The time has almost certainly come, the walrus said, to light the ruddy stove #narrowboat #england

Autumn is upon us.

Autumn, the season of axe-murderers.

Dragging his axe along the towpath, through the smoke from boat stoves.

It is high time that the Cardinal added his own stove-smoke to the others.

It is the law.

Six inches less flue, mayhap two or three inches more coolie hat than hitherto.

Besides, I needs must sometime test the new chimney. I have tested all of my smoke and CO alarms, and they spoke to me in the language of beeps and horrid, automated voices.

Question is, can I remember how to make Man’s red fire?

Can I remember how to keep Man’s red fire going?

To the super-tech of sucking power from the nearest star with the solar panels it is the season in which I must add low-tech, the releasing of heat from dinosaur bones dug from deep in the ground. Contrast el mucho, or what?

That said, I’ve just re-checked the Met Office forecast, and it’s warmed up a bit. Perhaps I need not yet have shuffled out along the seaward gunwale to mount the new flue chimney after all? We shall see. The forecast might change again in the next fifteen minutes…

So, what else have the Cardinal and I been doing this week apart from the usual mooching about? Well, I’ve been wrestling with Amazon and iTunes and Barnes & Noble and Kobo and wotnot formats, and with the mysteries of print book formats. In short, please expect this blog to become a little crass and tasteless in the old “self-promotional” line for the next month or so – my latest magnum opus, Cheerio, and thanks for the apocalypse, is available now in all sorts of eBook formats for pre-order, and the print version is simply awaiting my sight and approval of the printer’s proof copy.

If mine book-plugging offend thee then, well, I am sorry, but it needs must be done.

I shall be tweeting, blogging, facebooking and using my megaphone for a while in the manner of a fish-monger in a slow market.

If you don’t actually hate me, and I have heard tales that there are one or two who don’t, maybe you could help me out please by sharing, re-tweeting and so forth? I’d be ever so, really I would. 🙂


The eBook is available for pre-order now from your local

Barnes & Noble

Details of the beast are on my “My books” page.

The eBook release date is the 3rd of November 2018. Nearest that I could get to Bonfire Night and still be a Saturday. The print version may be a little before then, but it’ll be a day or two afore I can tell them that I have checked for upside-down, inside-out text and suchlike, and found none. I hope…

Whatever you’ve been doing this week, may the great bird of post-apocalyptic happiness cr*ap on your head. Here he is, taking off to do just that.


The ease of this feathered gentleman’s flight is in stark contrast to the buzzing, lawnmower-engined nonsense of this chap…


He circled a little as though to come in to land, but I think that perhaps the Bombay-style overhead wiring thereabouts put him off, and he throttled his engine back up to sixty-billion rpm and went elsewhere.

Good decision.

There’s nothing like the crackle and buzz of a conflagrated paraglider to ruin a chap’s day.

The evening? Well, I plan to spend mine with my feet up, possibly in front of the first stove of the season, possibly not (we shall see what the temperature does), and with my nose in front of an episode or two of Morse – thanks be to J.

Remind me to bolt the hatches well this evening, just in case Mr Axe Murderer is still out there in the smoke.

Cheers Muskie,

Ian H.


    1. Gadzooks and yikes again sir, thank’ee kindly – tis much appreciated! For the next books I am heading off at a real tangent – some romance, some “horror” and some odds and sods too. Mucho variety, I hope – if I can do it! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Oooh eck! Love that picture, it’s worth blowing up and framing it’s reet good that! It reminds me of I think an old Morse episode where he unravels an historical murder on yonder canals, but it’s proper inspiring. When is the paperback likely to be out for the new book?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The paperback probably within the week – I don’t think that I can set a release date on that other than “wheeeeee!” when I confirm the layout. I’ve just watch a couple of Morse episodes – starting the series from the beginning. It’s strange to contrast the early Morse with the Morse in the much, much later episodes – he’d changed an awful lot! Tis all good stuff!


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