TikTok, TikTok. I am so proud of myself; I managed to post the rap reel from Instagram to TikTok (and Twitter), but then tick tock, tick tock, the damn laptop got it’s kickers in a twist again. The temptation to drop kick it into the back garden is so strong, though not sure how I would explain that to the insurance company. Instead, it was a matter of take a deep breath, count to ten, breathe out slowly whilst walking into the kitchen to put the kettle on (it was too early in the day for a vodka, tempting though it was) and return to the man-cave with a sledge hammer. Only kidding; I returned with a calmer mindset, restarted the mistress (laptop) and just like magic, the problem had cleared itself. “What was I trying to do?” you ask. Only the most important thing of our publishing journey so far i.e. returning the final version of the manuscript to be typeset. Having completed the edit task in Google Docs, the manuscript then had to be saved as a Word document ready to return to the publishers. This was simple enough, but not trusting computers, Judith went through the whole manuscript again, checking for any obvious mistakes; this took several days, but finally was done. Microsoft earned itself a few expletives. In the old version, telling the system to ignore a word was remembered i.e. when reopening a document it did not reappear as a possible error. In the latest version of Word, all possible errors you have told the system to ignore, reappear. Very frustrating, and it meant having to add a note to the typesetter to ignore all the red and blue underlines. And this is progress?!
So that’s it, the writing and editing is complete. Nothing can be changed now before it (the manuscript) is printed. We should be excited as we take a step nearer the publication of our book, but we are exhausted and desperately need some ‘normal days’ i.e. time away from the book. Having sent the email to the publisher, I picked up my cup of tea, swivelled in my chair and watched a grey squirrel (tree rat as we call them) climb down the oak tree in the rear garden, run into the middle of the lawn and dig a hole to bury another nut – they are regular visitors to our lawn; we gave up trying to keep it manicured a long time ago.
How to have a boring, normal, non book weekend? Saturday morning we visited Jude’s niece for a coffee before having a gander around the town’s Artisan market – who can afford those prices? - before grabbing a pasty and sausage roll from Greggs and making our way to the doctors for our winter flu jab. It was a well oiled operation and we were in and out in minutes – if only access to see a doctor was as easy! Home for lunch and then settle down with a nice cool beer to watch the Arsenal Tottenham women’s football game, followed by the SailGP event (from Cadiz) on YouTube. Sir Ben Ainsle, the skipper of the British boat, is such a frustrating person to watch; it’s a good job there isn’t a swear box in our living room or Judith and I would be penniless. Dinner, followed by watching a film (it was so good I can’t recall it’s name!) rounded out the day.
Sunday involved going to watch Judith’s niece’s lad (is that a grand nephew? - no need for answers on a post card) play football. Last week they got beaten 9-0, this week they won 11-0: as they say, ‘footballs a funny game’. It was back to ours for ‘brunch’ then lazing on the sofa watching more women’s football, followed by Day 2 of the SailGP event. Swear box? We needed several! Needless to say, it was not a good day for the British boat. To calm down, once the sailing was over we started to sort out outfits for an upcoming ‘significant’ birthday party. Judith’s youngest son and his partner are having a joint party in a couple of weeks time and we are really looking forward to letting our hair down. Several hours later, we were sorted, with the exception being that Judith was in need of some new ankle boots. Ahh, that’s as good a reason as any for some retail therapy.
Monday, and its off to the local Designer Outlet to see what we could find. First stop, the loo. Second stop, Jeff Banks (my favourite shop) and lo and behold, the first thing we saw, and bought, was a very nice winter jacket. For me. Oops, we were supposed to be looking for boots. We did a whole lap of the 145 stores, finding several possibilities – taking photographs each time – before taking a coffee and Paninis pit stop to consider the options. Boots in Moda In Pelle and Kurt Geiger were shortlisted. Whilst back in Moda In Pelle, Judith spotted a pair of boots that we missed the first time around. They looked great, very sophisticated and sexy and were also very comfortable. Job done. Now we lapped the shops again, this time giving more consideration to the non shoe shops. A dress, sparkly gloves and tights were added to the haul. Returning home, we ended the day with a chippy tea whilst watching some trashy TV and then had an early night.
We eagerly await for the first chapter of our book to be returned to us, for us to approve the typeface etc. and send the book back for printing, but this may not be for a couple of weeks yet. In the meantime we continue work on our social media platforms. Judith has spent hours raiding our photograph albums to put together a marketing strategy for Instagram (see link on home page) which began last Friday with the rap video, and will continue daily leading up to, and beyond, the books publication (fingers crossed, by end of October). Each photograph and caption has a relevance to our story and is a chance for you to peer under our facades.
That’s it for this week folks, tune in again next week for the latest update on our journey.