Monday, 1 December 2014
Toadstools and Talks
Another damp autumn, the weeds still growing when really I want my garden and allotment to rest (never mind me!). We had a good day yesterday, though, a small work party taking down a willow hedge to allow it to grow back. The cuttings have been stored and in January we'll be making hurdles from them to reinforce our boundaries. It was a beautiful day and we were well attended by robins throughout, and the end was marked by a glorious Aberdeen sunset. Never mind that it took longer to get home through the Christmas shopping traffic than it had travelling from St. Andrews to Aberdeen on Saturday!
Saturday was good: I attended a talk by Margaret Skea, 'History in Historical Fiction: The Icing on the Cake or the Main Ingredient?' at the Byre Theatre. There might not have been many of us there but that meant we all had a chance to contribute and the discussion continued over lunch till 4p.m.! Margaret was inspirational and the talk has made me want to join groups, attend conferences and review my writing in a way I haven't yet done (www.margaretskea.com).
I also managed to pop into the Citizen Bookshop (www.jg-innes.co.uk), which I remember from my childhood as well as my student days. The books have moved downstairs now but at least they're still there! They've kindly agreed to take some copies of my free short story, 'Dead Dogs and Apple Trees', for those who have not already read it on this blog.
Meanwhile I'm working on Chapter Twelve of Death of an Officer's Lady: I'm theoretically a week behind, but there's a degree of flexibility built in and I'm assuming I'll lose a week or two over Christmas (I had a tutor once who deeply regretted that the Bodleian Library was not open for him to carry on his research on Christmas Day, but I'm not quite that free!).
All being well there'll be another short story coming out at Christmas, anyway: it's called 'High Tide in Tyskebryggen', and is set in Bergen, Norway. Just have to find time to do the cover! (though perhaps my Christmas cards are more urgent just now!).