Friday, September 07, 2007


Luiz Gonzaga - check the tack and that hat.

French caravan curtains:

Lunchtime already & haven't had breakfast yet. It's been like that since we got back the night before first day of term so sorry for lengthy absence.

We are definitely moving. Early November. Have given notice in and estate agent due in half an hour to get the marketing going, which presumably means he'll bring a little camera and take pictures of our interiors. The marketing of property is an odd thing when suddenly all and sundry can peek into your bathroom habits.

Moving from house with garden and garage to already overstuffed flat (partner's office) with only tiny balcony is going to be a challenge. It's back into central London, though, which I'm looking forward to. Am also enjoying paring my possessions down to the absolute minimum. Mainly clothes and rubbish so far. Clothes is easy because they're nearly all rags anyhow. Sadnesses will come later on when it gets to the book end of things. I'm not hugely possessive about books, I don't have many of my favourites because they've long been lent out, and if they've returned, they've been lent out again until they don't come back. I love libraries. I don't need all those books. But, but, yes SOME of them I do. Photographic books are hard, they're never looked at so they will go. All to charity it will be good. And records. Most to charity, some I'll sell. Was excited to discover my David Bowie pre-Space Oddity Deram album is valued at 200 quid. We shall see. Half a day has already been spent getting back into the eBay habit. Now have a lovely little Firefox list of six auctions going on, including one sadness, my saddle. When I was a child I was lucky enough to have a pony. He lived in the grounds of the mental hospital at the top of our road. We weren't rich. He lived out all year round, I never had a proper saddle so used to ride everywhere bareback. Years ago found myself in northeast Brazil filming the splendid legendary Luiz Gonzaga. He sat on his porch playing his accordian and lots of beautiful Brazilian people came and danced. The area we were in still has cowboys & we found an amazing cowboy hardware shop in the little town. Lassooes and all like you get peg-holders & washing lines in Twickenham. I got a bit carried away & came away carrying an intricately stitched saddle, which I then had to lug around South America. (I also bought one of those dinky hats, but back home it hatched!) I've kept it through countless moves, hoping one day I'd have a horse again. Arg, estate agent just called to say people coming for a viewing tomorrow morning (NOT EARLY! I said). At least I've tidied.

I haven't done any writing needless to say. Or work. I've announced my availability again but nothing's come in yet. Which is good. I need to get the revised synopsis to the agent. Managed to get quite a lot done in the caravan. Got up before everyone else & got down to some heavy plotting. There's a lot to be said for plotting a novel that's already been written. I had a really good time. A big chunk of story is going from the middle, bringing the end third batting up against the opening chapters & stretching that to two-thirds. Think I got on better with pens and cards than I would have done with a laptop. Am in LOVE with index cards. I don't know how I ever wrote a book without them. I don't know how I ever wrote a book without so much planning out. Mind you, I'm scared to get them out now, scared to see that what I've actually got isn't that much. Now the agent's due so I'd better make sure there are no embarrassing bits and pieces lying about anywhere.

Bye bye, thanks for visiting, come again soon.


Barbara said...

Dear Amanda ---

Welcome back! I live in the U.S and discovered your blog a few weeks ago. I read your first entry and was hooked. You have been missed while on your vacation (oops...holidays)!

Please know you have a fan here in the U.S. rooting for you and your manuscripts.

Good luck with the move!

--- Barbara

Anne Brooke said...

Nice to have you back! And good luck with the move.



Mya said...

Hi Amanda
Hope you had good hols and you didn't get rained on too much. Wouldn't you know it, the weather is beautiful now! Grrr.

Getting rid of all the excess baggage is my favourite part of moving - it's really liberating. AND moving into central London - I'm soo jealous.

Hope the writing keeps flowing too. Take care.

Mya x

Elizabeth Baines said...

Just to let you know I've tagged you.
You've probably done this before and of course you don't have to do it if you don't want to!

Elizabeth x

Amanda Mann said...

Hi Barbara and many thanks for getting in touch. Whereabouts in the US are you? Thanks, Anne & Mya, yes I'm quite excited about going back to London - we'll be in Kensington as well which is a nice bit. No garden but there's a communal square out the back and Holland Park across the street. Oh embarrassing moments, thanks Elizabeth, I'm up for that, will have to give it a bit of thought first.