Wednesday, March 31, 2010

update on the world of doing not much

I'm writing this update in between tasks at work, which is quite fitting given the last seven months of my life. In fact, if I write this blog entry at the same words-written-in-novel to hours-spent-on-day-job ratio, I should finish it in about three weeks time.

Yes, I've been busy at work and I've been neglecting the book. Work pays better, but sucks out both time and creative juices by the bucket load. The book gets a look in on very rare occasions, like a parent in an old folks home. As with the neglected parents, guilt builds up every moment I'm not attending to the book's needs and wants. But the job that pays my salary and allows me to enjoy cereal for dinner when I get home from work at ten at night has to take precedence. Here endeth the excuse.

"So does that mean the novel isn't finished yet?" I hear you ask in a frustrated tone and with a clenched fist. Well, yer, it ain't finished. Not far off, but still plenty to do. Currently working through the second draft which requires a full rewrite of the first 5 chapters - after that, things should move more quickly. My aim for publication by 2015 is still on track.

P.S. My parents are not in an old folks home; in fact, they are more likely to be in a campervan, travelling across the Aussie outback!

Monday, March 29, 2010

just finished reading . . .

This is the first Dan Fesperman novel I have read and the verdict is: I like his work! The Amateur Spy is a great read set predominantly in Jordan, not the safest place for an American ex-aid worker who has been blackmailed to dig around an old friend's fund raising business in search for possible terrorist connections.

Mr Fesperman weaves an intricate tale taking the reader to many interesting places including Ramadan in Jordan, violence in the Bekaa Valley, shady dealings in Jerusalem, and a politician's demise in Washington D.C.

I definitely enjoyed the read, but I also think Dan has better novels in him, which is an exciting prospect - and with novels such as The Prisoner of Guantánamo, The Warlord's Son and his new one, The Arms Maker of Berlin, I am looking forward to the prospect of sitting down to another Dan Fesperman modern thriller sometime soon.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

three more to the pile

Courtesy of a Waterstones Gift Voucher and a handy bit of internet shopping, the following books landed at my front door last night:

The TBR pile is growing and growing - good for two years worth of reading now - at least!

Monday, March 22, 2010

game for Gaiman

I've been quite keen to experience anything - comics, books, movies - that has materialised out of the mind of Neil Gaiman. So far, I have only managed a ten minute short on Sky 1 about statues which he directed. I missed Coraline and haven't managed to delve into the back issues of Sandman. I was reading his blog for sometime but that also lasped. It looked like as long as I didn't make a concerted effort, the world of Neil Gaiman would forever elude me.

Then, this morning, a work colleague, keen to offload as many of his books as possible before moving his life from Edinburgh to London, gave me these three to read:

I am delighted and can not wait! Now, I just need to find a place for them in the pecking order of the other 40 books in my to be read pile. Not an easy task at all!

P.S. Yes, I'm avoiding the obvious topics of my writing and absence from this blog - let's just say they have both taken a back seat to less exciting but more profitable ventures (i.e. the day job).