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A Work In Progress


Me at home (inspired by Queen song 'I want to break free')

Dear Friends


It’s been over a month since I moved into my new Glasgow flat, and things are slowly coming together. I haven’t finished unpacking yet (I’ve got approximately two-hundred pocket dragon ornaments still in their boxes) and it will probably take me a while, but I’ve bought myself a lovely new desk so I’ve got a clear space to write, and I’ve finally returned to working on Kingstreet, which is book number two in my infamous Glasgay Trilogy.


I’ve also found a personal assistant – a neuroscience student called Catherine – who will soon be helping me with organisational things and Life Admin and getting to some of the appointments and places that I’m not able to travel to on my own.


I must admit I’ve really struggled to write this post. Mostly because I’m an impatient bugger. I had hoped to wow people with all the amazing progress I’ve been making on the next novel, but sadly that’s not going to happen anytime soon.


Book number two


Right now, I’m 88,308 words into the fifth draft of Kingstreet and it really is a bit of a slog –

it certainly didn’t help that I lost 4,000 words when I accidentally saved over chapter twenty-one. My narrator, Allen Cassidy, is a thirty-four-year-old transgender man and self-confessed ‘miserable bastard’ who suffers from depression and anxiety which is exacerbated largely by his misguided belief that he has failed at life. His family disowned him when he told them he wanted to live as a man, and his girlfriend – who was originally supportive – left him because she identified as a lesbian.


‘a cross between Priscilla Queen Of The Desert and The Black Dahlia only it’s set in Glasgow in 2007 and the murder victim is a male impersonator’

Although Allen has no regrets about his transition and his decision to reconstruct his body, he has become jaded and bitter towards the world around him, and he is still mourning the loss of the singing career that he gave up when he started testosterone.


Usually I describe this book as being ‘a cross between Priscilla Queen Of The Desert and The Black Dahlia only it’s set in Glasgow in 2007 and the murder victim is a male impersonator’ – and it is all of those things – but it’s also very much Allen Cassidy’s story, a story about a man who is struggling to find his voice.



It’s difficult not to draw parallels with my own circumstances – I came out as agender in 2017, and I’m still healing from the recent break up with Antonia. Last year I was also interviewed by Ellen Desmond about my own perceived failures in Fearlessly magazine.

(Click here to read the interview.)


I don’t know if my life is imitating art or vice versa but I know that after over a decade of rehashing this manuscript I don’t want to just chuck it in the bin. Allen is hard work and, quite frankly, a bit of a wanker. But he’s also loyal and kind and full of integrity. I really like him. And I want to see his journey through to the end.


Tracy and me in Tinderbox working on the website

Right now, it’s ten past two in the afternoon on Thursday 25th of April, and I have to go because I am meeting my friend Tracy in less than two hours so that she can help me post this blog. Here’s hoping she will write down instructions for me so that I can have a go at uploading stuff myself next time – if I manage it without accidentally deleting my entire website, I’d consider that to be a massive personal breakthrough.


Much Love

Ely

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