Sunday, 16 July 2017

The curse of the panster.

As I may have mentioned, I'm writing a new novel. I'm also a panster, which means that usually/sometimes the books trundle along in vaguely the direction I'm shepherding them. That doesn't always happen of course and this time is one of them.

    Sods Law was supposed to be a parody. Some suggestive language and (hopefully) funny parts dotted along the way.

    Unfortunately, or fortunately, it's taking on a life of its own. Usually I love this because I don't mind the novel writing itself. But it looks as though, if I continue as is, then come the first edit, I'll have to remove all the comedic elements I wrote earlier. For the people who've read any of my earlier books they'll know that my (alleged) humour is highly juvenile, which is the way I like it. My wife always said I never grew up.

    But as usual I'm going with the flow. There's always time for childish humour in another book. If blood must flow then so be it.

    Perhaps there's a way of combining both. I'll look into that as well. 

    I love writing.

    I can't end a post without whining about something. Chrome keeps crashing. either I take a sledge hammer to my PC or find another browser. Which is better than Chrome?

Sunday, 9 July 2017

I did have something really different but...

I was going to write a long blog entry today on a subject dear to my heart, which is something of a difference for me. However:
    After spending hours yesterday mucking out the horses in a relatively temperate 30 degrees (that's centigrade) I finally finished about eight o'clock and then fell into my bed from where I didn't emerge until late this morning.

    Great, I thought, lots of tea, lots of computering and lots of blogging.

    Wrong. For reason I won't go into, but for anyone with daughters will be pretty much self explanatory, I have to go back to those four ungrateful little sods and do it all again. Oh, the joys of shovelling horse excrement under a blazing sky. And the horseflies. Almost as big as ME 109's but twice as nasty, they buzz around tearing pieces of flesh away that I'd rather keep. And even swearing at the little sods has no effect other than to annoy the the owner of the stables and amuse the horses who just swish their tails in delight.

    I wish I had a tail sometimes.

    I'd use it to flog those poo making machines into eating less, or at least do it in the same spot every day to make my work easier.

    No photo credits. I drew this after poo-picking a field for an entire day once. That time under six inches of snow.

Thursday, 6 July 2017

Us brits are a strange lot.

Just in case you're thinking that this is another of those weird net images, like the one of the dress last year that everyone thought was blue, or brown, and I thought was green, well it's not.

    In fact, even though it may look yellow, this is in reality, black. It's a famous London black cab.

    So, I hear you think, what colour would a really black, black cab be called.

    Well, black of course.

Sunday, 2 July 2017

I was warned but as usual I didn't listen.

Two months ago I bought a new(ish) scooter. I bought it on finance because after my daughter's horsey accident she hasn't been working and it's costing me about twenty thousand pounds per month to pay all her bills.
    It's a great scooter. And fast; really fast.

    Before I took it away I was warned that because it was so fast it was prone to be stolen. Apparently all the druggies like to take them because they know the police can't catch them.

    Nah, I said. Nah; it'll be alright. I've got a cable thick enough to secure a fuel tanker. And I was right, until last Thursday.

    Two lads with the worst invention available, cut through the cable with a portable angle grinder in about thirty seconds. A passing biker stopped their fun but ten minutes later returned only to find them smashing the steering lock. By that time a policeman had been called who very kindly wheeled it to a local police station.

    Great I thought, not stolen. I'd only have to buy a new ignition barrel. Today I find that they may have damaged the frame and if that's the case the insurance company will refuse to insure it anymore. And if that happens all the rest will probably follow suit unless I pay them a fortune. So I'll have a scooter I've only just begun to pay for which I won't be able to insure.

    Not a happy bunny tonight.

Sunday, 25 June 2017

Half way through - I think

When writing a novel I have this self-imposed rule that it shouldn't be less than one hundred thousand words. I don't know where that rule came from but I've pretty much stuck to it with the exception of Old Geezers 3, which fell woefully short.
    I've reached about half way through my new one (for which I am going to use a pen name) but this time I'm just going to keep going until it feels right. That's probably what I should have done with my previous fourteen novels.

