Forest Walks With Ultraviolence.


Recovery has happened so swiftly, and it was with both gratitude and wonder that I dug out my back pack in preparation for my first post-op walk. It was a slow, modest hike but a very necessary part of kick starting my writing.

The second chapter of book two has been a blank document for a while now; Carbamazapine, the meds used to control pain in Trigeminal Neuralgia, cocoons your misfiring brain in clouds of marshmallow which makes snappy prose and tight scenes completely impossible – although the mild hallucinations I experienced at the beginning rather cleared the way on some sticky plot issues.

But being both pain and  Carbamazapine free makes me feel as sharp as I have ever been: wide awake under bright July skies with my writing, in all its thousands of words, buzzing under my skin like bees ready to swarm. So I head for the forest. I know by the time I get back home I will be ready to take my place in that other world. I will sit back at my desk, open up that blank document and the words will swarm. I will have found my way through the woods.

Wide skies, wild paths, old trees and music. I walked the dirt paths, put my headphones in and let the characters write their own scenes, to speak as they wish. I know where I have to be by the end of chapter two but the story finds its own way there, it refuses to be forced, and the music is part of this magic.

Oh god, what would I do without music? One of the possible side effects of my recent surgery was the loss of hearing in the right ear. I was lucky, once again, and having retained full surround sound I have been cherishing this gift, and that day, walking beneath the trees listening to my music, was made up of the miraculous.

So if every chapter needs its playlist (as every chapter does…), what is the playlist for the once neglected, but now vibrantly alive, chapter two?

Oh, Lana, I love you.
Oh, Lana, I love you.

I’d love to hear your current playlists, so please feel free to share!


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