Friction Fiction 38, Cars, and the Economy

Today I published the Friction Fiction Podcast Show 38 I recorded on Friday at Libsyn. Here it is on iandsmith.com for downloading or just plain listening. This week I play music from Slumberlords, Ditto, Stanton Delaplane, a great new song from Tommy Mac, and Ashwan. I read two poems from a booklet published by SCAN poets in Reading in 1994, Jit’s Greyhound, and Jit’s Whirlwind. They suited the themes of the music. I also read A34 Poems, from my collection What You Will See published by Gatto. It’s another angle on the environment.

The A34 bypass at Newbury was a nineties battleground that environmentalists lost. Years on, and the bypass hasn’t solved any problems. In fact it’s time to bypass the bypass. My poem is about the economic dependancy on the car that Thatcherism, with its mobilised labour markets (which I was part of), created. Ten years on, and economies depend on cars, ie we’ve built the economy round the car, and we might soon see the disadvantages of doing this in the way a team built around one star might suffer when that star becomes old, lazy and expensive to run.

Today, I went to Reading, so I haven’t done a thing other than publish this, and do a little promotion on Myspace, and delete loads of unwanted mail.

I’m having a big think about my second novel. I’m going to write a 1500 word synopsis instead of writing the novel. This is because motivation to take it on in the way I took on my first novel has gone. I thought of separating it back into its short story components, but I have many short stories published so what’s the point of adding some more? Try something different. So tomorrow, I’ll try to get that synopsis started and see if I can have the energy to complete it.

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