    If I'm still alive by the time it's finished and been edited several hundred times I think I'm going to try for traditional publication for the first time. If nothing else it will be a challenge I've never faced before. And if that doesn't work I'll just self pub it and get onto the next book. Something tells me that my attitude is wrong but for the life of me I don't know what it is. I love writing, and as I may have mentioned, I'd love to be rich - I think. But ultimately there's always another book waiting to get out. My retirement is approaching with the acceleration that middle age brings. I should be able to knock off at least another dozen before the man with the scythe comes 'a callin'.

    With about ten pages done today, I think I'm going to start on the cover. I've found plenty of people who (for a fee naturally) will produce one for me, but I'm going to do it myself. I already know what it will look like so I think I'll begin on it today.

    I don't believe I'll be able to find a thong wearing middle age women in the stock photo libraries so I'll have to let my strange imagination try to draw it myself. Just why there's a thong wearing middle aged woman in the book is something you'll have to wait to find out. I also doubt there'll be much choice of nipple rings in said libraries, either. I hope GIMP and I are up to it.

Wednesday, 21 June 2017

Be careful what you wish for.

In England (that's the dreary little island wedged between Ireland and France) we long for summer. All year round we long for it. And when it finally arrives it takes the average Briton two weeks in the blazing sun just for our skin to turn white.

    Needless to say we don't get summer very often, It sometimes happens about July, but we have to be careful, it's usually about two o'clock on one unannounced day during that month, and that's it, gone, back to the rain and snow.

    So you can imagine how happy and thrilled we were, and just as quickly horrified now that we've beaten our own thirty years record and been blasted for nearly five days with 30+ degrees, and today it's 34 C, that about 108 F in old money. That's probably old hat for people living in the mid west or California, but for us it's the end of the world.

    No water in the taps, none in the shops, and all the air conditioners are sold. Most of those had cobwebs, hastily brushed off when the entire sun came out from behind the clouds last week. All the shops I went to said they'll be restocking next week where presumably we'll have to wade through feet of snow to get there.

    You might sense a soupcon of cynicism here, but the last time I lived in heat like this was in the south of France, and that was over twenty five years ago. Now I'm old and can't bear it. I was riding my motorbike home tonight and even opening the throttle to the stops wouldn't generate enough wind to cool me down. It almost got me killed but that's beside the point.

Sunday, 18 June 2017

An interview with Arnold Pratt

Arnold Pratt is my new hero (sort of) and features in my latest novel. I caught him as he was resting between dodging two police forces and MI5, all of whom want him with a vengeance.

    "Hello, Arnold. You look a bit harried."

    "You'd look harried, too if you was being chased by the law and the secret service. Especially if you haven't done anything wrong. But they aren't going to get me. I've got a plan."

    "Well if you haven't done anything wrong, then why don't you just hand yourself in?" It seemed a logical question but somehow seemed to make him even angrier, although it was really hard to tell as what I could see of his face in the gloom was covered in mud, blood and something smelling of cow poo. I tried to steer the conversation away from anything that might involve me and by extension send me in prison.

    "Did you ever think  about changing your name?" I backed away at his scowl. 

    "Why? And before you tell me, A pratt isn't a pregnant goldfish. Goldfish are lizards and lay eggs." It was obviously something he'd been teased about before. I flinched as the ripe smell of something dead wafted from his coat. I didn't really know how to go on. He doesn't seem like a master criminal - slightly bonkers perhaps - but not actually bad. At the sound of a distant passing police car he scurried back into the bush where I'd found him. "I'm going to get them all for this. I've got friends. Friends who owe me favours. You watch; they'll rue the day they picked on me.
    With that he was gone, shambling over the field at the outskirts of the village in which he lived; or used to live. Judging from the suspicious bulge in his coat, I didn't want to be around when he invoked his master plan. He was already wanted for double murder and perhaps espionage. God help the police force and MI5; they'd picked on the wrong man.