I co-wrote a live literature piece on this subject, back in 2003, when I was part of a collaborative writing trio, called 3dV. It was a playful, historical story about desire, fate and neighbours. The initial idea came from group member, Mary Winter, but since then the refrain rattles about my head on a fairly frequent basis.
The loudest was when I bought my share of the boat three years ago.
The most recent clanging has been set off by my imminent departure for Hawthornden Castle. I can't remember when or how exactly I heard of this place, but for many many years I've wanted to go. With the publication of Host last year I applied for a place there to work on a maritime project I've been researching. I was thrilled to be accepted. Now I'm just about to go.
For a month. Without internet. With four other writers. In silence (at least, from 0930-1830).
I have no idea how this will pan out. I don't have a clear ambition for the month, except to think, read, hopefully write something and walk.
I've just finished Sara Maitland's A Book of Silence, which was good, if accidental, preparation.
And so, until April ...