Stop dilly-dallying.


Passage has been launched for a month now and has accrued some nice reviews on Amazon both in the UK and the USA which has made that little journey worthwhile.

But one feels a certain amount of tiredness after getting a book out there these days. In the past, I have to say I would literally start writing the next book the day after the last one was released! But not so this time…

Perhaps I’m getting old.

But more likely, me being me with a well-known track record of  dalliance and delay, I’m just shirking.

In a curious way, writing a book is not unlike training for an  major sports event – hard effort before the event, exhaustive and particular fitness training and mental preparation. Then the event happens and one has a wind-down, a rest for the body and mind. But not for long – it’s not good to allow the skillset to soften off too much. Beginning again with light muscle work-ups and easy cardio.

But I’ve just had a bit of an op on my eyes which has thrown a spanner in the works – like a shoulder or knee replacement for an athlete. It’s holding me back a tad.

It’s a good excuse, don’t you think?

However, I’ve not been the complete truant…

I’ve written a contracted short-story for Bopress Miniature Books in the USA. It’s a prequel to a fantasy novel I have on the drawing board. The plot, in simple words, is ‘secrets, box, map, lives threatened.’ It’s called The Map of Many Things and is a precursor to the feature fantasy novel, The Cabinet of Curiosities and will be available from Bopress with it’s exclusively designed and hand-bound covers. (I can’t wait for this as the extent of the imagination at Bopress is jaw-dropping.)

I’ve also managed to get 15,000 words of the above-mentioned fantasy novel down, but it’s been like taking a gentle run through a park. A little bit of stretch here, a little endurance there – rather a picnic compared to my earlier hist.ficts and to Passage. Pure escapism and indulgence.

There’s also the opening chapter of my part of the Turney-Batten collaboration on Convict Transportation. But that’s very long-term – like aiming for the 2024 Olympics – a slow burn with a steady incline and pace.

I was also approached to write a short piece for Whispering Gallery, the Dorothy Dunnett magazine. I find that exciting because I have such innate respect for DD. In addition, the magazine is a tour de force, and the discussion point I’ve been given is, for me, one of the most white-hot subjects within her novels.

Of course, there’s my own writing heart home – the twelfth century and those who people the House of Gisborne-ben Simon. I hear them calling every day. My friend and researcher, Brian Cobb of Lyon, France, is currently pursuing something for me…

So it’s time to forget about resting, time to stop blinking against the discomfort  in my eyes and the stitches at the edges and to cease looking at life through what feels like the eye slits in a battle helmet.

Time to stop shilly-shallying, and dive into the world of words, words, words! Much awaits and the end result is worth the eye-strain! Besides, writing is so escapist and I’m nothing if not a brilliant escapologist!