The perils of sitting down

I have hurt my back. Yesterday, while stretching before going for a run, I managed to tweak it a little – and today I’m in agony. Ever since I damaged it a few years ago, my back has always been my weak spot. I suspect we all have them, somewhere that fails first and fastest when we’re not careful. As much as I despise not being fully mobile, I have to suffer the ‘double-whammy’ of finding sitting down – or rather the getting up from having sat for a while – the most excruciating.

It’s not just the pain that’s the issue. Most of what I do, what I love doing – writing, working on books for others, reading etc. – are essentially bum-dependant. Years ago I worked with some folk in Denmark who had telescopic desks in their offices; you could sit at them or have them raised so that you could work standing up. What I wouldn’t give for one of those right now!

So I’m trapped in a cycle of sit a little, get up and walk a little, repeat – with the odd cry of agony in between each segment. Being able to take my socks off by myself tonight is today’s modest goal, a sign of progress.

For a few minutes’ diversion, I thought I’d relate what I’ve been up to recently; this will have the dual advantages of taking my mind off my back (now that I’ve written about it!) and also, hopefully, make me feel better about myself in general!

  • Yesterday I completed the first draft of a new novel. I will start the initial round of editing today or tomorrow – and there’s a lot to go at! I suspect it will eventually weigh-in at around 70k words and be published (possibly under a pen name) towards the end of the summer.
  • In the background I am nibbling away at both a collection of short stories and a volume of poetry, though I suspect these may end-up being late ’22 or early ’23 publications.
  • Following-on from the month or so of readings of my own work published on this site, I have now started a podcast, Walking Thru Fire (this is the Amazon Music link, but it should be available soon via Apple, Spotify, Deezer etc.). I hope to expand the podcast over the coming months (should there be sufficient demand). Please check it out!
  • In terms of publishing, I’m in the process of going through the long- and short-listing process for the New Contexts: 3 anthology. This will be followed by something similar for the next issue of the on-line poetry anthology, Line Breaks. These should hit the streets in May and April respectively.
  • This year I have already published a wonderful collection of poetry from Graeme Ryan, Valley of the Kings, as well as an anthology of short stories, Making Marks in the Sand.
  • I’m also working on a collection of poetry for another poet, and have four other projects which will begin to call on my time from April onwards. After that, we’ll see. I’m thinking of the possibility of a poetry competition under the Coverstory books umbrella…

So busy, busy… And I suspect like just about everybody else, I am also preoccupied by what’s going on in Eastern Europe, increasingly angry that a single individual has the power to negatively affect the lives of millions of others. What right does he have to do that?

But maybe it had always been thus.

Stay safe, and look after yourselves…