Freedom From The Mundane - A Writer's Blog

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Colin's Guide to the Scottish Weather

So that’s it. January is over already. The recuperation month is done and dusted, the depression after Christmas lifting because we are now far enough away from the turn of the year, we have settled into an acceptance that the brand new year is suddenly not so brand new any more. The evenings are slowly getting lighter, teasing us into early thoughts that long summer evenings can’t be that far ahead.

But Scotland does this every year. It lulls us into a false sense of security and makes us think that pleasantness is only around the corner. Anyone who knows Scottish weather knows that despite the weather being mild and calm at the moment, our winter has yet to arrive.

Traditionally February, and sometimes into March, we get our worst snow, wind and rain. Granted it has been pretty bad over the last couple of weeks, but what do we expect? In a few days or weeks, or however long it takes, news programmes will be talking about the disaster of the unexpected snow that is causing terrible and dramatic conditions on our roads. We will be cursing the Gods because of the ice that has arrived and wonder why on earth does it happen to us?

This is Scotland, NOT Barbados. If it was we would not have to wear Pac-a-Macs in the middle of summer, and would not have to provide our elderly with sticky shoes to stop them blowing away in the wind. Surely this year we will be used to it and will know how to handle it? It’s only a bit of snow!
Here are some tips to help you get through the winter:

* If it snows heavily where you live, stay at home and watch Murder She Wrote. Please don’t leave your car stuck in the middle of a road because you just had to get work. It’s very annoying and nobody will miss you that much in the office anyway.

* Wear warm clothes, preferably not one of those bubble jackets that makes you look like a space cadet. Wear lots of layers to provide insulation. Do not wear a kilt. It’s not brave and it’s not smart.

* If you do wear a kilt, then DO NOT wear any underwear. You are in a kilt so it’s a waste of time bothering. Besides, only poofs and Englishmen attending their brother’s wedding to a Scottish girl wear anything under the kilt.

* Females: wear a hat that sticks to your head and covers your ears, not one that is likely to blow off if the man in front of you so much as sneezes. Males: don’t.

* Females: wear gloves. Males: just don’t.

* Do not bother with an umbrella if it is very windy. They are a waste of time and money when they flap around above your head inside-out. Accept the fact you might get a bit wet and get on with it. Have you any idea how stupid it looks to see people fighting with their feeble umbrellas? Not to mention the danger to other people’s eyeballs.

* If you are elderly, three bars on your heater is much better than two. You will pay through the nose for it, but at least you will be alive. You could always save money by turning off your freezer and storing your frozen peas on the window ledge.

* Tie a pillow to your bum using a piece of rope. This way when you slip on ice you will do no damage to either your tail-bone or your pride.

* Buy a good sledge, find a safe, steep hill, and off you go.

* And remember, there is no such thing as bad weather – just the wrong clothes!

I finalised all my February GDR’s today (you’ll find them at the end of this post), and I gave the Poolside Poetry manuscript a final check over before sending it to the publisher. I now await the first copy of the book with which I will give it one final proof check. When I did Fringe Fantastic there was a huge learning curve involved, which meant lots of corrections mainly to do with the layout and design.

This time I have it all sussed, so barring any stupid little spelling mistakes, this first copy should not need any changes to it before final publication on Friday 2nd March.

I also completed the Press Kit and uploaded it to the website, and I got an email from my contact at the Sunday Herald. She is going to contact to pictures desk to find out about copies of my pictures from the recent photo shoot.

February’s GDR Plan

* Finish redrafting of short stories and get them submitted to new markets.
* Begin detailed post-research for Slick based on notes taken.
* Begin redrafting Slick.
* Complete synopsis and format of children's book.
* Begin writing new children's book.
* Begin researching next Lennox novel (long term).
* Draft synopsis for next novel (to start writing March 07).
* Keep on top of submissions list.

* Give Poolside Poetry final polish for Mar 2 release.
* Write some new poetry with the PSH Free-For-All in mind.
* Go to a Slam event.

* Complete writing of feature interview with Anita Govan.
* Promote independent freelance website.
* Begin querying relevant markets to the ones I singled-out last month.
* Write SDR articles, 6th - IP, 13th, 20th, 27th.
* Plan and write SDR column for April edition.
* Update Press Kit with FF quotes.
* Promote Press Kit onto website.

Marketing and Promotion
* Finalise Press Release for Poolside Poetry by 7th March.
* Issue Press Release for Poolside Poetry on 23rd Feb (1 week prior to launch).
* Complete cross-promotion with Fife B&B for Fringe Fantastic.
* Begin revamp main website.
* Keep website up to date.
* Thank you notes and image request to Sunday Herald - done. Waiting.
* Contact Fringe Head Office.
* List businesses that could be possible stockists for FF.
* Contact businesses that could be possible stockists for FF.

Reading and Research
* Finish reading Flesh and Blood by John Harvey novel - IP
* Finish reading Watchman by Ian Rankin - IP

Other Projects
* Stay on top of editorial work for TSDR.

* Guitar - move onto next phase of lessons in book.
* Start the physical design plan for rabbit run.

is out on
MARCH 2nd 2007

Click on the image to

Only £5 plus p&p

Labels: , , , , ,

Colin 7:33 am


I love the tips -- they're very funny!

Sounds like February will be another creative month.

Add a comment