I have been away from many familiar places of my daily routine for several months. Among them I have totally neglected PBase and–even though I feel both sorry and guilty for realizing it– two of my greatest and more important ways of communications: photography and writing.
I realize that, in the quick times we are living by now, everything goes fast and is forgotten even faster. People always look forward to something new, something to add, something to change…
It's the basic principle of communication through social networks, I suppose. But I don't intend to give rise to any polemic consideration about that, at least not now…
What I mean to express, posting this picture after my long absence, is my moved gratitude for people who didn't forget me and were so kind to try to get in touch with me to know if everything was fine and to wish me to come back as soon as possible.
This picture of a new sunrise is, obviously a symbol of the beginning of a new period, which might be, at the same time, a way to go back in touch with my former and rewarding routine and, of course, last but not least, with the few people who still feel like following my work.
I'm back and, little by little, I intend to update my personal website, to find again the time to express something of my little creativity in the way that is congenial for me.
"Little Russian Stories"- Would you like to receive a complimentary copy?
The title of my most recent book is
"Little Russian Stories (So true, that they look invented)".
I have a few complimentary copies which I'd be glad to offer to the first people who might ask me for that, writing to my personal email address.
It's a collection of short stories, which have, as common denominator, the feature of being all about Russians and based on real facts.
Actually there is very little fiction. In most of cases I wrote a literal description of true stories. In few occasions I adapted slightly a description or I shortened an event, for narrative needs only.
The stories are presented in casual temporary order, like a voluntary backwards and forwards excursion in scattered memories.
I became fascinated by Russia when I was still a child. Oddly the book which kindled my enthusiasm for that country was not a Russian one. I discovered Russia, at least in my imaginary ideal, reading 'Michel Strogoff: The Courier of the Czar', by Jules Verne. I was seven or eight years old at that time and I was a passionate reader.
My next step was plunging into classical Russian literature and I dreamed of the world of Natasha Rostova, as Napoleon advanced in Russia. I felt moved by the vicissitudes of Anna Karenina and I fought with the difficulty of grasping 'The Brothers Karamazov'.
All that helped me to build my little, yet solid literary background, but gave me information only on a Russia which didn't exist anymore, while I knew very little about the contemporary Russia, which had become Soviet Union.
Only later, when I was largely adult, I realised that to perceive the spirit of a country it's necessary to learn its language and to deal with common people. History is a novel for which the people are the author.
See more about my books
"Goodbyes, they often come in wave" - Would you like to receive a complimentary copy?
The title of my last book is
"Goodbyes, they often come in waves".
I have a few complimentary copies which I'd be glad to offer to the first people who might ask me for that, writing to my personal email address.
In this novel we meet once again all the extemporaneous group of friends who live in a farm on the Tuscany hills, near Arezzo, and were protagonists of my two former books.
William and Peter keep on running their fashionable restaurant and their charming B&B. Reginald and Ellie are enjoying their married life and everything seem to be quiet, serene and a bit monotonous in the peaceful village of Capacciano.
A serendipitous encounter with Maresciallo Ciricola, who has just been transferred to Capacciano to be in command of the local Carabinieri station, after the retirement of his predecessor, opens the way to a new friendship.
But the talents of the valiant amateur detective of the farm "L'Oliveto" is challenged by a new case, which they are asked to solve.
Two years earlier, Iris Ciancaleoni, the best friend of Loredana Sanchini, the mayor's wife, committed suicide during a cruise, throwing herself from the balcony of her luxurious, first class cabin and disappearing into the Atlantic Ocean.
Loredana is tormented by doubts and she still cannot believe that her friend could kill herself, even though the case is considered officially close, after an accurate investigation.
Her husband, in spite of the deep love and esteem he feels for her, cannot take Loredana's doubts seriously. The only people who can help her to clear up the mystery about Iris' death are the owners of the farm and their friends. In the village everybody knows the fundamental role they had in solving an awful story about a murdered girl, for which one fellow citizen, Giorgio Cini the photographer, was groundlessly charged.
William and Peter agree with Mrs Sanchini that there is something fishy in her friend's presumed suicide and they start investigating their own way, helped by their friends.
Unexpectedly, the Russian business woman, who we met in the former instalment of this series, Lyubov Orlova, landed to Tuscany again and she contributes to stir things up.
Other events grow intertwined with each other. People who seemed to be disappeared come back and others leave forever.
All the characters will celebrate a very unusual Christmas, but once again. William, Peter and Reginald will find the thread to settle all for the best…maybe only temporarily. Who knows?
