In Dreams Awake

Our truest life is when we are in dreams awake.

(Henry David Thoreau)

Monday, 31 October 2016

O Jerusalem

 The Chinese have a curse; "May you live in interesting times." They mean that an age of excitement, of drama, might sound romantic and thrilling but is actually too dangerous to be worth it.

 Well, we live in interesting times.

 US power is in decline. It's creating a power vacuum and history tells us that's always a time of danger, as old powers struggle to hold on to dominance and new rivals emerge to challenge them. The rising powers now are China, which everyone knows, and I think Germany - dominant in the EU since reunification, set to become more so now Britain is leaving, and fast building a captive export market in eastern Europe. The EU dances to a German drum now, and already that's caused resentment in places like Greece and Italy. Again, potential for future conflict.

 Bear in mind as well that the US Federal Reserve said recently it expects a recession to hit during 2017. A US economic crisis would quickly spread to the Eurozone, stagnant since the 2008 crash. Even a small blip could easily break the Italian banking system, which is massively indebted and weak. Break that and the single currency collapses.

 These are only examples from a longer list. And yes, there are always such examples; and yes, someone will always be around to cry "Woe to thee, O Jerusalem." But I'm not prone to panic. As a youth in the 80's I didn't worry about nuclear war, because the Cold War enemies knew each other too well, they were known quantities. There was stability, and thus a good degree of safety. Now that stability is gone, and the survivors of the 20th Century's wars (hot and cold alike) are slipping slowly from their pedestals. What follows from that?

 I do not know... but it will be interesting.

Monday, 17 October 2016

Twitchy Fingers

 I hardly ever have time to write these days. It's the first time that's ever happened to me, and it feels weird. I swear my typing fingers twitch in my sleep. Come to that, they twitch when I'm awake, now and then.

 The worst part is that my mind is still involved. I come up with story ideas, ways to rewrite a chapter or novel, intriguing little characters, and all the rest. I still watch a stranger doing this or that and think "Nice, I can use that in the book that's seventh on my To Do list." And then I can't find time to sit and write. I have all these thoughts and can't write them out of me. It's enough to make my head explode.

 Last week I was off work on annual leave. Time to write! All my family promptly went down with flu so hideous we were vomiting, and poor Bella ended up in hospital til midnight, being drip-fed nutrients through a syringe. So, no time to write. At all.

 Bella's fine, by the way. As long as that's true I'll cope with not writing... sorta.

 But I've got to write, at least some of the time. I feel like a fish that isn't allowed to swim; what's the point of being a fish at all, if that's true? Something needs to change. A new job with different hours, maybe, to free up more time. But you know, I'm starting to suspect that when you have an 8-month old daughter, you just don't have time for anything else.

 I am finding this hard,

Saturday, 1 October 2016

Bad Times

 Horrible times at work.

 I expected to lose my job yesterday. A few days ago the manager wrote a 3-month performance review for me that was just so flawed and contradictory that I felt I couldn't accept it, so yesterday I told him I won't sign it. I've also made a formal complaint over his behaviour, which I find boorish at best and verbally abusive at worst.

 This is not how to have fun at your job.

 I'm trying to get out, but at this time of year there aren't many good permanent jobs around, it's all seasonal work. I do have an interview on Tuesday, so hopefully this will change soon... and I really do need it to. Whether it's selling a book or working with gribbly diseases, I've got to get out of that place.

 Meantime, I've had a real cracker of a new story idea, about a disparate bunch of social misfits who are thrown together to bring a cure to an ailing queen. Trouble is, the cure is found in only one place, an abandoned mine now inhabited by something dark and unknown and very, very hungry.

 Shame I have so little time to write these days really.