Where angels fear…
On several occasions during the past several months I’ve told friends that I’d like to write a novel about our valley’s 16th century folk hero, Harry Botham. Briefly: the landlord, the earl of Shrewsbury (whose family had acquired Glossopdale after…Continue
Freedom of speech: what are the limits?
The sentiment “I may not agree with what you have to say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it“, attributed to Voltaire, encapsulates the concept of freedom of speech. Freedom of speech is integral to democracy….Continue
Good start to 2019: positive health news, positive developments with Amazon
In previous blogs I’ve complained about Amazon’s censoring of my list of published works and apparent contempt for authors. Now I have to eat at least some of my words, with apologies. My most recent exchanges with the author profile…Continue
Recovery – and more pleasing news
Recovery from the cancer-treatment procedure is taking time, though so far it seems to be progressing more quickly than expected. My sleep is fragmented every night, and I’m still a little uncomfortable, but it would be remarkable if it were…Continue
Treatment and recovery?
Yesterday I was in hospital receiving permanent seed brachytherapy to treat this annoying cancer. (Permanent seed brachytherapy consists of injecting radioactive particles into the neoplasm, the idea being that the radiation will destroy the bad cells. It’s an alternative to…Continue
Bright tidings in the dark time of the year
I’ve never been subject to Seasonal Affective Disorder, but the intrinsic melancholy of this time of year is universally acknowledged. The clocks have gone back; the (temporarily) lighter mornings compensate for the early fall of darkness, but there’s no doubting…Continue
Defusing anger at governments
A week or so ago, our Prime Minister, Theresa May, approached the podium for her keynote speech to the Conservative Party Conference – dancing to an Abba song. The scene was played on our television news broadcasts. Like many other…Continue
After the holiday, more going-in-threes…
What a great few days in the Yorkshire Dales! The cottage was miles from the nearest village and couldn’t have been quieter or more peaceful. It was also comfortable. Moreover, it was the ideal centre for visiting the places I…Continue
Another novel finished and submitted!
With reference to my two most recent blogs (Everything goes in threes and In praise of small independent publishing houses), I’ve spent an intensive fortnight unearthing the 78,000 word draft of a novel, which several years ago I deemed unsatisfactory…Continue
In praise of small independent publishing houses
It’s generally accepted that today’s big fiction publishers – and, a fortiori, most literary agents – won’t take on a manuscript from a new author unless they expect it to be either a best seller or a prize-winner, or (in…Continue