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Yesterday’s Music

What’s occurring, three days, two blogs?? And what about the title of this one? Ok, some of the ramblings I have yet to add below will concern music of a certain vintage but it’s certainly not past it’s best and ‘yesterday’s music’ in that sense. What it is, is a recap of the music I listened to yesterday.

Nightwish

A recent discovery for me; I know, I know, they’ve been around a while. I have no excuse really, I’ve listened to Within Temptation in the past and some of my son’s friends are big fans, but it took me until the end of 2017 seasonal holiday period to properly sit down and take them in. I love metal music and the powerful, driven music this band delivers appeals to that part of me. They also make extensive use of the haunting, wailing sounds of traditional instruments such as low whistles, bodhran, and uilleann pipes.

Songs listened to – The whole of the Endless Forms Most Beautiful album and Last of the Wilds live.

Nightwish

Magnum

I’ve been listening to Magnum since my early teens, just before the release of Vigilante. They play great hard to heavy rock and beautiful ballads. In particular, I was drawn to them by the otherworldly, fantastical lyrics and album covers, the catchy chorus lines, and driving riffs.

I was fortunate to see them live 4 times in the late 1980s. They certainly know how to put on a show and are consummate musicians and performers.

Songs listened to – Dragons are Real from Princess Alice and the Broken Arrow, and Days of No Trust from Wings of Heaven.

220px-Magnum_-_On_a_storytellers_Night

Metallica

Is it possible to listen to and love heavy metal without embracing the phenomenon that is Metallica? I didn’t get them at first, despite seeing them at Monsters of Rock 1987. I soon put that right, although Load and ReLoad were a mixed bag and St Anger a complete non-starter. Thankfully, they are getting back to their best with Death Magnetic and Hardwired.

Song listened to – For Whom the Bell Tolls from Ride the Lightning.

metallica

Rush

Can I go a day without listening to the best band there ever was or will be? No! I have my sister to thank for buying a 12″ single featuring Tom Sawyer, Red Barchetta and a live version of A Passage to Bangkok. I’ve loved this band and their ever changing musical output since I was 10 or 11, 1980-81. There really is something for everyone in their back catalogue – very fortunate as it seems unlikely/doubtful that any future music will be recorded by this trio of deific musicians.

I judge the period from 2112 to Moving Pictures as their finest, however, I have a serious addiction to the era from Grace Under Pressure to Presto. But, every album is a classic in its own right that I can choose to match my mood at any given time. I got to see them live 4 times.

Songs listened to – Xanadu from A Farewell to Kings, The Trees and La Villa Strangiato from Hemispheres, and Witch Hunt from Moving Pictures.

moving pictures

An Update to Random Update.

Random and odd, but that’s just me. No, it seemed about time to blog again – it’s a dirty habit, I know, but what can you do?

It’s time to issue a blog-based update on my writing progress, I think I last updated on my current work in progress back in early November 2017 – last year, so long ago! Anyway, today I completed the first draft of my alternative project, which I can now confirm will be titled Oblivion. I’ve set a deadline for myself to have it fully self-edited and polished up by the end of January, and had to set a sub-deadline to complete the first draft by the end of this week. I achieved that first goal at about 1245hrs with a grand total of 79,045 words. Roll on the endless read throughs, improvements and rewrites.

All this means I am due to return to The Gene Weavers Sequence universe in February and complete Book 3. I’ve sent the current 20,000+ words to my test-reader – all the way next door! Fingers crossed he’ll come back with good feedback; I’ll take careful note of all his comments and even start afresh if he finds it doesn’t work. I started Book 1 in February 2017 and had it published in June 2017, so with good luck and a following wind (Mrs Lee says I always have wind behind me!!) I’ll be able to release Book 3 and complete the trilogy in June/July 2018.

Forcing myself to keep to a deadline proved that I can produce a higher word count and I intend to keep that up. Again, with luck and that wind I’m known for, I’ll release 3 or 4 novels this year.

The Freebie Has Ended

Yes, indeed. The 5 day free promotion on Amazon Kindle for Gene Weavers: Revelations has reached its inevitable conclusion. I can now confirm the total number of free downloads as 64, which I think is not too bad at all.

