Unlike the gap between Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire and Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (commonly referred to as the Three Year Summer) my brief hiatus has not been anyway near as fruitful. I have spent the last couple of days doing so much housework that I truly believe I could set up my own business and still have more free time for myself. I cannot wait to start my new job and have more time for writing - as topsy-turvey as that sounds!
What else? I've been struck more and more by how our romantic dreams as children effect the way we think as adults.
On St Patrick's Day I attended a gathering wherein we played DreamPhone, which I'd never seen before. It is - for the unsuspecting among you - essentially Cluedo, but instead of finding a murderer you discover who has a crush on you. (I have it on good authority *cough*Emily*cough* that Richard was the hunk most girls swooned over).
I never played this as a child however. I wasn't allowed to read Sweet Valley High or The Babysitters' Club, and may or may not have started sneaking home trashy romance novels from the age of 11. Now I'm not accusing my parents of depriving me of romance - I'd read all of Austen's novels by the time I'd left primary school - but it was all very age appropriate.
Now, I have my own theory about the effect of this on me. Part of me thinks that if I'd got it all out of my system by the time I hit 16 I'd be writing a very different novel, but I love what I write. I am a hopeless romantic, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. I believe in instant connections and passion, and that a lover can be a confidante. I want rom com moments, and curled up in front of the tv moments.
But most of all, I want to look back on my childish hopes and dreams and smile. Because it's so important to encourage children to want love as they grow up - it's because of that, because of the love I was lucky enough to see around me, that made me know what I want for my own life.