It’s the dead of night here in Northern Ireland and I can’t sleep. It happens from time to time. I wake up and, try as I might, I can’t get back over again. There’s no real reason why, I’m not overly worrying about anything and I’ve got nowhere to be. I’m just awake. So I do what I know best, I retreat into my world of words. I write a blog post, bury myself in a book, chip away at my latest novel. Words are my escape, my sanctuary.
It’s always been this way, but more so as I’ve grown older. You know where you are with words, well at least I do. I can weave them as I wish, creating new worlds and characters as quickly as the ideas drop softly into my head. A steady conveyor belt of sentences, paragraphs and pages until…poof…there’s a 120,000 word manuscript staring you in the eye. I’ve no idea how that happened but congratulations to all concerned.
Sometimes I need a break, but I always return, like an old dog gnawing at its favourite bone. I’ve written three books now, with a fourth in the pipeline. They are my past, present and future, my innermost thoughts and feelings laid bare for all to see. I pour my heart and soul into them, sacrifice a little piece of myself every time to breathe new life into letters and words spoken a trillion times before. My books are me, my legacy, my raisin d’etre.
I have found sanctuary so many times before in a book, when battered by the storms of life. They have been my calm harbour, my safe haven. There I have healed and taken stock before returning to the fray. I hope that my stories may offer similar comfort to those who read them. If I have, then my work is largely done and I can rest easy again. Maybe that’s why I woke up this morning and wrote these words. Somebody, somewhere needed to hear them. Maybe it was you.