‘Say it ain’t so’ Sunday – Special Edition

Well, here we are again; another Sabbath –  they come around quickly these days, don’t they?

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This post is a Special Sunday edition. you’ll be surprised/pleased/relieved to hear that I am not going to moan about anything today. Yep, today is totally dedicated to honour, humility, peace, love and Dads.

You’d have to have been living underground without tv or wi-fi to not have witnessed what has been happening to our wonderful planet over the last month or so. Okay, I know that horrors and atrocities occur all the time, all over the world, every minute of every day, and yes, living in England, our tiny-but-glorious corner of the world, we are generally sheltered from the worst of it and tend to be blinkered when it comes to realising just how broken our planet is, but just recently – and against our will – we have been awakened.

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On the 22nd of March 2017 at 14.40, a fellow Brit drove into pedestrians on Westminster Bridge injuring more than 50 people and killing four. He then stabbed a police officer on duty outside the palace to death.

A few weeks later, innocent children and relatives were pointlessly murdered whilst leaving an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester. A single, cowardly attack by a lone, misguided monster. Blindly led by the pathetic scum known as ISIS, who yet again,  falsely claimed it was in the name of religion.

Just twelve days after that, three men (and I use the term loosely) drove a white van into crowds on London Bridge before jumping from it and randomly attacking Saturday night revellers in Borough Market, again, killing many more innocent people. Thankfully, our wonderful police shot them dead within minutes.

On Wednesday of the week just gone, I awoke to the news that a block of flats in London was ablaze and there were several fatalities, with more expected.

Our little isle is hurting right now.

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We are sad, angry, bewildered, dazed.

But there is one thing we are NOT and that is scared.

The UK has proved – yet again – just how resilient and precious its inhabitants can be. How strong, how brave and how determined we are as a nation, not to let hate win.

We went to that concert that you thought we wouldn’t attend, we cheered at the massive end of season football match and sang songs, we wandered the streets of big cities in step with the armed police that smiled as they posed for pictures and we stuck two fat fingers up at your stupid, weightless argument. We screamed: FUCK YOU!

Okay, we cried. We stood in silence to remember the victims and the tiresless work of our angel army that is the emergency services and we let our hearts break at our loss, but something else happened.

We got strong.

We got stronger than ever.

We got re-UNITED.

I visited St. Anne’s Square in Manchester before attending the Robbie Williams concert on June 3rd to pay my respects and as heart-wrenching as it was, it was also beautiful.

People who had never met put their arms around stranger’s shoulders and shed shared tears. They stood, sombre, reading tributes to the victims, no doubt collectively wondering what on earth it had all been for. They walked quietly around the memorial, hearts aching, but also bursting with pride. Pride for something you will never destroy.

Our country is reeling, it’s crying right now, but it’s also fiercly brave, and proud.

Proud of the way that we still welcome different people, different cultures and different beliefs with open arms.

Proud of the thousands of police staff, firefighters, military personnel, paramedics, doctors, nurses, surgeons, porters, receptionists, counsellors, cleaners, chefs, taxi drivers, reporters, news readers, politicians, volunteers and members of our not-so-ordinary public who have given their all or just a little over the past few months; whoever you are, you have made a difference and we thank you for it.

Hate will never win, because love exists.

So I dedicate this post to us all.

You can keep trying to knock us down, but we’ll just dust ourselves off and get right back up again, as we always do.

We are the United Kingdom.

We are England; God’s own country.

We are GREAT Britain.

Saffi.

x

PS. Happy Father’s Day. 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

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‘Say it ain’t so’ Sunday

I give up on Tuesday’s, they’re just too boring. Believe me, they have no use whatsoever; apart from to remind you that the worst day of the week is gone: dead and buried – a dim and distant memory – a bit like Liverpool’s trophy hopes, only with more teeth.

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So, what’s a girl to do when the one day that fed her blog with its digital fodder, suddenly becomes so inane that even Wednesday shrugs its shoulders and shakes its head at it with a wry midweek grin on its chops? Well, I’ll tell you (not like on a Tuesday or anything)…

We effin’ ‘Say it ain’t so‘ on a Sunday.

Yep, you heard it here first, blog buddies: Saffi ‘Says it ain’t so‘ Sabbath-stylee.

