East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai


Writing, reading, making plans

In this month of August 2019 I will have to churn out something like 75.000 words, between stories I am already contracted to write, and translations. That’s a load of work, but the hope is I’ll be paid (I usually am, but not always) and therefore I’ll have a certain security for the last months of the year. It would be good to be in the green for a while.

So don’t get fooled by the photo (it’s there to keep ME in a good mood): I am devoting eight hours a day to writing, and at least two to reading – because I need distractions and fodder for thought. It’s not that heavy a schedule, because in these three years I have learned to pace myself – more or less.
I will still do my best to post here at least once per day, and I’ll keep doing my posts for The Earphone Diaries.

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Learning photography, again!

And so I went and enrolled in a new MOOC.
Fact is, you see, I’ve spent a few days (and nights!) going around carrying my trusty old  camera, and I took lots of photos. And I realized I have lost my touch.
Not that I was ever a star photographer, but I was pretty good, for a self-taught amateur. In the time when cameras still packed a roll of film, I shot in black and white (it was cheaper), and I had lots of fun. I used a Nikkormat EL, back then, and I had studied a lot of photo books and courses and handbooks1. Boy, I loved that camera. An artifact from a more civilized time.


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Being alive

You wanna hear a horror story?
Fine, here goes: yesterday my mother came back from the dead.
It went like this…


The bank asked my father for a certificate – they asked him to provide legal proof that he’s alive.
It happens.
This being August, and administration offices still being in a state of summer torpor, my father downloaded a standard self-certification form from the web, filled in the blanks, and delivered it by had at the bank.
“Here’s my statement of being alive!” Continue reading

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Fifteenth of August.
Mid-august day.
My country locks up completely.
Nothing moves except in crowded beaches and assorted barbecue venues.
Everything’s silent, even the social networks.

Paesaggio del Comune di  Castagnole Monferrato (AT)

I’ll take the day off.
No stress, no nothing.
I’ve planned lunch and dinner -something light, cheap, good.
I’ve got a good book to read.
I’ve got some nice CDs should I need any background music.

Today I’m on vacation.