As I write my way into the home stretch of this book, here's a sneaky peek at what will begin it.
Debrief is the shortest story in the collection and it looks at one of the effects of war, on an outsider. It is coming home and forgetting how to greet loved ones, forgetting social cues, dropping an apple in a supermarket and waiting for the roof to fall. It is the fractured crackle of PTSD and not knowing how to fit back into what came before.
The spiel that comes after the story does contain one inaccuracy: the book is clearly, now, not coming out in 2013. Blame CFS/ME for that one. (In fact, when I watch this video back I can see the illness on my face - but perhaps that is ok. It is what it is. Video goes places that I can't physically reach these days, and so here it is, evident fatigue and all!)
I am writing as fast as my body will allow, and am thrilled to say that I am approaching the edit stage. I won't be doing any live events until I've finished, as I need all available energy for writing, so until that time, let video-me tell you a story.
(My apologies for the lack of youtube window inside this post. For some unknown reason, my host doesn't want to load it, so you WILL have to click out on the link above. Never mind, all you've missed is a frightening still of my face, mid-sentence, where my eyes are neither opened nor closed.
Here - as consolation, have an old, obtuse punching-in clock from Victorian times, now part of the Jeremy Deller exhibition. This one looks lovely and antiquey, doesn't it? Now at the Amazon warehouse they're yellow and grey and strapped to the employee's wrist. Poor bastards. If you're in Manchester, please please go and see that exhibition. This Sunday's the last day, and then it's off to Nottingham. Manchester City Art Gallery, NOW, and the wheelchairs, as with the art, are free.)