If you’re wondering why you haven’t heard much from me lately (and I know you spend all your time just hanging out for me to post again), the reason is twofold: 1. My websites went down for a little while (my Steffanie Holmes site is still down) and it took a bit of shagging around to get them back. 2. We are full speed ahead on the final stage of building our castle! The Cantankerous Drummer Husband and I have been living in the midst of this dream for four-and-a-half years now, and it’s both strange and exciting to have it all coming to a close. In just a few weeks time, we will be moving our stuff into the brand new great hall and bedroom wing we’ve built.
In my ears: Am currently addicted to Blue Oyster Cult. “Veteran of the Psychic Wars” is my new favourite song.
Reading: A friend recommended Dmitry Glukhovsky’s Metro 2033, and so far it’s proving to be an excellent recommendation. If you loved the Night Watch books or anything generally bleak and dystopian, this is for you.
Writing: I’ve finished the first draft of Ossified State. I’m currently re-reading it and fixing some continuity errors and adding lots of lush detail before it goes off to the editor. I’m so excited about this book.
I’m also working on a children’s book about a topic that’s pretty close to my heart. More details and snippets have already been sent out to my Patreon followers.
Watching: So … you know how we didn’t really watch TV? Well … we got a free trial of Netflix so we could watch the Gilmore Girls revival, fully intending to cancel it once we’d finished that. That hasn’t happened. Currently watching The Crown, all the Dr. Who episodes (up to S4), a series called Hemlock Grove which is quite gothic and styley and surprisingly good, and some documentaries about industrial inventions.
On the Farm: We have a bit of a grass shortage at the moment. I’m focusing on ridding the paddocks of weeds, fertilising, and re-sowing grass to encourage growth. We’re probably at the stage where we really need to lime the soil, as well – but we’re just a bit too broke for that at the moment.
After some chicken-related disasters, my summer garden has finally sprung into action. I’ve got tomatoes growing, as well as gherkin vines, strawberries, and a single broccoli. I’m looking forward to making pickles from the gherkins again, last years batch was awesome.
Speaking of chickens, we had to put one of ours down the other day. Princess was the lowest on the pecking order, and the other chickens were bullying her pretty bad. She was such a friendly girl, and she liked being stroked. My husband went out to give them some scraps and discovered to his horror the other hens had pecked out her eyes. Chickens are dicks. RIP Princess. I hope you’re busy pecking away in the Great Chicken Coop in the Sky
Loving: The tiles we just chose for our ensuite bathroom. \m/ The chandeliers I designed for the Great Hall \m/ Current writing projects making me so happy \m/ My kitchen sink tap \m/ Pulling out all my stored artwork ready to hang in the new house \m/ Planning our next projects after the house is DONE. \m/ Marrying three lots of friends in the next two months. \m/ NICK CAVE forever. Full concert review to follow. \m/ Getting Fleshgod Apocalypse tickets \m/ being so full of burritos right now after lunch with the lovely Eli \m/ Seeing my sister and niece and nephew this week \m/ Riding the waterslide at Parakai Springs with my nephew AT LEAST twenty times in a single afternoon. That was leg day done. \m/ Mastering the “Expert” level on the Woodhill Forest Tree Adventures course. I thought I was going to die, but I managed to do it! Funnily enough, there were a couple of guys right behind me on the course. I managed to get around it, finish the rest of the course (the expert bit is like a side-track through the trees that brings you back onto the main course after basically putting you through hell), complete an entire other course, and as we walked back toward the entrance, discovered they were STILL trying to master the expert section. So I can’t have been too bad! \m/ Getting all sorts of comments about my buff Shakespeare “Dost Thou Even Hoist?” T-shirt. Tree Adventures was awesome fun – I felt like Inidana Jones running across rickety swing bridges and zip lining through the forest. \m/ My two cats, Socrates and Eleanor, who are endless entertainment and ridiculously cute. \m/ Colson Whitehead, for writing some of the most wonderful and original books ever. I’m re-reading some of his work as my next book deal with race, which is not an issue I’ve written about a lot before. I adore the way he tackles it in his work. The Intuitionist is one of my favourite books ever. \m/ Whisky. Thank the gods for whisky. \m/
That’s my week. What about yours?
When I’m not reading confusing Russian books or chasing chickens out of the garden, I write dark urban fantasy novels. My latest book, Petrified City, first in the new Chronicles of the Wraith series, is out now. Grab your copy from Amazon, or join my mailing list to stay up-to-date with the series.