I made a decent enough Sunday roast today. We don’t usually have them in my family, or at least not as people from the UK or the US would expect. For some time now I’ve wanted to try myself at this, and today was the day. A chicken was put in the oven, together with a trayful of vegetables, and all were left to their own devices for the next two hours.

It turned out nicely, if I do say so myself. One minor snag, though, was that the time given in the recipe wasn’t long enough even though I bought a smaller chicken–(not funny, Jamie Oliver!) –I had to pop it back in for another half-hour. After that, it was finally done, and everything tasted fantabulous.

In other news, I started a new short story yesterday, which Steve will be happy to hear, since this is one that we plan to submit for an anthology. The due date for subs is January 15, so we can’t afford to wait much longer if we want to give it our best shot. Anyway, what I want to record for posterity is my realisation that I need to write my way into a story. I’ve never given it much thought before, but it sort of hit me today: the first 500 or so words only serve to home in on the characters and their threads. Knowing this, cutting the beginning will be much easier, since I no longer believe everything is essential.

This story is another example of the way Steve and I work best together: taking a story that’s easily separable into two threads, so that we can write simultaneously. It’s no accident that this applies to all our published stories so far.

And now you’ll have to excuse me. I want to get back to reading the magnificent An Instance of the Fingerpost by Iain Pears.

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