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I just cannot resist. My muse Nancy sent this to me, and I have watched it — er, a lot — in the last 12 hours. I don’t care if it’s planned, choreographed, worked out. That it’s an advert. It’s still community art, and I love it.

Who hasn’t wanted to dance in a big open space like Liverpool Street Station? How perfect would that be?!

Check out this short film on the making of it too: you just have to, for the guy at the end who says something like ‘it was five minutes of love, man’… Just absolutely great.

Happy Monday.

I guess I don’t get to list all the people I’m so glad to know and see — again. But I do want to express one thing: welcome back Deborah! She’s moved her site. And I for one am breathing a sigh of relief. Life without Deborah’s sparkle hardly bears thinking about.

I’m hanging onto your sparkle, Deborah….



I’ve progressed from pedometer to gym. Oh yes I have. So far (okay, two days in) I absolutely love it. I know I’m behind with this. I know it. Don’t write and tell me. But being inside my own music, cycling, or doing the dreaded chin-ups…It’s not that far off my all time favourite activity, now limited by my knees. I can deal with hard work to good music, anyway.


I am not doing any writing. Just thought I’d make that clear. I could list everything else I’ve done — a chicken without the proverbial, in truth — but the heart of the matter is pretty simple. If I don’t make space soon, there’s not going to be much reason to carry on doing much of anything.

Any five minute a day bright ideas? I need a writing personal trainer. Embarrassingly, I’ve let myself go. To rack and ruin.

1) Been thinking about twins. Somehow, and for no clear reason. Except that weeks ago I saw what appeared to be twins (women) both running (separately, one behind the other) for a train in Charing Cross Station. And that day before yesterday I thought I walked past two shopping twins (women again), one with a young child, looking at face creams. And today I maybe saw the same two maybe women twins on Canterbury High Street, walking briskly. Maybe not. You’d think I’d know for sure. But I don’t. I’m wondering if it’s not unusual for me to be in an almost constant state of double take.

2) The number of people working on the house today all at once: 6

3) The number of posé turns I did across the floor in ballet: at least 50. No wonder I’m seeing twins.

4) Hauled a chest of drawers up three steps on my own. Last time I did something like that was 15 years ago, when I carried a different set up an entire flight single-handedly. Nevertheless, proud of myself. Even if R, E, and M might not like it in the sitting room.

5) One of the six men in my house today fixed the tumble dryer. He’d been round to fix the oven last year, and the washing machine several years before that. You’d think therefore that we had a relationship of sorts. Well, no. Despite five others being in the house — in the same open space indeed, talking and joking — I couldn’t entice him to a single off the cuff remark. He did inform me though that the thermostat had gone, in his opinion, because the filter was bunged up. He lifted it up to show me: should be able to see through there. Oops. I tried to tell him, my voice no doubt trailing off, that I did sometimes carry it up to the shower…I did, um, try. He remained unmoved.

6) Another of the men in my house today was the template person. Whenever I asked if something were possible, he replied with a resounding yes. I liked that. We should all be so lucky.

Night Train 5Just a quick reminder that tonight is the launch of NIGHT TRAIN 5 (an anthology of the best of University of Kent’s student work) in Canterbury, at the Gulbenkian Theatre.

Time: 6.30 pm

Tickets: £8 (£7 concs) INCLUDING a copy of the book, a glass of wine, and very, very fab music by jazz duo Frances Knight and reknown saxophonist Paul Booth.

AND loads of student readings: 16 poems, six short short fictions, two short stories….

It’s good stuff: I’ve read it. Because I’m co-MC-ing along with one of the editors, Andrew McGuinness (a fine fiction writer in his own right, by the by, more later I’m sure).

Be there or be…uh, left standing at the station?


Now might be a good time to mention that not only does M dance, but son E danced for years, and yes, I do and have done for many more years. Ballet. Not sure why I feel the need to mention this, except that in last 24 hours I’ve encountered three people who either know me through dancing or ‘heard’ that I danced — something in the air maybe: coffee with Karen and Sarah (both dancers); chance meeting with Suzanne (dancer) at the school play last night, and now this morning Wonderful Builder just getting going before the rain started bucketing…. ‘Seems there are many strings to your bow,’ he said (enigmatically). He’d heard it from the wife of the man he plays squash with. Heavens, I say. So I’ll set the record straight: no, not professionally, but yes, for 35 years, some of them pretty seriously.

How’s that blueblog, which links here through “Patricia Debney Mainly Talks Dancing”? Good enough for TV?

Today is a rainy day, and it’s Tuesday. Although yesterday was rainy too — more on that later. Anyway this morning M had her Grade 1 ballet exam. All well. I had the very peculiar experience of peeping through the skinniest little gap between two doors, and seeing her beaming face as she petit jete-ed, hands on hips, then chassee-ed across the room, her arm rising to the diagonal as she went. For most other things she was out of my line of vision, but her shiny slicked back hair and sheer delight will stay with me for quite a while!

DissonancesLast night I had what turned out to be the real pleasure of going to a ‘bulk’ bluechrome reading at the Poetry Cafe. Trains being what they are, I missed the first reader Mike Hogan, but settled down to enjoy Leah Fritz, Ruth O’Callaghan, and finally Nigel McLoughlin. I was particularly taken by Nigel’s work, and bought his new book, Dissonances, which I read cover to cover on the way home. With great enjoyment, I must say.

Oh, and it rained. The whole trip. While I was walking around London. No umbrella and a wool coat. Bleh.

If you’re interested in more bluechrome happenings, a good way to find out about them is by joining the wonderful world of bluechrome on facebook. A great stable of writers there — and entertaining to boot.


From January 2010, my new blog is Waving and Drowning


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Who am I?

A writer born in Texas, who grew up in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia (yes, like the song), and who's been living in the UK since 1988. I've published two books (see below), and teach creative writing at the University of Kent. I'm married to a composer, and we have two young children. See About for my full profile.