Monday, December 19, 2005

Busman's Holiday

Yesterday, I didn't write a single word the whole day. I also didn't crack open the spine of a book. I did look at a magazine but it was just a desultory scan. This is odd for me. I pretty much write every day and on those rare days when I don't write, I try and catch up on my reading.

Before you all start imagining me as some recluse hunched over a computer, I do of course do other things during the day. It's just that writing/reading always have some part to play in the day for me. So when I have days like yesterday, I'm stunned. I can't imagine my life without a constant relationship with words.

Often writers take busman's holidays - the laptop / pad & paper, goes with them everywhere, even to the beach or the exotic deserts of China. (That last one I did - with my faithful Alphasmart in my pack). Sometimes people advise that taking a break, a real break, with no writing whatsoever, is a good thing to recharge your batteries. I have no disagreement with that. But for me, such a break equals two or three days.

What I can't imagine, is going on holiday for a week or two and not writing throughout that period. That wouldn't equal a restful vacation for me because writing is part of who I am. And it's a part I don't want to be without.

What do you think of such full writing breaks if you're a writer? And if you're a reader, have you ever considered not being without a book ie. taking a complete break from reading? Could you?


Emma Sinclair said...

If I'm writing, I can go a fairly long time without reading.

If I'm not writing, I'm almost always reading.

I don't think I could go more than a day without doing either. I'd have to be REALLY busy doing something else.

And I'd probably be a very cranky girl.

Anonymous said...

Hmm...I'm always doing something associated with writing. When I'm off from my "paying" job, I write more. And I couldn't imagine not writing while I'm off from there.

Nalini Singh said...

Ah, people who understand the true meaning of obsession *g*

Anonymous said...

Normally, when I go somewhere, I take something to read. If I don't, I'd feel something was missing.

Nalini Singh said...

Me too, Olga. That reminds me, must remember to pack some books for the trip! :)