I’m Trying (I know)


Reading: The Guardian; Cosmos, by Carl Sagan; the Wisdom of Donkeys, by Andy Merrifield.

Watching: Master Chef, The Professionals; Hawaii Five-O; Under the Dome; The Walking Dead.

I’m in my new, new base: the former is mum and dad’s house, since being chucked out by the now-ex girlfriend (six foot tall, body of a super model etc? That one. Obsessed? Self-indulgent? I’ve been accused of far more recently besides: more on that later). The latter is a fold-out table which I’ve made a base for the laptop I’m borrowing from The Mother Ship and for which I’m very grateful, as it allows me to do this: write.

As well as the laptop – which I’m borrowing – I’ve acquired other stuff: things I needed to replace those which I left back in Sidcup with the ex: a wallet, (stolen from mum and dad’s sideboard drawers (they know though, as though that makes it okay): I’m a thief among other things. Again, more on that later); pens (one from Harrods) and notepads: I have all that I need here.

I’ve got my Guardian (newspaper), current reads and TV downloads and this laptop, permitting me to write in my own private corner. I also have a book shelf:

  • Simply Divine, by Wendy Holden;
  • Water For Elephants, by Sara Gruen;
  • Holy Fools, by Joanne Harris;
  • The Innocent’s Story, by Nick Singer;
  • The Brooklyn Follies, Invisible, Leviathan and Sunset Park, all by Paul Auster;
  • The Sorrows of an American, by Siri Hustvetd;
  • The Subterranean Railway, by Christian Wolmar;
  • Bringing Out the Dead, by Joe Connelly;
  • The Perfect Nazi, by Martin Davidson;
  • The London Train, by Tessa Hadley;
  • Driving in the Dark, by Deborah Moggach;
  • The Glass Lake, by Maeve Binchy;
  • Sushi For Beginners, by Marian Keyes;
  • Nemesis, by Rosamond Smith;
  • Noughts and Crosses, by Malorie Blackman.

What to read next, dear reader? I like to have two on the go at once: one fiction and one non-fiction. Recommendations please? I’ve got plenty of time to get through them all eventually and there are thousands more back at home in Sidcup but these are the ones I grabbed before I left (got chucked out).

Talking of which, I’m a scheming, thieving, calculating, manipulative, devious scumbag: I quote my very own sister. But she’s right. It’s those very same qualities which also make me the charmer I am and that have allowed me to be privileged to relationships with girls which others would give their arms for. That’s me: those who’ve loved me, loved me for being me. And yet I’m changing: should I? I don’t actually know if I want to.

But I should think of my family: my parents, sister, ex-wife and kids. Maybe the old Steve won’t be so interesting but neither will he be so challenging; so volatile but perhaps not so vulnerable. I’m trying: I really am and I know it too.

Strange days indeed; Most peculiar Honey.

So I’ve alienated my family, as well as many friends: I deserve the penance I’m paying by being where I am. My niece and nephew want nothing to do with me; my sister loves me as a brother but hates me as a person. I’m invited to my sister’s for Christmas but I don’t want to go; don’t want everyone to suffer. Instead I’m planning on spending the day with my auntie, who’s also alone otherwise (the rest of the family are travelling and auntie doesn’t travel well).

Other freebies, besides those which I’ve “borrowed” from The Mother Ship (she asked me how I’d feel if she went through my drawers and I must admit I wouldn’t like it): business cards. So now I’m putting my name out there with the aim of getting a job once I’m dry in the New Year. In the interim I’m doing this and gaining followers, for some reason: always the charmer and salesman.

I’m just writing and as well as my new fan base, I’m getting positive comments from friends about this blog and the stories contained herein: for that I’m grateful. I’m humbled and I can be selfless too (even though I’m thinking OF me, rather than ABOUT me).

One of said friends suggested that I might think about extending my short story “Old Wives’ Tale” to 50’000 words and realise my ambition (self-set target) of turning out a novel: worthy praise.

But I’m unwell. But this is part of my therapy: writing. I’ve lost many lives – including my own (many times) – but I’ll keep writing; keep going; keep trying (I know I am).

And I do think of others besides myself. I’m grateful to them too: my mum for accompanying me on various visits to hospital, doctors, dentists; family and friends for sticking by me; those and others for not beating me up when I’ve let my mouth or fists go: thanks for indulging me then and now.

My own son has called me mad, bad and dangerous to know: thanks for sticking with me.

I’m reviewing the situation.

I’m trying; but then you knew that.

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