I’m about to take a daring leap into the giant swimming-pool filled with tinsel that is Christmas. Of course I should have dipped my toe in at an earlier stage to test the temperature, but having procrastinated so far, there is no time for caution. I have only bought one small present so far, if you don’t count the even smaller one I accidentally purchased in the summer because I happened to see it while buying props at the bargain stores. My plan for this year is that it’s an ethical, charitable kind of Christmas so on my shopping agenda today I will be visiting the One World Shop and perhaps a craft fair or market if such a thing exists. It’s the kind of year when people can think themselves lucky if they don’t get an Oxfam card saying I’ve bought a swarm of bees for a beekeeper in Africa as their Christmas gift. Then there are all the animal sponsorship possibilities… I think the immediate family will be more or less immune to these as we already have two sponsor dogs and an orang-utan.
Tomorrow I will be at my theatre group again trying to complete our props task list – an ominous item has suddenly appeared at the end saying ‘Set dressing for finale tbc’, a phrase which strikes fear into the hearts of the team. I am not sure if we will have to provide something completely over the top like elephants or white doves or a stage covered in real flowers, or whether it will turn out to be a minor rearrangement of what we already have.
Anyway, to get back to the heading for this post, before I do any of these I have managed to hit the ‘publish’ button on a small collection entitled ‘Five Short Stories’ which should be appearing on Amazon in the next day or so. One of these stories was intended for an Apocalypse anthology which didn’t happen, two are new and two have appeared elsewhere. I am hoping the title is unambiguous enough to warn people not to expect a novel! The main reason for publishing so quickly is that I think the Apocalypse referred to in two of the stories will lose its topicality quite rapidly after the 21st of December. Or at least I fervently hope it will.