4/16/2003

I was starting to get worried the contract - which my agent warned me was on its way - had got lost in the post, but when I got home this afternoon it was there. Had a look at it - the thing that pleases me the most is that (as far as I can tell amongst the lawyerese) a couple of weeks after I return the contract, I get a payment of 7,500 quid. I'm not sure whether they take the agent's share off first, or if I have to pay her, or whatever. I'll probably email her.

What's really important about this isn't even so much that I'm getting paid to write, it's what it means about getting out of flatrenting land. I can put down a serious deposit on a flat and buy a house, which is incredible, although it has to be said that the places worth living in, in Glasgow, are still far, far beyond my means. Which means I may have to go a little further afield. And being self-employed and therefore below the radar of the majority of UK mortgage companies does not help matters any either. Nevertheless, I'm exploring several options - it would be nice to be able to spend christmas this year in my very own house. I'd like that.

I've got two options - either a one-bedroom place for myself and MJ, but it would have to be below 35,000. When you wrap in the monthly council tax payments, that really boosts the cost upwards. Alternatively - and my preference - is a two bedroom place, where I can rent a room out, and pay a good chunk of the mortgage that way. It would also serve as insurance against any unforeseeable financial problems in the future - as long as you can rent out a room, you can cover the majority if not all of the mortgate. Yes, yes, I know it's not as simple as that, I've been thinking about lots of different options, it just more or less boils down to this basic choice - depending on the flat, and where it is.

I haven't done a huge amount on AG since finishing the first draft. Started revisions, not huge, then spent most of this evening downloading files on nanotechnology from the web to load up onto the ageing laptop I do most of my work on. Plus, it's not like I'll get much done before the convention this weekend.
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