A year has passed and I’m just a bit closer to claiming my pension. Only another 30 years to go. Top Christmas presents included Colin the carrot shaped vegetable scrubber, with whom I’m having a glass of bubbly with, and an egg timer shaped like a pig. As yet, the pig-timer remains unnamed. Time seems to have whizzed by but when I look back, I've packed in a lot.
I brought out two novels. An early one that I rewrote: The Little Camera and the much called for sequel to The Ghost Hunters’ Club, cunningly entitled, The Ghost Hunters Return. I had two pleasant surprises, which is quite rare for me. The first was The Policeman Who Was Afraid of the Dark getting to #1 and #2 in the US and UK free British detective charts on Amazon. But the biggest was receiving a tweet from my good friend Mari Bella on Twitter to tell me that I’d been nominated and picked as one of the top indie writers in the UK by The Guardian. Yes, that’s The Guardian. Chuffin’ ‘ell!
This was the post-Olympic year and so extra effort had to be put into the summer to make it exciting. I managed that with both Green Man Festival and Reading. First time in a tent and now I’m a dab hand. Rusty the hamster arrived in February and is still causing furry chaos and I got my 3rd Dan in taekwondo. I’m quite proud of that one.
So what have I got planned for next year? I have a new novel, a supernatural thriller Ashwood House currently being ignored and rejected by the agents of London. Every so often I like to give it a go; just like I do jogging. I start off enthusiastic, then I get exhausted, then I get bored and then I realise it’s pointless. I've got a Moleskine notebook full of ideas and all I've got to do is choose which one. I’d like to do a sequel to The Policeman, there may be another outing for The Ghost Hunters but I've got a few more projects planned as well including a medieval road trip novel and a thriller. Who knows, I might let Rusty the hamster choose. In fact, I might get her to write one of them, she’s probably got more chance of getting an agent than me. You think I’m kidding; one of the bestselling books of the year was A Street Cat Named Bob. All I need to do is get Rusty to wear a scarf, learn the banjo, take her busking and I’ll be quids in.
Here are my indie highlights of the year. I've included music and other categories as well including best advert because it’s my blog and I can.
Have a Happy New Year and keep on writing!
Indie Books of the Year
Cleaver Square by Sean and Dan Campbell
The Ice Marathon by Rosen Trevithick
Wolf by the Ears by Lexi Revellian
Fire and Flame by Anya Breton
The Daedalus Code by Colin F Barnes
The Griffin Cryer by Julia Hughes
Indie Short Stories of the Year
The Leger Cat Sleuth Series by Lacey Dearie
Deadly Reflections by C L Raven
Strange Ideas by Louise West
Best Indie Cover Artist
Love Your Covers by Ryan Ashcroft
Best Indie Bloggers of the Year
90 Days Novel - Sean and Dan Campbell
Best Traditional Books I’ve Read This Year
Broken Homes by Ben Aaronovitch
Saints of the Shadow Bible by Ian Rankin
Crossing the Line by Christian Plowman
‘I Did it for the Money ’ Squashed Tomato Award
Mad About the Boy by Helen Fielding
Best Music of the Year
Inform Educate and Entertain by Public Service Broadcasting
Reflektor by Arcade Fire
AM by Arctic Monkeys
Random Access Memories by Daft Punk
Best Live Performance of the Year
Public Service Broadcasting at both Green Man Festival and Cambridge Junction
The Strypes at Reading Festival
Best Sporting Event of 2013
Me getting my 3rd Dan black belt in taekwondo
Andy Murray winning Wimbledon
Best Non-Sporting Events of 2013
Me appearing in The Guardian as a noted indie writer
Rusty the hamster
Green Man Festival
Most Underwhelming events of 2013
Getting my tent broken into at Reading festival and having my radio nicked.
Being too fat for middleweight at the taekwondo world championships and having paying a tenner to compete in heavyweight.
Being stuck on the A14 for two hours after a dull date.
Be More Dog for O2