|Image: Undiscovered Scotland
On the weather front, it was a weekend of two halves: on Saturday, Edinburgh was enshrouded with cloud apart for a brief part of the afternoon when the sun came out. It was warm and muggy all day though, meaning there were lots of people in shorts walking about with umbrellas in their hands. On Sunday it just rained, rained, rained.
I enjoyed an early coffee on Saturday morning with a newspaper. I did some writing into my notebook, working on a couple of new poems, an essay I’ve been commissioned, and the new novella that has transpired out of the Advanced Dialogue workshop.
It was very a pleasant morning spent in a practically deserted coffee shop. The Princes Street tramworks are having a big effect on the shop’s profits.
A New Character
I jumped a bus from George Street and made my way out to Portobello. On the way, I got the idea for a brilliant character to use in a future story. This guy was something else—disgusting, unaware, going somewhere—the perfect character to use in my next crime or thriller.
I spot great people to use in stories all the time but every now and then one comes along that is just begging to be delved into and explored. This was he, and I know I’ll use him somewhere; he was very easy to read.
Porty Book Fest
In Portobello, I found the library and went in to collect tickets for a couple of events happening at the Porty Book Festival next weekend.
I bagged the final ticket for Doug Johnstone speaking at the Dalriada about his new book Smokeheads. I saw him at the Edinburgh book festival before I’d read it, bought it on the strength of that appearance, and now having not long completed it, have some questions I want to ask.
I also got myself a brief for a Sunday morning event called ‘From Ideas to Page’, a workshop about getting published with Marianne Paget (author), Francis Bickmore (Senior Editor Canongate Books) and Allan Guthrie (Literary Agent, author and editor). This promises to be an excellent event as it was recommended to me by Mr. Guthrie himself, so looking forward to that one.
I have to admit to being totally unaware that Portobello even had a book festival. The same thing happened a couple of years ago with their music festival, in that I never knew they had one until I got talking to a woman at work one day that organised it. I’m glad it does; it’s handy and small and in a nice part of the world, and now I know it’s there I’ll be happy support it.
It also means that over the next two weekends, I have two separate book festivals to attend: Porty and the West Port. It’s a busy and wonderful time!
I spent a chunk of my weekend setting out issue 17 of the Ranfurly Review. I know, I know, I’m just done with issue 16 so why am I doing this? To get ahead. The new automated submission system makes it so much easier to stay on top of the submissions coming in, that it has released new time to me to actually get ahead with the design and layout of the magazine early.
Issue 17 is complete all but for the front cover, and issue 18 is filling up nicely. It’s a unique and special place I find myself in with the RR for once, and I very much like what I see.
My design work for the weekend didn’t end there, with a lot of work being done on the new style galleries and content for the Edinburgh Boudoir website. This is a very tricky site to get to grips with because the client doesn’t really know what she wants yet. Each draft of the site improves though, and gives her more ideas, which is the way it should be, but it elongates the whole process. I’m happy to say it’s coming on with each session I spend on it.
I never heard back about the driving school website request. Sometimes happens, but I think this one may yet find its way back around to me.
And finally, I got around to designing new business cards (ones that don’t have the News of the World logo on it) that I can use in my networking endeavors as an author and poet, and out-with my freelance work. The only other ones I’ve got have my old mobile number on it so now’s the time to put some new ones together.
I also designed new bookmarks for the release of SILLY POEMS FOR WEE PEOPLE VOL.3 (the illustrated edition), which is primarily for my visit to The SKY Project. I’ll be giving them all away to the kids to keep.
Ciao for now, people!