Friday, April 05, 2013



Hello beasties!!

This week I'm off work - so although there is another video ready to be posted I have decided to hold it back until I get back from my trip and instead I intend to share with you some of what I've been up to whilst I've been off this week,

What I do have for you this week, in just a while, is a new interview by Mr Yeti with the Beargrrrian Press. Those of you who know, may remember that the Beargrrrians are rather fond of our yeti - partly through his connection with a certain Charlie Grrr, Beargrrrian superstar and general all-round greedy guts. This time Mr Yeti will be discussing new books, new poems and what is coming up for over the next few months in both his writing and his videos.

But first I'm just going to share with you what I've been up to over the past week or so, having finished work on Wednesday the 27th. I didn't get up to much on Thursday, other than some editing and - but things soon got busier after that...

Friday 29th March 2013:

Today was Good Friday and the weather, which had been cold but sunny yesterday, decided to be relatively kind to us today too... Other than continuing with the editing for A YETI IN VENICE - PART 1 I went into Woking with Dominic and alongside shopping etc there was time for me to record some material to round off my forthcoming WINTER ON A SUMMER'S DAY episode of SHY YETI ON LOCATION. We headed off to the woods on the outskirts of the town, but didn't get too far as it was extremely muddy out there. Still, we got far enough to record a poem called ALL THE RAGE which is from my collection THE AUTUMNAL E.P. which comes out this autumn in a 10th anniversary special edition.

Saturday 30th and Sunday 31st March 2013:

Saturday I did quite a bit more editing on the first Venice episode - but otherwise I was busy getting excited about watching the new episode of Dr Who and also attended an awesome Suede gig up in Alexandra Palace... On Sunday 31st March 2013 we did do some filming around London, originally I did consider recording a new mini episode called SHY YETI LIVE AND IN HYDE-ING... Basically an episode filmed in Hyde Park; however the weather simply wasn't bright enough. In the end I filmed an old poem from GO 4TH AND DIVIDE called KILLING TIME and then a little later recorded a few lines of my recently completed poem PICCADILLY IS A RUBBISH CIRCUS in both Piccadilly Circus and Trafalgar Square - two of the locations that are name-checked in that poem. This footage will now probably appear in an episode called SHY YETI'S SEARCH FOR SPRING which I expect to be filming during the rest of the week.

Monday 1st April 2013:

Today I managed a few extra scenes which I expect will go into the SHY YETI'S SEARCH FOR SPRING episode. The first couple of clips were filmed in our hotel near Lancaster Gate, one acting as a brief introduction to the episode and the other acts as an end of episode "silly" bit which mentions me doing cookery in a future film; that's where the photo above comes from! I'm really not sure what the thing on my head was - some kind of magazine rack, maybe!? There's was nothing for it though; it HAD to be worn on my head! The other scene of filming was done back across the road in Hyde Park and was the last verse of PICCADILLY IS A RUBBISH CIRCUS which mentions Hyde Park. Covent Garden and Earls Court are also mentioned, but I doubt I'll be filming at those locations on this occasion. Sadly the weather, in the morning, was pretty bleak - annoyingly the sun came out in the afternoon once we had long since finished filming and had returned home! I also spent quite some time this day continuing with the editing of the first Venice episode.

Tuesday 2nd April 2013:

Today, I had considered beginning a new episode, however although the weather was very sunny it was still very cold in the shade and there was also quite a breeze, which is always a problem when filming with the rather basic equipment that I like to use. I was filming around Brentford and Greenford and recorded an older poem called THE CALL OF THE MILD, which is also from my AUTUMNAL E.P. collection from 2003. This poem will also fit into the SHY YETI'S SEARCH FOR SPRING episode and I also did a brief intro for this title today.

Wednesday 3rd April 2013:

Today the weather was cold and overcast, but not as overcast as had been forecast - basically there was a bit of sun from time to time which helped make the filming look a little more cheerful. As for me? Well, I was cheerful too because I got to have a delicious thai green curry for lunch (not to mention an ice cream!) But anyway, I'm jumping ahead of myself... Where exactly was I filming today? Trent Park, near Cockfosters - which is where they filmed one of my favourite 80s Dr Who stories, Mawdryn Undead. It's a location that I've long known of, but which I'd not visited in quite some time. What exactly did I film? A mixture of bits and pieces - a yeti dance, a couple of daft sketches - including the return of the "ghost hunter" character and I read a shirt story from GO 4TH AND DIVIDE (2003) called WE HAVE MICE. This pretty much sees SHY YETI'S SEARCH FOR SPRING completed. In addition to all the filming I stayed up late both ends of the day working on the Venice episode - which is now nearing the length that I want it to be!

