Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Home energy saving

The Consumer Guide to Home Energy Savings arrived in the post this morning. I was hoping to learn all about loft insulation, multiply-glazed windows, solar power options ... turns out the book is American, I so wish had made this clear before I purchased it. Check the link for my one-star review to join the five-star joke review already there (should be up by Friday).

Our house moving seems stalled at present: issues down the chain have impeded exchange of contracts so it's 50-50 whether we move out to Reading before Christmas. If the purchase of our intended house in Wells, Somerset goes through, we'll have a modernisation job to do on a fifty year old detached house. Hence the book.

Hi Adrian in Canada if you can hear me? We didn't hear from you in a while, I reckon you're busy with your classes on the slopes while Clare inclines to the view you lack Internet access. Just to let you know I'm still working on that story you so effectively critiqued before you left.

Actually, returning to it the last couple of days - and reinforced by reading your Chekhov short stories - I was horrified by the crimes against literature I had committed.

- Poor to zero characterisation of the Sally and Danny characters.

- Lazy, superficial descriptive writing - especially a lack of scene anchoring in place and time. Characters were also inadequately described both physically and in temperament. The perils of being mindlessly plot-led.

- A totally unconvincing motivation for the actions of the main character Harry. He would have to be mentally disturbed to carry out the violent, depraved acts he does, and so he has become.

So I'm somewhat happier but there's still a way to go before you get another version to review. I suspect it's not really Interzone material so I'm treating it as an exercise piece.

I have something else in mind for the SF magazines which I'm starting shortly ...