The Spinning Plates Menace

How are my energy levels? Next question.

  • article on A Scanner Darkly — 23 January — hah — various ideas but no more written. Next week, maybe, but it’s likely too late for the special issue.
  • book proposal for Sekrit TTTTTTTT project – asap
  • revise bounced book manuscript – asap – this hasn’t left the house for once this month
  • three book reviews — one almost complete
  • turn EX_MACHINA, War of the Worlds and The War in the Air papers into articles
  • Chapter on Star Wars — 22 February 2016 — I’ve started writing and this is three quarters done, in search of a conclusion — submitted
  • continue beer research

So, another idea for a book is hovering and a couple of talks need to be written. We’ll see.

Spinning Plates: Spin Plater

So, my energy level is still zilch and attempts at early nights seem to end up with later ones or insomnia. Did you know the digital Radio 4 switches from World Service to Children’s Programming? At they up earlier or late?.

  • article on A Scanner Darkly — 23 January — hah — a chunk written and I hope to submit anyway
  • book proposal for Sekrit TTTTTTTT project – asap
  • revise bounced book manuscript – asap – this hasn’t left the house for once this month
  • three book reviews
  • turn EX_MACHINA, War of the Worlds and The War in the Air papers into articles
  • Chapter on Star Wars — 22 February 2016 — I’ve started writing and this is three quarters done, in search of a conclusion
  • continue beer research

There are a couple of talks in the pipeline and a couple of conferences I want to put in for and I just had a conversation with a publisher. I need to get my mojo back.

The Two Faces of the Spinning Plates

So we come to the end of a challenging year — leaving aside reviews, I’ve published chapters on British sf short stories, Adam Roberts and YA gay fantastic fiction, all of which have been in the pipeline for ages. I’ve submitted two survey chapters and one on Star Trek, two of which seem to be MIA, one of which is awaiting galleys. Was there more? I forget. Ah, a chapter on Wyndham.

My energy level is zilch.

I gave two keynotes, one in Dublin, one in Lisbon, and papers in Woking, Canterbury and Liverpool. Again, there may have been more. A poster session on drinking in Bristol.

I’d been in Dublin in the previous October, so the return visit was rather sooner than the twenty year gap since my earlier trip. Meanwhile for the first time I visited Amsterdam (which is promising but knee events conspired), Den Bosch (nice town), Bergen (a lovely town), Paris (which is a shit hole*), Dijon (more than just mustard), Lisbon (which I saw little of) and Uxbridge.

I saw more fantastic exhibitions than I wrote about — David Jones, Caravaggio, Paul Nash, Wifredo Lam, Georgia O’Keeffe, Nickolas Astrup, Hieronymus Bosch, James Ensor, Christopher Wood, Julia Margaret Cameron, Francis Bacon, Maria Lessnig, Vincent Van Gogh, and so on.

The good news is that ideas for articles continue to form — I want to write something about Passengers, but that must wait.

Energy-wise I’m grinding to a halt though. Too many late nights. I bruised my foot in last year’s visit to Dublin, so was limping more or less up to Christmas. Then this year I had bursts of gout and pulled my right knee in Dijon. This had more or less cleared up before I went up north before Christmas but, after a recurrence of almost gout — the left knee decided to stiffen up. I gave peas a chance, as well as broad beans.

But I am stupid so I have a new year resolution to get out of bed when I wake up rather than losing too many mornings to the doze. I’ve renewed my Curzon membership, so I will see at least one film a week, and along with various forthcoming comedy gigs, I’ve booked a concert for the first time in years. There’s also two plays I want to see at the National.

2017 sees trips to Liverpool, Birmingham and Helsinki, and I’m tempted by Brussels for Ensor (and of course Magritte). I was thinking of going to Vienna for a Bosch exhibition, but there’s no mention of it in their website and I think survival should kick in. If I can get back to Bergen I will, and maybe finally do Oslo, and I’ve yet to book for Edinburgh.

  • article on A Scanner Darkly — 23 January
  • book proposal for Sekrit TTTTTTTT project – asap
  • revise bounced book manuscript – asap – this has travelled miles and miles
  • three book reviews
  • turn EX_MACHINA, War of the Worlds and The War in the Air papers into articles
  • Chapter on Star Wars — 22 February 2016 — I’ve started watching films and assembling reading, and I need to find some comic books I have somewhere, which were lost when I cleared the back bedroom
  • continue beer research

* Paris is the closest I’ve come to getting mugged — someone bumped into the back of me and the person I fell against seemed to be reaching in my pocket. Station signage is appalling, and as far as I can see Metro maps are on the inside of the barriers rather than also being outside.

The Spinning Plates of St Trinians

Another month on

I’m leaving out lectures (four a week on average this term) and if I’m circumspect about details, it’s just because I’m superstitious that way.

  • Paper for Lisbon – mid-November
  • turn Wyndham paper into article – 1 December 2016
  • book proposal for Sekrit TTTTTTTT project – asap
  • revise bounced book manuscript – asap
  • three book reviews
  • turn EX_MACHINA, War of the Worlds, The War in the Air and A Scanner Darkly papers into articles
  • Chapter on Star Wars – 22 February 2016
  • continue beer research

Spinning Plates: Season of the Witch

So, a month since I updated my to do list, with a bloody busy ten days.

I’m leaving out lectures (four a week on average this term) and if I’m circumspect about details, it’s just because I’m superstitious that way.

  • Notes on bad taste and comedy – tonight
  • Paper on A Scanner Darkly – 30 September
  • notes on The Island of Doctor Moreau
  • Clarke conference CFP
  • Paper for Lisbon – mid-November
  • turn Wyndham paper into article – 1 December 2016
  • books proposal for Sekrit TTTTTTTT project – asap
  • revise bounced book manuscript – asap
  • three book reviews
  • turn War of the Worlds, The War in the Air and A Scanner Darkly papers into articles
  • Chapter on Star Wars – 22 February 2016
  • continue beer research

The Good Companions

I have two chapters for companions on the to do list — a chronological survey for one, something meatier for the other, and Current Events seem to be swelling the materials for the latter, which does need to be written first. I would like to write something soon that doesn’t involved holding my nose. Heigho.

In the meantime, the survey is definitely a game of two halves and I’m pondering quite how I swing things around, given that there’s a large no go zone which is the other chapter on the same materials. I am the cause of reaction and a reaction to that reaction. I can see where I’m going to end, but I need to stick the teleology in the mix and work out the route there. All very post hoc, of course. At some point I’ll need to talk to the other writer on the shadow chapter. And work out how much of the three thousand words I wrote in November are usable.