I don’t often write about political events, either here or in my travel blog

This blog is intended for those who love reading, and might like to follow my writing and publications. Nevertheless I won’t apologise to you, my readers, for diverting today a little way down the murky paths of UK politics. But you are deserving of an explanation, so here goes:

Normally in November I take part in National Novel Writing Month, the global extravaganza for novelists wanting to write the first draft of a new novel, down and dirty, in thirty days. [See my NaNo blog in 2015]

The timing was better than ever this year, as my recently completed SF novella Entangled has caught the eye of an Australian publisher, who is looking it over for possible publication. I had the outline of a new historical novel all mapped out. I’d had the first meeting with my new independent editor, Gemma of Oak Leaf Editing, and we’d tidied up the outline together.  I was signed up and on the start line for NaNo on November 1.

But sometimes things even more important than novels come along.

Here is the letter I wrote to the West Midlands Chapter of fellow NaNo writers, to explain why I’m withdrawing from writing the first 50,000 words of Governor’s Man: The Bronze Owl next month:

Dear Fellow Writers, 

I felt a word of explanation as to why I am withdrawing from the excellent project of NaNoWriMo 2018 was called for.

Along with 700,000 other like-minded fellow UK citizens, I marched in London on Saturday to support a People’s Vote on Brexit. This was such an extraordinary and inspirational experience, I have decided I must do more. Brexit is the great existential issue of our times for the UK. Not since WW2 has our country been so threatened, this time by internal division and lack of leadership when we most need it. 

Accordingly, I need to do what little I can as a writer and activist to support the right of the British people to have the final say on Brexit, and fight for the right to change our minds if necessary and stay in the EU. November will be a critical month in this fight.

So good luck to my fellow NaNoers – may you all win and emerge with the bones of a great new novel! I’ll see you all next year, when hopefully I can put politics behind me and go back to writing novels.

[If you want to follow my alternative November writing, I blog at jsrogers.blog and tweet as @rogers_jacquie]

I’ve followed this up by volunteering with my local Worcester branch of the People’s Vote campaign. Hopefully they’ll find something useful for a middle-aged wordsmith to do.

Either way, I will be able to look my gorgeous little grandson Alex in the eye when he asks, and tell him what Gramma did in the Brexit wars.

If you’re also keen to do your bit, go to the People’s Vote site for latest info and tips.

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