No, I haven’t written any more of my novel. Haven’t had much sleep, either. Storytelling in Cromford on Wednesday. Creative writing class, play-writing class and creative fusion meeting on Thursday (more or less a sixteen-hour day). Taking the old folk to the church coffee room on Friday morning, then a lunch meeting with the new chairman of the Concert Society, and off to Hebden Bridge for storytelling in the evening. Cooking and domestic chores on Saturday and then a trip to Chinley for an evening of folk music and more storytelling. Most of Sunday and Monday spent compiling the programme for next Thursday’s Creative Fusion evening – this is when the film with the learning-disabled people will have its premiere, but I had to organize the rest of the event as well and then circulate the draft programme – and doing my creative writing homework (a short story, 1700 words) and play-writing homework (a short sketch, 1600 words), and phoning around to arrange a short visit to Scotland in the second week of May. That’s the only time I can go to visit my daughters: blank pages in my diary for three whole days! But the third of those days will mostly be spent in a recording studio, because at last I’ve managed to arrange a recording of some of my Peak District folktales – CDs to be offered for sale at my forthcoming gigs.

Oh yes, storytelling gigs: one in the middle of May, one at the beginning of June, one at the beginning of July. At least, those are the ones I know about! Who knows, they might ask me to do a floor spot at the Matlock Storytelling Cafe on May 1st, and I’ll surely have to tell a story or so in Buxton on the 10th and in Glossop on the 22nd, but those are just ten-minute performances, like the one I’ll do at the Creative Fusion evening on Thursday coming.

I want time to get my head down and really work on the novel. I’ve completed 110,000 words of the draft manuscript so there isn’t all that far to go, maybe another 30 or 40,000 words, but… time, time.

And I probably need a holiday. This frenetic lifestyle is exhausting!

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