Good morning, good morning, as the Beatles famously said. It’s Saturday and I’m at my desk preparing to go live to a potential audience of 7 billion. Potential. Japan Writer’s Conference has kicked off and sadly we’re online again. Still, that means potentially 7 billion of you could attend (could Zoom handle that? Wanna find out?). The schedule is here, I’m on from 1-2pm Japan time talking about my writing process, autocomposting and why writer’s block isn’t a thing. It’s free. I think you have to register or something to get the link, it’s all on the website.
Reviews of Life is Elsewhere/Burn Your Flags are starting to come in. Earlier this week Taylor on A Basket of Words said some frankly lovely things about the book while over on Instagram ScotLitDaily’s Sarah said it is “an emotive powerhouse of a novella” in which “the scope is huge and the effect is a rich, detailed slice of life story.” Simply put, it is “gorgeous.” So now you don’t have to just take my word for it.
The Scots Whay Hae podcast dropped the other day. You can watch on YouTube or listen on all the usual places. My anxiety would appreciate you sticking to audio only as I had no idea the video would be released (my fault, not Ali’s!) so I don’t look my best. Either way, we had a great chat, Ali, Angela, Paul and I, about indie publishing, the book, and the pandemic.
Talking of the pandemic, despite all the supply chain problems, Kinokuniya in Japan have got physical copies of the book at last. The Shinjuku branch (the one with the massive foreign language section) has a bunch on the shelves (unsigned as yet, but as soon as I can get on the shinkansen that will be sorted). You will soon also be able to order through their online store or via your local branch (once their website has been updated).
I think that’s all for now, but since I’ve spent this entire post upping myself, here’s some creative things others have done that I’m currently enjoying: The Flicker Against the Light by Jane Alexander (beautiful writing, speculative short stories), Duck Feet by Ely Percy (high school in Scotland, painful and hilarious in equal measures for those of us who were there), and The Chernobyl Protocol by Alex Lockwood (survivor of Chernobyl working with nuclear subs in Scotland). Three great books if you’re looking for that sort of thing. Musically, Laura-Mary Carter of out of Blood Red Shoes is releasing a solo record and the first single hit this week. Carter is simply one of the best and most overlooked guitarists out there, and this single is a perfect slice of low-fi rock. Windows down, volume up.