And… relax. That’s enough. Back to work.

Visitor season is over. Nearly two months of it this year. I’d set up a temporary office in one of the unused upstairs rooms, among the boxes full of crap I’ll get around to sorting out one day. It functioned, with a dodgy WiFi connection through the granite walls, but it’s good to be back in the real office again.

This room, my office, doubles as the guest room because both staircases are seriously difficult to navigate until you get used to them. The main one is a steep, curved, 17-step staircase with a frighteningly low banister. The other is narrow with a 90 degree bend halfway up and no handrails of any kind. None of the upstairs rooms have heating. My father is 80 and would take far too long to navigate those stairs now!

Also, all the upstairs rooms are full of those boxes of stuff…

Anyway, the bridge down the road is now fixed so the post office is accessible again. I have a backlog of things to post, and a lot of the boxed stuff can go on eBay and get turned back into money. Probably not much in most cases but there’s a lot I’ll never use again. Camping equipment comes to mind…

My little lab has been scheduled for demolition. This is not a surprise, it was set up as a temporary lab in the 1960s and should have been demolished 40 years ago. This has spurred me to officially retire from lab based science work although I’ll still take on consultancy and advisory work. I’m getting too old to deal with 60+ samples a day anyway. I’ll clear the lab in the coming weeks and sell off anything that’s still in regular use in other labs. Might keep a few bits for dabbling, you never know. All those 5-litre flasks and heat mats are likely to come in handy 😉

Even with all this madness, the Halloween anthology is on track to be ready in time. As long as Amazon don’t screw up the merging of CreateSpace and Kindle, it’ll be fine.

Six authors are confirmed so far, a couple more possible and there’s still roughly a week before this one closes. There’s enough to make a book, I’d be delighted to make it a thicker one though. More details closer to the release date – but there are a few interesting new twists this time.

Once this is in the bag I’ll start looking for stories for the Christmas anthology. I could leave it until November but there is the possibility of novels arriving soon so I should get that one started early. As always it’ll be a Christmas theme but no restrictions on genre (other than keeping it within legal boundaries). I’ll be developing the dystopia I’ve built over several Christmas stories in that one, and in the process I’ll solve how I get to a genderless, utterly compliant population for ‘Panoptica’. The real sticking point for that one was always the backstory. I needed a plausible answer for ‘How did it come to this?’ and I have one now.

One day this blog will return to its scheduled programming of whisky-fuelled rants against pretty much anything (but especially Puritans) but for now I have to build a business while having absolutely no idea what I’m doing.

It seems to be working out so far though.


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