Not going to be getting out much for a while

I had surgery this week to correct a bunionette (Tailor’s bunion) on my right foot. This has been a problem for a while and has been getting worse. I now have to be non-weightbearing on my right foot for 2 weeks – which makes getting up and down stairs challenging. Beyond that I have to wear a protective shoe all the time for a further 6 weeks. I foresee a couple of months of intnesice TV watching.

June – life has changed.

Life is different this week. As of yesterday I am unemployed. My association with Lilly ended on May31st after 35 and a half years. In better times there would have been a retirement event with speeches, toasts and retirement gifts. But the Erl Wood Research Centre is gone, the site sold and my colleagues scattered to the four winds. That is sad; a lot of great work was done there by good scientists.

The reason for this is good news; Lilly’s insurers have determined that I am fit to return to work. A significant improvement from where I was 4 years ago and it should help with getting travel insurance, but there is no job for me. Accordingly I have taken the pension, but also rebuilt my CV and sent it out for a couple of jobs. After all I have 40 yrs experience as a lab-based scientist and you can’t buy that (though the “not worked for 5 years” thing may count against me).

In other news – we still own my mother’s house and I hope it will be sold by the end of the month. It is now empty but our house is full. We have wardrobes – if anyone wants one please get in touch.

We are both now doubly vaccinated and starting venture out seeing people – small steps back to a normal life.

The sequel to Shadows of Faerie is advancing slowly, the first draft currently stands at 66k words.

February!

I had intended to do a new year update, but stuff I was waiting for took longer to come through so here I am a month late!

I am vaccinated as of Wednesday this week. No noticeable side effects and now need to wait 3 weeks before there is a reasonable level of antibodies. That’s if my damaged immune system is going to make them which is not a certainty. There’s no data on the effect of the COVID vaccines on CLL patients taking Venetoclax, though it is known that the flu vaccine works; just not as well as it does for normal patients.

Back before Christmas I became aware that there was a major problem with the paperback edition of ‘Exile’. It took a while but this has now been rectified and a new version is available from Amazon. If you bought one of the faulty paperbacks get in touch and I’ll send you a revised version.

You may recall I subbed my new epic fantasy project to my agent last summer. I have now heard back from him and he does not want to take it on. He stressed that it was a near miss, and in a healthier book market he might have decided otherwise. The market is very difficult at the moment with so many books having been postponed last year. This is book 1 of proposed series so is not a candidate for self-publishing as any sequels would be a long time off. I’m trying to complete the first draft of the sequel to “Shadows of Faerie” at the moment so I’m not ready for a new project. I’ll think about it after my mother’s house is sold which should be only weeks away now.

Another New Year

A new decade even, and well past time I updated.

So what has been going on?

First off my health continued to be stable, see the consultant every 3 months and keep taking the Venetoclax. I get my immunoglobulins topped up every 3 weeks and that has kept me free of infections for nearly 2 years.

Writing-wise, Phantasia ceased publishing and returned the rights to the Nandor Tales books (except the audiobook – that’s a different deal) so I have now self-published them. I took the opportunity to revise them and (I hope) kill off all the typos. The revised version of Exile is now available as Kindle and paperback, the paperback of Nandor will be available soon. I’m about halfway through the first draft of a sequel to Shadows of Faerie, but that may well get put on the backburner as my first reader comments on the new epic fantasy I finished last summer are coming in and I need to begin rewriting (of which they will be lot).

I’m still going to quizzes, and occasionally winning them, and getting a bit better at having conversations in noisy backgrounds; it is still tough though.

Southampton have even picked up and won some games so I look forward to the rest of the season with the hope of a mid-table finish.

First draft

I have completed the first draft of a new epic fantasy novel. The file is called Eternal Warrior, but that may not be the name forever. It comes in at nearly 99k words, and it will get longer in the several rounds of rewriting that I expect it will get. This is a project I have put aside several times while other things (Shadows of Faerie and its sequel, Nandor) got worked on, so it feels good to have typed THE END.

Available for pre-order

NEW BOOK!  Shiny!

FAERIE SERIAL KILLERS IN THE NEW FOREST

For centuries countrywomen in England have kept a secret; if you go to the right part of the woods and sing the right song, an Otherkin man will appear and be your lover. Charlie Somes, 24, postgraduate chemistry student at Southampton University, is the product of such a liaison and is touch telepathic; a gift which blights his life as he cannot control it. When Charlie discovers his gift works on the recently dead he is forced to use it to avoid a murder charge and then when the bodies of women who have taken faerie lovers start turning up, Charlie is the only person who can stop the serial killers.

At Last! Shadows of Faerie is available for preorder  here