A day of no toil, calm and dodgy dinners: so buckle up, you onesiewearing-yorkshirepuddingmaking-boxsetwatching-jobdodgers, Saffi’s coming to nudge you off the corner settee you spent the last three years paying for and make you wish you had shares in Alka Selzter; this Sapphicscribe ain’t for turning. She’s positively going Room 101 on your backsackandcrackwaxed ass!

I told you there’d be no holds barred didn’t I?

What does that even mean?

Well, I’ll let you in to a teensy-weensy secret: We gonna say what we want, when we want – and ‘when’ happens to be this goddammotherfrickinmoment right here, y’all. ‘k?

Yah-huh, thought it might be…

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You hear that sound, you sorry excuse for Sunday Saviours?

“Tick, Tock, Tick, Tock.”

The grains of hope are rapidly running out of the shattered timeglass for you feeble lot – we need the truth and we need it now!

So who’s gonna be brave and go first? It’ll only sting for a second – I promise.

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No?

Any takers?

Okay, I knew it’d be me. Afterall, that’s what I’m here for, right?

What grinds my gears? (apart from the euphemisms that people use to describe how angry they are?) What really makes my innards twist like an adder on acid and sends my crimson tide past boiling point? I’ll tell you.

You asked for it.

Empty fucking cups on soaps.

Recycled, Polyethylene corrugated drink holders with nothing in them. Why? Just, why?

They could fill them with water or cordial or something so that’s it’s slightly believable they’ve paid £2.40 for an Americanothatsnotanamericanocosithasmilkinit and haven’t suffered third degree burns to their perfectly manicured pinkies whilst carrying them back to the only factory/laundrette/pub/marketstall in the village. I mean, really? Would it take that much?

They lift them off the fake counters and they float in the air like Olive off of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children and we’re supposed to believe that they have something in them. Do you honestly think we are that stupid? Seriously?

And how come there’s never any steam? Coffee’s hot, right? There’d be steam. So stop blowing on them and then slewing it back as if your throat’s made of asbestos – we don’t flippin’ believe you!

Enough – there’s nothing in it and we all know it.

By God’s! If I only had one of those guns from the cop shows with eighteen thousand bullets in it – I would totally use it to shoot those empty cup holders…and ten-times dead zombies.

Annnnnd breathe. Phew. It is Sunday afterall. It’s supposed to be peaceful – and harmonious – and… how come they never burn their collagen-filled lips? Huh?

Right, stop it, it’s not doing me or you any good. Nothing positive can come of this.

It used to be a Tuesday, now it’s a Sunday and there’s nothing to see here. Move along. There’s a good girl/boy/hapless village idiot.

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Happy Dossday, you feckless soap-rakes: I wouldn’t want to be the intern that’s sent out for your invisible, Cinnamon-festooned Skinny Latte.

‘Say it ain’t so, Sunday.’

Saffi

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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‘Tell it like it is’ Tuesday – Guess who’s back..?

You wanted Shady and chopped liver, right?

Tough. On both counts.

It’s jus’ li’l ole me. And him. And them. And…Oh dear, I’m getting carried away with myself and my imaginary friends again, once more aren’t I? How do I manage it?

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I honestly do not know.

If I could share my literary lunacy then I would, but popular that would make me not. And hey, everyone wants to be loved, yeah? Of course we do – that’s why we’re here, but Shakespeare didn’t make any friends by inviting ghouls to the feast did he? Nah. So let’s get back to the subject in hand – Telling it like it is, on a Tuesday. A Tuesday I tell you, who ever thought of that needs a lifetime of Monday’s… sigh.

Tuesday is the crappest day of the week – fact.

It’s nowhere.

It’s a misnomer: a waste of my time and most definitely yours.

TUE-your-foot-off-because you can’t be bothered-SDAY.

There can be no other use for this shit day.

Bin it.

Now.

However, if you don’t – do this with it:

Remember 9/11… Tuesday?

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The day the music died?

Yep, a Tuesday…

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Then there was this:

These excuses for human beings shot a school up – please….

WTF?

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They are someone’s boys, someone’s sons. Somebody somwhere is wondering what they did wrong. How did we all get it so wrong? Ask yourself. Seriously, ask yourself.

Take it on the chin, it’s Tuesday.

Saffi

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‘Tell it like it is’ Tuesday – Two years on.

Holy smoke.

Has it really been that long?

WordPress is telling me that I haven’t posted a blog for two years but that’s just an outright, disgusting lie. Shame on you WP! It’s nowhere NEAR that, it’s…

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Shit.

It’s almost been two years.

