Weeell, as you may know, I have been hammering away at the Next Shiny Thing, another novel (CODENAME: Not-so-cozy) and have had to set it down to have a long think and reorder. In the meantime though, the Cityverse has some iiinteresting things in development, and for my own projects I appear to be writing Ecology/Joanna Macy inspired spoken-word/slam poetry.
Breathe, I remind myself.
I’m standing on the uncompromising concrete of some western town, surrounded by glass and stop lights and hurried, tight faces. The world feels cold, and cruel, and small.
No, REALLY breathe, I have to say. Right down to the gut and back. Let it out slowly.
There. It feels better, don’t it?
I have to do this. I have to give these little moments to myself, to sprinkle them through the day like wildflowers. I like to think that there’s a thing that happens when we remember the gifts we carry: that the world feels more open somehow, more comforting, more exciting.
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Gardening is much on my mind of late. Hardly any surprise, as it is spring here in the northern hemisphere and Storm Hannah has just made short work of my French Bean sprouts!! (Luckily, we have two million and five seeds ready to be resown).
To say that gardening has been much on my mind is a polite way of saying that our little UK council-house 12X20 ft plot has been occupying me. It occupies my ponderings, I fantasize about what the garden could look like with this or that plant in place, I try to pre-cognate the pitfalls (note: didn’t bloody well see Storm Hannah coming though…).
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With both Apex Magazine’s and Shimmer’s recent news, I’ve been thinking about the State of the Thing; and that Thing of course being specfic publishing in the Near Now.*
The field of weird and wonderful fiction has changed a lot since I started subscribing to ‘zines. There was that slow-burn month or quarter of excitement as you wondered what tales might arrive through your letterbox, and what characters you might meet. Some were glossy works with smooth layouts, others stapled together and photocopied. Each and every one was a delight. Some of the authors became familiar, and you’d track them across different publications. They felt like friends, even if you’d never met them. Other names you might never hear of again, but their stories stayed with you. It was harder to meet fellow weirdworlders back then; you formed scriptorial packs, secretive cabals; you lent well-thumbed booklets to those who understood.
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