Wednesday, 19 October 2011

A tree grows in Chelmsford

Dear Reader,

As is rapidly becoming usual, I am once again not writing about Once Upon a Time in Tombstone. (which truly was a great game, honest!) No, today I am writing about the founding of an independent publishing company, my independent publishing company. Cherrytree Publishing, future home of Monday and the Murdered Man, Monday and the Apocalypse Engine, and Monday and the Clockwork Corpse. Yeah, I've got a theme going but it's working for me so far.

For those Dear Readers who don't know what is involved in the establishment of a publishing company, the following description will very likely be absolutely no help whatsoever. Sorry folks, but that's just the way I roll.


Yes, that's right, I'm pretty 'Street,' now.

So my first stop on the bureaucratic odyssey was my local banking establishment. Everyone was very nice and helpful and we got my accounts mostly set up, but since it was to be a business account, we couldn't finish without a few simple details. Simple in theory, but not so much in practice. I was informed that I needed to register as a business at the local town offices. 'Okay, that sounds easy enough,' I thought. 'I'm a townie, I should be able to handle this.'

I hop back into the author-mobile and scoot across town to the local town offices. So far, so good. I was pleasantly surprised at how well-labeled and organized the offices were; it took me no time at all to find the town clerk and slide into line behind all the other confused folks on their own bureaucratic odysseys. When it was my turn, I told the nice lady behind the counter what I wanted and she told me I had to go ... Downstairs. (cue: ominous music!)

Downstairs was everything I had been afraid of, narrow labyrinthine corridors with dozens of closed and cryptically labeled doors. I wandered aimlessly until I found a group of people waiting outside one particular closed and cryptically labeled door. I figured this many people couldn't be entirely wrong, strength in numbers, et cetera, et cetera. So I decided to get in line behind them. Eventually, it was my turn and I explained to the nice man behind the counter what I wanted and he told me - believe it or not, no word of a lie, that I had to go upstairs. Sometimes this blog just writes itself.

It turned out that the guy downstairs was the first person I needed to talk to, but I needed a form from upstairs first. I went upstairs, waited in another line, got the form I needed, went back ... Downstairs, got back into line #2 to talk to the guy who needed the form, filled out the form and got told by the guy that I needed to get it notarized and then give it back to the lady upstairs that I had gotten it from in the first place.

Notarized, check.

'Can I get that notarized somewhere in this building?' I ask.

'Nope,' the guy replies, 'new legislation says we can't do any notarizing.'

Somehow, I am not surprised. I ask where I can get the document notarized. The downstairs guy replies ... wait for it ... at the local banking establishment. I should have seen that one coming, in retrospect. It actually all made sense from a story perspective. And people ask where I get my ideas from.

I hop back into the author-mobile and scoot across town back to the local banking establishment. Everyone is pleasantly surprised to see me again so soon. 'So soon?' I ask. 'It feels like it's been weeks since I was here last.' The precious document is swiftly and duly notarized and I motor on back across town to the town offices. I slide back into the very first line and wait for one last time and I am in business. Cherrytree Publishing is born.


I wonder what tomorrow will bring.

Today's distraction: Ps238 Online! Read Aaron Williams' spectacularly funny, well-written, well-plotted and well-drawn comic about young super beings, their school, their teachers, parents, and adventures. I can't recommend this one highly enough.


  1. I shall refrain from getting all up in your grill.

  2. How long it takes to register a new business is a common metric for measuring bureaucracy levels. One day is actually pretty impressive compared to:

    "When it takes 19 steps, five months and more than the average person’s annual income to register a new business in Mozambique, it is no wonder that aspiring, cash-strapped entrepreneurs do not bother."

  3. This reminds me of the old text adventure: Bureaucracy.
    I wish that when life imitated art, it would choose the "good parts" version :-)