I've often said it's impossible for a writer to have a holiday. The mind is always buzzing inescapably with ideas, no matter what.
But it is possible - and important - to take breaks.
These wonderfully cute goslings were some of the stars of the Devon County Show, which I visited on Thursday.
To be honest, it was a totally unjustified few hours out. I had far too much work on, but...
I had the sense I needed a break. Everything I had to do was crowding in on me; the teaching, new book, screenplay I'm working on.
I felt myself getting tense, rather than enjoying the writing, and that's never a good sign.
So off I went on my little expedition...
And after only a few hours away from my desk, I felt much more relaxed, creative and enthusiastic.
It was the magic medicine of a break.
Sitting slogging away, hour after hour, may feel like you're working hard. But, in reality, if what you're doing is sub standard because you've lost that delight in it...
A break can refresh the mind, renew the enthusiasm, and make the writing much, much better.
And it can be a whole lot of fun, too.
It's another of the great delights of writing - what looks like simple indulgence can, with a little crafty lateral thinking, even be put down as "work".