Tuesday, 11 July 2017


What's that bump bump smack sound?

It's me coming back down to earth after an amazing weekend - and landing pretty heavily.

First of all, I went on a train trip to London, with my packed egg sarnie for breakfast, some orange and mango squash (my current lifesaver - stops me spending a fortune on Irn Bru), and some allotment raspberries and more sandwiches for lunch. Not spending your fancy London prices on mere food, no sirree! Some mutual outfit admiration occurred with some rainbow-bedecked youngsters off to the Pride March.
 Arriving with some time to kill, I went to one of my favourite places in London - the British Library, where I met up with friends for a chat in the open air terrace. Kings Cross looks rather like Hogwarts peeking out from behind, doesn't it?
I took this photo early on at my book launch in London, which was at The Star of Kings in Kings Cross. The room got pretty packed and people were still turning up after the event had finished to say hi and have a beer with us in the glorious sunshine. Such a lovely time. There was my Best of British Science Fiction 2016 and Elasticity: the Best of Elastic Press being launched.

Unfortunately, here I did spend some fancy London monies on cider. But it was hot! and I was there all day! That's my excuse, and I'm hiccing to it.

The train journey home was quite eventful, as one of my comedy heroes came and sat at the same table as me: Nish Kumar. And I bumped into him again at his gig, which was at a pub where I was meeting more friends to round off the day of loveliness. I promise I wasn't stalking him! I am a fellow comic, just occasionally I can't help a bit of fan squeedom, as I'm a geek and that's just the nerdy social awkwardness I'm made of. Plus he's really, really funny. I also saw other comics, but I know them, and therefore no need to name, but if they happen to be reading this, don't worry I think you're great too, okay? Sheesh!

Nish's Saturday night gig at my local was actually part of a comedy festival, for which weekend tickets had been made available. But as I was at a book launch all Saturday I'd only bought tickets for the Sunday.

And here is where I feel... awkward.

It was a great festival, I wanted to support it and the friends playing there, and I had a lovely time, and I got to see Ed Byrne, who I've wanted to go watch for 20 years (since 20 years ago, not for that longevity... that would be stalkerish). But there's something about being an old hand of the local scene who the new and extremely professional folks organizing this thing don't really know, and being in what I dub 'Puntersville' that made me feel... weirdly insubstantial. I didn't really know any of the crowd who'd bought tickets either, which was quite an alienating experience as there's normally folks to hang about with at comedy gigs I tend to go to. I kind of felt like a goldfish in a bag being introduced to the big pond, but instead of gently acclimatizing, actually starting to feel a bit short of oxygen and realizing I'm probably never going to get out of the bag. I'm going to die in this bag, and no one will notice...

Now if that doesn't sound like the plot of Finding Emo...

I'm sorry... I have had a really successful year in terms of publishing, and felt a bit of momentum happening in my performing too, but sometimes if I sit and think about it too long, it feels like everything crumbles and disappears. I don't know how to Houdini myself out of the bag...

Is that a bad example? Didn't Houdini have a sudden attack of appendicitis in a water tank and drown?

Ah well... I'm sure if I pull my socks up, I can get over it. And never ask anyone to punch me in the guts before going on stage.

Anyhoo... lovely weekend, but I'm looking at a strictly biznizz rest of the month, as I had  a horrible financial surprise, and then realised I've made a huge miscalculation in my budget and failed to make any headway on next year's transport. Not the end of the world, but I think I need to organize a re-boot.

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