Friday, 15 February 2008


My current WIP is a contemporary novel with an historical element, which means lots and lots of research! Some research, or a lot of research would probably be enough, but I seem to be doing masses and masses! I’m drowning in books and printouts -- some still unread.

Perhaps I have a geeky academic or collecting urge that lay dormant until now. Perhaps I don’t want to miss an amazing piece of information I don’t know exists -- but won’t find if I stop looking! Perhaps I’m just really enjoying wearing my glasses and ploughing through tons of material. (It’s great!)

I’m so bitten by the bug that, on Wednesday, I attended an auction of antiquarian books and bid on lot 64. I could not honestly say it was vital to my research, yet I felt compelled to have it. And a valuable item can always be sold on, hopefully at a profit.

The auction was well attended. The guide price for lot 64: £50 to £80. I imagined no one else would want it, and I’d probably go home with a bargain. Two others were bidding before I stuck up my hand.

“The lady’s in,” said the auctioneer.

An uncomfortable spotlight moment; he wasn’t commenting on the other bidders!

“£130, the lady … The lady’s still in at £180 … £210 … The lady’s out ... £220 to Jarvis!”

At those prices, what on earth was I doing? Well, Jarvis was determined to beat “the lady”. Whatever lot 64 meant to me, it was more valuable to him. But no way will he make a profit! :)

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