Well, so, my dumps have been enshrined in showbiz history, playmates. I have become the official Guardian posterboy for artistic despair. Serves me right, and I can't stop giggling at the URL of the post in question, which is:
Well, quite. Thanks again to everyone who shouted encouragement. Of course I'm not going to give up. What else would I do? I am monumentally unfit for all other human practice and enterprise. A couple of well-wishers used the phrase "keep on truckin'", which reminded me that the results of my sixth form careers aptitude test indicated that, by some considerable margin, the job I was most suited for in life was road haulage manager. (So close.)
Anyway, despite the anxieties I aired in my last, I've spent quite a pleasant week writing and shaping The Forest and the Field and I'm interested now to see how it might go down. So, do come if you can.
Also, I took delivery this afternoon of a proof copy of The History of Airports, and I'm pretty pleased. For a POD job it's not too shabby at all. So now the presses can roll. I'm not quite sure what that entails, but in my imaginings it's very much like this:
At any rate I now feel all the more confident in urging you to pre-order the book (for the special price of £10 +p&p), which you can do through the Lean Upstream web site, and which you'll shortly be able to do from this site also.
The book launch event, by the way, has moved again, this time to Sunday 29th, still at STK as per the side bar (over there >>>). This is to avoid a clash with the last ever Openned at the Foundry, which I imagine most right-thinking people (including myself) will feel they want to attend. The Foundry has been a great location over the years and Openned in particular have done fantastically important work there; it's absolutely nauseating to be losing it.
Mostly this post is just to fill y'all in on what lies ahead at Thompson's in weeks to come.
The next major post will be a transcript of my recent conversation with Tim Crouch and a smith, which they very generously made time for on The Author's last day at the Royal Court. I'm excited to listen back to it all, though I think it might be quite an undertaking to turn it into text, as I remember a lot of words quite tightly packed in to our hour together...
After that, Thompson's takes its customary winter wonderland lurch towards muso-obsessiveness. The 2009 Furtive 50 rundown of the year's most ear-pleasing albums will hopefully be going up a little bit ahead of Christmas this year, so as to help with those last minute gifts for strange people who are difficult to buy for and seem to like peculiar music. And also -- contain your excitement now, little ones -- I'm going to be doing an audio advent calendar: so there'll be a new consignment of jingle-bellery every day for you to listen to and enjoy or not as you see fit.
No doubt there'll also be one of those reflective end-of-year pipe-smoking posts, possibly in the gap between Christmas and New Year. I want to remember to say something about Bob.
But I think there's room in the schedule for one more post, and I thought it might be fun or interesting or something to take requests. I will undertake to generate a substantial post, sometime between now and December 31st, on any topic prescribed by any Thompson's reader. Suggestions may be lodged in the comments field here, or by email. I'll pick one more or less at random, with perhaps some moderate (but far from conclusive) weighting towards those who I know have been particularly close or committed readers. -- Normally my attempts to engage Friends Of Thompson in this kind of vaguely bogus-looking way fall coldwater flat: exempli gratia, the resoundingly 100% unentered Thompson's Christmas Quiz competition of 2007. But I hope this new wheeze at least places less grotesque impedimenta in the way of the, er, fun and interesting part than did that quiz debacle.
There's absolutely no constraint on what the topic is, it needn't be within a million miles of any of the subjects we normally discuss here. An independent adjudicator will oversee the selection and ensure, if not impartiality, then no more than a gentlemanly degree of bias.
So, please, let your mind wander freely, and propose your topic. Any time between now and the end of November will do.
Let me announce, also, finally, that Thompson's will be on sabbatical during January and February 2010. I have another project -- two, in fact -- into which I need to be pouring whatever writing energies I may by then be capable of generating. Given that the blog quite frequently lapses into month-long silences anyway, I don't suppose it will make much difference to anybody, but for the sake of transparency...
Maybe see you tomorrow at Lawrence's birthday corroboree, or next week at The Forest and the Field -- and if neither of these, then somewhere down the crazy river, right?