Day 2: It’s raining, it’s pouring…

On a walk to the park this afternoon, there was a light sluice of rain. In an attempt to keep my daughter interested, I tried to teach her the Old Man Rain song:

It’s raining, it’s pouring, the old man is snoring. He went to bed and bumped his head and couldn’t get up until morning.

Since she’s only two-and-a-half, she couldn’t quite manage all of those words and instead made up her own version:

It’s raining, pouring. Get up in the morning. Bumped his head. Whoops! Be careful.

Now she’s mastered the art of speech, I simply cannot help but laugh at her mannerisms and the adorable things she says.

We came home to hot apple pie and custard! :)

In other news, I seem to have an Everlasting Biro. The ink ran out three days ago and yet it’s still writing perfectly fine.

See? Not a single drop of ink but it still writes like the day I bought it. Not bad for 0.60p!

Today’s research took me on a journey through the art of the Amarna period of the 18th Dynasty and then onto burial customs. Two integral parts of my upcoming novel.

Now: Time for an afternoon off!

Day 1: Is this a New Year?

Technically, no. It’s not the first day of a new year, or even the first day of January. It is not even the first day of September — it’s the second.

Yet I am treating it as a new year. It’s my new year. Let me explain why:

First off — and despite being just six months away from being thirty years old — I am still in the routine imposed by my school years. Though I left school fifteen years ago — dropped out, actually — I still feel that refreshed sense of excitement brought about by the first week in September: the stationery sales (oh god, the stationery sales!), the cooler days and crisper nights, the leaving behind summer and anticipation of autumn. It feels like New Year should start here, in September, just as the world gets back into gear from a long and warm, lazy summer.

And this brings me to my second point: Autumn! Although the official first day of autumn doesn’t swing by until September 23rd this year, it very much feels like it is here already. The last couple of nights have been cold — cold enough to condense up my windows and leave me with a wet fog to wipe away in the mornings. There’s dew on the grass when it gets light and, walking my dog before the day got into gear this morning, I was actually cold. It’s been raining for a few days straight now; the warmth of the sun seems long left behind.

Even the tree outside my window seems to agree that autumn has come early this year — the majority of its leaves are red already, and some are even littering the grass.

Still, that tree turns earlier than all the others, every year.

This next year is also a count down: in September 2016, my two-and-a-half year old daughter will start nursery school. This next twelve months is set to be geared around potty training (we’ve already had a failed attempt) and encouraging her to eat without being spoon-fed (she had it nailed earlier this year, but the Terrible Twos and Toddler Regression have seen me sitting at the table, my own meal going clap cold while I try and force as much food into my resistant child as I can). Yes, this year is a count down — to a huge life change for both of us; to me getting time to myself back again, while my daughter spends half-days at school.

Most importantly, a year from now I hope to begin querying agents and publishers.

That’s right — at the age of thirty I want to take control of my writing career. No more practice attempts. No more self-publishing because it seems easier and ‘the popular thing to do’.

Almost ten years ago I set out to write a novel that would be accepted and published by a traditional publishing house.

Almost ten years on, I’ve meandered down several roads and have come to the point where I need to get back on the track of The Dream.

I am currently working on research towards what will hopefully be a series of three historical novels based around some key, real-life characters from the 18th Dynasty of Ancient Egypt. I have currently been researching for two months and estimate a month of research left. A month of plotting after that, and I hope to begin writing the first draft of the first novel on November 1st. Yes, that’s right — I’ll be getting a first-month boost in with NaNoWriMo. I’ve participated — and won! — several times.

I hope to be querying this novel a year from now. And to help me achieve this goal, I plan on holding myself accountable by blogging every day for the next 365 days.

So here is Day #1.

Here’s to getting this party started.