[For those of you from Twitter looking for the Sam Green short story, please scroll down.]

For the rest of you…

… it’s all been a bit of a rush, like my bum’s on fire and I can’t find a puddle to sit in. But … we’re hoping that any time soon it’s all going to settle down a bit and we can refocus on the everyday. Like Ikea.

First, school. I have half a day left on Tuesday. I survived the end of the week without major breakdown and unless one of the sweeties brings a bomb to the class on Tuesday, then I think I’m going to make it out the other end with my sanity intact. It has been a close run thing, and I guess in a couple of weeks I’ll give you all a resume of life as an ageing school teacher. It won’t be pretty, but, having been given a lovely handmade-card from two Yr 9 girls, the front of which says, ‘We will miss you’ (and there are an assortment of lovely notes inside), there are bits of it I will cherish. But, importantly, sanity frayed but in one piece. Tick.

The whole family got together on Friday night in Gloucester. It was lovely to see them all, and C and I marvelled that whilst none of us are completely ‘all there’, we do make a great team. Both of our sons-in-law are the perfect foil for our daughters and both couples are making a much better fist of early marriage than we did. Well done them. Bex and Steven fly to Seoul next Thursday, and we are seeing a lot of them between now and then. And Jen’s business continues to flourish: £200 worth of e-orders on Friday. We attended a fayre (actually it was more of a v small fun day) at a village close to Gloucester yesterday. I had made a display trunk, C loads of bandannas, and Jen a good many leads and collars. It looked fab. And the weather was kind – when is it not at the moment? But she only sold one collar, which paid for the pitch. To be fair there were only a few people there and she did hand out some cards. So, no great sales rush, but at least we have a system.


I remain unsure of how my part in her business will look over the coming months. I’m going to have to balance it against book stuff, and my leadership mentoring. Whatever – it will keep me occupied. Which will be a good thing.


Books? Well, I’ve sold 75 copies of For Good Men To Do Nothing, and have three 5-star reviews on Amazon already. Indirectly I also received two comments from pals: ‘bloody loved it’ … ‘pretty amazing piece of writing’, both of whom I know will post reviews. What I love about the second comment, which is written by my brother who I know does not hold his punches, is that he didn’t say ‘that’s a great story’, or, ‘loved Sam’. But he actually commented on the way it was written. My writing. Pretty amazing? Fab. I will hurry along all of the reviews from people I know over the next 10 days or so. And all of this gives me a good feeling.

On Goodreads I am at 98 reviews for Fuelling the Fire, with an average score of 4.20/5.0. I think, in comparison to nearly everyone else with a big chunk of reviews, that’s good going. I still believe The Innocence of Trust is a fabulously complex book (25 ratings on Goodreads, with an average of 4.64/5.0) and I am very proud of Unsuspecting Hero (58 ratings; 4.19/5.0). Goodreads is the world’s readers’ forum and they’re not shy from telling you that your stuff is rubbish.

So what? I have to keep going at this. I have to believe that one day someone with a big voice in the literary business will pick up one of my books and think, you know what, this is a good series. It’s different. Sam Green is a lovable character with whom everyone empathises. We should let everyone know about this. And then order a plateful of minions to make it so.

That’s me sewn up until I’m unable to think/type then. Certainly I’m v excited by book 5, which is going to be dark, brooding and ever-so slightly off the wall. Stand-by!

I have numerous articles in for possible publication and, via a good friend, I have a second director reading Unsuspecting Hero’s screenplay. The initial comment from the director was that she was ‘liking it’. We shall see.

That’s it from me. Bex and I have a day in London tomorrow. She’s going to get her Korean visa. Then one final morning at school … uh, yippee?!

[And thanks for all your comments on the short story. I’ll let you know if it makes publication any where.]

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