Weird old weekend, spent mainly in the past. As anyone who knows me on Facebook will have realized, I finally got a scanner and indulged in a totally over-the-top nostalgia fest. Pictures spanning a century (no, I’m not quite that old – I found some of my mother’s old photo albums too).
|Living in a box, living in a cardboard box.|
It was bittersweet, the way looking at the past often is. I compounded it by reading through old diaries. And then, just to cap it all, I decided to tackle my box files and weeded through a decade of accounts and cuttings and clippings and other detritus. Dear god, I was another person entirely – earning a packet (THAT much? SHIT!) and spending a packet (mainly, has to be said, on doing up the derelict money pit otherwise known as the Rectory). I didn’t have time to think – one year I think I wrote six books (quite apart from doing a shedload of journalism and TV and radio). Funny old world, huh?
|Shoulda spent more on hairdressing, huh?|
Anyhow, the passed is past and I had a big bonfire (of my vanities) and there you go.
And then lovely Zoe and her lovely husband came over to visit and I was going to be all Nigella-ish and make them pukka tea with scones and wotnot but they came early so the poor sods ended up taking me out to lunch (at lovely Woods, of course) and then I spent a bit of time dragging Zoe round the estate agents in town and pointing out the delights of Dulverton in the hope she would decide it really was time to ship out and come on down to Exmoor.
And then, the post came. A thick parcel from Aurum Press. Huh? I opened it up and there were two fat hardbacks sitting inside. The Hedgerows Heaped with May. Huh? The Telegraph Book of the Countryside, edited by Stephen Moss. Huh?
And then I remembered. That piece I’d written for the Telegraph, years back, about Liz Jones being such an arsey cow when she moved to Exmoor. 22 August 2009, to be precise. Time flies, huh? Based on that blog post.
Anyhow, it was being included in a compilation of ‘the best writing’ on the countryside from the Telegraph. Well, well. Even better they were asking me to invoice – for fifty quid. Not quite a fifteen grand royalty cheque but hey…every little helps right?
The book is quite nice actually. It’s got contributions from people like Clive James, James May (hey, how come he gets his name in the title??), Max Hastings (The Hedgerows Heaped with Hastings?), Joanna Trollope (umm, better not) and Boris Johnson. And, er...me.