I mentioned briefly that I'd begun a new book of short stories, dreams, synchronicities and correspondences. I am aiming at about 70 pages and have reached 50. Time to ask for a fresh pair of eyes to take a look, I thought. Crysse Morrison, who'd reviewed and edited my last book agreed to do the honours again - Crysse, as well as having a substantial collection of stories and novels to her credit, also writes and performs poetry at a variety of venues, the strangest of which was her recent appearance atop one of those Plinth thingies in Trafalgar Square this summer. In addition she is soon to appear on stage at the Merlin Theatre in Frome, a new venture. She also leads writer's workshops in different locations around the globe, and combines all this with a spot of novel mentoring. A woman of many talents you'd agree.
We met last night at Kevan Manwaring's most enjoyable Garden of Awen, Samhian/Halloween event at Chapel Arts in Bath, where in the near pitch dark - very atmospheric, very Arcadian with bird songs, intermittent moonbeams and bonfire smoke - I handed over the first 50 pages of my m/s. We sipped a delicate glass of bubbly and toasted Nikki Bennett who was celebrating the launch of her own book of poems, Love Shines Beyond Grief, from which she read a selection during the evening.
In keeping with the Synchronicity aspect of my title, I had just written a few paragraphs on Jacob Epstein, the sculptor. He was a figure very much in the public eye during the time I knew him - controversial, and for decades vilified and attacked for certain of his figures which outraged the public at the time because of the raw power and explicitly primitive aspects of humanity which they portrayed. Like several other artists at the turn of the last century he had a need to break through the barriers of over-civilised society to reveal underlying and universal truths and strengths beneath the surface. I was sad to think that this genius and giant of those times was now virtually forgotten. I was sad also to think that another formidable yet forgotten figure, Carl Jung the psychotherapist, who I'd also written about in the same little book, had also dropped from the scene. How wrong I was! My pen was hardly dry when I heard that Jacob Epstein was having a major exhibition at the Royal Academy, (along with his contemporaries, Eric Gill and H. Gaudiier Brezeska,) and C.G. Jung is in the top 3 best sellers at Amazon right now with his book Modern Man in Search of a Soul.