Twenty-odd months of me keeping shtum. Got to be a record.

Was it because I had nothing to say? Has some terrible fate befallen me or did I lock myself away in a creaky cabin cloaked in cobwebs at the bottom of the garden to finish another tome?

Nope. Nothing anywhere near as exciting as the above. Quite the opposite. I wish i was so deliciously interesting.

The God’s honest is: life just got in the way.

Work, family, people, things just kept on happening. Places to go, men to see about dogs in dingy pubs etcetera etcetera. That crap just kept putting its size nines right in the middle of my plans for world domination, and shaking it all about!

Hey ho. I guess that’s how the story (no pun intended) goes. But I’m back!

Yes, Siree, ain’t no keepin’ this bad-ass mo’fo down! (see how gangsta I got there? Uh-huh, you wanna be checking your sorry self out for my bootprint on your rear end, homie).

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Anyway, I digress.

So, what’s been going on then, dudes? Up to much? Any news?

Wait, I might have some.

The Saffina Desforges writing machine is now totally just Saffi.

Mark Williams and I have decided to call it quits, go our separate ways (words-wise) and cut the chord. It was inevitable really; two people slinging ink down on virtual paper across the oceans was never gonna work, was it? Besides, he’s way too quiet for my liking, it was always gonna end with me screaming and shouting and him cowering beneath his make-shift desk in his flip-flops. 😉

There’s been no (well, not much) blood spilled and I would like to think that we can remain e-friends, after all, if it wasn’t for our chance encounter, Sugar & Spice would never have seen the light of day and gone on to sell over a million copies, Cass ‘Red’ Rose wouldn’t exist and the original manuscript of a book titled Equilibrium that I started (and still haven’t finished) almost thirty years ago would still be keeping the spiders company in my garage. Oh, wait… 🙂

Nah, just kidding. Look, I have a real cover and everything!

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So there it is, Saffina Desforges was and still is, my own alter-ego. She’s very much alive and kicking and very much writing more stuff thank you very gladly…coming soon to a Kindle store near you. Mark has re-published S&S under his own name and he’s even managed to finally get some of his scribblings about the paradise that is West Africa down on paper, see here. You might even find the odd short story about James Bond and some re-telling of Arthur Conan-Doyle’s ‘Sherlock’ classics on his page if you were to hop over and give it a squizz. That’s him, there.

As for me, well, I hope it won’t be another two years before I swing by this way again. REALLY.MUST.MAKE.MORE.EFFORT.

Seriously though, I used to love ‘Telling it like it is’ on a Tuesday, maybe I will again.

In the meantime, I suppose I should get back on the pantomime horse and stick some shit down on the page. These books ain’t gonna write themselves, dawg! 🙂

(Hopefully) Coming soon:

‘Beauty & the Beast’ – Rose Red crime thriller series: Book 3

‘The Sandman’ – A Rose Red Rhymes short story

‘First Blood’ – Equilibrium Trilogy: Book 1

Writing as Stevie Jordan:

‘Drawer Seven’ – a horror novella

‘Take it to the grave’ – D.I Andi Lincoln ~ ‘Crimes in Wonderland’ Series, Book 1

Saffi.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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‘Tell it like it is’ Tuesday – Is there anybody there?

So…turns out, I’m not dead. Phew!

I’m more glad about that than you might think. I’ll tell you why a bit later. But enough with the pleasantries, how’ve you been? Sheesh, it’s been ages. I mean, like, forever.

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Well, it also turns out, that forever is a long time. Who knew?

Precisely, it’s about three hundred and thirty four days.

Hello, my name is Saffi and it’s been some time since my last confession…I mean, blog.

Yeah, yeah. Shoot me now. I know.

Good, so that’s that out of the way then. We wouldn’t want a huge grey thing in the corner, would we?

Soooooo, you look different. Have you changed your hair or something? New dress? Just can’t quite put my finger on it, but you’ve definitely done something…wait, I know! Yep, you’ve turned into something completely unrecognisable! How did I not spot it before?

Need a little help?

We’re on about the game face of the publishing industry of course.

Talk about trying to trap a firefly at noon with your granddad’s favourite pants! Just can’t make that critter say still long enough to see what you’re up against. And even if you do get lucky, the darn thing is bound to wriggle its way out some hole or another. My advice? Don’t bother.

Dead-tree route? Indie? Go it alone or pay someone else to upload your books to the internet of things? Get an editor/don’t get an editor? Use KDP’s new button and make your own cover. After all, no-one judges your work by that, right? It’s all just a big boat-load of reasons not to get on with your day-job.

