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Will the Welsh Wizard pay up?

Posted by lauren.downes.mtp@gmail.com on July 29, 2014 at 4:00 AM Comments comments (0)

Some movement in the attempt to recoup  the money the Welsh Wizard owes - and admits he owes. The new version of the old Small Claims Court is called Money Claim Online.  Have started the ball rolling with them. A communication back  from them states that  unless the WW puts  in a defense by August 3rd he is toast. A judgement will be issued  against him. Which is then enforceable etc etc.

On the  writing  front Anna Reynolds  from WriteWords  asked me to do a  short piece on the WriteWords  site outlining  what  would make a  good submission for Tan Tan Books. Replied  with the key  words: clarity, originality, narrative. 

I am now starting to promote One Million Euro. There are many guides to the Camino de Santiago and many returning pilgrims  offer their thoughts,  but there are  very  few novels .... and  very  few pilgrim novels that turn on the robbery of a bank...


Posted by lauren.downes.mtp@gmail.com on July 23, 2014 at 4:20 AM Comments comments (0)

How to categorise a book that does not fit into a category? There is no slot into which any of these three books will fit.  Counterpart sits uneasily between memoir and fiction. So  what do  we call that? MemFic? FicMem? One Million Euro and Tombola!  triangulate a position between adventure, humour and polemic. This is a problem when it comes to selecting a category for the Nielsen book catalogue service. Perhaps there should be a final catch all category marked simply:  STORIES/life/odd...

Bravo the Mail

Posted by lauren.downes.mtp@gmail.com on July 16, 2014 at 4:50 PM Comments comments (0)

Now moving on from the disaster of Geronimo. As  was  said by a kind sympathiser .... ' don't worry, it could have been  worse, you could have been playing football for Brazil.'   Court action now begun to  reclaim money owed by Mike Thomas of Mike's Donkeys, Kidwelly. Watch this space to see what happens....  on the good news  news front  items  about Counterpart in the Daily Mail and  the Western Morning News. This thanks to the efforts of Lee Armitt, the hard working media man for Parkinson'sUK.  The pieces refer to  a 63  year  old Cornish widower....suddenly realise they mean me....  

Licking wounds

Posted by lauren.downes.mtp@gmail.com on July 6, 2014 at 3:00 PM Comments comments (0)

Back home at Freathy  to lick  wounds  and  to  consider  advice  given by the excellent  Alison  Beck of the donkey sanctuary. She is  advising the  two donkey  solution. Two  smaller  donkeys,  instead of one  uber donkey  such  as Geronimo.  (If  trained) they will  follow  one another and cause much less  hassle. So the next  question is  where to find  two donkeys that  are  trained  and  will  follow   each   over  rough  country  without bolting  at the first  sign and causing  total  chaos and danger  to life and limb? The  good  thing  is that  there is no  hurry. We will   take our  time, plod  along slowly, until the right donkies come  along. Meanwhile  it is on  with promoting  One Million Euro and Counterpart.  Starting with .... 'Buy  a  copy of Counterpart and £1  goes to Parkinson's  research.'

What was he thinking of?

Posted by lauren.downes.mtp@gmail.com on June 27, 2014 at 5:50 AM Comments comments (0)

It  would be good to be able to  report that Mike of Mike's Donkeys in Kidwelly is a Whimsical Welsh Wizard who marches  to his own  tune and is all the better for it. But sending us  whicker shopping  baskets, without girth, instead of proper panniers  is a step too far in anyone's language. Geronimo threw them off  straightaway. And trained? Well yes, for the beach and parades maybe. For going across  rough  country  carrying panniers full of camping equipment? Absolutely not!

Got Geronimo back to camp

Posted by lauren.downes.mtp@gmail.com on June 25, 2014 at 5:45 AM Comments comments (0)

Got Geronimo back to camp  finally. He bolted threw off his panniers and almost caused an accident on a road. He is a lovely donkey but not  trained for  going  cross  country  on his own. We were also promised good quality panniers. They  turned  out to be large  size wicker shopping baskets which perched on  the  top of his back - and which he could  throw off   very easily. A phone call to Mike of Mike's Donkeys is upcoming.

Correction and difficult day

Posted by lauren.downes.mtp@gmail.com on June 21, 2014 at 2:20 PM Comments comments (0)

Complement au mot de bienvenue : "Bienvenue a nos amis francais et francophones qui nous accompagneront...". Nos amis francophones sont pries d'excuser cet oubli de ma part.

A difficult day here. Trying to get Geronimo to take the panniers with our equipment. The panniers are  really too small. But we are where we  are and we will have to adapt as best we can.  We will set off tomorrow over Carn Brea and keep  fingers crossed  it works  out. It can only get better!

Blog 16 Jeanne addresses our French readers

Posted by lauren.downes.mtp@gmail.com on June 20, 2014 at 5:40 AM Comments comments (0)

Bienvenue a nos lecteurs francais qui nous accompagneront dans notre randonnee avec Geronimo pour plusieurs semaines. Le temps est magnifique, l'ocean est un lac, l'herbe est grasse a souhait pour notre ane. Les choses serieuses pour lui commenceront samedi matin quand il demarrera avec 42kg de bagages sur le dos. Mais il est costaud, grand, calme, c'est un St-Andre brun clair avec une croix foncee sur le dos et des pattes tigrees. A bientot.

Blog 17 Converting Jin to Kilos

Posted by lauren.downes.mtp@gmail.com on June 20, 2014 at 5:20 AM Comments comments (0)

Yesterday Alison Beck who is the Cornwall representative  for the Donkey Sanctuary in Sidmouth  came to see us. We had an  intensive few hours talking donkey feet and  grooming and feed. More of this ( fascinating) detail  as we progress. Last night we attached  to a farm gate our mini electronic weighing device. The panniers  are much smaller  than  we hoped  for  and  we  are  going to have a problem  getting  everything  in.  As  we weighed bag  after bag  we were horrified  by the amount of kit  we had  accumulated. It seemed to have  expanded beyond all  reason. Then Jeanne, who is of a scientific  turn of mind,checked the  calibration on the machine and found  we  we  were weighing in Chinese ( or maybe Japanese) Jin. When  we changed the setting to kilos the  weight tumbled. Relief all  round. I think there is  discreet  amusement on the  farm campsite here. This is  a working  farm where  animals  are animals and live in fields. By comparison  we  are  treating Geronimo like a new  born  baby. 

Blog 13 Arrival!

Posted by lauren.downes.mtp@gmail.com on June 18, 2014 at 4:45 AM Comments comments (0)

Geronimo is here! The wonderful transporter Paul Cannon of Plymouth went  out of his way ( in so many senses) to repair  damage done to all our plans  and get him down here to us. It was quite a moment  when he came down out of the transporter and stood blinking in the field overlooking Land's End. We have been talking to him, grooming him and  feeding him carrots( but not too many). As the sun  was setting we were eating pasties and drinking  red wine  out of tin cups  as he munched  away on the  grass. Everyone  says  we have  to stay with him here on the site at Trevedra   for two or  three  days  until  we have  'bonded'. First disruption  was this morning at 4.30 am when he brayed extremely loudly, waking us and  probably everyone else on the camp site. I suppose he  was just announcing his presence.