Settling and Getting Set

With nothing specific on the agenda, it’s been good to be able to take a few moments to pause and reflect. I’ve especially enjoyed looking at all the wedding photographs coming in from friends and family and absorbing different impressions of a day that fills me with happiness whenever I think about it.

I’ve also been taking stock this week because next Sunday sees the official release of my second novel, Move Over Darling. Without, I hope, wishing to sound in the least bit boastful, it feels particularly good to have reached this point after all the doubts, fears and long, long hours. I joke that when I look at my daughters, I’m filled with a sense that, wow, I made a WHOLE person (okay, with a bit of help) and then I did it again! Well, it’s a similar feeling holding a second book in my hand and seeing my name on the cover. With it come the same mixed emotions about holding on and letting go. There’s the joy of celebrating with loved ones, sadness for the people we miss.

It’s one thing, however, to create a fictional world and a group of characters hoping that it will strike a chord with the reader, but it’s a different and quite daunting prospect to have to face the outside world - as I did again this week - and talk about it! It’s lovely that any journalist in a world of fast-moving news, is interested enough to interview me about what I do, but, goodness, it doesn’t half get my pulse racing!

Two people though, who are much better at facing the outside world than I am, are the folk duo, Spiers and Boden (see also Bellowhead). Tom and I popped down to Theatr Mwldan again on Friday to see them perform. It was a full house, packed with the kind of audience who favour lots of au naturel hair and big woolly jumpers. With that and an aberrant stage gizmo that puffed smoke effects at surprising and unpredictable moments, it was a bit like sitting in an Iron Age hut, but we had a brilliant evening. Spiers and Boden are terrific musicians and great entertainers. How Jon Boden manages to sing one rhythm, play another on the fiddle and stamp his foot to a third is quite beyond me!

Today's painting is Tom's choice.  It's his painting of the Ring of Kerry from Slea Head.


Sarah Tranter said…
I so get your analogy with your daughters and your books Chris - yep you created them and nurtured them, allowed them to develop into themselves - and no doubt lost your patience with them on occasion too:) The end results? Something to be very proud of. Both your daughters and your books have turned out to be beautiful! Congratulations on the forthcoming publication of Move Over Darling - it deserves huge success. Sx
Anonymous said…
Hi Christine,
I too am a big fan of Spiers and Boden. Discovered them with Bellowhead and have been buying CDs and going to gigs ever since.
I went to a Jon Boden solo gig once - and given the depth of talent , his passion for the music and his looks... I feel for him just a little bit.
Janet X
Jane Lovering said…
It's so scary, isn't it, having to get out there and publicise your books? A bit like having your precious children take part in a beauty pageant. But worth it in the end, because people can only buy it when they know it exists - not that I'm suggesting anyone would sell their children, or anything, but I'm sure you know what I mean! And Move Over Darling deserves to be a huge success - it's a wonderful, lovely, tender book (and this comes from someone who hates Doris Day...) x
Cally Taylor said…
It's particularly gratifying to see your novel in print when you suffered from terrible second novel syndrome with it and doubted you'd ever see your words in print again! (I'm not talking about you here! ;)). Huge congrats Chris, hope it's a great success x
Sharon Whitley said…
super blog - I came across while looking for paintings of Aran Fawddwy - amazing how these search engines work - I was up there yesterday - 4th time and 1st view! Anyway very envious of you living over on the Welsh coast - love Tom's paintings too - especially the one of Craig Cau - beautiful!
Frances said…
Chris, I am glad that you've had a bit of time to yourself, without any events on the immediate horizon. Just time to reflect a bit, embrace the changing of seasons, and ... enjoy having your second novel published.


Let me also ask you to pass along a bravo to Tom. I do like this picture.

I am thinking that this autumn and winter are going to be very good times for you all. Just a sense I have.

Chris Stovell said…
Hi Sarah... that may have happened a couple of times, yes! Not long to go for you now! Thanks so much for the support. Cx

Janet, hi, how nice to see you here. Well, here's to the next Spiers and Boden/Bellowhead gig when you're back in the UK. Hairy jumpers at the ready!

Aw, Jane - you've made me come over all unnecessary now! How kind of you... don't suppose you'd consider doing my PR for me so I don't have to to?

Cally, you've no idea how helpful you were during those long dark nights of doubt! Thanks for the good wishes.

Hello Sharon, thanks for visiting. Well, we've done Aran Fawddy three times and only seen the view once! The first time we were forced to turn back because conditions were so bad. The last time we saw a party of kids doing their D of E Gold expedition and they looked utterly worn out, poor things, but they were on the final leg. Thanks so much for your appreciation of Tom's paintings too.

Frances, thank you for your kindness, as ever. I really enjoyed your most recent post with its lovely story and a walk in the park.

Pondside said…
I had a peak at your latest book when I was at Jane's - well done!
I think I'd like that musical duo - my sort of music.
Flowerpot said…
Congratulations Chris I can't wait to read it - so much has happened recently you need to take stock! Take care xxx
I've downloaded my copy of Move Over Darling onto my Kindle and long to read it.

I'm glad the wedding went so well, the pictures you posted on FB were fabulous.

Love the painting (as always!).
Sophie said…
Well firstly, I had a brilliant shot of my bottom that I was going to share - taken with a wide angle lens - but if you don't want to see it, then fine...

Anyway, have downloaded MOD, and look forward to reading it. Congratulations on the publication, Chris. x
Sophie said…
Oops!! Don't know what happened there. My dog appears to have left a comment. It's me - Liv!! No idea how to post as me. Won't let me do Open ID, and don't know how to retrieve my Google Account info.

Liv x

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