Hello Good People
Today it’s ‘GEORGE’, and this book is as different from ‘PROM’ as it’s possible to be. And, unbelievably for me, it all began around August of 2000! A beautiful young lady joined the company I worked in. Before too long, she informed me that she had a little dog, a Jack Russell, by the name of ‘GEORGE’. Typical me, I said I’d write a story about him, and the ‘handle’ was already there: his name. The story would be about a little Jack Russell by the name of ‘GEORGE’. For reasons I won’t explain here, he struts his stuff from the moment he deems himself to be THE George: that’s to say, SAINT GEORGE, Warrior Knight. Patron Saint of England, Slayer of Dragons, Rescuer of Damsels in Distress and an All Round Good Egg!
There was another young lady in the company, by the name of Filez (or “Filly” for short). She informed me that their family dog was a cross breed Husky by the name of ‘BUTCH’, and Filly’s prime job, as far as the family was concerned, was to keep his fabulous coat in pristine condition. This wasn’t helped at all in the fact the hair was plentiful and WHITE, and Filly was always fighting a losing battle. I said I’d write a story which included Butch. And such was so.
I wrote seven stories in the first session, and seven more in the second session, with a number of years between the two. By the time I was starting the 12th story, I was pooped. So, I decided to stop at the even number of ….. 14. This gave me time and space to begin laying down the road to the end. Also, when the time came, I had to ask the publisher that all future copies had a single strapline on the inside front page of the book: Nothing is what it seems.
I noted a few “odd” happenings in the context of the stories, from story 12. Only into the second half of the 14th and final story would the reason for that strapline come to be understood.
I enjoyed writing them, the more so as Maria, Filly, George and Butch had been and are real people and real pets respectively. Also a character by the name of Inspector Charles “Charlie” Roberts. The real Charlie (!) had been my father’s friend for some 15 or more years, and is still mine. Dad is deceased, but Charlie’s still hanging in there – at 97! They don’t make them like that anymore. A true “Good Old Tommy”!
The illustrations for the book were done by an outstanding Artist/Illustrator, Finola Stack. I gave her detailed descriptions of George, Butch, Maria and Charlie (along with photos), and just the descriptions of the other characters. She did a wonderful job. Also, ‘George’ has received approval (at least of his image) from a Royal quarter.
The Primary school kids I spoke to about George and his adventures loved him. Time will tell how far he goes.
I won’t detail any of the stories, but some did, in a very gentle, oblique way, make mention of some of the sharper edges of a young person’s life. Also, that life, and goodness was, and always would be, ultimately triumphant!
Right, tomorrow I shall deal with my third book – due out at the end of November, 2018. A collection of novellas from the HORROR genre, in which I usually tend to write.