Category Archives: Freedom

State Of Play

The situation is in a state of flux. Everything always is, said a friend. Metamorphosing he said. I dislike saying what I am going to do because it might not happen. As Spike Milligan said, I have no plan so nothing can go wrong.

Be that as it may Shinobu has said she can lend me 500 euros towards the publication and printing of my proposed book, which exists in the ether of this computer on which I write. Politics has been described as the art of the possible.

I texted my solicitor, Gus Cullen, asking should I buy an ISBN number for it, which is not a legal requirement. Mainly this book will be sold locally, perhaps through one bookshop and two hotels of a friendly nature, but 50 or so individual people have said they will buy. They need no ISBN, those individuals, of course.

ISBN numbers cost 100 euros plus VAT for one or 250 pounds sterling plus VAT for ten. I may self-publish on Amazon, not the book I am proposing getting printed locally, but a variation of it, of a higher page count. As a POD and also digitally, if I get around to it. I like to keep my options open, but not forever.

I would not have to borrow if I was not broke. There is some kind of Arts department of the local county council which apparently give grants in some circumstances. I spoke with their representative after a poetry reading I gave at Arklow culture night and she said they would give a grant towards the cost of bringing out a book.

A visual artist I know said they are no good, they promise a grant and fail to keep their promise.   My sister, who knows that artist, said that is just him. I said the silly bitch did not have a card. My sister said if I call her that I won’t get any money. I suppose she’s right, my sister.   She sometimes is.   I am trying to avoid being annoyed with the world and all its works and pomps but am having difficulty doing that. Restraint is a virtue at which practice makes perfect.   I’m not there yet.

Maeve Binchy said she does not agree with subsidised art, neither do I. Beggars can’t be choosers. There’s no harm in trying. They can only say no, although I foresee having to jump through many bureaucratic hoops before achieving a result, positive or negative.   Bureaucracy and me are not good friends. A bureaucrat thinks rules are more important than people.

I was never too proud to be on the dole. If the county council come up with the goodies I could return it at a later date. There is always that possibility. Bob Dylan took some time deciding whether to accept the Nobel Prize money. I myself walked to the dole office on foot, not barefoot. Through the snow.

That then is the state of play. Situation normal, all fouled up. A solicitor I worked for said to a client “We will wait until the situation clarifies itself”.   Situations don’t clarify themselves, you have to clarify them.   Or in this case, me.   I must be the clarifier. With help from my friends.

Thanks, Shinobu. Also to others who would blush if I mention their names.   Humility is the greatest virtue. But you know that already.

I will work it out as I go along, crossing my bridges as I come to them. That is my plan. But what did Spike Milligan say? “I’m walking backwards to Christmas”.

And so say all of us.

Tich Ennis

10th August, 2017

Voice

What’s going on in the inside world, in the outside world, can the two of them combine?

If I were a dictator I would say speak with one voice, mine.

Luckily for you I’m not, I wished to be in times forgot.

Music tells us how to be, why can’t we live in harmony?

On your approach to the sublime do not forget to sing in time.

Tich Ennis

10th August, 2017

Full Stop

My best friend Michael O’Brien agrees I should stop giving my stuff away for nothing on my blog. I have written various things and not put them there recently, too busy.

I have only 75 or 76 followers on my blog. My nephew said people liking and following other people’s blogs often only want a like or a following in return. I don’t want those likes and followers. I know at least one is genuine, the only one I wrote to and who replied. Thank you.

My plan is to have a book printed and sell it locally, quite a few people, maybe 43, have said they will buy. I will sell it for almost nothing, the printer will make more than me.

I ordered a book on self-publishing from Amazon today, by Rick Smith, which seems the best on the subject. So my work may be available as a print on demand book (POD) and also electronically when I can get my head around how to set up writing for those and uploading and all that.

That way is known as going over the heads of the gatekeepers, who are very good at slamming doors in people’s faces and ignoring them. Going direct to the public.

25 per cent of the top selling books on Amazon are self published, usually half POD and half digitally. Digital books have a 65 per cent market share, and growing.   People buying digital books buy more books, presumably because they are cheaper than on paper, as well as instantly delivered and other advantages.  Being old and traditional I prefer paper books and do not own an electronic book reader. Also being broke.

