Rhythm was the theme of the day yesterday as I had ended up after the previous day’s work with a fragment of material that was possibly workable but definitely uninspired. A succession of quavers with some sort of flow is all well and good, but I have come to recognise through the years that those long lines of similar notes are something that I tend to do when I am trying to prise material out of nowhere.

I went away and had a bit of a think and a bit of a read about rhythmic design and then changed one small detail which then led to my changing another small detail, and suddenly the phrase had much more space, a little light and shade. So far this year I have been concentrating on the Dunstan cantata, but it seems as if that focus is beginning to shift to elements of my technique that need strengthening.

There are other areas of my writing that I have been tackling since the start of the year, and while they are at present merely various different things floating around on their own at some point they will coalesce into a single, defined approach. Even so, I can feel that those disparate areas are all improving as I spend my time and focus on them.

We invited one of our gaming neighbours over for some play last night, somebody who lives next door but who, thanks to our incompatible diaries, we have not seen in this capacity for a year or so, and we sat up into the night playing trusty old solid old Dominion, whose design still holds up well against many of the young pretenders. In gaming, so in life, I guess.

Duking it out in Dominion.

At the moment there is a fine balance in my days, even if I am still experimenting with different times and layouts. It is particularly satisfying to have the feeling of being able to get things done, and there is no doubt in my mind that my writing has already become stronger thanks to my being able to spend more time on it.