Yesterday I went along to meet Caitrin at the Scottish Book Trust to talk about my New Writer’s Award and where, just as important, I was handed a large cheque (in that the sum of money it promised was large, not that it was one of those outsized novelty cheques presented by multinational corporations during televised charity events. That would have been difficult to take home on the bus). It’s obviously slightly vulgar to mention the cash aspect first, but, being practical, this is what helps me spend the rest of the year working part-time at a job while spending as much of the rest of my time as possible writing. And it was the practical, business-like aspects of the Book Trust that impressed me most, I think. It was an introductory meeting, and I haven’t quite decided what route to go down from the options they give you, but the focus was very much on the mechanics of writing and the possible time constraints or other commitments that might limit it, as well as the range of practical help that they offer over the year. While the help they offer is incredibly generous, the Book Trust also understands that often the best support you can give a writer is to leave him or her alone to write. For the next two or three months then, I’m being left to my own devices to work on the next draft of my book and think about what I want from them. Which is more than enough to be getting on with.