The interview with Murray from The Australian went well... I think. It's always difficult to tell till you see the finished article. Oh, yes, he seemed nice enough, and asked good questions, and didn't probe too deeply into that whole 'cross-dressing as a lama' thing, but Australians might still be waking up to the headline, 'Beardy Writing Boy's A Poncy Bastard!' Who knows?
After that it was the train to Glasgow for me, where I managed to get a whole 1,500 words done and only one episode where I nearly vomited all over the carriage. Hurrah! Less 'hurrah' was the taxi ride from the station to my hotel -- we were going down Wellington Street and was telling the driver that my granddad was the live-in caretaker at the Baltic Chambers. It's a big red, sandstone building, and doesn't seem to have changed much since I visited there as a wee toot 'embarrassed coughing noises' ago. Well, except that the buildings surrounding it have shed their skins to become vast glass and steel things that tower over the place my granny and grandpa used to live. And then the taxi driver tells me this is the red light district now. Crack hos and junkies. Which kinda spoils my warm fuzzy nostalgia moment.
Check into the hotel and up to the room where I managed ANOTHER 1,500+ words. WooHoo! That's me done two days' worth of writing in one. So if HC want to send me off to a swanky hotel to make sure I hit my deadline, I'm all for it. But next time I'm raiding the minibar.
I never, ever touch the minibar. Well, that's not strictly true: last year, after the BA awards dinner, I helped myself to a bottle of mineral water, because what came out of the tap in the hotel looked more like yogurt than H2O, but other than that my conscience is clear. I am a minibar-free zone. I also picked the least expensive dinner option (eating in the hotel so I could get back to writing afterwards) because I knew HC were picking up the tab. I'm SO high-maintenance!
Next morning I nearly blew chunks all over the selection of cold meats while waiting for my poached egg: the antibiotics still screwing with my system even though I'd been off them for a whole nineteen hours. Bloody things. And the hotel didn't have any of those nasty wee bio-active drinky things either. So I went for the fry-up, figuring it would be much the same thing. And I actually spotted someone from INoGITCH at breakfast: one of the big bosses from Aberdeen. He didn't see me though, and I thought it would be a bit stalker-ish to go hunting for him in the little breakfast nooks and crannies.
Then it was off to the HarperCollins warehouse for a morning signing books, talking rubbish, laughing at a variety of outrageous anecdotes from Marie and Janis, eating chips and sandwiches, then signing more books. Last time I was down, Janis was joking about how she'd like to be a DI in a crime novel. Bwahahahahaha! I have an opening in book 4 for a Glaswegian, red head who can have been an old love interest for one of the main characters 20 years ago. She was delighted -- and according to Bob she's going to be impossible to work with when it actually comes out -- but she has no idea what I'm going to do to her! Once more: Bwahahahahahaha!
Gordon, who does a lot of driving proper authors about, as well as bearded gits like me, then whisked me off to Radio Clyde for my annual chat with Alex Dickson. He's been with the station for 30 years and used to run the place before retiring, only to be dragged back to keep on doing the book program on Monday nights (and other things). I've got no idea when our chat's going to go out –nothing like a normal interview, just him and me talking about stuff for half an hour which makes it fun to do -- but I think I made slightly less of a hash of it than I did last year. Well, hope springs eternal and all that.
The train home wasn't quite so productive as the train down, but then I think that had a lot to do with the impending feeling of nausea.
And today I feel like squeezed poop, but the local shop's all out, so I have to settle for dreadful instead. But time, tide and deadlines wait for no man. Especially not beardy write-ists.
To the grindstone!