One year old

I was obliviously typing away on a completely different and mostly irrelevant topic (no surprise if you have been here before) for this week’s newsletter when it suddenly dawned on me that this thing, whatever it is, is one year old! Hurrah! Happy birthday! Three cheers!

Where are my presents?

Think back to the significant date of May 11th 2020 that is forever etched in your psyche when I launched this weekly gobbet of nonsense. Back then we were in the early months of the pandemic. In England on May 10th the “PM announces a conditional plan for lifting lockdown, and says that people who cannot work from home should return to the workplace but avoid public transport.” So the Earth has taken another laborious 365 day orbit around the sun and arrived right back where it started?

Yes and no.

To quote my introductory newsletter, “I'm definitely an introvert. Probably not great at parties. Unlikely to be called upon to make a speech.” All very much still the case, if not more so. Although I did make an entirely imaginary speech to the cream of the literary world within this newsletter and it was a huge success.

I have become slightly more comfortable talking about myself and, unfortunately for them, talking about my family. I should have foreseen I would find this necessary as all I do is sit at home and draw little people in little boxes and put them together in books. Whereas they have friends and lives and are functioning human beings. They are not a pale sack of flesh attached to an Apple pencil. I have much thank them for, the least of which is providing me with material.

I still grew up in Kippax and I still earned a BA from Liverpool Poly. I still live in Worcester and Phil still works in museums. One thing that did change is that my daughter got the A-levels she needed and has since gone to uni to study medicine. That was one of my favourite pieces of writing of the last year. Despite life being very samey over the last twelve months it has also contained some monumental changes. I am still very proud of her.

The subjects of this newsletter have ranged hither and yon over the seasons, from book reviews, to cutlery, to the memories attached to original art, to the university experience of an aloe plant. Let it not be said that I lack range or gravitas or shy away from the burning issues of the day. I have discovered that if I have an ability for anything, it’s being able to turn nothing into something.

How can I possibly find new subjects to cast my gimlet eye over? That is a question I ask myself every week. Somehow I manage it, that or I will come down with a serious case of CDS.

The most surprising discovery of the past year is that more than the predicated two people, my wife and daughter, would read this thing at all.

Thank you for reading.

And remember, Always Be Boiling.

Yes, I am still plugging Kerry and the Knight of the Forest and The Book Tour. Why not try Glister for a change? You can still support my efforts by checking out my store/digital comics/patreon or leaving a positive review online.

So, where are my presents?


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