Monday, April 28, 2008


Rough Guide to the Less Lonely Planet

Madrid was a blast as always. I went to an obscure gig that turned out to be very good, a singer called Amelia Ray who was more versatile than the 'blues' label she tags herself with. Madrid is a truly great place for music. A stroll through the backstreets reveals lots of little music clubs and there's something happening every night of the week. Madrid is certainly one of my favourite cities on the face of the planet Earth.

London I feel more ambiguous about. Before this week I would have said that I didn't much like it, but the last few days changed my mind. The first night I stayed in the noisiest hostel imaginable, with a techno club directly below the bedrooms. After that I stayed with Sarita. Over the weekend I explored many of the usual 'sights' and also spent a lot of time at Portobello Road Market. Everything was better than I remembered it!

My new book was launched in a pub near Bond Street. For some reason I thought The Less Lonely Planet was going to be a paperback but in fact it's a chunky hardback and I'm very pleased with the production values. A collection of 32 linked stories dating from 1992 until 2006, it's one of my lightest and most absurd books, and I consider it highly representative of what I do. I hope it sells well, as I eventually want to offer a companion collection called Salty Kiss Island to the same publisher. We'll see!

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