Search

12 Books in 12 Months

writing books and blogging about it

Tag

Emily Dodd

West Port Book Festival 2011

Everyone in Edinburgh loves a book festival.  There was one in Portobello at the weekend and there’s another just around the corner in the Old Town.  Peggy Hughes (who Twitter users might know better as the Scottish Poetry Library’s @ByLeavesWeLive) was kind enough to write me a guest post about it.

The West Port Book Festival has reached the merry maturity of its fourth year, with another programme of cracking collaborations, tall tales, award-winners, stars of the future, dead people, open mics, and of course cakes. This year we’re popping up in October  – Thursday 13th – Sunday 16th to be precise.  We have flirted with running in different months (August for starters and seconds and June for thirds) and find that variety is the spice of life.

We have lost a few of our sterling venues from previous years.  The Lot, the Roxy ArtHouse and the Illicit Still (scene of the cause of a monstrous festival-wide hangover in year 3) are all sorely missed, while the Owl & Lion Gallery has risen like a phoenix from the ashes and resurrected itself as the Owl & Lion Bindery, further up the hill in the West Port. We’ve got a new bookshop on the block in Pulp Fiction and are comforted by the never-changing Blue Blazer and its energy-restoring ham and cheese toasties. Some things change, but the ideas and vision behind the West Port Book Festival remain.

Continue reading “West Port Book Festival 2011”

August Thanks

Today is the last day of August and therefore it feels like time for a progress report.

I have just over 15,000 words of book 8 written in a delightful stream of consciousness that makes no sense whatsoever; a situation unlikely to be improved by the fact I have a full day of work ahead of me and guests staying in the flat for a few days who it would be churlish to ignore. 

I’ve been writing in first person from the point of view of several characters, and accidentally switching tenses all over the shop.  This will almost certainly make for a narrative that feels immediate and tense and worthy of all manner of high praise…  That or when I go back to it I’ll be so confused and irritated I’ll consign the whole lot to the recycle bin and try to forget it ever happened.  I considered posting an extract by way of example, but to give you a proper sense of the nonsense it’d need to be 1k +, which seems inappropriately long for a blog post.

I have mostly been writing on my laptop, which has been the case with the bulk of the project, although I did actually scribble quite a few notes by hand this month (how retro) and I also typed out a few sections on my phone in queues at the Book Festival.  To the untrained eye, I was the only loser who was playing on my phone instead of reading a book.  Little did the general public know that in a couple of years they’ll be picking up the very book I was writing on my phone from the festival book shop!  Muahahaha, etc.  Except they really won’t.  I can’t see book eight being my debut – not unless there is some kind of drastic book shortage that necessitates the publication of things that need so much re-writing it makes your eyes water. 

By way of research (it’s scifi this month, by the by) I have read half of The Jennifer Morgue by Charles Stross and the first chapter of Neuromancer by William Gibson.  Oh yes, I am that prolific a reader these days.  It turns out having a vast pile of recommended books did not translate into having time to look at them all – who saw that coming, after my amazing track record?!  The only book I’ve finished this month is The Moth Diaries by Rachel Klein, which is a good story but doesn’t have much bearing on genre fiction.  Not this genre, anyway.

Naturally I am disinclined to take responsibility for my own actions and therefore lay the blame for this appalling lack of reading squarely at the feet of festival season.  To be fair the festival has been very distracting, although it has also been amazing in terms of making blog posts more diverse.  In fact I would like to thank Andrew BlairEmily Dodd, Ruth Dawkins, Harry Giles, Bethany Anderson and Mara from Toto Tales for their excellent guest posts; Amanda Palmer, Rod Jones and Andy Stanton for letting me interview them; and the Edinburgh International Book Festival for having me along to an amazing range of literary events over the past couple of weeks.  All of you have made things a lot more colourful around here, and generally helped to set a blogging precedent I am unlikely to maintain.

Which is nice.

How To Successfully Stalk Comedians

In this guest post, award winning author Emily Dodd gives you a taste of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival’s seedy underbelly – the twilight world of stalking.

I’m not talking creepy or romantic stalking. Successful comedian stalking is quite different; a fine art with the ultimate aim of making the comedian laugh. Then you have arrived, then you are funny.

I first started stalking comedians in the Fringe by accident. I’d recognise them and greet them like one greets an old friend. I was so ridiculously friendly that they were polite; perhaps thinking I was someone they knew but didn’t recognise. You could see them racking their brains trying to work out who I was.

A real friend, Vicki once caught me mid-stalk with Simon Amstell.  She edged away, embarrassed. I went to find her afterwards.

“What were you doing?!” she exclaimed.

“I don’t know” I confessed “I just forgot I don’t actually know him.  It keeps happening..”

Continue reading “How To Successfully Stalk Comedians”

Banana Me Beautiful

Emily in action

Last night I went to a book launch, the first I’ve ever attended (although hopefully not the last, or this blog is a smidge redundant).

The book was Banana Me Beautiful, the author is Renaissance woman* Emily Dodd, and you can buy it off the internet for a fiver, most of which goes towards supporting mental health charities.  It’s only available in eBook format just now, with the paperback version coming out in about six months, and it contains art and poetry.

Now, until a few years ago I was the sort of person – along with an awful lot of The Great British Public – who claimed I was ‘not that into poetry’.

Continue reading “Banana Me Beautiful”

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: