My Amazon Author Page

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"A Scottish Wind in the Willows on high end skunk."

"I enjoy Kate's stories..."
"A fun and spooky read..."

"The characters are so involving and
loveable that you do want them to really exist. It does read like you've
stumbled across someone's long lost diary from and alternate timeline/universe.
I quickly got into the story and loved every second of reading it...
total gem of a read by an author who deserves a lot more recognition."


Sunday, 18 December 2016

Thoughts expected during the coming year.

Loss of place, loss of community - memories of a time when islands were not, or seemed not, places of isolation.
These are the things that will be occupying my thoughts during the coming year.  When I can shoehorn them in among worrying about bills, getting the car fixed, damp-dusting, the 'ageing process', Death, World War Three, eating too many biscuits, did I use up the emergency UHT milk last Tuesday, bothering the doctor with my rheumy eye, will I die 'early and suddenly' (preferred option) or wither away, alone and ga-ga, in a work-house-style care home et cetera, et cetera, et cetera, that is.  Death and Money, basically.  And as one gets older, Death, naturally, tends to predominate.
If you aren't readying yourself for Death, ur not doin it rite. Life, that is.  I read that somewhere.  Or at least, something along those lines.
I'm forever readying myself for Death.  I have been ever since I was in my 30s when I expected, due to illness, to be dead at 42.  However that did not occur.  42 came and went, and a fairly large number of years have followed.  I count myself lucky.  Now I think of myself as being in a waiting room, waiting my turn, sweaty palms and dicky tummy, reading magazines I never usually read and eating sweets to try to take my mind off the horror of it all.  Lots of people have gone on before, let's face it.  It can't be that bad - can it? We all must open the door alone and find out what lies behind it, alone.  Perhaps it's not that bad after all.  We just don't know what lies beyond, because nobody's come back to tell us.  Fear of the unknown and all that.
Meanwhile, it's probably a good idea to set aside 'readying yourself' from time to time, and enjoy oneself as much as possible.  Otherwise one might become depressed and likely to move on from magazines and sweets to truly life-threatening things such as alcohol, drugs, fatty foods, dangerous 'sports' and so forth, in order to blot out the existential anxiety, thereby increasing it by increasing the chances of an earlier demise possibly through complications arising from morbid obesity.
Can I manage that?  Can I manage to set aside readying myself?  I'm not sure.   I am sure, and I know from experience, that reading and writing are two non-life-threatening activities which can blot it out, if the subject matter is sufficiently interesting and engaging.  Obviously that won't include (at least not when anyone's looking) articles about gluten-free baking,  Katie Perry's beach-ready-body and Cruz Beckham's singing career.  That is an excellent motivation.
On the other hand, why should one bother to avoid life-threatening things, when one is going to die anyway?  It's only putting off the inevitable and you can smoke and drink merrily knowing you will be saving the state a few quid by dying 'early and suddenly' of a heart attack or rapidly-advancing cancer.  Nobody lives forever.  The reason I don't presently tend to over-indulge TOO much is because I enjoy physical activity in a moderate kind of way, walking and nature and so forth, and I want to be able to do so for as long as possible.
On the other hand - or foot, since we've used up both hands - you never can tell.  One might not have to bother setting aside 'readying oneself'.   One might come to terms with one's mortality - biting the bullet, so to speak - as one potters along, and have a terrific time doing it.
Compliments of the season, and all that.

Thursday, 15 December 2016

Roads and Paths 2016

Observations of paths and roads from my daily walks during the past year.  Most were taken in the fields and woods near home.  Farm tracks,  woodland paths, single track roads.

Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Festive Freebie

I've organised free download of all my e-books over the Festive - starting on Christmas Eve and continuing for five days.
Crack open the Madeira, trim the oil lantern, put your feet up by a roaring driftwood fire, fill your pipe, fire half a dozen fish-fingers under the grill, ensure the dead-fall is operational (in order to repel neighbours), and Read On, while the wind howls and the windows rattle and Death sniffs the air, seeking his next victim...
Not necessarily in that order, of course.
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all.  

Tuesday, 6 December 2016

Germs and New-fangled Fivers

This post was inspired by the so-called new fivers, which are apparently impregnated with meat products, making them a horrible, weird, post-cash-society, both food and money-style hybrid. While waiting for the kettle to boil and leaving aside the obvious, i.e. they probably don't taste better than Spam but you might be tempted to make a sandwich from one if sufficiently intoxicated, I was contemplating the ways in which a meat-product-impregnated new-fangled fiver might be better or worse than a meat-free-but-filthy old-fangled fiver - the kind that emerges damp and falling apart and undoubtedly germ-ridden from smelly men's trousers during pub crawls or in the bookies.
The new-fangled fivers are certainly likely to be less of a health hazard. Or are they?  Perhaps there is a hidden danger lurking in your wipe-clean fiver.  Perhaps its shiny facade masks a deadly, germ-laden secret. Perhaps the Daily Express will do a terrifying feature on it.
Which germs does one really have to worry about, though, when push comes to shove?  Stuff from your backside and stuff from your nose and stuff from off of off food, and stuff that smells bad, obviously.  At least, it's obvious to me. Some may argue, of course, as they are fully entitled to do.  And some may not - and they are the clever ones because they agree with me.  I will reluctantly accept that what smells bad to one may not smell bad to another, and vice versa.  Nevertheless I hold to my point and I refuse to yield.
What else is there to worry about, in the germ realm, now we're on the subject and away from fivers?  Let me see.  Diseases, possibly, that you can catch from toilet seats and the tropics and the like.  Other than there anything?  I dunno.
Some people like to tackle germs, by the way, with an 'evil spray', perhaps incorporating bleach and the like.  Does 'evil spray' kill germs though - the ones that count, at any rate?  Is it of any benefit? Does its germ-killing capacity outweigh the carcinogenic risk from its noxious toxic fumes?  Does one, in short,  get one's money's worth from the evil spray?  Because after all that is what everything boils down to in life.  Getting One's Money's Worth.  
Which is my next topic*, and brings me rather neatly in a forced kind of way, back to fivers.
*unless I get killed by germs.