East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai

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The last adventure of the year

The forecast says rain and possibly snow for tomorrow, and I am boarding a train early in the morning to go to Asti, the provincial capital, in what promises to be the last adventure of this year – braving weather and public transport to meet some people for a writing job.
One more little step to a better 2020, hopefully.

So I am taking along book to read on the train, Kay Kenyon’s At the Table of Wolves, plus pens and a notebook to take notes during my meeting, plus a pocketful of coins for hot drinks machines along the way.

As it usually happens when public transport is involved, I’ll spend most of the day waiting for trains and buses, but that’s part of the game. I’ll keep warm and read a book about Nazis and superheroes – could be much worse, and I like Kay Kenyon’s writing, a lot.

Of course this unexpected last trip of the year will provide me with the opportunity of spending Christmas and New Year’s Day in bed with a cold – but when one is trying to make a living writing, this is part of risks of the trade.

And really, it’s sort of fun.


Snowed in

The First of February came with a heavy snowfall, that started in the night and added up to the 30 cms we had got a week ago. This caused the day’s plans to go somewhat askew – we were supposed to drive to the supermarket for provisions, and will do it tomorrow instead, and spent the warmest hours of the afternoon shoveling snow off the lane.

This is the sort of thing I should post as an example of the funny surreal things that happen to writers when they should be writing instead. Shoveling snow or, like two days ago, running barefooted in the snow to try and catch the postman before he disappears.
What a cartload of laughs, uh?
You read of things like that and instantly you decide to follow me on Patreon.

But I’m being uselessly snarky.
I did need a bit of exercise, and shoveling snow was a good opportunity.

I keep writing, and tonight it’s going to be one long writing session. Also, I’m going to try a new writing trick. Then on the weekend I’ll be working on another project.

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Hitting the road

As you are reading this, my brother and I are braving the cold, the rain and the snow to reach some friends 120 kms away.



Photo by Valerie Mcintyre


We’ll spend the day together chatting, eating good food and playtesting the first episode of the forthcoming Hope & Glory plot point campaign. I’ve printed the character sheets, I’ve a bunch of notes and I’m still wondering if I might need a map or not. Probably not.
Due to a number of personal misadventures (most of which you know about already), the Hope & Glory ebooks are still in publiser’s limbo, that place where books hover in darkness waiting for the presses to churn them out.
But I’m continuing working on the big one, and testing the scenarios is part of the developing process.
And fun.
God knows we both need a vacation.
So, if we don’t get lost in the blizzard, see you on Monday.
Otherwise, send a team of sherpas to look for us.