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11 minutes ago, scoutldr said:

"I was made redundant"....I love the British language!  Here in the Colonies, we get "fired" or "laid off".  Question, SKip:  when you say the time is "Half eleven"...what time is it?  Wife and I watch more British telly on PBS now than we do the American mindless sitcoms.  Our current faves are "The Durrells of Corfu", "Call the Midwife", "Midsomer Murders", and "Doc Martin".    

Now fired and laid off are two different things to us. Made redundant is, I think, the equivalent of laid off. ie your job no longer exists due to cut backs, closure etc. Which is what happened to me. Sort of. Basically HMRC is changing from about 180 small sites and condensing to 14 massive sites. I could have gone to a new one but it would have meant 4 hours commuting a day or move to East London. No thank you to either option! So I took redundancy (with a pay off generous enough I can spend some time writing!) To us fired means something different, it means dismissed or sacked, typically for gross misconduct or incompetence.

Anyway "half eleven" means half past eleven or 11.30.

As it happens Midsomer Murders is filmed in and around Cambridge. Gets a bit annoying when they tinker with the geography though!

A couple of recomendations, if you are fine with "robust" language give The Thick Of It a try. Political satire at its most biting. The central character, Malcolm Tucker, is losely based on Alistair campbell who was press secretary to Tony Blair when he was Prime Minister. The Royle Family is alo wonderful comedy. Basically follows the everyday life of a working class British suburban family. And the best part is that nothing ever happens! They lead the most dull, middle of the road life imaginable but it is so wonderfully onbserved and written that it is compulsive viewing. It's mostly them sitting round in front of the TV talking. Genius!

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1 hour ago, Cambridgeskip said:

... Made redundant is, I think, the equivalent of laid off. ie your job no longer exists due to cut backs, closure etc. Which is what happened to me. Sort of. Basically HMRC is changing from about 180 small sites and condensing to 14 massive sites. I could have gone to a new one but it would have meant 4 hours commuting a day or move to East London. No thank you to either option! So I took redundancy (with a pay off generous enough I can spend some time writing!) ...

We call that helping a CEO justify more than six figures.

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On 1/20/2018 at 5:46 PM, Cambridgeskip said:

On the topic of scouting books......

Back In November I was made redundant from my job (I worked, for HM Revenue and Customs, broadly our equivalent of your IRS) and since then having been taking a bit of a career break during which I'm attempting to fulfill a bit of an ambition to write a book. And this particular book is a children's book set in a scout troop.

I won't give the whole plot away, you can all buy it if it's published! But broadly it concerns a scout who, after getting into trouble at school, is pulled out of scout summer camp by her (my protagonist is a girl. Sorry!) parents completely unjustly. Her patrol promptly help her to stowaway to summer camp.

I'm quite enjoying writing. It's certainly more fun than tax! Will it ever get published? Who knows. Even if it is I doubt I'll ever become the next Joanne Rowling, but you never know :)

(I try to take break from social media during the weekends so I am a bit behind) Bully for You! :) Scouts give a lot of opportunities for stories and the younger ones say the funniest things. Is this a children's book or more of a YA story? If it is a children's book will it be illustrated?

Years ago my wife got burned out at her job and took a couple years off to write a novel (based on her work place). I know it was a lot of hard work.

When I was a professor I had to write a lot and it is a slow and painful process for me...the dyslexia makes it extra difficult. I am much better at writing and giving speeches for some strange way...I am available for funerals and Scout Courts of Honor. But writing fiction is , for me, hard, mentally exhausting work. (When I was an artist doing figure painting or sketching for hours was pretty hard too...no one gives you credit for that sort of thing)

Will you be writing under a pseudonym? 

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On 1/21/2018 at 11:19 AM, scoutldr said:

"I was made redundant"....I love the British language!  Here in the Colonies, we get "fired" or "laid off".  Question, SKip:  when you say the time is "Half eleven"...what time is it?  Wife and I watch more British telly on PBS now than we do the American mindless sitcoms.  Our current faves are "The Durrells of Corfu", "Call the Midwife", "Midsomer Murders", and "Doc Martin".    

Half eleven? Time for a snack. You're running a bit late for morning elevenses, but we'll let it slide, and if it's half eleven in the evening, then it's decision time, go to bed, or get the beers and bad food in, possibly start dancing.

As for the telly choices, looks like "Sunday evening telly" to me, mostly gentle drama, no gore, no swears, no sex, nothing wrong with that of course,  there was one called Kingdom with Stephen Fry in the lead role that was similar to those sorts of things.

I'm sure I've got a book in me, scouting anecdotes and the like. Crikey, I could do a half hour stand-up routine on last year's summer camp, but

a) like I've got the time for that

b) as far as I can work out, my prose style can come across a little rushed, too many commas, not enough description. Short sentences. 

c) I'd probably upset someone, if not many.

 

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