Lorde says work on her next album has been derailed by the death of her dog, Pearl.
The Kiwi singer-songwriter has written a lengthy note to members of her mailing list, saying while she's been "working away on the new songs for most of this year in New Zealand... something happened last month that I need to tell you about".
Her dog Pearl had two cardiac arrests within the space of an hour and died.
"I was holding him when he went, and I know he knew that I was there. But this loss has been indescribably painful, and a light that was turned on for me has gone out."
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She adopted Pearl in 2018, and said he'd been sick most of his life.
"Pearl brought an immeasurable amount of joy and purpose into my world. Love vibrated all around us," she wrote.
"I felt my life growing and swelling in healthfulness, this orb of contentment glowing around me and Pearl, and our family. We spent almost all our time alone together, him asleep under the piano as I played, or on the porch together, or in the park, where he became a blurry speck of gold in the green, far away."
She said the love she felt from Pearl was "divine", and was planning to channel that into the follow-up to 2017's critically acclaimed Melodrama.
"But the bright energy I was trying to communicate to you has gone, for now. He was instrumental to the discovery that was taking place. I felt he led me towards the ideas. And it's going to take some time and recalibration, now that there's no shepherd ahead of me, to see what the work is going to be.
"So I'm asking for your patience, as 2020 comes around and you start to wonder where the next record is. I have lost my boy, and I need some time to see the good again, to finish making this for you."
The note was posted in full to her page on Reddit by a fan.
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Lorde, real name Ella Yelich-O'Connor, released her debut album Pure Heroine in 2013 when she was just 17. Its lead single 'Royals' was a worldwide smash, topping the US charts for nine weeks. She followed it up with Melodrama in 2017, which didn't sell as well but wowed critics.
Earlier this year Lorde said her third record was "in the oven".
"I think this next one will probably be born out of the piano in my house; me and my friends, keeping it simple."