I RETURN! LET TRUMPETS AND CORONETS BLART THEIR JOYOUS NOISE ACROSS THE INTERWEBS!
Where I’ve been
Last week N. and I went to the tiny Fijian island of Nanuya, some 4-5 hours by boat north of Nadi, to spend seven days and six nights relaxing, attending friends’ wedding and getting in a little honeymoon time of our own. We snorkelled, lay on beaches, swam, drank cocktails, drank massages and generally did nothing but enjoy ourselves – with a short aside to do a reading for Sabhdh and Peter, our getting-hitched friends.
Here I am at the wedding (with my pal Eamon) looking completely awesome in traditional Fijian shirt and sulu (skirt), a formal pinstripe model that I plan to wear to the office Christmas party, because it’s super-light and comfortable and it’ll be a million degrees that day.
It was a grand, grand time. Possibly one of the best times of my life. Especially the part where my wife and I held hands while snorkelling through a school of a million darting blue fish, suspended in cool water above an expanse of reef, in love and in paradise. That was the best part.
(Sabhdh is also the non-fiction blogger over at Boomerang Books, and you should check her column out once she gets back from her honeymoon.)
What I’ve been doing
We got back very late on Sunday night, and since then it’s been busy as H-E-double-hockeysticks, back at work and arse back on the grindstone.
But no-one wants to hear about my arse, do they? God, I hope not.
On the internet this week you can find me over at Louise Cusack’s site If You Must Write, where I give a quick and hopefully useful primer on how to independently publish your own ebooks. It’s neither the first nor last word on the subject, and it’s all very general; I could have written twice as much just on topics like sorting out US tax details or the proper use and value of a table of contents. But if you’ve been looking at indie ebooks thinking ‘could I do that?’, well, the answer is ‘yes’ and this may give you a bit of a head start.
You can also go check out this very positive review of The Obituarist over at the eNovella Review site, which says all sorts of nice things about my little book. Including that it could be good YA reading, something that I don’t quite understand and is prompting me to write that what-the-heck-is-YA-anyway post that’s been on my mind, possibly even this weekend.
Last night I saw the Afghan Whigs live, a gig I’ve been waiting nearly twenty years to see. And yeah, it was worth the wait. I saw Greg Dulli a couple of years ago when touring with/as the Twilight Singers, and that was good, but this was a stronger, punchier gig with all of the Whigs’ classic tracks, all jangly guitars and sleazy, lonely lyrics. The Hifi crowd was pumping and just the right size – and for an encore they busted out ‘Miles iz Dead’, the bonus B-side from Congregation, and that pretty much made my fucking week. Thank goodness that all us indie/grunge/subpop kids from the early 90s now have respectable jobs and can make it financially worthwhile for our fave bands to reform, tour and charge $70 a ticket at last.
Oh, and I saw Dark Knight Rises. Which was… hmm. Not as good as I’d hoped, due to very messy storytelling and pacing, massive plot holes and nowhere near enough Batman. On the other hand the acting/casting was uniformly excellent (especially Anne Hathaway), the development of themes within the movie dovetailed amazingly with those in the previous two films, and there were some gorgeously visceral setpieces. But still, something of a disappointment to me.
…and yes, of course I’m going to buy it on DVD and watch all three movies in a single night as soon as possible. Like that was ever in question.
Writing, of course. It’s been on the backburner for a bit as I got organised for the trip, flogged the last book around the internets and did, you know, living things. But now I have a head full of concepts and half-developed lines for Raven’s Blood and that old itch is building up – that terrible itch that crawls up my neck and reminds me that I could be writing, creating, making something; that it’s time for me to do the only thing I’m good at. Because there may never be another chance.
It’s very Shakespearean. And Batmantarian.
Plus I’ve managed to sort out the other half of my ideas for The Obituarist’s inevitable sequel, which I’m now formally committing to writing, hopefully by the end of the year. But don’t hold me to that date. Really, don’t.
I also need to write reviews for the books I read in Fiji, as per my last blog post – especially for Chuck Wendig’s Blackbirds, which completely blew me away. Just need to find the time and the spark to come up with something fitting.
Stupid spark. Why can’t I just be on fire ALL THE TIME?
…god, I wish I was back on Nanuya.