J D Davies

Battening Down The Hatches

Last week’s post attracted the most traffic ever to this blog, and certainly generated the biggest response in terms of comments, feedback on Twitter, etc. The moral of the story seems to be that saying vaguely rude things about David Starkey and/or Michael Gove strikes a big chord with perusers of this particular dark recess of the Interweb, and it would have been easy for me to carry on in the same vein this week, just as many of the numbers in Saturday’s Eurovision song contest were basically clones of the previous year’s winner. (As ever, far and away the best music of the night was Charpentier’s Prelude to a Te Deum, aka the Eurovision theme. Maybe next year the UK should enter Vaughan Williams’ The Lark Ascending? Let’s face it, it couldn’t do much worse than Bonnie Tyler, Engelbert Humperdinck or the Romanian castrato vampire…)

So, for example, this week I could have chosen to major on the fact that thanks to the intrepid Freedom of Information requests put in by a retired teacher, some of Mr Gove’s more sweeping assertions about schoolchildren’s alleged ignorance of History are based on rigorous in-depth research by such authoritative organisations as, umm, Premier Inn. But I don’t want to flog a career-dead politician, so then I thought of commenting on the appearance last week of the new seminal literary work by master wordsmith Dan Brown – but Michael Deacon’s brilliant send-up renders superfluous all further comment about said renowned author.

No – this week marks a battening down of the hatches. In the last couple of months, I’ve lost a huge amount of writing time to meetings, trips, filming, transporting elderly mother from Wales to Bedfordshire and entertaining her for a week (she particularly likes my stand-up routine and my rendition of the greatest hits of Max Bygraves), transporting her back again, etc. So it’s time to shut myself away for five or six weeks, during which time I hope to finish off ‘Quinton 5’, The Battle of All The Ages, and work on various other projects too. Embarking on such an intensive period of writing means I need to be fully prepared for all the potential pitfalls lying in the way, which from past experience are:

So as part of my focus on writing, I’ll be scaling back the amount of time I put into this blog for the next few weeks, for example by taking the opportunity to publish material that takes a bit less creative thought, namely some pictures and documents of naval and/or seventeenth century and/or general interest. But if the likes of Messrs Starkey or Gove stick their heads above the parapet again, be sure that I’ll return to the fray and will have a trusty demi-culverin or two primed, loaded, and ready to point in their directions.