Thursday 4th April 2013:

Today, didn't work out quite as planned due to the weather - the snow returned, a little half-heartedly, but it did return and it made everything extremely chilly. Calum and I still went out - travelling out to Hatfield Forest near Bishop's Stortford... I didn't film any poems, just a few shots in the snow and a couple of "ghost hunter" sketches which I will probably include in the our wintery Summer Special later in the year. Oh yes - and I finished the Venice episode today too, although you'll have to wait 2-3 weeks to actually see it!

There will be photos from all this week's adventures as the episodes near readiness and more diary entries from the last few days of my week off next post.

As an overview - the episodes that I've been working on so far this week are as follows:


The poem ALL THE RAGE was recorded on Friday 29th March in woodland near Woking; this was the 4th poem for this episode. I also added a few quick sketches for this episode whilst filming in the snow in Hatfield Forest on Thursday 4th April. This film is now completed and will be edited in time for release in July 2013.


This episode is an unofficial sequel to last year's SHY YETI WELCOMES SPRING, but I thought I'd give it its own separate title. Filming took place between Sunday 24th March and Wednesday 3rd April 2013 and the episode is now completed. It includes the poems KILLING TIME and THE CALL OF THE MILD from THE AUTUMNAL E.P., as recorded on location in London during my break. The episode also contains a very new piece, PICCADILLY IS A RUBBISH CIRCUS, recorded in Piccadilly Circus, Trafalgar Square and Hyde Park - as well as featuring additional footage recorded back in Salisbury during my last trip there. There is also a short sketch called WE HAVE MICE from my GO 4TH AND DIVIDE collection. This episode also includes a number a daft sketches, recorded in central London on Monday 1st April and also in the Cockfosters area on Wednesday 3rd April; where a yeti dance was also recorded. I have no exact release date for this film, although it makes sense to release it by May, maybe once I have finished work on the two A YETI IN VENICE episodes.


I had intended to film an episode which would include pieces from the new collection, but in the end this never happened. However, next week I'll tell you more about the episode I intend to film between Friday 5th April and Sunday 7th April - A YETI BACK IN PARIS... I'll keep the location of that one secret until then too... Oh...

Now it's time to move onto the interview that I mentioned earlier...


Here is another, what has become bi-anuual interview that I did recently with Beargrrria’s top magazine for chat; THE GROWL GAZETTE. They know me over there due to my dubious connection with a certain Beargrrrian superstar named Charlie Grrr. This is the fifth time that they have interviewed me recently! They really MUST be short of people to interview. This time I’m speaking mainly about what the next few months hold in store and about my forthcoming collection – NOT AS SHY AS I WAS and the reissue of my fourth collection, GO 4TH AND DIVIDE. So, here’s what they asked and what I said in reply – straight from the yeti’s mouth, as it were!!!

Q. So, Paul – you’ve recently released another book, ARE WE THERE, YETI? Wasn’t that due out last autumn? What delayed you? You must be very pleased that it’s finally out there.

A. Yes, very much show. But you are right – there were a few problems. Alas – my writing is not my day job and I didn’t want to rush release an inferior product. ARE WE THERE, YETI? is over 350 pages long and contains a lot of short stories and to do them justice I wanted to make sure they got the best proofreading possible. In the end I asked my friend, Dan Hodges to help out, which he very kindly did – but as Dan also has a full-time job I only gave him a story at a time. I had hoped that the collection would be ready by November, but it wasn’t and so it seemed more sensible to take my time and to release it after Christmas and so in the end I launched it in early February which seemed to work, as it very quickly sold out and moved into a second and third reprint.

Q. That all sounds fair enough - and you're already working on the final stages of your next collection, NOT AS SHY AS I WAS?

I am, indeed! That and the 10th anniversary editions of my fourth and fifth collections, GO 4TH AND DIVIDE and THE AUTUMNAL E.P. I may not be releasing quite as many books this year – but those that I do I am pretty excited about.

Q. We’ll return to those re-issues later… But as for your next book I understand that the writing in NOT AS SHY AS I WAS has been ready for a while…

Yes, that’s true… I usually work on two (or even three collections) at a time – but obviously I’m at different stages with each. There was a time, until recently, that I was working on finishing ARE WE THERE, YETI?, whilst finishing the writing and beginning the formatting on NOT AS SHY AS I WAS and then adding very new pieces to a third collection, provisionally entitled either GRANNY ATE MY AFTER-BIRTH or A YETI WAY OF THINKING.

