Sunday, 15 June 2014
Funerals and Things
I've been to two funerals this week. One for my partner's adopted father John Leach, aka Janos Lehar, a composer who was also well known for playing the cimbalom. There is a good chance you have heard him play, listen here. Pretty much anytime a cimbalom is heard in a recording the chances are it is John Leach playing, for example the Alan Parsons Project album Tales of Mystery and Imagination.
The second was the funeral of a long time friend Ken Brown. Who was the best friend of Andy Robertson, another friend of mine who died a month ago. Far too many deaths of people I know over the last month. So it all got a bit emotional for me during the service, especially when singing Amazing Grace and Jerusalem. A lot of old faces came out of the woodwork to see Ken off, including David Pringle the former editor of Interzone. All in all, as far as funerals go, it was a lovely day, with a fabulous wake in the pub afterward as Ken wanted.
Another upside, other than supporting his daughter and giving him a send off, was meeting Andy Robertson's daughters Alice and Claire. I knew their mother Sylvia, who died when they were babies, which was the last time I saw them. It was therefore both a surprise and a shock to meet them again all these years later. Their mother would have been so proud to have seen them grown up.
As I said last week, I read a Cthulhu story, and so inspired I started a short story of my own, only to find Peter Watts had beaten me to the idea of a sequel to The Thing when I was doing some research. Still, my story takes a different approach to the events, being more mythos based, rather than being just some poor misunderstood alien trying to communicate with the humans. I'll say no more at this point. Consider yourselves teased.
I've also submitted a short story to my writers group, which will see which way the wind blows. I'm not sure they want a genre writer like me in the group, as they seem more focused on fantasy and what are described as slipstream stories. That or I'm just a terrible writer and they don't like what I've written. Either way, I'm coming to think I may be too old fashioned, and out of touch with modern reader sensibilities in the SF market.