Have spent a wonderful time today having a first look at Mark Wagstaff's submission to Mighty Erudite Publishers - a novel called A Runner in Spring. As per Juli's instructions, I've only skimmed it - looking at Chapters 1-3, a random middle chapter and the last one. And that without the help of a synopsis too. I have to say it rocks and I really, truly hope Juli will take it. If not, I shall definitely have to buy a copy from whoever does take it (and I'm convinced someone will) in order to read the whole thing in its final version. I've always rated Mark highly, and this is, I think, the best thing I've seen of his - and that only with five chapters. So dark, so bitter and so London. Just my thing indeed. Hot enough in terms of literary punch to singe my eyebrows off.
I've also booked (oh triple bliss for sure!!) my tickets to see the gloriously wonderful and deeply sexy (though surprisingly short when you meet him) Patrick Stewart in "Macbeth" at the Gielgud Theatre in London in November. Oh joy and rapture unforeseen indeed. I was so distraught at not being able to get tickets for the pre-London run in Chichester that I absolutely had to get these. And "Macbeth" is my favourite ever play of course - all that wonderful evil plus the utterly humane story of a good man gone wrong. Plus that poetry. And Patrick! What more could a girl want?...
And Lord H and I have booked our holiday in October here. Hell we deserve it. We might even see some birds.
Talking of which, here's a poem about our feathered friends and their peculiarities:
The contrariness of birds
After a day spent
searching for birds
we haven’t seen before
in the places
we’d expect to see them –
woods, the garden,
marshes, rivers, the sea –
and finding nothing but rooks,
robins and rabbits,
it’s only on the walk home
that we glimpse a woodpecker,
four jays, a kestrel,
and they must know
it’s too dark
proving once more
the innate and foot-weary
contrariness of birds.
Which meshes in nicely with this week's haiku (see later!). I've also found time to respond to this week's Writewords Flash Fiction Group II challenge. The theme was cruising and this is my offering:
A Well-Earned Cruise
Olivia leant back on her deckchair and sipped her Vodka Martini. So wonderful that, after all these years, Reginald was finally taking her on a cruise. Goodness knows why he hadn’t given in to her before, but she wasn’t planning to complain. Not while the sun warmed her skin, the breeze lifted her (dyed blonde) hair and the Mediterranean landscape drifted slowly by. Nor was she planning to complain about the assiduous attentions of that Spanish waiter who’d served them at last night’s Welcome Dinner. Thank goodness Reginald hadn’t noticed it. Or the few stolen kisses she’d granted dear Carlos in the corridor leading to their state room. Husbands! They rarely noticed anything.
She smiled. Tonight was the onboard Bridge Night. Reginald would be occupied all evening and she was planning a repeat encounter with Carlos. This time she hoped there’d be more than just kissing. She deserved it after all. With a longing sigh, Olivia took another sip of her Martini and went to sleep in the afternoon sun. Dreaming of the night ahead …
Meanwhile, two decks below, the object of her deceit was pumping seed into the welcoming body of his mistress in her tourist cabin. Well, a man couldn’t afford more than one state room per cruise. As he came with a triumphant cry, Reginald couldn’t help but smile at the way that hired gigolo had succeeded in attracting Olivia’s attentions so comprehensively the night before. Wives! They were so predictable.
And once dear Olivia was busy with Carlos, well, a man could really begin to relax and enjoy his well-earned cruise then, couldn’t he?
A tad naughty, I know, and let's hope the children aren't watching, but if you can't be naughty on a Sunday, when can you be, eh?...
Tonight, Lord H and I are going to watch our DVD of "Lost in Translation", as there's nothing else on TV. And I've wanted to see it for ages. I gather it's supposed to be quite gut-wrenchingly romantic and sad, so I hope Lord H is okay with that. If it's all too much, I'll have to distract him with chocolate.
Oh, and this week's haiku (which proves that it takes me a while to leave a subject I like alone ...):
Pulborough Brooks, September 2007
Today is for "R":
we see robins, rooks, rabbits,
a little light rain.
Today's nice things:
1. Mark's stonkingly exciting novel (at first glance anyway)