NOT AS SHY AS I WAS, which I was working on for most 2012, is now entering the final proofing stage, as well as working out what photos I would like to include. There’s a lot more poetry in this book compared to ARE WE THERE, YETI?, which means it may be quicker to proof – even so I don’t imagine that it is likely to be out until Autumn 2013, maybe in time for my September Poetry Café show.

Q. Has it all been formatting so far in 2013 or have you been writing new things?

A. Yes, indeed. The usual mixture of poems and short stories – although I’m not having enough time to write as much as I’d like to… There are a number of other projects, including a couple of Mouse Of Commons collections, that I’ve put on the back burner – with my main project currently being NOT AS SHY AS I WAS and the two poetry re-issues. The 2nd series of THE BEAST OF FRIENDS is probably the only completely new thing that I’m currently working on to any extent this year – a lot of the plots were worked out last year and I’m finding it enjoyable to finally get around to writing the dialogue for these episodes. A third series is also looking likely…

Q. As already mentioned, you’re continuing to release your early books as 10th anniversary editions this year too? Have there been any poems that you’ve especially enjoyed revisiting or which you had practically forgotten?

A. Exactly! I’ve already been busily recording poems from the 4thcollection, in fact my A YETI BACK IN DORSET video includes 3 poems from that volume, DARK HORSE, A GAP IN THE MARKET and FROM THE MIND OF A TURNIP – all pieces that I’ve rarely performed. Since then, whilst working on the latter half of that book I’ve found another half dozen or more that I intend to record during the year.

Q. When are these two re-issues likely to see the light of day?

A. GO 4TH will probably be out by late July, so that I can read from it during any Summer holidays that I have. I’m due to be returning to the Lake District for a week around that time, for a start –where I am considering working on my Halloween Special for the year. THE AUTUMNAL E.P., although it wasn’t published until December 2003, I am hoping will be out by early November 2013 so that I can read from it when I go away for my 40th birthday. As already mentioned NOT AS SHY AS I WAS should also be ready around this time, fingers crossed…

Q. Which collections reach their 10th anniversaries during 2014?

A.LOVESONGS FOR THE BITTER AND TWISTED is the only one that actually came out in 2004, but MUGSHOTS and POETIQUETTE both came out in early 2005, so I will probably be working on all three at once over the course of next year, although I will only actually release the first of those that year. It’s really nice to be well on the way to completing the reissues of those first eight collections, so that they are now available as they were originally released when hand-published.

Q. How are you going with the SHY YETION LOCATION videos? I hear that there were a lot of episodes left over that were originally filmed during 2012?

A. Yes, that’s true – but we’re doing very well at catching up with them. To date I have released three mini-episodes set in Brussels which I filmed back in October 2012. I had a few problems with these episodes and ended up doing three shorter episodes, rather than two longer ones – but it all worked out okay in the end; doesn’t hurt to have a few shorter episodes. In addition to this I have completed the second SHY YETI BOTTLES SUMMER episode and the first AN EPISODE WITHOUT A THEME. I am currently working on the two-part (or it could be three part!) Venice special from November 2012. This only leaves me the four part Lake District series and a second AN EPISODE WITHOUT A THEME episode from those held-over from last year. I am beginning to film new episodes this year, although because the weather has been so bad I’m not rushing to complete them. I’m still getting over 1500 hits a month, but at the moment it’s the older episodes that still seem to be getting the attention, as I presume they must have been highlighted by some other site that I’m not specifically aware of.

Q. So you have been working on new SHY YETI episodes too?

A. Oh yes… A YETI BACK IN DORSET, filmed in late December / early January 2013 is one of those that I filmed quite recently which is already out there to view. A number of other episodes that I’ve been working on, so far, this year I have been putting together in slow time and in a number of cases they’re not all quite complete. These include an episode set in my old haunts around the Salisbury area near where I grew up, a wintery-summer episode for release in July, an episode or two focussing on writing from my ARE WE THERE, YETI? collection, an episode set (one again) in Paris, another in the Shetlands… Well, then we’re into the Summer season and I’ve not even confirmed what I’m up to – although I do want to do an episode with my ghost hunter character set up in the Lake District. I’ll also be filming more live material at the Poetry Café when I have shows – although I may end up putting the footage into the normal On Location episodes rather than doing as many exclusively live videos.

Q. How is the performance poetry going?

A. Again, quietly as far as having the time to do other shows or even open-mike nights – although as mentioned earlier I have four Poetry Café shows lined up during 2013 which I’m looking forward to, Friday April 19th being the next one in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support… There are a lot of open-mike nights in London as you would imagine, but when I’m working during the week I have a pretty early start which means that I couldn’t go to a lot of events, especially as you only get to read for up to five minutes or less. It can make for a long evening! I suppose this is why I’d rather do my own shows and meet new poets that way – or why I do the videos and talk to other writers a lot on Twitter and Facebook… The videos bring me to an audience who wouldn’t necessarily follow poetry, but who enjoy my SHY YETI ON LOCATION films for one reason or another.

