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Writing. It’s a dirty job, but….

Caution – a totally non-historical, and apolitical, post…

It is an odd thing, but there comes a time when you write when you realise that actually, you’re not writing for yourself any more.

You put the words on the page, and they come out of your head, but actually, there are people out there – real, living, breathing, feeling people – who read them and care what happens to your characters. And that’s a sobering reflection.

Now I am not, by any stretch, a best-selling author. Meh. Occasionally. But it scares me that that rebel rabble are out there – unsupervised – and that I have a sort of moral obligation to take care of them. They have acquired a life outside my head, and people have been known to talk to me about Luce and Rosie and Hapless as if I know them and may bump into them shortly this week.

Absolutely, Russell will be a lot happier when he gets a steady girlfriend. (I’m sure he will, he’s just a little busy with Army politics at the moment.) – but he’s not very old, remember, they can be a little silly at that age. He’ll steady up when he settles down with a nice girl.

Luce is going to be fine. He’s young, he’ll get over it.

Yes, I think Rosie should be sterner with his daughters, too. Hardly fair, to come home every six months and spoil them rotten, then get off and leave his poor wife to clean up the wreckage. Typical, though.

There is a part of me that thinks it’s funny that there really are people who believe there was a Caroline poet called Lucifer Pettitt who was the 17th century’s answer to William McGonagall. And I am toying with the idea of the Holofernes Thomas Babbitt Wikipedia page, detailing his military campaigns. (1632, Siege of Nuremberg, serving with Wallenstein – in a ditch, mostly drunk, or suffering from a lesser pox. You can see how it’d go…)

Always happy to provide Het Babbitt’s recipe for ember tart, on request. Hetta really does exist. Het is every woman who’s ever stood behind a famous man and looked obliging and serene, whilst secretly trying to work out how many clean shirts he’s got left and how many more meals she can get out of the ham bone in the pantry. I have been accused of being Het’s non-fiction alter ego and I’m not altogether denying it.

…And on that note, my Real Life cat has just stuck his Real Life wet nose down my ear and demanded that I feed him.

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