I nearly did it again. Did what? I nearly gave the ‘go ahead and print’ order for Tess of Portelet Manor. Thankfully however I called for yet another soft-copy proof.

With growing horror I’d marked up the previous, hard copy, proof with sticky flags. It was full of typeset errors where a word break at the end of a line led to white space after the penultimate word on that line. Advised that the corrections had been put through I was confident enough to give the print order – but I didn’t. Just as well. This latest proof has no fewer than 36 similar errors, plus a handful of typos which I’m sure I’ve identified before.

So it’s back to the printers, asking if they can give me a price for finally cleaning the thing up. It’s as well I like the story I’ve written as I can now recite it off by heart.

Do other writers end up tearing their hair out like this months after submitting their work, light of heart? How many times do you have to proof-read your work before printing?angry face

Meanwhile I’ve tentatively set off on my fourth novel. Hardly for the mass market this one. It will focus on real, modern-day slavery, alternating between the misery and cruelty bestowed on the slaves and trying to dissect and examine the money chain which enables the trade to happen. I wonder how readable I can make this! Not easy but I’m going to try.

And I’m also going to have a shot at a volume of short stories. This is a different discipline entirely and something I’m trying to learn as I go along. I’ve got a couple in the can which is, at least, a start.

And in other news my new Jersey Joggers group meet for the first time on 14th January. I have about 30 indications of interest, which is great. A big attendance will bring a number of little problems, but nothing that can’t be overcome. jogging cartoonIn addition I’ve just taken on a wider-ranging role in coaching the youngest members of Jersey Spartan AC, at least temporarily. I love coaching so it’s no real hardship.

And I’ve got to find time for tackling modules 6 – 23 of the course which will give me my higher qualification in throwing i.e. shot putt, discus etc.

All of which is a bit introspective and uninteresting for readers – my apologies. But I suppose it’s my version of looking ahead to 2013 and what’s on my plate. Now if someone would just do my full-time job (I get to keep the salary) then I’d be fine.

Now I have a week’s break, using up some of my 2012 leave entitlement backlog. The first thing I need to do is to catch up with my favourite bloggers, sadly neglected recently. I get so much enjoyment and inspiration from them that I’m looking forward to that.