NaNoWriMo is coming! Hide! No, wait, the other thing.
If I were on track, this would have been several days ago, and you would have an extra two days to follow my advice. Instead, I’ve been following my advice. In the northern hemisphere the nights are drawing in, the clocks are changing, the leaves are dropping, and the weather is turning towards winter. There’s a bite in the air, although not much of one in England at the moment, and everything smells of autumn.
Now is a good time to get out and enjoy it. If the weather allows, go and sit in your city centre and watch the birds feeding up for winter, the early Christmas shoppers and the confused first years settling into university. Take a tea or coffee to keep you warm and a notebook to keep your notes, because town is full of inspiration. If you’re more rural or can get out there, go for a walk in the countryside and try to capture the colours and the smells of autumn, the crunch of leaves under your boots and the way they snag in your hair. Embrace it, fill pages of your notebook (you picked it up on Day One, I hope), and make the most of it.
For us in the north it’s going to be dark for a long time now. I’m all the way up in Yorkshire, which means that for most of December and January it gets light at about eight and dark again at three. Yes, 7 hours of daylight, and the chances of seeing it if you work are fairly slim. NaNo, bless its cotton socks, likes to suck up every spare minute, and by the time it’s over it can feel like I’ve not seen light for a month and won’t see it again until May Morning. So in October I like to get out and about, get that Christmas shopping started, and remember what the world looks like.
It’s not like I miss it, come November, but I like to pretend I do.