Writing.

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There are a gazillion ways to allow a reader to feast their eyes on those little letters you’ve stained a blank canvas with – and let’s face it – they’re better off there than in your muddled brain. So do it. Hell, dare I even say it, do NanoWrimo if you feel you must! Whatever it takes to shut those whining protags’ up. Do it, and do it now.

It’s what November was made for.

Ooh, speaking of November, let’s not forget about its poor relation.

Halloween

Two more days.

Two more days to Halloween, Halloween. Dontcha just frickin’ love it? It’s the night when the lost souls wander the earth and it’s your job to stop them stealing your breath and slithering under your bed. Baseball bats are NOT gonna cover it. So choose your side carefully… are you with me, or against? Come on, it’s Tuesday, got to tell it as it is.

Have a fabulous Autumn and never forget: it’s not the dead that’ll hurt you, it’s the living.

Happy almost Halloween.

Saffi

 

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Thanksgiving ‘Tell it like it is’ ~ Why you should be thankful you didn’t call your cat Azzie

Right, let me just get this out there before my inbox explodes, okay? No one, but no one likes a big grey problem lurking in the corner…

Are you SURE you can see me at the back?

Are you SURE you can see me at the back?

Yes, I know: my last blog was July 2013… (Oh and yet again, it isn’t Tuesday, but what the hell. For today’s purposes, we’re telling it like it is on a Thursday)

There, I said it. But hey, guess what? Go and read it (here), it’s quite amusing and a LOT has changed since then. Not least, that my beloved country finally has a new Wimbledon champion! Yay! Great news for us Brits and what a deserved victory it was…

*insert picture of Andy Murray kissing said trophy here*

…however, the blob on the field scene, is that the twisted and futile battle between writers (also mentioned in the blog post) of all persuasions still has legs and is currently running around the ‘net like a jam-covered Twinkie at a wasp reunion. There’s a few interesting posts here and here if you can stomach any more of it. Personally – as I have said before – I would rather write, but it does make you feel better about said writing when you read them. *big smiley face*

Soooos, anyho’, let’s not allow that to scar this latest post. It’s Thursday not Tuesday, it’s Thanksgiving. You’re here, I’m here and we’re telling it like it is, right?

Right.

Let’s do this thing!

What is all this ranting in aid of today?

Well, it’s about a cat.

And little lockable mind- boxes where we store our deepest, darkest fears.

And bad people who want to steal your very life-essence.

It’s about good triumphing over evil.

Oh and some bloke who fancies himself as a horror writer.

Meet Azzie, the real star of the show…

Of course, I am referring to the sequel to The Shining, Doctor Sleep. But beware – this is NOT a review. Okay, I will mention the book and what I thought of it (and possibly give some bits away, so go do something else if you haven’t read it yet and intend to) but that is not the purpose of this post, so don’t start bitchin’ if that’s why you came.

Here’s the actual cover (well, the Amazon UK version of it anyway. There are many more, but this is my fave):

Okay, so for me, as a die-hard SK fan, this book coming out was a BIG deal. My love for the master of horror has seen more ups and downs in recent years than a roller-coaster ride built by a drunken Tourette’s sufferer (no offence intended here btw before you start, I have been known to unleash the occasional uncontrollable barrage of profanities myself and share the odd bottle of wine or three) so I was skeptical – if not a little wary – to say the least. Would he really be able to follow up The Shining after all this time? Would readers be comparing it to the film? Are SK’s stories even scary anymore or does he just churn out books that he knows fans will buy because they have his name on them,  regardless of the quality of the plot or the writing?

Well, let me tell you, the answer is a resounding: I DON’T KNOW.

I am totally on the proverbial fence with this one. There’s always markers for me regarding whether I thought a book was good or not, first one being, did I finish it? In this case, yes, I most certainly did. And did I rush home to read it every day? Yet again: Yes. Did it hold my attention? Yup. Did the characters resonate with me? Aye and did I care about what happened to them? Most definitely. I thought the concept was unique and typically strange, and the members of the True Knot were not the type of retirees that you would enjoy sharing a natter and a coffee with at a rest stop. It was great to see what had happened to Dan Torrance and how his life had panned out (although no great surprise that after his experience at The Overlook Hotel he would become a messed-up, single alcoholic) and the supporting characters were as believable as they were lovable. All in all, it was a great story. It had everything you would expect. Suspense, weirdness, plausible fantasy that treads the fine line between real-life and what we all hope actually exists –  and a cat. You just gotta have a cat, right? According to numerous articles on the web (this one being my fave), the story about a real-life cat named Oscar, who reportedly knew when people were going to die, prompted SK to start work on the sequel in the first place, so why didn’t I love it, instead of just liking it?