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Tribute to the late public telephone boxes.
I had a liking for public telephone boxes, when they still existed. I cherish my memories connected with public telephone boxes in different countries.
I wrote a very short story, nearly a page of journal on this subject.
If you have a little spare time and you are curious to read it, you can find it in my personal website
Maybe someone of you might remember similar impressions.
I have created here this graphic image as half-serious tribute to one of the many things which have practically disappeared from our daily life.
If it's not too tiring for my always welcome visitors to add an extra click, they might move temporarily there to my short tales section, clicking on this button, and read my first Summer Tale…
Fragments of summer tales.
I'm very grateful to Johnny JAG, who left one of his cleverly humorous comments to my former photo, which you might see here below.
He's always refreshing and enriching with his witty mind and his talent for photography, which, by the way, confirms what I think, that is it's not necessary taking long trips to exotic countries to produce good quality pictures. We can find continuous inspiration in our daily environment if, like Johnny, we can look at it with renewed curiosity, day after day.
This time he gave me an idea with his funny remark about steam laptops…
He involuntarily encouraged me to do something slightly different in these summer months, which are not exactly my favourite ones from the point of view of creativity. I'll play with graphic, to balance the few opportunities I have to take relatively good photos outdoors.
Besides that I have just started a kind of summer blog hosted in my personal website. I don't know how to call it actually. My intention is to write down short stories, fragments of memoires, something like that. I hope to post something once a week, but I don't give and strict deadline to myself. This freedom is part of my own rules–or rather the lack of them– which characterize what I call my summer hibernation, here in my cosy troglodytic cave.
I'll post my graphic little creations here on PBase, alternated with some photos, if I take any which I might consider at least a little worthy and I'll post the texts and the short stories in my website.
If it's not too tiring for my always welcome visitors to add an extra click, they might move temporarily there, clicking on this button, and see what comes out from the cave…
From the threshold of my troglodytic cave…
As every summer approaches I start organizing my summer hibernation, hidden inside my troglodytic cave. Said with less imaginative words, it simply means that in summer I become even more secret and reserved. I was not made for too bright light, for too sultry climate, for too noisy streets. I try to get invisible; I disappear in my small world, looking for silence. I allow myself to enjoy the most enriching and luscious laziness. I get even more disconnected than usual.
I enjoy the infinite freedom of living my own way. I work on the threshold of my imaginary cave. I feel well.
I hope to keep on with my book this summer and to develop also other projects I have in mind.
I know I'm going to neglect PBase too; my summer photos will probably be all as banal as this one, so I don't see any reason for imposing them to a few kind visitors.
"In winter I get up at night
And dress by yellow candle-light.
In summer quite the other way
I have to go to bed by day."
~Robert Louis Stevenson~
Thank you to all the people who asked me for a complimentary copy of my last book…
Thank you to all the people who asked me for a complimentary copy of my last book. I'm delighted and thrilled for your interest. I have already managed to send all the small parcels and I hope they will arrive to the receivers very soon.
Unfortunately I have not any further copy left, so I cannot fulfil any other request.
Of course my books are on sale, but this is not a veiled invitation to buy them.
My proposal was simply suggested by my genuine pleasure in sharing my work and I find extremely rewarding the number of request I have received.
Writing has always been one of my interests, together with photography and, in some cases, I do think the two activities might be considered complementary.
Someone asked me if there is any version of my books in e-book format. The answer is no, there isn't and probably there will never be.
I adore being totally old-fashioned in that and for me a book must be a concrete object made of real paper, with three dimensions.
There are already so many virtual items all around. All my photos posted here on PBase or on my personal website are virtual, digital, immaterial…I know there are excellent reasons for that as well. But as for book, please, let me keep on according to the old traditional way.
As for all the people who will have a copy of my books, either if they read them or not, they might at least use the books for a practical purpose. For example putting it under the leg of wobbly table, throwing it at someone disturbing, using it as saucepan mat or burning it in a fireplace for a minute of heat. Try to do the same with a e-book, if you can!
I have already stated that I think to be a quite average amateur writer, but I enjoy inventing stories and creating characters and in some cases they can bring someone a smile and a short entertainment, that is already an excellent result and I don't ask for more.
I confess without any shame to be a recidivist…In fact I have already started working on my third book. It takes me a certain time, since I try to be accurate in collecting all necessary information before starting putting down the main elements of the plot and only after all that I might consider to start writing the story itself. But the idea to not desert my main characters is a good motivation to keep them alive in their next adventure. We will see…
Would you like a complimentary copy of my new book?
