I know it’s way too late to say it… but I will anyway. Happy New Year everyone : )
New year. Time to reflect and plan. The Writing Team (me and Alfie) had a ‘strategy session’. Tea was drunk, treats were chewed and there were many, heated disagreements. (Should the heating go up or down?) But, finally, we agreed on something… The focus this year will be on efficiency.
So, I’m tracking everything: Word-count, editing, planning and marketing. New tools and software. Streamlining. Alfie is holding me accountable. Geeky, yes. But more organised means more words, which means I can bring you more cool fiction this year… so it kind of feels worth it.
Downstream book 2 is shaping up nicely. Joe has a new timepiece, a pocket-watch fitted with mysterious time crystals. He and Vinny are back in 1963. I’m having fun and can’t wait to share it with you. I’m consistently hitting a good daily word count and still smiling. All good.
Also, on the writing front, I’ve been mapping out the Zido Zitagi origin story (working with a new collaborator) More soon… And, have been working on some novella concepts with Ian. Again, watch this space… it’s going to be exciting.
Multiple projects. Definitely the new me.
What I’m reading
Still working through Rose Madder, and absolutely loving it. The audiobook includes male and female narrators (Male is voiced by Stephen King). It does add something to hear it from the Author. Steve can be hit and miss on narration but he does a good job here. Sadly, I’m so busy writing and learning that my reading of fiction has dropped off a bit in January. Oh well, you can’t-do everything. And anyway, it’s the King, so like a good brandy, I’m going to savour it…
The break was a good opportunity to stick a dent in the ‘to watch’ list.
Spider-Man homecoming: Loved this. They went right back to Spidey’s roots and reminded me why I loved the comics so much as a kid. Tom Holland is Peter Parker. Watching him goof around, quipping and smiling with his side-kick, all worked in my opinion.
Paddington 2: What can I say? The first film shouldn’t really have worked but it did… And, the second should have followed the rule of diminishing returns. Instead, you could argue (just check the Rotten Tomatoes score) that the sequel is actually better. Yes, it follows a well-trodden formula but all expectations were met and the audience walked out with a smile on their face. Mission accomplished.
Logan: The perfect antidote to the sickly-sweet Paddington. Well made, dark and gritty and I enjoyed every icky, stabby moment. Hugh Jackman (also known as ‘Huge Action’ in our house) brought a thoughtful tenderness to the character and then killed everyone. Raaahhhhhh! Stab, splat, dead. Nice.
To watch (this year feels like a biggie)
Darkest hour, The Post, Logan lucky, American-made (to name but a few).
I absolutely, totally bloody love being an author. It may be the most demanding job I’ve ever had, but it is by far the most rewarding. Butt: I can easily spend way too much time sitting on it. (See what I did there?)
So, with that in mind, I purchased a sit-stand desk.
Press a button and the whole kaboodle rises to standing height. Unexpectedly, I seem to be able to stand for hours and sort of forget that I’m not sitting. Better for the posture, heart and energy levels. Highly recommended, especially if you have any sitting related aches and pains.
The boss (Alfie) is quite demanding. He constantly needs attention, fuss, walking, treats and most of all wrapping up. He hates the sound of my typing, he groans in annoyance when I dictate. He is the ultimate black hole of negativity for a writer. So, thanks for all your emails wishing Alfie (not so much me) a Happy Christmas and New Year. He needed it. I passed them on. He wagged his tail and then demanded an urgent photo-shoot.
He is suffering from the January blues at the moment. Being Italian, he is craving warmer climes. The heat pad is on and that seems to have cheered him up a little. Important to remember, it’s all about him…