Friday, 16 December 2011

Bloody bronchitis

I have bronchitis. Now I know that this news is not up there on a par with the recent doings of the leaders of the European Union, nor even of the latest twist in Katie Price's love life. But, damnit, it has taken over my existence at the moment.

Any fool can have bronchitis, of course, but mine is PARTICULARLY INTERESTING and I feel I must share its fascinating details with you.

This is noisy bronchitis. Noisy, that is in two ways. There is the conventional rasping wheezing, coughing and expectoration (ordinary people spit; authors expectorate), which is so painful and debilitating. But my bronchitis has a very distinctive voice of its own, which emerges when I put my head on the pillow at night and desperately try to sleep.

You see, across my lungs and inside my chest there is coiled a serpent. It has two voices: an initial and constant bubbling kind of rasping murmur just to show you that it is there and and hates you. It is sufficient to keep you awake. Then, just when you think you might be drifting away, the second emerges.

This is when the serpent lifts its head from its coils and decides to strike. This is a manevolent hiss that precedes the slash upwards into the throat which brings on, suddenly and viciously, the bout of frenzied coughing.

Fanciful? Not at two a.m. it isn't, when you are all alone in the blackness
of the night and the terrors press in. Mind you, perhaps this is a form of bronchitis that only writers get. Creativity gone mad, do you think? Nah. Can't be. It's too real.

Saturday, 3 December 2011

Swindon hears about Fonthill

Those of you out there who follow the doings of Simon Fonthill, Jenkins, Alice and Co and who live within a spit or so of Swindon in North Wiltshire might care to know that I will be talking about them all at Highworth Library on Monday evening (5th Dec) at 7.30.

The talk is entitled "The Pitfalls and Pleasures of Writing Historical Fiction" but I will dig a bit into how these characters were created and developed. Everyone is welcome (no charge)and the address is Highworth Library, Brewery Street, Highworth, Swindon (just off the A419).

Do come and shout "Rubbish" from the back of the hall.