I gotta be brutally honest – it didn’t scare me.

There were no shivers, no heart-stopping moments where I held my breath and stared in disbelief at my Kindle, nor did I switch the light off with reluctance when I had finished reading. It was good. That’s as kind as I can be.

I get the feeling, that A) Mr King was physically compelled to write the sequel as Dan Torrance was tapping him on the shoulder, begging that his story be continued and B) that this will undoubtedly make a great film and was written as such a book.

I found the parts where the MC and Abra (token tween who also had shineability but to a greater extent than Dan’s because hers hadn’t been dulled by booze) communicated telepathically,  jarring. They were written in italics and strangely, without punctuation, so were very difficult to follow and I found myself going back over what had been written frequently and also, I kept getting the peripheral characters mixed up. There was a doctor and family friend, and some other bit-part groupies who went to AA meetings, as well as Abra’s family, and this I found rather disjointed.

I loved the True Knot characters and the names he gave them and the fact that they disguised their true purpose as innocent oldies, wearing crap t-shirts and trundling around in sparkly SUVs, but aside from the odd arched eyebrow when Rose (one-fanged leader of the True Knot) got inside Abra’s head, I wasn’t too disturbed. Which is a little disappointing as a fan.

But here’s the sucker-punch. The big ‘but’. The golden ticket as far as a writer (or indeed, a reader) is concerned.

SOMETHING FROM THE STORY STUCK.

Some line/scene/character/throwaway comment nestled itself into someone’s psyche and settled down for the Winter, if not forever. Burrowing deep, laying its hat and calling that new, warm, cosy place home.

As a writer, that is all you could ever wish for.

Sure, I have no doubt that my fellow scribes would also have a NY Times bestseller chart position and a yacht on their wish-list, but when you sit back in your chair and type THE END (which is usually about ten years before the book is actually properly finished), all you can hope for is that someone reads the story and one little, tiny, miniscule mote of story-magic, is inhaled and sparkles for eternity.

How do I know that this happened with Doctor Sleep, I hear you ask?

A friend of mine is going through a pretty crap time of it just recently. I won’t name them, nor will I divulge the circumstances around said crapola period of their lives, but what I WILL do, is show you this.  This is a reply to a text I sent the other day, insinuating that even the super-humans among us have to admit that life and emotions can get in the way of being the incredible hulk sometimes. This was their reply to a comment I made suggesting that worry over a relative had possibly affected how they had behaved in the last few weeks:

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If only eh? If only we could compartmentalize our feelings, anger and sadness and stick them in a little drawer in our heads, turn the key and leave them there until we were strong enough to deal with them or just set them on fire – blow the box up – whichever came first. How cool would it be and what would life be like? Much different methinks.

The truth of the matter is, we can’t.

So the point of the this post is two-fold (phew, Saffi, I can hear you say. We wondered when you would get to that bit):

Stephen King is still a great writer and is the undisputed master of mote-leaving magic in the Universe, even though he has probably made peace with his demons and that shows in his writing these days and…

No-one has the key to the aforementioned box.

Sure, you can put things away for a while and sit on the lid whilst they bounce around like a kangaroo trying to get out of a suitcase, but you can never really silence your fears. Not forever.

Things sting. Life is shit sometimes. Crap things happen to okay people. It’s the way of the world.

What you can do, is smile the next time you pass someone who looks like they could use a bit of extra help shutting that lid. Even if it’s just for a while. Just long enough to store that box in a filing cabinet, then blow the dust off and have a look inside at a later date.

Maybe Stephen King’s story has a deeper meaning. Maybe it’s just a good book that turns out okay in the end. Who knows? Not me.

All I do know is – whilst we’ve still got steam, we’re still alive and no amount of scary monsters can keep us down forever.

Saffi

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‘Tell it like it is’ Tuesday – Anyone for tennis?

Ahoy there!

Well, it’s Wimbledon time again. The supermarket aisles are stocked with Pimms and there isn’t an uncultivated strawberry in sight. Oh and it’s raining!

