Monday 1 February 2016


By Candy Gourlay

So it's February now. How's it going?  Written any books lately?

It's such a struggle. I sit down to work, my good intentions shining, and what do I do? I interrupt myself. I make another cup of coffee (that I'm going to allow to go cold anyway). I go to the bathroom (even though I've already had a wee ... but why not go again, just in case?). I glance at my phone for messages (and spend the next hour or five answering texts and scrolling through Facebook). I read a passage from the book I'm currently reading (and end up reading for the rest of the morning or even, day).

Why? Why do I do it? Why do I interrupt myself like this?

I once pinned a notice that said  DON'T INTERRUPT above my desk. Mind you it was to remind myself to avoid expository interruptions that take the reader out of the flow of my story. But here I am, compulsively interrupting myself when I know full well that the most important thing I need to do right now is get on with my writing.

Speaking of interruptions - may I interrupt this blog post to congratulate Kathryn Evans on the birth of her debut novel MORE OF ME today? Well done, Kathy ... we're all excited for you! 

The other day, I was telling someone (on Facebook of course) how much I hated myself for even being there. She told me that she'd deleted the Facebook app from her phone so that if she wanted to visit FB, she had to deliberately fire up the laptop and connect to the internet to do so.

I thanked her and promptly deleted the Facebook app from my phone.

And turned off notifications.

It was like going cold turkey on chocolate.

Did it work?

Well at first, I was like an addict, tapping away at my phone before realising that Facebook wasn't there anymore.

Then I was checking my email account for notifications from Facebook before realising that there weren't going to be any.

THEN I got a lot of work done.

It's been a few days now. I'm out of the loop. Haven't seen the latest dog and cat videos. And though I can access FB on my laptop, I haven't done so. Much.

Wish me luck.

Lovely Laura 
Hey! Candy will be appearing with Laura Dockrill in Tall Stories and Mermaid Tales at the Imagine Children's Festival. The event will be chaired by Emily Drabble, editor of the Guardian Children's Books website. Please come. Tuesday, 16 February 2016, 1pm, Level 5 Function Room at the Royal Festival Hall. Book tickets 


  1. Congrats Kathryn - hope it goes well. The cover has the grab factor.
    I'm surprised you get any writing done at all, Candy, between what seems like back to back public events, maintaining an impressively regular blog, travelling and collecting socks.
    I'm loving 'write together' sessions at the moment - sitting with other writers, all silently working on our own projects. It makes it much easier to focus and to tackle the tricky plot problems etc that I avoid on my own.

  2. Ha ha it's so good to know other writers struggle like this! Thanks, Candy.

  3. I'm at the station waiting for a train to get to more of me launch. I should be thinking about writing right now. Thanks for a timely post !


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