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“the game’s afoot”

Just before Christmas I ended my working relationship with my literary agent. The result is that now I’m able to focus the business of writing, which has been on hold for the last year or more.

I have a plan of what I’m going to publish over the next two or three years, a real strategy on how to proceed, and I feel energised.¬†Books will be published in both print and electronic forms, and I’ve got other ideas bubbling away for how I can get my stories out into the world.

And there’s a novel due for publication in February.

 

Brig

Refitted, copper-bottomed, new masts and rigging. Currently plotting a course.

Shiny things

Spent the last three or four weeks working on project with some pals, but I’m realising it’s a dead end, I shouldn’t have begun it. I’ll have to stop because it’s eating into my time and filling my hard drive.

No matter.

Lose early, move on.

 

 

 

 

 

Christmas concert

I haven’t been to many church services in recent years, but the last two times I was playing an instrument. Last night I took Miyagi, my alto sax, along and joined some former colleagues for a lovely service.

The highlight for me was listening to a dozen Iranians singing a hymn in their native language. They were just singing, there was no artifice, no false American accents, no posturing. Just singing. It was real.

As the reverend held the service, little kids in PJs and coats ran about the front, and that too was a wonderful thing.

I saw J’s mother there, which was weird, she’s about as religious as me, but then I realised she might be involved with the Iranians. There was no reunion, no setting aside of past differences; there was no forgiveness. I don’t converse with thieves. I blanked her. She blanked me too. I think that was the proper thing for both of us to do.

That aside, the evening was just wonderful. Returning to a place that I hold dear in my memories was like stepping through a looking-glass.

haven

Suzie asked me if I’d play a Christmas concert at Burn Park church, and I said yes. I haven’t been there since I was fourteen, I wrote about the place here, and it’s dear to my heart. It was a refuge for me when I was a kid and life wasn’t kind.

I set up in the church at about half five, then nipped through a side door and walked along a corridor to the place where we all used to meet up. Sat in a seat, saw myself sitting there aged thirteen with Mark, Mickey, Heather, Carol and the others, everyone older than me, looking after me; a place where I never needed to be tough or defensive or tell lies. It all came back to me; I cried.

I texted my girl Ruthie and told her where I was. She texted back, ‘Gd memories?’

‘Safe memories,’ I texted back.

A Christmas collection:

A collection of contemporary, Christmas-themed stories, as it says on Amazon.

Available for download – click the cover image for link:

Bones

A short story of mine, Bones, is featured on this site.

Not sure about the artwork, seems like it was created by someone who didn’t read the story. Either way, feel free to read it there, maybe comment.