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.

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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".