A Boat For My Potplants


My nautical project took me to glorious places, metaphorically speaking. There were parties on board. There was The World's Smallest Pirate Radio Station. Of course there were plants. And one day even a gorilla.
The boat also became my 'Writer's Retreat'. I decided to become an author, writing my debut novel aboard the boat. The book, called MUDDY WATER, was naturally set in Wivenhoe. Amazingly, several local people paid good money to have their names appearing in the book, and a lot of cash was raised for worthy charities - the RNLI, MIND, The Samaritans, and The Royal British Legion.
Now, my next multi-singular selling novel, FLORIDA KEY, is in 'production', due for publication in October 2017.
I'm sure to be visiting writers' block along the way, as well as euphoria, self-doubt and inspiration.
See how my book goes through all the stages - from initial concept to final print. I'll take you with me on my personal journey as I work on the words, on the cover, on the marketing, and on the publishing.
Maybe it will inspire you too to have a go at bringing out THE BOOK IN YOU. Everyone has a story in them, just waiting to be told, and after all, if I can do it, anyone can.
(Click on the tabs below to see more about the Writer's Retreat In France, the old Boat For My Potplants, Tallulah the Motorhome, Alfonso the Car, and Jane the Woman. And to find out more about MUDDY WATER the novel, click the cover to be transported to its Facebook page)

Saturday, 20 November 2010

I've Got A Feeling

I've got a feeling about The Boat For My Potplants. It's a positive vibe. I don't know where it's all leading, but it sure ain't down the Swanny River - it's up the creek with a paddle.

Today, a very nice man, by the name of Jason Cobb, wanted to interview me on my boat - for his blog. It was fun alright, but I have committed the immortal sin. I have stated in writing, and now in an interview, that I intend to start up Wunnerful Wadio Wivenhoe - pirate-style. Cripes! That means I really do have to do it.

All I need is Money. That's what I want. I'm sure that all that equipment is going to cost a pretty penny. And not only that - I need a motor. That's what I need. And I'm not going to get that for a song, either.

Hmmm. I'm going to put my thinking cap on and hatch a plot...

Any ideas?

Sunday, 14 November 2010

Lucky, lucky, lucky

On Sunday I went up the Co-op, as you do, to buy whatever we needed to complete the Sunday lunch. I paid for the good, as you do, and was just leaving the shop when I noticed that the new Essex Life magazine was on the shelves. I decided to thumb through the pages, just in case...
...just in case there was another mention of my Boat For My Potplants. Surely they must have given up on me by now and I would have become a long distant memory to their editorial pages.

But what was this? Yet another inclusion of my blog - detailing the continuing saga of 'Erindoors, me and how the boat was affecting both our lives. Tee hee, chuckle chuckle, all the world could see that this is a REAL project. It must be - it's in print.

I dashed home to tell 'Erindoors the good news. As she carried on making the roast pork and tatties, I reflected on how lucky I had been - and still am...

...Lucky to have been given a boat in the first place. Then lucky to get its mooring in a prime position. Then lucky to receive an original piece of artwork from Cherry Ann (which is now hanging in the cabin), and lucky to get 'Erindoors to plant the winter pansies and lucky to get the free paint from Dulux and lucky to get the fantastic canopy from Sail And Cover and lucky to have tons of friends and well-wishers 'in' on the whole project, and and and lucky lucky lucky.

I looked through some of the pics I'd taken, and then I reflected on how seriously lucky I am to have two such incredible kids (Laura, 20 and Oliver, 17) to be happy to spend time with their old man on board the Boat For My Potplants.

Saturday, 6 November 2010

Electrifying!

Yesterday the big Switch-On occurred.

Solar energy is our future, and it's free. My local friend Martyn helped me connect up my solar panel to my regulator to my battery to my inverter to my iPod to my old Grundig amplifier to my old Grundig speakers. The good people of Wivenhoe Quay didn't know what hit them this afternoon when they got blasted with a few minutes of Dire Straits, as they sat outside the Rose And Crown and I cranked up the volume. Just testing.

Also to my delight I discovered that the internal boat lights still work after all this time, so no more clambering around in the dark for me and 'Erindoors.

But I got a call late last night just as I was getting tucked up in bed. It was Mike, who lives on the quay. "Did you know you've left your lights on, Neil?"

He didn't know that I had stuck some colour-changing garden lights, powered by the sun, in between the winter pansies.

I thanked Mike for his concern. You can forget boring Blackpool and disregard lousey London. The only illuminations worth looking at are right here in Wivenhoe, on the deck of the Boat For My Potplants.

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

100 Today!

Today is the day that I write my hundredth blog about The Boat For My Potplants. One hundred blogs. I don't believe it, but it's true.

Oh what fun it's been so far, and I'm only just beginning Chapter Two.

Chapter Two, in which hopefully I will...

...sort the electrics
...renovate the interior
...get a motor that works
...learn how to drive (the boat)
...start up The World's Smallest Pirate Radio Station

All in good time.

But for now I am celebrating the 100th blog with a toast to all who read it. I didn't realise that anyone actually does read it until last Friday when I bumped into Paul and Vivienne in Saffron Walden, who said they enjoyed it.

CHEERS to you, and thanks to all the other Paul and Viviennes, wherever and whoever you may be.