Raphael, A Version (Illustration, graphic markers & black ink on Bristol paper, A3) // ©Jules R. Simon

Hello there! Long time, no see. I started this account with the purpose of sharing my stories, but life got in the way. There is an upside to this, though. I’m back, with more tales to tell, nestled between my ears and eager to come out.

You see, 2018 was a difficult year. I took a long break from London, to begin with, and, as much as I love that city, my stress levels have gone down since I left it behind. I’m in an intermediary period of sorts, and I’m taking this time to (1) clear my head, (2) enrich my knowledge, (3) spend time with my mom and (3) write like there’s no tomorrow. It’s a long hermit phase, and I’m loving every second of it.

Last summer was particularly difficult. My mom had brain surgery in early July, and my dad died unexpectedly on August 22nd. The former was touch and go for a split-second, but she pulled through and recovered beautifully. The latter, well, I’m still adjusting. My dad and I were more or less estranged, but that never killed the father-daughter love between us. I owe part of who I am to him, and I know that, out of all the people in the world, I mattered most to him.

Now, I’ve got two lovebirds which I adopted — they’re savage little turds, but beautiful and adorable. We’ve established a rapport, but I doubt I’ll ever be able to hold them in my hand. There’s a family dog, too, a big black beauty whom I spoil relentlessly. And I made a small garden for my mom — pots, of course, but filled with wonders. The dwarf irises have already blossomed, along with blue hyacinths, whose fragrance is simply mesmerizing with my morning coffee. Next up are yellow tulips, pink and mixed freesias, pink and “Arabian Night” dahlias, pink lilies, fiery orange marigolds, California poppies, orange begonias, colorful snapdragons and lupin. Waiting for April so we can plant the red and pink gladioli and the lavender. But I reckon my prettiest project will be the climbing yellow roses — they went in a large pot, settled on the tray of the first birdcage I got for my parrots. It’s a big one, tall, with three walls up which the roses will grow this summer. There are freesias and wildflowers sprinkled between the rose stalks, and the entire arrangement will also have a couple of decorative garden lights.

Sorry, I droned on there for a bit, but I can’t help it. I’ve recently discovered gardening and the peace and tranquility that it offers, and I’m loving it.

Now, back to projects. I’m ghostwriting full time, which is good because I doubt I’ll ever hold a 9-to-5 office job ever again. Plus, it’s fantastic practice for my craft.

Lilith started out as a fun bundle of short stories, but she’s grown so big and multifaceted in my head, that she now has five novels planned for her. I’m currently writing the first one, but I promise to add more bits and pieces of her and other characters from her lore on Medium, as time allows it. She’s the one who’ll hit the agents’ desks first, I guess.

Dora is also growing, but slightly differently. I’m thinking novel or graphic novel form, because I’ve developed the multiverse concept she’s been treading through. There’s also another related story in the oven, which I’ll further expand on this summer, once I finish Lilith’s first draft.

I also have a TV series to develop, currently polishing the pilot and building the bible. I reckon the pitching will be a pain, but not impossible. It’s sci-fi, The Bourne Identity meets The X-Files — if a reference helps.

On top of that, there are bits of freelance and pro-bono work sprinkled in-between, so, I guess you get me when I say that this will be a busy year. But any task can be accomplished, as long as it’s broken down into manageable pieces. My head is filled with stories, and they’re aching to come out. I’ve put this off for too long…

I cannot promise consistency in my posts, but I can promise that bits of my heart and soul will be injected into every word I put out here. To those of you willing to join me on this ride, I welcome and salute you. I’ll also be sharing some thoughts on books, movies and TV series, and film scores along the way — the latter is what I listen to when I write, and I’m hoping that, if I share my favorites with you, they’ll inspire you as much as they inspire me.

If you made it all the way to this line, well… Thank you. May spring bring you nothing but joy and clarity, energy and love, good health and whatever else you may need to accomplish everything you’ve set out to do in this year.