Off on my travels

I meant to write a couple of posts for the turn of the year but I didn't have time. It's interesting to think about 2009/10 now, almost three weeks into 2010.

2009 was a little disappointing. Programming took more of my energy than I'd have liked, meaning writing projects, including the novel, didn't get the attention they should have done. The year was pretty good – I ran 600 miles, did over a dozen readings, made great progress on my novel – but I would like to have done more.

So far 2010 has been a blast. Despite the snow, I've managed to do some running and am, just about, on track for the Brighton Marathon in April. My talk at the Catalyst Club, on How to Escape on a WW2 POW Camp, seemed to be very well received.

The most exciting news is that I've become a freelancer. I'm planning to do both writing and programming work in 2010, but so far I've been exclusively working on some writing projects. One of these was an essay which included some fictional sections – I'll announce that when it comes out.

Even more exciting, I'm off to India tomorrow. It's amazing to think that in about 30 hours I'll be landing in Delhi. I'm going to be away for a couple of months and will be taking the opportunity to get away from my computer as much as possible. I will be contactable by email, but I'll only be checking every few days. There will also be some blog posts, as a friend has agreed to scan in some letters.

2010 has been pretty good so far. I'm looking forward to seeing what more it brings.

Things to do before I leave town

My library is now in storage, which means I’m one step closer to my holiday. Storage centers are weird, pushing the trolley past dozens of identical doors, knowing there are hundreds of rooms in the warehouse and wondering: what is in all these rooms?


Only a few more days to go, and I still have lots left to do. A week from today, I’ll be settling down for my last sleep in this country for some time.

I love Ross Sutherland’s poem Things to do before you leave town, now more than ever:
Do not go back for your coat
Do not hard-talk the homeless.
Do not stare longingly up at the clock tower.
Stop taking yourself so seriously. .

My favourite films of 2009

I'm running a little late with this so I'll post it briefly now before it's too out of date. My favourite films of 2009 were:

  1. Synecdoche, New York – currently my favourite film ever.
  2. Antichrist – although I had my eyes closed for a couple of bits
  3. Morris: A Life with Bells On – I had a great time seeing this at the Duke of York's, surrounded by real-life morris dancers
  4. Up – although mostly for the first five minutes.
  5. The Wrestler
    – I was underwhelmed when I watched this, because the ending seemed a
    disappointment, but I found myself thinking about it a lot afterwards.

I didn't see as many movies last year as in 2008, and I missed a few
that looked amazing. I was underwhelmed by both Moon and
District 9, which seemed illogical and obvious. I'm not sure why they
received the acclaim they did.

I’m speaking at the Catalyst Club on Thursday 14th January

I am speaking at the Catalyst Club this Thursday, on 'How to escape from a WW2 POW Camp'. The Catalyst Club takes place at the Latest Music Bar on Manchester Street (BN2 1TF) and costs £5.  Doors open at 8 with the first speaker on at 8:30pm.

This is my first post of 2010 – the start of the year has been great fun, but hasn't allowed as much time for blogging as I would have liked. I will catch up with things before I go away.