The London Poetry Scene is still a bit of a mystery to me – although in other way it also feels like a potentially open playing field of talent. There will always be people with more experience than you, but that doesn’t mean that you’ve not written something new and marvellous yourself – there are a lot of really talented poets out there who are struggling to be heard. When I was down in Broadstairs last summer for the folk festival everybody was encouraging and helpful and there was no feeling that anybody was better than anybody else. London never feels quite so friendly - there are so many poets out there and yet very few names draw you in by their reputations alone. I guess it’s also a case of who you meet and who you know as far as getting noticed or on the bill of poetry events. I do find it a bit frustrating that there can still be a certain air of superiority about what makes a good poem in the 21st Century. I do also get a feeling that poets don’t always like the same poetry as their potential audience might and I do wonder how much thought goes into trying to attract new converts. I’ve always been more inspired by lyricists – but that’s just my background; but I have heard lyricists referred to as the poor man’s poet. I often think it’s quite the opposite! The competitive side of the poetry scene isn’t everybody’s cup of tea – it’s a way of meeting new people, but I’m not really into big groups; so it’s a catch 22… As much as I like to perform my poetry, writing can be quite a solitary pursuit, which is the last thing an open-mike night is! As far as competitions are concerned I’ve always been a bit wary of people setting them and charging people to enter – we could all sit in judgement and do that, but I worry that it makes us look like we’re saying we’re better than those who are entering. I am probably missing the point! I guess I’d prefer people to get out there and publish their own collections rather than waiting to be told that they are good by a stranger. I very much feel that if you like your work then fight for it – don’t wait to be told whether it’s good or not. If you want advice, fair enough – ask for it, but if you’re in love with what you’re writing then get excited about it and don’t let anybody slow you down.

There are 101 ways for a poet to try and get wider exposure these days and none of them are the right or the wrong way; it’s about trying different things and seeing what works best for you as an individual and sometimes a competition might be the perfect starting point. It’s this sort of do-it-yourself approach that leads to people doing their own shows, forming their own publishing houses, setting their own competitions, launching their own groups etc. Still, it can often seem quite a maze as far as taking it to the next level in an attempt to make it more than just a creative hobby.

Q. You mentioned earlier that you have another show coming up. Tell us more.

A. Yes, indeed. The date is Friday 19th April 2013 at The Poetry Café, Covent Garden. I hope to be reading from my new collection, ARE WE THERE, YETI? It won’t just be me – I do hope to have, at least, one special guest on the night and I’ve tried to make it clear that there is also the chance for anyone in the audience to come up and read if they’d like to… I know what it’s like – getting a chance to share some of your own work is often the incentive that I need to come along to a show. Also, if you’ve got a room full of creative people then doesn’t it make sense to air as many voices as possible? So, I’m always happy to share the stage with someone who’s come along to see John or I at one of our shows. The more the merrier.

Q. Will there be any non-poetry related projects this year?

A. Oh yes. I’m working on more Mouse Of Commons stories – but I’m not sure if there will actually be a collection released this year as I need to finish typing up all my notes and then rework them before getting them proofread! It all takes so much time! A more likely release will be the 2nd series of THE BEAST OF FRIENDS, which I have written almost 7 of the eight scripts of. It’ll be a lot quicker to round off this project as conversation is a lot easier to tinker with, I find. With a bit of luck this second script book should be out by the autumn. I also have, at least, two more SUTTON PARKepisodes to edit – which I had hoped would come out last year, but which never did… If I ever catch up with my SUTTONPARK backlog then I’ll happily record more – in fact I have had a few ex-cast members asking to return!

Q. That's good news. Thank you for answering our questions, Mr Yeti.

A. That's okay, thank you for inviting me back – hopefully we’ll growl again soon. Once again, I’d just like to pass on my thanks to every one in Beargrrria for all their support and good will over the years


So, there you have it... Next week I'll be letting you know how the Paris filming shoot goes, as well as releasing a new SHY YETI ON LOCATION episode called AN EPISODE WITHOUT A THEME, which was filmed back in July 2012 but which has only just been edited...

More soon!

Yeti hugs,

Paul xx

PS See Adam M Botsford's new yeti drawing for my poem ANOTHER YETI POEM at the following link:

PPS Here's that new SHY YETI Youtube advert again!

This post and all contents are Copyright 2013