Interesting stuff about counting

I made my first youtube animated video. You can learn how to count to 12 on your fingers, to 60 and even to over 1000 using the binary system. It explains why we have twenty-fours in a day, sixty minutes in an hour and sixty second in a minute. It all makes perfect sense when you know why.

You can view it here.

I’m planning the next animated video on rainbows and colour. Did you know why there are thought to be seven colours in a rainbow and why they are the wrong seven?

Valley of the Rocks, Lynton, Devon

Valley of the Rocks from North Walk, Lynton

A painting of the Valley of the Rocks, Lynton, England. Another piece of work experimenting in acrylic paint. I gave up painting when I started working commercially in design and advertising, for me the two occupations didn’t mix, but now I’ve started painting again.

Illustration and painting are very different in my mind. Illustration is done for a client, usually commissioned, never from the heart. Painting is a process of releasing a little bit of your soul or heart onto a canvas.

Hope Island

Book cover of Hope Island

You can now find this book on Amazon as an eBook or paperback

This novel grew from speculation in the summer of 2019 that a viral pandemic was imminent, that the western antarctic ice sheet is fragile and that the Carrington Event of 1859 is overdue for a re-run as it repeats about every 150 years.

The result of all three of these happening in relatively quick succession would devastate the world. But after the turmoil I have hope that society might emerge in a simpler, rather more pleasant form. This novel is set 100 years in the future, not a dystopian future, but one that in which I hope our great grandchildren could survive and prosper. Of course there is always human nature to contend with. Greed. love, suspicion and desire still exist and drive the plot

If you wish to review this book an eBook file is available on request for any eReader.

Life After Alison

Life After Alison book covers

You can now find this book on Amazon as an eBook or paperback

This is based on a thought that has been with me since I was a teenager and that I’ve never resolved and never will – what does happen after we die?

I lost friends when I was a teenager and again in my twenties. I don’t claim to be unusual in that respect. Many people wonder about an afterlife, some claim to know, or at least believe. I have no idea, no deeply held beliefs and only a few playful theories. This novel is about the natural sadness of losing someone, their utter surprise that they’re still around, happiness that does return after loss and the fact that we can’t communicate with the dead, or they with us, or can they?

If you wish to review this book an eBook file is available on request for any eReader.

The Act of Falling

The Act of Falling - book covers

I wanted to set myself a challenge with my second novel. I chose a cast of characters who all had a psychological or sociological problems. I threw them together in their first year at university and watched what happened.

The plot developed almost by itself, I only had the vaguest outline of where it was going and at some points it almost seemed like fate was melding strands together (it was probably my sub conscious).

You can find this book on Amazon as an eBook or paperback

If you wish to review this book a eBook file is available on request for any eReader.

White Lies and Black Sheep

You can find this book on Amazon as an eBook or paperback.

Not my first novel, but the first one I’m admitting to. Previous attempts are not tucked away in a drawer, they were ceremoniously burnt on the fire (nowadays of course I would recycle them).

I understood that first novels are often a thinly veiled autobiography – or a fantasy version of the author. I decided that the best way to avoid that trap was to write from the point of view of an 18 year old girl who ran away from her childhood home in the fear that she had killed someone. She returns as a 36 woman and only then learns the full truth.

If you wish to review this book a eBook file is available on request for any eReader.

Nothing Matters

(flash fiction – 500 words)

Nothing Matters

I’ll try to explain but I doubt you’ll get it. The thing is there’s no point to anything. That’s what people don’t understand, that nothing matters. Nothing makes any difference. That’s why I want to do this, that’s why I have to do this, to show you, to make you understand.

Today is not special. It’s not my birthday or anything like that. People will try to explain, but they won’t get it, that’s the point, it doesn’t make any difference, there is nothing to get. We’re all worms grubbing through the earth, eating what comes our way and leaving our shit behind.

It’s sunny. My back is hot while I wait. I like that I’m alone, that nobody knows I am here, but then nobody cares, nobody really cares for anyone else. They pretend, they make noises like they care, but they don’t and I don’t. I don’t need their sympathy, their concerns, boring repetitive words. They go home and forget everything. But they won’t forget me now.

This is the most peaceful I have felt for years, maybe ever. There is nobody up here to tell me what to do, to look at me like I’m not one of them, like I’m not normal, a freak, an outsider, a waste of space, somebody they don’t want to acknowledge or talk to. Today I am truly alone

I have a counsellor. She talks to me. It’s her job. Then she goes home and forgets. She always has to read her notes when I’m there. I’m just a file, a collection of words on a piece of paper. If I tore up the paper and threw it in the bin I’d still be there, but she wouldn’t know who I was. She doesn’t hear what I say, only what she wants to hear, only what fits into the box she’s put me in.

There’s noise below me now. Not individual voices, but lots of voices. Random noise, it comes in waves, in ripples, up to where I am. It washes over me. The time is right. My time. I don’t hate anyone. I don’t know anyone well enough to hate them. I don’t want to know anyone that well, there’s no point.

Today is the day. I don’t why today. It just felt right when I got up. I knew. I dressed, checked myself in the mirror in the hall. My mum said goodbye.

The sun is really hot now, burning through my coat. The metal is cool against my finger. There’s no sweat on my palms, no excitement and no fear in me. I thought I might feel something, but I don’t.

I feel it smooth against my finger, a perfect fit as I pull carefully against it, testing the pressure, the resistance. The noise is louder than I expect, a clean noise, cracking my ear, mixing with the shouts below. If anyone had listened they would understand.