Snow Business

I do like a bit of snow. On the down side, I haven’t been more than about two miles from home for the past week, but on the up side, Dartmoor looks beautiful, and I feel quite manly going out to fetch firewood and feed the alpacas every morning.  The forecast is saying the weather will turn warm’n’wet again this coming weekend, so I took this morning off and had a good long stomp over the hills near my house before it all melts. Here are some of the photos I’ve been boring my Twitter followers with…

Bonehill Rocks

Tracks of William Bell’s tractor in the field below our house.

Ice on the grass stems, up on the hill this morning

Sam’s school was closed, so we got lots of tobogganing and snowball fights in. And I gave him a quick history lesson about Anglo-Saxon England. How King Alfred Burnt the Cakes was something Every Schoolchild Knew when I was little, but the modern curriculum doesn’t seem to touch on it. I know it’s apocryphal, but it’s pretty much the only thing I knew about King Alfred, so I thought it a shame not to pass it on…

Chinkwell Tor

Splat!

Snow, Reddit, Mossy Hares

Our pond on Friday. Thanks to Frank Kelly for pointing out that the trees look like three frosty trolls …

Winter finally reached us on Friday last week, with a heavy fall of snow overnight.  I gather it’s mostly melted down in the lowlands, but here on Dartmoor it’s not going anywhere.  It’s very picturesque, but the lanes around our house are all quite bad, so I think we may be stuck here till it thaws. At least we’ve sorted out the pipe from the borehole, which used to freeze every winter and leave us without water at the coldest times of year.  And the new studio is toasty warm with the woodburner ticking over, so I have no excuse to slack off. I’ve completed three projects so far this year – the text for the second of my OUP books with Sarah McIntyre (keep watching her blog for updates on the first, Oliver and the Seawigs) and a couple of short stories which I’ll tell you about when the anthologies they were written for are published. I suspect that rate of productivity will tail off pretty sharply now…

Last night, as mentioned here previously, I did an AMA session on the Mortal Engines sub-Reddit.  I was a bit worried that nobody would log on, but quite a few people did, and it turned out to be one of the most enjoyable interviews I’ve done: there were good questions about the books from all sorts of angles, and people could come back with further responses to my answers, so it was like half a dozen conversations going on at once. I hope I didn’t miss any of the questions: I’ll check in a moment in case I did.  You can read it all here, but because of the way Reddit operates, with people voting things up and down, it’s all got cut up and rearranged in the manner popularised by William Burroughs, with some of my replies appearing long before the question to which they relate…  maybe that makes for a more interesting read, though.

Finally, thanks to everybody who shared or re-Tweeted my posts last year about Mossy Hare Productions, and all who contributed to their quest to fund their documentary about the making of John Boorman’s Excalibur.  They raised very nearly two thirds of the $30,000 they were aiming for, which will enable them to at least start the post-production work.   I look forward to blogging my report from the star-studded Dublin premiere in due course.