An Asylum of Authors

Asylum (collective noun); a group of authors. I’ve been using this term for a little while now. It fits, I think. Even when we’re at our most steady – in between deadlines, maybe, taking advantage of the occasional chunlulla 😉 – that madness lurks in the periphery, giggling to itself, rubbing its little hands in glee, waiting to pounce. So yep, an asylum. Mostly a happy one, definitely supportive.

In the last couple of weeks I have felt the creep of madness in its alter-ego guise: Stress. I’m not a social person by nature, not unless it involves food or cinema outings, and even then I prefer small groups I’m familiar with, but within 10 days I’ve recorded two podcasts (ThankBookFor and Writers in Cars), travelled to London for a bookish meet-up, went to a book signing for Adam Christopher’s new Elementary tie-in and had coffee with him and Gilly afterwards (lovely people), almost met Mike Gayle for another #TBF podcast (but it was cancelled last-minute due to copious amounts of up-chucking from Tom’s daughter), and then rounded this week off by taking my mom to hospital with heart problems. And on top of all that, I’ve been revising book 2 of The Voices series. Which is coming along nicely, but revising isn’t much fun. It’s piecemeal and feels uncreative at times and makes me think I’ve bitten off more than I can chew. It’s a lot bigger in scope than DEFENDER, so it’s proving an interesting challenge. (Oh hello, nagging poke of stress! Come to remind me that I’ve set myself a deadline of getting it finished by the end of May, have you? Why, thank you so much. *checks diary for May* *cries*.) So yeah, I’ve been doing a lot, and for a person who likes to stay at home in her pyjamas, building the odd set of LEGO, it all took up more time than I’m used to. My ‘home’ time is extremely valuable to me.

In other news, I read THE LAST ONE by Alexandra Oliva while I spent eight hours waiting in A&E, which was excellent and I thoroughly recommend it to everyone when it comes out in July (thanks, Gilly, for the loan). It’s about a bunch of wilderness contestants who are filming a reality TV show when a pandemic-type event hits the world and kills millions of people. It’s one of those books that is soooo well-written I feel like, in comparison, my writing is a long dribble of liquid excrement. Reading it has been inspiring and depressing in equal measure. So cheers for that, Alexandra *thumbs up*

And finally, I’m off to the Author and Blogger meet-up at the Bacchus Bar this Saturday in Birmingham. It starts at 12pm, so if anyone fancies swinging by for a drink, make your way to the back where they usually reserve a room for us. We’ll be the ones talking intensely about books and drinking expensive beer. It’ll be spiffy!

Adam Christopher
Adam Christopher (signing copies of his books at Birmingham’s Forbidden Planet), me, and Gilly McAllister with her tissues.

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