Saturday, July 28, 2007

More devastation on the allotment. I couldn't believe even the tomato plants were eaten but the second planting of potatoes I put in has produced fruit - I've never seen that before. I collected the remaining broad beans, dug up some of the early potatoes, picked plums, raspberries and blackberries.

But it's a terrible year and a lesson to me. I've neglected it too much. I have to put in more manure next year, try new techniques against slugs and keep the weeds down. It'll probably cost me in wood chips and weed suppressing cloth, but if I don't do something radical, it'll be pointless carrying on with anything other than fruit.

It was one of those days yesterday. The car battery finally gave up altogether and a friend had to take me down to Halfords to fork out £60 for another, when I am so broke I feel like weeping. Being broke in the rain is even more extreme and the situation most guaranteed to invoke a bout of self-pity.

I'm at a stage with the novel now when I am thinking about the people in it an awful lot of the time. I have been holding back from writing this next bit because it feels important, because I started off not entirely sure what this man would do and he's taken things into his own hands.

Writing prose is a satisfying way of filling this time between delivering Commandments to Arc and waiting for it to be published in October. A few readings are trickling in now - one in Brighton will be a launch of sorts in November; there'll be others in Lewes, London, Folkestone and Limerick.

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