|Image: Princes Street: The scene of my trapeze-like fall|
It’s the final day of November, a month that has been full of research, excitement, fun, partying, the unforeseen, but little writing. After all that has happened this month, the final weekend saw weather conditions transpire to prevent me from even getting back to Edinburgh after a couple of days gigging. Yup, I got snowed in and unable to get out of Glasgow.
The weather these past few days has been cruel. 14 inches of snow fell on Edinburgh over the last three days, a pattern that affected everywhere from Aberdeen all the way down the east coast to Newcastle. While Glasgow was affected on Sunday—the reason I got stuck—it missed the worst of it allowing me to get out by train yesterday, although by the time I reached Linlithgow I found myself looking out the train window at a blizzard and wondering if my pork pie hat would be enough to protect me.
It proved to be a tougher and more hazardous job to get from Edinburgh city centre to my home in Leith, than it did to get from the west to east coast. I made a complete arse of myself on Princes Street, when after giving up any hope of a bus showing up at all I decided to try and overtake an old Chinese woman to get to anther bus stop. My left foot slipped on the ice and disappeared behind me and I ended doing a kind of running on the spot slippery ice dance. I tried to straighen up and only managed to statr running in the other direction, eventually flailling backwards, my legs up in the air, my holdall even higher. I landed in a freezing puddle of ice and water and had to shield my head from my bag, now hurtling towards me at a rate of many knots. Ignoring the sniggers of the east coasters around me, I sped off being ever more careful not to do it again.
Finally, a bus came and I made it back to Leith and home. I got changed and put on the kettle. Phew! Not easy.
And so to the weekend: It was awesome. I know I’ve had a few cracking weekends this past month but Madness bring something out of me. Madness is in my blood, it is what makes me tick and about the only thing left that really takes my back to my childhood. I’ll talk more about it tomorrow when I’ve finished getting all the pictures and videos ready, but for now I’ll talk about Friday’s entertainment, the immense Biffy Clyro.
I made it through to Glasgow by mid-afternoon on Friday. My sister picked me up by car from Bridge Street underground and we headed out to the south side of Glasgow. Most of the day was spent boozing and catching up, before we jumped into a cab and made our way to the SECC for the Biffy gig.
This was a proper rock gig. A powerful band with all the passion and desire to play that you could want. They battered out all their best work in front of a sell-out 10k capacity audience, that proved to be just as animated as the band. A runway stretched from the stage out into the audience providing an extra exciting factor, which the band used on numerous occasions. It was fantastic—Biffy are well worth seeing.
When we left the venue the temperature had dropped noticeably and there were several light flakes of snow drifting down from the sky. By the time we got home, which included walking half the length of Paisley Road West) and had taken our home-made pizza dinner out of the oven, the street outside was a blanket of white 3 inches thick. This was just the start of it; it would get much worse.
I’ll finish the weekend catch up tomorrow with the big Madness reunion in Glasgow city centre: The McMadmeet. Meantime, here is my monthly GDR wrap-up of work, but first, a few pics from the Biffy Clyro gig.
* Complete 50,000 words of new novel for NaNoWriMo – disastrous attempt this year; managed around 8k.
* Complete Muse story and submit – done
* Keep on top of fiction submissions – done
* Submit to all selected fiction competitions this month – none
* No poetry this month – another poem sent to Macmillan anthology
* Complete RR issue 13 for December – pending author interview and front cover
* Make site updates from photography client – larger site overhaul to cope with business expansion being planned; helped out with cash flow spreadsheet system
* Keep all my websites updated and relevant – done
* New gigs lined up for review – UB40, Madness, Biffy Clyro – still to be written
Reading & Learning
* SCAREDY CAT by Mark Billingham – IP
* ONE GOOD TURN by Kate Atkinson – IP
* Use Podcasting ideas to publish first one
* Kick off Christmas Special Offers – done; too early to say about sales
Things That Turned Up
* Jury duty – have to mention it as a form of research. Several days were spent in Edinburgh Sheriff Court taking part in a paedophile court case. Intense, sickening, but highly informative.
* Contacted by legendary Scottish poet Alan Spence re my book festival blog.
* Contacted by woman involved in Glasgow’s Aye Write! Book festival – meeting to be arranged.
Submissions Activity Summary
Not available as I was snowed out of Edinburgh when this summary was created. Will continue next month.
No specific writing successes.
* Very disappointed I wasn’t able to make a serious challenge to NaNoWriMo this year. I made big plans but when it came down to it I expected too much of myself when other things should have been taken into consideration. Kicking myself over this but can’t let it get me down.
* General amount of writing and reading was very disappointing. Looking back over the past few years I seem to always have a dip after the book festival in August and a hectic September/October. November has started to become a poor month for output. Needs to change.
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Grab issue 24 of Open Wide Magazine for only £1 (one British pound) and you can read my short story, LETTING GO. It’s well worth it!
Even on Cape Cod, the weatherfolk were marveling at the snow in Scotland and Wales this weekend!