Reading and getting fit are not two hobbies that are usually associated with each other. However, over the next few months to a year, that's what I intend to do. A friend has recently completed the challenge of walking from Land's End to John O'Groats and her achievement gave me an idea.
I decided to copy her challenge but to give it a twist of my own. While I'm walking through the virtual countryside, I have an audiobook playing that is set in that county. My intention is to blog about the walk/book as I go. However, I will also be writing a book alongside this in which the main character also does this walk and learns things about herself and her family along the way. I won't give away any more details than that at this stage, but I'm looking forward to trying out this new kind of research and seeing what it throws up. I'm also hoping to get a bit fitter along the way. My poor dog isn't going to know what's hit him! He loves going for a walk, but he's equally happy snuggled up in his basket and I suspect that there will be a few days in the not too distant future where we will be cursing each other as we walk around the streets of Brightlingsea!
We did our first walk this morning to kick start our long trek and despite the 5:55am alarm call, I feel remarkably awake writing this, however I have a day ahead of me filled with looking after/home schooling my kids, while he is currently curled up asleep in his basket, content to spend the rest of the day relaxing. Little does he know he'll be going out again this afternoon as the small one wants to take him for a walk and then possibly again this evening so that our other (very old) dog gets a little walk as well! At the moment, despite having worked out that it might take 200+ days to complete the steady trek northwards, I'm feeling quite positive about the whole experience - it gives me chance to listen to audiobooks, it will get me fitter (and hopefully lose inches even if not weight!), I'm spending time with my four-legged friend and having some of that all important headspace. What's not to like, right? But, this morning is bright and fairly warm. Had the weather this morning been like that in the opening chapter of my first book, Daphne Du Maurier's Jamaica Inn, I'm not convinced I would be looking forward to the rest of it so much. When the days are dark, cold and wet and I know I'm coming home to the joys of the rush to get the kids ready for school, rather than the cup of tea my husband had waiting for me this morning, I'm sure I'll be calling myself various unflattering names, but if the book is progressing nicely by that point, perhaps that will mitigate things somewhat!
I have so much writing to do over the next few weeks - a dissertation to complete, a piece or two for the latest Write Society anthology to write/edit, a couple of short stories to edit, a short story or two to write, a children's novel to edit and a novel for adults to complete the first draft of - and all this before I can even begin the walking novel!
It's a good job I love what I do!