So a month has passed, and now I think I can tell you a bit about what I mentioned in the last blog post.
Those of you who know me will be aware that I enjoy a good quiz and am somewhat competitive. It will come as no surprise that I might put myself forward for a well-known TV quiz. I did, was accepted and on Fri Jan 27th filmed an episode. I do not yet know when it will be screened and will post the date when I know.
I went to watch Southampton play at St Marys. They are going down. That is all.
Nearly the third week of January and well past time I updated. My partial excuse for this tardiness is that I came down with a lurge on Boxing Day which I passed on to Mary (or we caught from the same source) which wiped out NYE and required a couple of weeks of antibiotics to subdue. I’m recovered now and, in general, my health remains stable and the Venetoclax continues to work.
Writing-wise I am working on book 2 of my Eternal Warrior project. Book 1 -“Reborn” – remains unsold after positive comments from the Baen reading panel and Storm Publishing last year and a std rejection this month from Bookouture. I will continue to seek suitable publishers for it while working on book 2, but if I end up self-publishing that it not going to happen until the first draft of book 2 is complete at least. Truth be told, book 2 is going rather slowly and I would welcome a major flash of inspiration on it.
I went to see Southampton play Man City last week expecting to see them lose. Instead they played them off the park. That, and the subsequent victory at Everton, gives me some hope that they may claw their way out of the hole they are in. Still need a decent striker and it’s a shame it won’t be Danny Ings.
Pardon me for vague-booking, but I am doing something interesting next week which I cannot tell you about. As soon as I can it will be on here.
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.
The second draft of the sequel to “Shadows of Faerie” is done, and now I could do with beta readers. I also appear to have started a new novel.
First draft of the sequel to my contemporary fantasy novel “Shadows of Faerie” is finished.
This manuscript is currently shorter than the first book and anyone familiar with how I work will know that there will be several further drafts
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.
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.
The 3rd draft of my new novel, working title Eternal Warrior, is complete at 107k and has been sent to a couple of readers. I am now wondering what to do next, probably more on the sequel of Shadows of Faerie.
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.