Tag Archives: running

Oscar Diamond rough cut geezer

14 Dec


I know exactly how poor Odysseus is feeling. He yearns to arrive home safely with his crew intact. What does he encounter ? A bunch of Sirens trying to seduce him onto the rocks ! His men have tied him to the mast permitting him to hear their hypnotic song but preventing him from succumbing to its lethal effect. They are immune because their ears are stuffed full of beeswax. What have  got in common with Odysseus  ? Like him I easily succumb to DISTRACTION, the eighth deadly sin. He wanted to hear the song of the Sirens and experience its death inducing quality yet survive. An unnecessary risk, I might add. Naughty thrill seeker Odysseus. And this is subsequent to spending a great deal of time canoodling with Circe and being subject to her magical ways on her island. Yes, he’s a first class loiterer and thoroughly unfocussed traveller. I, like him, need to bring some discipline into my (writing) activities. Tempus fugit ! How easy it is to fritter away precious time. A few days ago I was in the mood for murder and egregious revenge. I had a couple of hours to plot a storyline and start writing a chapter. Instead, I gave great attention to building a nest around me. I surrounded myself with books, cut out articles, notes, food coffee, pens, laptop and iPad. I was nicely set up to browse all the very interesting things in front of me and enjoy the stimulating ideas contained within. As a consequence I did no plotting and no writing but vowed (good tabloid word) to be more resolute next time. I have played out this scenario on many occasions. The only time I did become more consistently committed to writing was in the period following my heart attack four years ago. I don’t recommend this eventuality as a viable aid to focus and concentration, of course, but every cloud has a silver lining. This blog is a distraction as is my dog, all my books and magazines, gardening,running, cooking and cleaning. I must pull my finger out. The majority of people who write also have a myriad other commitments and still find a way of fitting writing in. But, golly gosh, its difficult.

http://www.thecreativepenn.com This is the website of Joanna Penn, writer,public speaker.entrepreneur and advocate of self publishing. She has about 170 podcasts on iTunes and has conducted many interviews with successful ebook authors. She’s authorative, knowledgeable and shares her experiences of writing, marketing and publishing as they happen. Very easy to listen to, I find them inspirational and entertaining on a number of levels. Joanna recently interviewed Kerry Wilkinson, a very successful British writer and this contrasted strikingly with her more frequent American interviewees. The Americans tend to be very polite, humorous, socially at ease, articulate and receptive. Kerry was some of these things but not to any great extent. When Joanna started the interview and greeted him the response was abrupt and  barely comprehensible. But I did warm to him because he was straight forward and didn’t speak in generalities. Success appeared to come relatively easily, he wrote prolifically and he was very self disciplined. His manner was low key and very matter of fact.There was no showiness. I’ll probably listen to it again. Another bloody distraction. Thank you Joanna !! I’m going for a run now.


Oscar Diamond rough cut geezer

18 Nov

I’m lucky to be living in Cambridge, UK. We are less than 5 miles from the centre and the University, which is an embedded and integral feature of this small City. Moving here 14 years ago, we love walking in and about Cambridge and visiting the Colleges and their grounds. If I’m feeling very fit or in training for a long race, I can run along the River Cam which goes through Cambridge. It’s got a great library, 2 large multi floor bookshops, several excellent second hand bookshops, beautiful architecture, a  number of first class museums river punts, good independent shops, two theatres and zillions of concerts, talks and performances regularly taking place. The Market Square has a very good second hand book stall. In short, Cambridge offers a wealth of cultural and cerebral delights to an appreciative demographic as well as an elite education for those with brains, money and the right class. In the distant past, hostility and resentment between Town and Gown, (ordinary town residents and working people and students and their wealthy Colleges), led to fights, occasional riots and sometimes, deaths. This is no longer the case (I think) but the old enmities live on, albeit in a weakened form. I live in a village and I walk my dog with other dog walking chums. If I announce on any particular day that I’m going into Cambridge later, their response is invariably “Poor you.” It’s now become a conditioned response and I’m disappointed if they don’t respond negatively. Why don’t they like it ? Traffic is awful and it’s full of tourists and congestion. They would only venture in to do some shopping but only if it can’t be avoided. Not everyone but most of them have no interest in what Cambridge has got to offer including the architecture and the river walksw

http://www.cambridgewordfest.co.uk/ is a literary festival in November and a smaller one in the Spring. Heffers is a large bookshop which hosts literary events. See http://www.eventbrite.co.uk/org/4414026401. I’ll be seeing retired Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams and Raymond Tallis talk about faith and science and crime writer Ian Rankin interviewed by Alison Bruce. Poor me !

I think I’ve got a crime novel in me. I’m currently sketching out the story line and characters. It’s slow work. Must get more focussed, more motivated and definitely more  disciplined. I’ve been giving myself this message for decades. Note to self : please take notice of important internal memoranda addressed to self.

Oscar Diamond rough cut geezer

10 Nov

With this blog, with the words and ideas contained, I intend to make radical changes. I vow to use all the clichés and tabloid phrases at my disposal to describe an intrinsic shift in my outlook and disposition. I’m fed up with procrastination, willingness to be distracted and endless fantasising about ideas which are never pursued. I’m sixty-one years old! Still young, very young compared to a centurion but indisputably chronologically older than nineteen. I am, however, emotionally stuck in my late teens and early twenties and glad of it! But I’ve always put thing off, let things ride,taken the line of least resistance and put effort into avoiding any stressful changes or stepping outside of my comfort zone. Well, lessons have been learned. At the end of the day I’ve got to change my mindset or I’ll be in bits. Lets be clear about this, I’m damaged goods but there’s still fuel in the tank, still lead in my pencil (figuratively, of course, because I’m using a computer).

What do I want to say? What ideas do I want to explore that will lead to new ways of thinking and feeling? Which then lead to consistently working towards a goal.

I want to write a book. Good news! I have written a book. Well done me. But wait. Despite reading and thinking a great deal about writing, revising and not sending it off to agents and publishers until  it was fully polished  and avoided all the obvious pitfalls a budding writer falls into, I did just that. I received numerous rejection slips and one comment stating I was at the beginning of the creative process. That particularly grated. For a short while I mused about plotting a crime story concerning a serial killer whose victims were literary agents choked to death by rejected submissions. The ones who only accepted emails would have to be dispatched in other ways. But, of course I didn’t pursue it.

I’d like to start a small  internet based  business selling self designed T-shirts. Again I’ve spent quite a lot of time thinking about this and the steps I would need to take but……………at this point I lost interest in myself and decided to start another blog aliveandrunning2013.wordpress.com