Happy New Year

A new year has arrived. Celebrations were muted again this year. But for me, it’s not about a party. It’s about new possibilities and a chance to make this year count. It’s time to stop wallowing in what we can’t do but embrace what we can do.

I wish you all a happy new year, and no matter what this year throws up, let’s make it a good and positive one.

Goodbye 2021

It has been a tough year for everyone. The coronavirus has caused lockdowns, followed by a relaxing of the rules only to be followed by more lockdowns. This has caused a strain on many people’s mental health, mine included.

I managed to cope for the first six months and did a little writing, but to be honest, I’ve not done much since. I think it’s probably time for some serious new year’s resolutions to get myself together and start to look after my health.

There’s one thing that really affected me, and that was a book by Sam Morris called “Don’t Fall in Love, Sam”.

 

The blurb say:

‘Don’t Fall In Love, Sam’ is a series of short personal essays, which takes the reader on a journey of a young, gay man’s exploration of self, body/image, identity, sex, sexuality, and existing as a real person in the digital age. It resonates with the millennial, initially, but extends to the human experience of life, and love gained and lost. Morris’ words are a truly emotional read for any queer person finding their way in this world.

I found the writing to be honest and emotional, and it really touched me. Although Sam has his own erotic website (one of the new generation of ethical porn), nothing in the writing is salacious, so don’t expect any erotica. Sam is a beautiful and complex person, which comes across in his writing. It is well worth reading.

After reading the book, I felt it would be an excellent way to excise my demons for me to write something similar, probably not for general consumption. I was in my late teens when I wrote a diary, and by writing down my, sometimes incoherent, thoughts, I came to terms with being gay in a mainly homophobic culture. Perhaps something like this would work again and allow me to come to terms with other aspects of my life.

Depression defines me more than being gay does; next year, I want to find myself again. And look after myself.

I will continue to write, as writing allows me to express my creative side, and Screeve will continue to showcase some great stories. I hope you will join me in welcoming what we hope to be a better 2022.

Everyone has a story, each story unique
Every soul is constricted, each life a journey to release

My story will continue, my life is unique, my soul will break the chains I put around it. I hope my journey lasts for many years yet and that you will join me.

Bugger!!! What a cock-Up!

Be careful what you wish for!

Having my email address on the internet tends to mean that you get a lot of spam. And my email has been around for many years, so I get tonnes of the stuff. So much that I just delete whole swathes of the stuff at a time.

So for the past few days, I was relieved when I didn’t seem to be getting so much. It felt so good not to have the chore of clearing it all down.

And then I tried to log in to the website to check stuff. Shit! I couldn’t log in. I left it a day in case the hosting provider was doing some maintenance or something. I checked my control panel, and I had a message that the old style was being retired, and I had to upgrade. Was that the problem? I upgraded but still couldn’t access my WordPress login pages.
If I couldn’t access the site, there would be no more updates, and I would be forced to start over again. Trust me, it takes a lot of work to create and maintain a website with so many pages as mine.

My heart sank. I had a glass of wine to stop me from getting too stressed.

The next day, I googled the error, looked through all the YouTube tutorials, followed them to the letter. Nothing worked. I had another glass of wine or two.

Then something occurred to me. I had changed my anti-virus software. I quickly uninstalled it, and ‘hey presto!’ It worked. I can now access my WordPress login page again.

So I did some tests, and that’s when I found out that none of my emails were working.

Shitting hell!

I think this calls for another glass of wine.

I left it until today to try and sort it. And I have half sorted it. I can now receive emails again.

So that’s good news to the spammers trying to get me to part with my money or data and for the readers who have been trying to email. (They never even got a bounce back, so they didn’t even know the emails weren’t getting through.)

If anyone has been emailing me with comments or submissions, I sincerely apologise and please send them again.

But I did say that I half sorted it.

I can receive it, but I can’t send it. Well, not entirely true. If I email my outlook account, it gets rejected. If I email another account, then it goes through. I get some sort of error that Outlook has blacklisted the IP address that the email is sent from.

So I’m fed up!

I’ve now created an outlook account to send emails, and I’m thinking of keeping it and dropping the screeve.org email addresses in the future.

But I’m going to keep checking to see if I can get them to work. If anyone reading this is an expert, then the error message I get is:

Diagnostic-Code: smtp; 550 5.7.1 Unfortunately, messages from [45.83.192.3] weren’t sent. Please contact your Internet service provider since part of their network is on our block list (S3140). You can also refer your provider to http://mail.live.com/mail/troubleshooting.aspx#errors. [MW2NAM10FT019.eop-nam10.prod.protection.outlook.com]

A bit of googling shows that others have the same problem, but I’ve not found a solution yet.

Wish me luck!

When I Was…Twenty-Seven by David Heulfryn

Robbie and Jack are now older, and it is Jack’s wedding day. The two friends are as close as they have ever been as they spend Jack’s final night as a bachelor in Robbie’s apartment.

I like writing about these two friends. They have a closeness that I wish I had with my best friend. There is no sex between them, and I seriously doubt if they ever will have sex, it would spoil the relationship. I hope you like these glimpses into defining moments of the life of these friends.

It Can Take You By Surprise

Broken Glass

I went through a year of lockdown and didn’t fall into a deep bout of depression. Now we are coming out of lockdown, it hits. I can’t blame it on anxiety, which I know some people are experiencing after such a long time being locked down. But I suppose that is the nature of this illness; there can be no rhyme or reason for when it strikes.

I was very conscious of my mental health during lockdown. I suppose because I knew there was a possibility of going into a depression during that difficult time, I made conscious decisions to try and stop it from happening. Now we are coming out, I have been more lax with my health, and I allowed this bout to overwhelm me.

So the lesson I have learnt this time is, don’t get cocky and complacent when you feel good; you need to keep working to keep depression at bay.

The First Cockaigne Chronicles Novel Coming Soon

‘Becoming Kes’ is a story of lust on a clinical trial while testing a new cream that enhances sexual performance. The story is set in the exceptional fictitious English town of Cockaigne. A town where nudity and sexual freedom are part of everyday life.

Jay is struggling to make something of his life when he finds a tantalising advert from Cockaigne Pharma trying to find volunteers for a clinical trial. All the volunteers are healthy young men who must remain anonymous and naked throughout. They are given codes, and Jay decides to go by the name Kes.

Kes finds himself partnered with Zack, a troublemaker who is punished on his first day. On the trial, Kes and Zack test the new cream and discover how much better sex can be.

Outside the clinical trial, Kes meets Philip. They become close, and Kes begins to question his sexuality and explore what Cockaigne has to offer. Hopefully, with Philip.

YOI Cock Town by David Heulfryn

I enjoyed writing the short story YOI Cockton so much, and it got such a positive reaction from readers that I decided to turn it into a series. I consider the original short story the pilot and I used it as the start of the bigger story. It’s about juvenile deliquents in a “Young Offenders Institution” and is a fantasy about control and forced sex.