But wait, it was also Glastonbury a few days ago. What did you expect? British Summer Time? Hell, this is British summer!

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The clever boffins at the All England Lawn Tennis Club have finally (after some 136 years) decided to stick a roof on center court (and soon #1 court too) so that we can actually get through a match without the covers having to be brought on OR endure a Cliff Richard rendition whilst we wait as rain stops play. Yay! Thank *insert appropriate deity here* for that!

But hey, let’s hope they actually close it in time – unlike our friends in Donetsk at the Euro’s last year *sigh* when they delayed the decision to close the embarrassingly expensive roof until they were under three feet of water and then realised that it takes over an hour to shut, by which time, the referees were wearing waders and Roy Hodgson had defected to the England synchronised swimming team!

So, for all of our non-British visitors, I thought I’d give you a little sneeky-peek into one of our most visited events of the year and show you why it is so adored here in Blighty…

During the Wimbledon fortnight the following are consumed:

  • 300,000 cups of tea and coffee
  • 250,000 bottles of water
  • 207,000 meals served
  • 200,000 glasses of Pimm’s
  • 190,000 sandwiches
  • 150,000 bath buns, scones, pasties and doughnuts
  • 135,000 ice creams
  • 130,000 lunches are served
  • 100,000 pints of draught beer and lager
  • 60,000 Dutchees
  • 40,000 char-grilled meals served
  • 32,000 portions of fish and chips
  • 30,000 litres of milk
  • 28,000 kg (112,000 punnets) of English strawberries
  • 25,000 bottles of champagne
  • 23,000 bananas
  • 20,000 portions of frozen yoghurt
  • 12,000 kg of poached salmon and smoked salmon
  • 7,000 litres of dairy cream
  • 6,000 stone baked pizzas

In the fourteen days of the tournament, some 378.8 million people will watch it on their televisions.

Almost half a million spectators will pass through the gates during the tournament.

At least one player will smash a serve in of more than 137 mph at their opponent and no-one will die. (hopefully)

660 matches will be played.

Over 40 miles of string will be used to re-string rackets.

6,000 members of staff will work for the duration.

25,000 households will be adorned with a new green and purple championship towel.

10,000 umbrellas will be bought and most likely, used.

And one man and one woman will be crowned Champions and have their name etched on that famous wall and trophy.

This usually leads to almost 63 million disappointed Brits – again.

But what about this year?

Federer – out.

Nadal – out.

Murray – still in (at the time of writing this)

…and possibly just one man stands between him and that elusive win. Will we be celebrating this coming Sunday in the sunshine, or will we be snarling a smile as someone else plants a smacker on the trophy once again? Who knows? But to us, it is summer, it is Wimbledon…

?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????112898481_am_335114b imagesBut it’s just a game right?

Wrong. Very wrong. There can only be one winner.

So, you are forgiven for wondering what any of this has to do with writing and publishing (a-ha, you knew there was a reason you came!). Well, I’ll tell you.

I am soooooooo bored of reading posts/rants/tirades of abuse relating to the tennis that is the ‘traditional’ versus ‘indie’ grudge match.

I mean, get over yourselves already. ALL of you.

I staggered across one highly amusing post here the other day. I won’t offer my opinion on the poster, he does a cracking job of removing all doubt for you in his replies and his other vitriolic (and highly unsubstantiated) blatherations against ‘indies’. It seems reading his other posts that the guy is highly knowledgeable and offers some great news and insight into e-reading and publishing. but like the perennial loser at Wimbledon, no matter how well he plays up until the final match-winning point, everything else that comes before it is irrelevant if you’re not kissing the cup.

Then there was, of course, the equally-sidesplitting post by Melissa Foster some time ago. Add that to your handmade, obviously second-rate pipes and smoke your not-quite-as-good-as-Golden Virginia-tobacco you wannabe writer plebs!

At the other end of the manicured court, just in sight above the perfectly aligned net are the ‘indie is the only way’ ‘traditional publishing is dead’ naysayers. I detest them with equal venom.

Let’s just get one thing straight here, guys: whether you label yourself with the latest cool author tag (anyone else hate ‘hybrid’? I’m a writer, not a car) or you stand with both feet rooted in one happy camp and your one and only song on your iPod blasting out on a repeatable 24 hour loop, you are in this crazy sport for one reason and one reason only. To write the best story/book/poem/screenplay that you can.

There should only ever be ONE winner.

The reader.

Game, set AND match.

Saffi

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