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22 August 2015

I have very few regrets. There’s been a few people I wish had died before I met them, And I know that when I die, my biggest regret is going to be that I didn’t have time to write everything I wanted. But then, if I do live long enough for that, I suspect I’d be into the third millenium.
By now I’ve mostly outlived my enemies anyhow, another one died last year and they were younger than I am.
For years the title of my apazine was Dum Vivimus Vivamus. Strictly speaking this translates from the Latin as “while we live, let us live.” I’ve always translated it more informally, as “raise hell while you’ve got the strength.” I have, and I’ve few regerets about that.

And I’ve recently signed contracts for THE UNICORN AND THE SORCERESS, sold to CARPE NOCTEM anthology (to appear from Charon Coin Press.)

Tradepaperback published New Holland (Australia) 2007.
And yes, some of them certainly would have been embarrassing merely making them all the funnier to anyone that wasn’t involved. The compiler has trawled a wide variety of areas to bring this lot together and I’ve found that it’s not just readable, but re-readable. Third time of reading since purchase and I found them just as funny. There’s the suspected drug dealer who escaped from police by racing into a forest. He might have been harder to find if he hadn’t been wearing sneakers with battery powered lights that flashed off and on at each step. Then there was the newswoman on Australian TV who was chatting with an expert on prostate cancer. Asked the lady of him “and what percentage of women are affected by this disease?” Ah well… And so the book goes on, as did my giggles. Yes, this one was definitely worth the cover price.

Recently I calculated my life expectancy. (87) What I should have been calculating was life expectancy for lambs. I went out the other morning and discovered that one was now deceased. Typical woolly idiot. Somewhere in the early hours he’d climbed through the fence and couldn’t work out how to get back to his mum. No warm milk, no warm mum, over a freezing minus three degree night and he’d died. Sigh. And I wondered too, if lambs have been doing such stupid things since they evolved, how come they aren’t getting brighter. Going on Darwin’s Law, isn’t weeding out the reckless and the dumb supposed to improve the genome? You couldn’t tell that by sheep then again, It’s probably better not, otherwise we’d be the ones out in the paddock.

9 August 2015

Paperback, published TOR August 2015.
And very sadly, the last in the series. I got this in the mail (pre-ordered) yesterday, read it in gulps all day, and today is the review. Look, this is a great book, still more of the same and I loved every word, but it’s bitterpsweet. Yes, another Kitty book, but also that’s it. On the other hand – Many years ago Andre Norton wrote what was intended to be the final (last word and no more again) book in her Witch World series, The Warding of Witch World. yes, well, it wasn’t the last book because she changed her mind. It’s possible Carrie Vaughn will too, and even if she doesn’t and there are no more books, there’s always short stories to fit into odd parts of the series arc, and when there’s enough of them there can be a collection, and more new short stories and…
But this one was great. It finished the saga of the Vampire long game very satisfyingly, brought back several old friends from earlier books, hinted at a possible romance for Cormac, and convincingly allowed Kitty something she wanted. No, I’m not spoiling the book by being too explicit. I enjoyed it too much to ruin it for other readers. Go buy it yourself, if you like Kitty at all you shouldn’t be disappointed. But with no Kitty to look forward to I may have to buy the first in the author’s other three books – which up to now I haven’t bought because I got hooked on Kitty. Hmmm. I wonder how many other ‘Kitty’ readers out there are saying the same thing. Could be great for sales of Discord’s Apple, After the Golden Age, and Dreams of the Golden Age.

First lamb of the year arrived Wednesday July 15th when Mopsy had a nice little, mostly-black, ewe lamb. Swiftly followed by back and white twins from Princess, another single (ditto) from Rachel, mostly black twins from Ellie-Mae and another two black and white singles from my remaining ewes. The hills are currently alive with the sound of shrieking lambs – something I prefer to Julie Andrews. Not that I don’t like her voice and the songs, just that lambs are more profitable – and mostly more fun to watch.
(Why are they shrieking? Because they tend to nap, mum wanders off following a trail of the jucier grass clumps, lamb wakes, no mum. Shriek! But if that continues too long then I pay attention. Now and again some small woolly idiot has got through the fence and can’t remember how they did that. They have to be chased down and returned. NOT easy when your best pace is a moderate walk.)

When you’re old people make assumptions – as per my last operation after my pre-med – note to nurse, No, my teeth don’t come out. (when I said they were my own, I didn’t mean I’d paid for them, I meant they are an integral part of me – get your fingers away from my mouth before you lose them!)
Being old isn’t so bad, I’ve done more in the last 25 years than I ever dreamed I would and most of that is of far more worth than anything I did when I was younger.
Getting older teaches you something most kids haven’t learned. That things really ARE getting better. The ‘good old days’ often weren’t – and I can cite examples.

I’m currently bouncing happily about my farmlet. Yes, Wildside emailed to say that they liked my latest submission and SHERLOCK HOLMES; POISONOUS PEOPLE is herewith given a home. It’s another of the two books per single volume, with the separate titles being The Dreadful Diary, and A Poisoning at the Publisher.
I note in regard to my other work in this area that the first book Wildside did, SHERLOCK HOLMES:REPEAT BUSINESS, my collection of 14 new Holmes/Watson stories, published in January 2014, continues to sell solidly too, while the second, SHELOCK HOLMES:BEASTLY MYSTERIES is following suit. Nice to be wanted.
Meanwhile the UK Sherlock anthology from MX Books in London is proceeding well. Interviews, newspaper articles, and while it was originally intended to be a single large paperback, it has slowly metamorphosed into a three volume hardcover. Profits from it go towards the restoration of Undershaw, ACD’s old home. When it comes out – buy the book, and you’ll not only have some 60 great Holmes/Watson stories, you’ll help save a wonderful old place.