I started and I didn’t want to admit it. I would lie in bed instead of getting up to write, my usual routine. I would distract myself with books or television, hoping to jump start something that would make me want to write, but it wasn’t working. Eventually, I had to admit it to myself, when I took out my pen and notebook after reading a line in China Miéville’s The Scar that almost inspired me, but the minute my book opened, I couldn’t get a single word down. I had writer’s block.
I tried a few things. I told myself it wasn’t real. Nevertheless, I needed a holiday. I had heard a few of my more eclectic friends talking about Croatia as somewhere to go, so I had a look online. It looked amazing. On the coast; lots of sands, sea and sun. It would either relax me, inspire me, and failing that at least I would get a good tan. I research some Croatian writers to read while I was there, to really get my head in the mood. I took The Ministry of Pain by Dubravka Ugresic as my holiday read. Airport books are generally rubbish.
Croatia was everything I thought it would be and more. I stayed at the phenomenal Hotel Croatia at Cavtat. With the beautiful town on Cavtat on my left and the bright blue Adriatic on my right, I felt so relaxed. I stopped worrying about what I was going to write, and went out to explore.
Cavtat is like a dream destination, and not in the must do holiday sense. It’s like walking through a painting of what a holiday should look like. Terracotta roofs and cobbled streets wander down to the water’s edge, where fishing boats and yachts jostle for your attention. The food is wonderful, every bite like a never tried flavour, even vegetables tasted like ambrosia. I checked out the artwork of celebrated painter Vlaho Bukovac. I wandered the old town, the harbour, taking in the amazing sights and sounds. The Church of Our Lady of the Snow and the Church of St Nicholas were beautiful hideaways to get pen to paper.
There’s so much to see and do to be inspired by. I researched the siege of Dubrovnik while I was there, visited some of the places that were bombed in 1991. The harrowing history of the area, juxtaposed with the beauty of the town I stayed in. It was impossible not to pick up my pen and start writing again.