If anybody is reading this who took advantage of the offer – I hope you are enjoying it or, if you haven’t started yet, what the fuck is holding you back, sorry, I hope you enjoy it when you get around to it. Only time will tell if this marketing event has brought more readers to my writing table (I use a laptop on my knees, actually) but it is gratifying nevertheless to know that more people will be reading my concoction of words.

The Eve of New Year’s Eve

Arbitrary. The decision to celebrate the beginning of a new year, you know – when it goes up 1, to quote Bubble, is arbitrarily set at this time. We could just as easily welcome a new year between June and July or 5 September and 6 September. After all, each new day is the start of a new year since that same date’s predecessor 365/6 days ago. The Chinese don’t celebrate their new year now.

Nevertheless, we welcome it in at this time. So, in my most recent solar circumnavigation, what has happened of date? Ok, I haven’t worked for a wage for a single day. My back, legs and fibromyalgia symptoms have seen to that. Of course, the DWP decided that, ‘although you may have a condition,’ you are capable of doing some work and cancelled my ESA, put me on JSA instead. Although I dot the I and cross the T and search for suitable part time employment I still can’t see any employer taking me on with the caveats and restrictions imposed by my health. Therefore, I continue to write.

I started writing again in September 2016 and put finger to keyboard on my first novel in February 2017. That was independently published in June 2017 with book 2 in the series already started. Book 2 was independently published in October 2017. Quite successful really, two books published from a standing start. Marketing, however, is an alien concept to me and consequently sales have not been astounding. But, my work has sold and garnered positive reviews, which is rewarding in itself. I wish I could sell more, though and stop relying on the government.

To that end, I have two pieces of work currently on the go. Gene Weavers Book 3 is on standby; it has over 20,000 words in rough draft but I need to properly plot and order the middle section. An alternative project, Oblivion, is nearly at 60,000 words and all systems are go. This will be my next release and I’m looking at doing the process of uploading the manuscript to Amazon KDP myself. It is supposed to be relatively straightforward so I’ll give it a go and save some outlay on this one. Cover design will be left to a professional. Gene Weavers 3 must be in the same style, font and everything as the other 2 books so Publish Nation will be approached again with that one.

I hope to have 5 books to my name by this time next year – assuming I can maintain this rate. That will be my new year’s resolution. Resolutions don’t have to be something different, they can be to continue as current. Perhaps more monetary reward would be nice, though.

 

It’s International RUSH Day!!

As I’ve already admitted on my Faceache, sorry, Facebook page, it’s only fair to confirm, today of all days, with an Admiral called Lifeson, a General called Peart, and an alien called Gedd(e)y, this author is heavily infected with RUSH fandom. How many RUSH references I’ve slipped into Gene Weavers Books 1 & 2 I honestly cannot tell you but it should be fun searching for them. First (and only give away) – at what time does Admiral Lifeson receive notification of the priority Message Torpedo’s arrival from the destroyer ‘Dawning Reality’?

2112-cover

Memories (Part 1)

I had a visit from an old school friend today. he was picking up a copy of each of my books to take to Australia over Christmas and new year – cheers Sincs, I appreciate it.

As we chatted, he received a call from a client he had to take. I mentioned how strange it always seems when I see old friends with their business heads on; I still think of myself, and them, as the reprobates in that 6th form common room oh, 29-30 years ago. Thankfully, he agreed.

It was secret that I dabbled in writing back then. I burnt that output a long time back and good riddance. My genre was fantasy in that age and the dream of being a published writer was as much fantastical as my poor prose. Over the intervening years I tried again many times but was always very hard on myself – you’ve tried and it was not good. Thankfully, I overcame that hold up last year and I think that time and experience has had a calming effect on my writing. I’m also enjoying the writing process much more than I used to.

What’s the point of this blog? I don’t know, I’m only writing it – you tell me! No, it’s that time in December that we atheists aren’t supposed to enjoy, a time when old reminiscences are released into the light of day and we can think about people near and far, alive and passed.

I hope all my readers (that merry little band) have a great holiday time – stay safe but get pissed!