I chose one of my photographs of a recent trip to Tignes to illustrate this post, because I fell in love with sled dogs on that holiday (I was particularly amused by their stubbornness) and recently became the owner of a Tamaskan puppy whom we’ve named Flin (Scottish Gaelic for sleet, apparently) and is equally as independent, stubborn and strong.
Sled dogs, from which Tamaskans are descended, are famously persistent and able to run for many miles in the snow. They have thick coats to withstand the cold and powerful bodies.
I’m hoping to harness some of this strength – metaphorically – for my writing journey. Sometimes it feels like my sled is out of control, my muscles are failing and it is too unwelcoming and cold for me to continue on this journey any more. This is one of those times for me, and I know that probably I just have to wait for this bleak weather to change before I carry on – or go in a different direction altogether.
I am also thinking about the playfulness of writing and the enjoyment that it can bring, when it is going well. These beautiful dogs are very playful, rolling in the snow and howling. I too want to howl and play, enjoying the snow for its own sake rather than caring about the journey and where it will end.
I’ll be back in the New Year with a special offer on my book, and there will be an interview with the curators of the Fantasy: Realms of Imagination exhibition at the British Library on the Story Radio podcast on the 1st of January, exploring how writers, artists and game makers create imaginary worlds.
Until then, Yuletide greetings to you all, and I hope you all have full sledges, strong dogs and fine weather.