The Joy Returned (Real Life Post)

Sometimes I will write Real Life Posts on here. Those will be posts about me and my life, maybe some book reviews as well, rather than a new chapter of Knaresborough Mysteries. All of them will have the tag ‘real life post’ as well as indication in the title so you know they don’t belong to the story!

I haven’t been writing my entire life, but started when I was thirteen or fourteen, and I started with poetry (which is pretty good, by the way). Then short stories followed and when I was fifteen I started my first novel (which is absolutely horrible!). I went ahead and studied Creative Writing after upper secondary school and then a couple of years ago I started my fantasy novel (yet unpublished) and a couple of months back I started my dystopia set in Scandinavia. Somewhere along that road my joy in writing disappeared.

For a long time it has been a drudgery. I have done it because I should, because I know there is an agent who wants to read my dystopia manuscript when it’s finished. But none of it has felt like the adventure it used to be, years ago.

I suppose it might be because of my situation in life too. It’s hard to find a good job and I am struggling to keep an employment. Apparently that is the case when you are a twenty-something person. You see, nobody wants to give you a permanent position and when cutbacks are required you are the first one to go.

Last week was one of the most horrible in my life. I had to put my old dog to sleep at the age of 13 years and 11 months. It was heartbreaking and I still cry. After all I had had him since I was 11 so we had grown up together, and now he doesn’t exist anymore. I still cannot wrap my head around that. To top it off I found out that the company where I am stationed (as a consultant) probably can’t keep me on, and an interview I thought I was going to for another job this week was cancelled because they found an internal solution.

On Thursday I was on my way into the city after work to meet up with some friends and suddenly I got this idea about Lady Matilda Arkwright. That is, you see, the way my brain works. One of my friends said that he had heard that according to Neil Gaiman you should take your sadness and turn it into art. Perhaps that is why this happens to me? It seems I am channeling all the pain and hurt into creating something else.

So, just like that, out of my anxiety, fear, sadness, hurt and pain something was born which this last week has given me back something I haven’t had in a long time: joy in writing. I’m working on chapter two at the moment, along with some illustrations, and hope to post it in a day or two. All of a sudden I long to write the next section about Matilda and all the crazy adventures I can see her in. I can’t wait to get it all down in print!

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