Nostalgia makes the autumn of fifteen years ago seem a serenely magical place yet it was if anything fraught with frenetic tension combining nowhere to live, a non-career and turning 30. I was just back from Italy and needed to finish my second book with only four days to do it. I did but was unable to properly promote it.
Looking back it all seems rather strange though I still believed in what I was doing even if ignorance met every release – save Mezzanine Smile. I’ve probably written somewhere about how many artists’ are defined by either their debut or their sophomore effort and this is very much the case with Notate. It all began five years previously in Newport and was augmented by further writing in France and Scotland.
The first two poems to be designated to Notate were the last two which were both strong enough and for which there was no room in A Lyrical Oasis. I didn’t envisage it taking five years to write but a lot occurred in that timeframe.
Now 15 years later I have fond memories of Notate as it is in a way the parting shot of youth, the new life doctrine – unknown to me then – would be one of travel and location independence.
Life is (they say) what you make it, but I say it’s what others allow you to make it and no-one was buying. Publishing books is not the same as music, a publishing house and its marketing clout is still very much-needed in order for the fruits of our labour to be discovered. Independent music can be reviewed in the mainstream media, though I would soon find this was not extended to the printed word; a case of majors only. Without promo a book is destined to be still-born.
Notate and its sisters still await an audience (on Amazon and Lulu). If you can see the magic, please investigate…