This is embarassing. A friend sent me a text message with a photo attached. It’s my book, on sale for “Just 99p” in a second-hand bookshop somewhere. Remaindered after only 2 years. Well, it could be worse: at least whoever had read it considered it good enough to flog on!
Perhaps this is a good time to resurrect an idea I had a while back. I have one hardback copy left of my first book, and I thought I could sell it for a ludicrously inflated price. The catch is this: not only will I sign the thing (obviously); I will also sit down with a sharp pencil and an open mind and annotate every poem with thoughts, background, context and notes. So for twenty-five quid*, say, you will be the owner of a completely unique document of the writing of a book. And a book, that has been scribbled over.
Does this interest anyone, or is it a ridiculous idea? Either way, I could do with the cash.
If you want to spend much less than twenty-five quid on my book, the paperback edition is on sale for £7.99 at Salt.
* Maybe less. Or I could auction it via Ebay?
The latest book from Penned in the Margins has just arrived back from the printers, and is looking rather gorgeous even if I say it myself. Man in Black is David Caddy’s ninth collection of poetry, and one of his finest. ‘Radical intent’ is a phrase I’ve been using about David’s work in press releases, and I’d stick by it. His poems champion the disenfranchised and the forgotten – they strive to re-member the past. Shakespeare, Donne and Coleridge are touchstones. So is Johnny Cash. Tomorrow night (22 Nov, 6pm) we’ll be launching Man in Black at Crockatt & Powell on Lower Marsh, behind Waterloo Station. It’s a lovely little independent bookshop which I recommend patronising. Lower Marsh has a daily (?) market. Last time I was there I bought cashew nuts and chorizo. Two of my favourite things.
Today I tried to defrost my fridge. A two-inch layer of ice had built up inside and around the freezer compartment. In the process of hacking away at the ice using a steak knife and a vegetable peeler (as chisel and hammer) I managed to pierce the roof of the fridge, causing the refridgerant gas to seep out. Great. New fridge then. Adding to my already-extensive list of things-wot-I-gotta-buy-for-the-flat. I probably needed to replace the old fridge anyway, I tell myself. I’ve bought a Proline PF120GWA.
On a merrier note, the very talented musician Al Joshua has formed a new group called Orphans & Vandals. I was very sad when his previous incarnation with The Lost Revue imploded – not least because the drummer was related to me – but definitely recommend checking out his new outfit. Less consciously rock ‘n’ roll than the Revue with the added bonus of a string section and spoken word narratives in more than one track. Jim Morrison meets GY!BE meets Jean-Pierre Jeunet, with some Londoncentric pyschogeography thrown in for good measure. Orphans & Vandals will be launching at the Vauxhall Tavern on 4 December. An historic venue indeed.