I wrote a hard scene tonight. Chapter 10, roughly 120 pages in on Word. I sat down, put on some good music, made myself a mug of tea, focused and began to write. I visualized the scene, tried to grasp the tenor of the character’s emotions, to chart their progression. Put myself in the unearthed room beneath the church, down in the darkness, summoned it up and made it real, if only for thirty minutes as I typed.

This is such an important scene in the book. One of the few make-or-break moments, a scene I’ve been building towards, thinking about, relishing getting to. I don’t think I nailed it, I’ll need to go back, fine tune, flesh out, refine. But I finished it, and now I’m on the final stretch. I finished it in one blurred burst, hammering out the words and phrases, the paragraphs and pages until I sat back with a gasp and looked at it, laid out across my screen in sharp and precise letters. I feel exhilarated, doubtful, pleased.

It’s like hitting a hole in one on an empty green at an abandoned golf course. There’s nobody there to appreciate your efforts, nobody there to applaud and confirm your achievement. After that burst of energy and that climactic moment of excitement as you revel in the glow of accomplishment, you realize that you’re sitting alone in your bedroom. That it’s 1.41am in the morning and everybody you know in this Time Zone is asleep. That writing is a solitary, solitary thing, a long and harrowing journey into the darkness, an act of faith that you’ll make it through to the other side and that when all is said and done, the journey will be worth the recounting.