The end of the week draws nigh and so far I have managed to send off three separate submissions and make what I think is a decent stab at some material for a new project, not bad for a few days of work. Even with all the driving up and down the A303 and M3 I have carved out a few quiet moments to get ahead and do things that otherwise I would not have been able to do.

I have no doubt that had my timetable been the same as it was last year I would not have been able to get this work done, so while there are pecuniary downsides to being without those obligations the opportunities to get on with matters related to composition have been much more fruitful. This is the primary motivation behind taking time off next year, to be able to devote myself to these matters more fully.

Today I shall continue with the new piece, which is at that stage of not really having any material which is good enough. It does, however, have plenty of doodles that could be reshaped into much stronger ideas, so for now I am happy with where it is going.

Next week will be a busy one with rehearsals, concerts (including Gerontius) and a couple of lectures to prepare. All the more reason to get ahead with the work this week while I can.

Despite the valiant attempts of George the Barista to sell me a mince pie yesterday Advent is still a few weeks off, but I am already preparing myself for the wave of carol services and concerts that will breach the dam at the end of this month. And then, suddenly, just before Christmas all will be quiet and I will head into the terrifying unknown. Will I be productive? What will I write? Will I be happy? Terrifying and exciting.