I'm one of the world’s least popular authors. It doesn't mean I must be necessarily one of the worst either. It's simply a proof that I'm extremely lazy about any serious form of self-promotion and I endemically and awfully lack any kind of ambition.
Actually I write because I like it and it's already a good enough reason.
My career has been a varied one: for a few year years I was an assistant professor of Contemporary History, and then I became a Radio journalist.
I worked in various other creative fields in Switzerland and abroad.
I've developed a deep interest in photography and literature since my childhood.
I have just finished my second book, featuring the same three Irish characters who were the protagonists of "The perilous Art of Forgetting", William Collins, Peter Boyle and Reginald McKenzie.
A few years have passed since then, and they have left Ireland to start a new page of their life in charming Tuscany. Once again they get involved, against their will and expectation, in dramatic happenings and mysterious murders and have to summon up their speculative intellectual talents to unravel the evidences and the plots.
The book title is:
The Bride's Veil
You can read an extract of the first chapter clicking HERE
It's not a masterpiece, but I like thinking that it's entertaining and the plot is rather intriguing and accurate.
I'll be glad to send a complimentary copy of the book to the first people who will ask me for that. Please, write to my personal email address, which you can find in my profile page.
The best friends to spend a rainy day with.
I had created this slightly unconventional space in my PBase pages, because I wanted to concentrate here two of my passions, photography and writing. Later I have enjoyed myself building up other personal spaces, relatively secluded, since there is not any large and well lit-up road leading there. I leave bread crumbles over side paths for the few ones who would consider amusing to find their way. It means that I keep on writing, of course, but I do it in a different place. I don't think what I have to say might be of any importance, but at least I have tried to make the place cosy, advertising-free and hopefully relaxing.
I write little stories about other peoples, I try to put my own thoughts together, I invent silent conversations with my two or three visitors and I share occasionally some inspiration I have found in good books.
It's because books remain my great passion in absolute think I could live without a camera (it would be sad, but I could), but it's unconceivable for me living without books.
Oscar Wilde once said that if one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all. I don’t think it could be said in any better way.
Books are my friends, my companions. They make me laugh and cry and find meaning in life.
If anyone would feel a little curiosity for the books I love and the novels I try to write, there is always the chance to click on the small pictures here, to be redirected to my two specific websites.
After this shameful self-promotion, I suppose it's better go back to the side of the scene and to find shelter in a comfortable armchair, with a side table covered with books, of course.
I wrote a novel as well...Who want to get a copy of it for free?
If you have landed here on this page by chance, maybe because you were slightly intrigued by the picture of a funny face peeping behind a heap of books, I rely on your understanding and I trust you’ll forgive what might definitely sound like a self-promotion.
I tend to be always too wordy, maybe because I like the good use one can make of words, when they are threaded one after the other in a possible elegant order, like coloured pearls which compose a beautiful necklace.
Being aware of this flaw of mine, I come directly to the point, without roaming about that much.
I have written a novel. It has been a very enjoyable experience for me. I have not any expectation, any presumption either. I’m amused by my own boldness, since I have written my novel directly in English, which, as it’s obvious, is not my mother tongue.
The ancients said “Fortune favours the brave” I might paraphrase that saying my own way and declaring that “Fortune helps the brazenfaces”. Actually I was lucky enough to have the precious help of a very competent Irish editor, which has corrected my lame use of English idiom.
My novel is a kind of detective story, set in Ireland, which might be rather entertaining and I have tried to do my best to make the plot accurate and intriguing at once.
I have always repeated that I can read a book with genuine pleasure only if it’s a real book, a concrete object, made of real paper and I consider e-books like a kind of plague(I’m a troglodyte, don’t forget that).
I have a lot of faults, but at least I’m relatively consistent in my statements; so I’m not trying to find any reading public, offering my modest novel in e-book format. By the way, my book is not supposed to be on sale, who would buy it? Nobody, it’s obvious.
I wrote it for my own amusement and to fulfil a kind of challenge. But a book must be concrete, it must be made of paper, have a cover and be a material object, you know what I mean.
My book exists and it's made of real paper. I’ll be very glad to offer a copy of it for free (of course) to some people who will ask me for that, sending me an email to
with their postal address.
You see the advantage of a concrete book is that if you don’t like it , you can always use it to block a door or a window, to put it under the leg of a rickety chair or to use it to smash disturbing mosquitoes in summer nights; try to do the same with an e-book, if you can!
So, if the idea amuses you, send me an email and for sure I’ll send a copy of my book to the first people who ask for it.