The paper method costs more, including to me to get my book printed locally for which I will have to borrow.   Selling as a self publisher through Amazon involves a steep learning curve, hopefully I get to the top of that hill!   But no cost to the writer, except time and know how.   The know how I do not have but hope to learn.

Of course not every book sells, I am well aware of that. Today I heard I failed to win a short story competition. A friend of mine said, when you’re starting you have to do everything for yourself.

Contrary to my title here, this may not be my last word ever on my blog. Look forward to Full Start.

I’m a crazy mixed up old man, not a crazy mixed up kid.

Tich Ennis

4th August, 2017

Explaining Myself

Or attempting to. What am I? Who am I? Do I matter? If so to who or, much less, what? Are these irrelevant questions? If irrelevant, irrelevant to what? To what matters. What does matter? You. You matter to me. Do I matter to you? You who hear or read these words. Does it matter if I matter to you? It matters to me. Does it matter to you if you matter to me? I suppose so. It should. Who says? I do. Am I what I say and do? To a large extent yes. In fact that is all that matters about me. You too? Yes. Questions are limited. How, where, what, why, when and who. Am I defined in those terms and are those things all there are to say about me? For me read you. What is the most important question? Not what, that’s for sure. Why is the question, the supreme question. Why am I? Why are you? Why not? Why a pear, an apple, a blade of grass? Our environment. The environment from which we spring and of which we are a part. Self aware matter. Does matter matter? Yes. For a while. Our life is a while. We could not exist in material form except in a material world. Or universe or galaxy. Does matter last forever? No. It changes form. Will I or you last forever? No. Not in material form. Life is a life sentence. Hard labour. I mention that in passing. Life is a passing thing. Why and how are important, more than what. Reality is the essence of the real. I am my essence, you are yours. You are how you are what you are. I attempt to explain myself but explain you. A poor explanation. Another word for essence is spirit. When the spirit leaves the body we are dead. Dead to the world. We are no more. In the eyes of the world. We are our spirit. How we are. I am I. You are you. You are your spirit, me too. Does this matter? The word matter again. The soul of the thing. The thing I am, but more than a thing. What is my wish? That people not be treated as things. I or you. Anyone anywhere. Speaking for myself I know people have not much time for my longer pieces such as this. Unparagraphed now as I write. Should I care? Yes. About that? I don’t know. Should people care for each other? Yes. Who is the other? You. Me too. There are more questions than answers. Always. Here in this piece for example. The question why is all important. I must be talking to myself. You too. Have I answered those questions about myself? It seems not. I still don’t know. Do you? About you? Meanwhile I press on regardless. What have I said? I don’t matter, I am not matter, not a thing. If I matter to myself I am wrong. You matter. Who will read these words? Almost no one perhaps. Only you. That makes two. Me and you. A dream come true. Poets ask these questions and answer them better than I. Every man his own poet. We are part of a poem, you and I. The poem is the universe. Words are stars sprinkled in the sky. The question why. Maybe I will answer before I die.

I have a friend in hospital, maybe I will read him this. He will say it is too long. He is usually right. So long.

I read it to him. He said blog it. As is.

Tich Ennis

24th July, 2017

Coin

The good things and the bad things are both made by man.

Two sides of a coin, thats God’s plan.

Do you need to toss a coin to make your choice?

Choose good, then rejoice.

You made your choice.

A coin may balance on its edge.

Sucicides stand on a ledge.

In life we take rough with the smooth, good and bad.

Sane and mad.

Good makes you glad.

Tich Ennis

26th July, 2017

America

Part of America was bought, is everything for sale?

Does money get you elected in the land of the Christmas sale?

Money may buy you health, what is looked up to, wealth?

Is everything about money, their comedians are funny.

Is money what its all about, death and taxes find you out.

What does it profit a man if he loses his soul, they fought to keep their country whole.

Oh land of striving which speaks of the free, your music means a lot to me.

Tich Ennis

23rd July, 2017

My Book

I have each and every part, assembling them will break my heart.

Where do I start?

How do I join files together?

Free me from stormy weather.

What on Earth are page breaks?

My heart aches.

Have I got what it takes?

Everyman his own Gutenberg, for every boat, an iceberg.

I must give it to the printer as he requires before either or both of us expires.

Or retires.

Each genius perspires.

They wish to light fires.

So I ordered a book about Word, another book for my shelf.

Physician, heal thyself.

Tich Ennis

12th July, 2017