I’m up at 5am here, and everything is still but for the electric hum of some machine somewhere in the cottage. I’m sitting in the solarium, surrounded by great bushes and cacti, with my laptop on an ancient wooden table, the floor covered in great pieces of slate and all of pre-dawn English night looming outside the glass wall to my right. A mug of tea is close at hand, and I have a couple of hours on which to work on my novel.

Which is what I am about to do.

Nothing like a hot mug of black tea with milk and honey to get the engines started. I broke 60,000 words while writing on the plane, finishing that writing bout at exactly 60,001. I’m managing to only lag a day or two behind despite all my travels, but am rapidly becoming aware that with Feb having only 28 days, I may not be able to continue my neat plan of 1 novel per month, as Blood from the Mountain is liable to spill into March.

But! Such is live! Such are the vicissitudes of harnessing oneself to the machine. All is well as long as the words continue to come, so it’s time for a bracing sip of tea and getting to work.