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Monthly Archives: January 2022

Shoreline Gold

I was at the beach this morning, and took this photograph. The coastal path inspired an early story of mine. I still like that story. It does the things I like my stories to do.

Harm’s Way

A couple of days ago I opened a new word document and saved it under the title Harm’s Way. It was an auspicious moment. This will be the third and final book in a trilogy. I first began thinking about the story that eventually became the Jago trilogy in 2016, and I finished the first book, Jago, in 2020. I’m currently finishing off the second book Jester, to be published later this year.

Harm’s Way is the final book. I pretty much know the story, though it may surprise me yet, and I’m looking forward to working on it.

Usually when I begin a book, I just start, and there’s no real pleasure in it, just a nagging compulsion to get the words down on the page. But with this story, simply opening the word document gave me a feeling of elation. I know it will work. I know it will balance with the other books in the series. I know the strands of the plot will mostly be tied up by the end, and in a satisfying way. I know there will be dark places in the story, though I’m not sure of where they will be yet. And I know there will be light too.

So I’m feeling good about the story. Not in a hubristic way – I still have to put in the work, and there’s never a guarantee. But if I approach the task honestly and diligently, it will work.





The other, warped in the shape of a man,”



support network

Being independent, you don’t enjoy the support-structure of agents, publicists and editors, but you pick up help where you can. It’s often very informal and very organic in its development, but the support you receive is in some ways superior to the contractual stuff you get from an agency.  Whether with spotting Anglicisms in a book set in the USA, getting a class to critically read a manuscript, or maybe just being enthusiastic about something that I’m unsure of, it’s super useful to a singleton like myself when people offer their help and guidance.

I’d struggle without them.

And because of the internet reach of my work, this support network is truly international, it occurs randomly, worldwide, when someone reads one of my books or short stories, and they get in touch with a question or a comment, and we build bridges from there.


toil, no trouble

Cupboard door fixed. Taps needs fixing: one leaks, one is loose. And the new Mac needs lots of things done to make it work perfectly. Perfectly for me, that is.

I wrote a list of jobs, and got to 27, some easy, some slightly beyond my ken, especially the IT stuff*, so I decided to complete a couple every day. The writing is on pause ’til I get the bulk of these out of the way.

Might have a glass of wine tonight.



* I do not understand a lot of tech stuff. I have 9 tech jobs to complete.

you say you want a revolution

…well, you know. We all want to change the world.”

But when I see people desperate to tear down society and start again, and there seem to be a lot of them at the moment, I sit here with my coffee and my new MacBook and my creature-comforts, and I think, who benefits from this revolution?

No one that I know.

Every would-be revolutionary thinks that, come the revolution, they’ll be in a position to change the rules.

Naah. Come the revolution, some hitherto unknown sociopath will quickly assume absolute power and the first thing he will do is cull the revolutionaries. All of them. Remember, it happens in this order: Revolution. Terror. Tyrant.

Anyhow, politics lesson over. I’m going to buy some wood glue. Fix a cupboard door.


Got a new laptop and I’m busy setting it up. Meanwhile the dead MacBook is being resurrected by the man Wilson, and I’m hoping he can download the information I kept on there.

If not, it’s an issue, but not a huge one, and not one that stops me writing, and doesn’t impinge on the current book-in-process, just sets it back a couple of weeks.

splash splash

I introduced my MacBook to a large cup of milky coffee. Not a good idea. Been scrabbling round to scrape the money for new one, remember all my settings and passwords etc. Hoping that when the old one dries out I’ll be able to save the various manuscripts.

Oh dear!