Richard Pierce

Richard Pierce – author, poet, painter

Life, Reading, Writing

Day 25

Fermat, alas, didn’t feature in any University Challenge answers last night, even though I even threw him at a Physics question. But I did get Holst right as the answer to the music starter (and it wasn’t a guess – who doesn’t know Mars, Bringer of War?), which A and M were very proud of me for (and me). The rest of UC and OC made me feel very unintelligent indeed, but who cares?

Yesterday in a nutshell: 98 unread work emails on opening email after a week off. Phone calls, Zoom calls, more emails. Accidental 5.4k walk at speed (it just happened). More setting up of A with her own studio in her room – should be finished today. Finished my fourth book of the year (not greatly impressed by the book). My third book arrived from The Bookshop’s (in Wigtown) Random Book Club that M enrolled me in as a Christmas present (what a great and much-appreciated idea). Time accelerated again. I must admit I feel more at home when I’m back at work. It sounds sad, but I’m lucky to have a job I love doing. Maybe it’s because there’s a kind of routine in it.

And all day I had so many words in my head I just couldn’t get rid of, and by the time I went to bed I felt ridiculously hyper, but managed to go to sleep nevertheless, which is something of a miracle. My body was actually shaking that sort of restrained tremble you have when things are just coming to a boil and your body can’t quite release the tension. Even when I woke up in the night (old men, you know), the feeling was still there, and again when I got up this morning. Putting the recycling out (and there was a lot of cardboard to shift) helped me there. Doing an extremely banal thing at 3C can sometimes make you feel free and alive, although doing it in minus 10C would make you feel a lot more free and alive.

Just about the best thing was to find out that C, whom I referenced a few days ago, puts together playlists for when he’s writing new novels. And if you think it’s sad that I got so excited about this, let me explain that most writers I know say they need absolute silence to write, and I’ve always felt very weird and left out in that I need music to write, and that I do put a different playlist together for every novel I write, and sometimes can’t actually move a novel on unless I’ve settled on the perfect playlist. And to know C does the same made me feel a lot less alone in this. He asked me if I had any suggestions for songs, so I sent him the spotify link to my top 23 songs of 2021 which I’m listening to right now. If you do nothing but listen to the first song on there, Sunflower Girl by Giant & The Georges, which is my most favourite song of 2021, you’ll have done yourself a favour.

Sometimes I feel I’m too light-hearted here, but I suppose I can’t be a miserable writerly type all the time. It’s good to come out of the shadows occasionally.



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