Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Walking Down Memory Lane


I've always favoured moving forwards--when I leave a place, and on the rare occasions a person, I have a habit of never going back. Lately though there have been many changes in direction. One or two people sadly kicked into touch, shifts in publishers, unexpected contracts. I thought maybe someone was trying to tell me something--you know, get as much out of him and into the can before he shuffles his mortal coil! Then there's this disability thing which I thought might be permanent.

My entire back catalogue (no pun intended!) is now under release, which I guess isn't bad for "a failed writer", and there are now several films under discussion which one or two will say isn't happening. That's up to them. I was criticised for not taking prisoner, and now I've stepped up that side of my particular garden. The only difference is that I no longer make announcements. I have a good team who are very keen on looking after me, and we're all good at tapping on shoulders.

The silly spoofs are doing well. There's nothing better for purifying the blood than having a laugh--Ian Hislop would call it taking the piss, and he's an expert. There's also a novel about to be out there. I should have sorted out the loft years ago. I was writing for fourteen years before I started getting published, and every now and then if there's been a gap between projects I've opened a box in the loft, but always closed it again in time for the next big project. I think there's just half a dozen things left up there now.

I said I would publish my autobiography at sixty--take a leaf out of Tino Rossi's's book. But there's so much to say! And not about the lunatics, who I've given a suitably wide berth as I see no sense in offering worthless or pain-inflicting people the publicity or time of day. As my mother used to say, there are more ways to cook an egg than just by dropping it into the frying pan!

I took a very unexpected trip down Memory Lane when I stumbled upon a long-lost relative. I've always avoided them like the plague because in their world, unless you worked down the pit or on the farm, you were not normal. Also some of them never forgave me for legally changing my name. Now, I don't feel too bad about all of that. I've found out a lot about the people I turned my back on almost thirty years ago. Well, quite a lot of them are dead! It's sad to hear that Uncle Roy, for instance, died four years ago aged almost eighty. I always remember him as a fairly handsome young man. 

What I'm most enjoying are walking down those streets again, not physically as most of them aren't there any more, and seeing old faces I had forgotten about--and who are now bringing back so many memories, my autobiography has taken on a new meaning and may even come out later. The publisher who was going to do it are no longer there, taken over by a bigger organisation. But there are so many photographs!

The new publisher already has a title, and they've said that it's not going to be "The Failed Writer"!!! The odd thing is that, even if I don't publish it for another fifty years (I'll be an old bugger then!) the same thorns in the side (who'll be even older buggers!) will still be there, pricking but still getting nowhere with whatever they're failing at now because revenge is the most assured recipe for failure.

The picture above? That's Aunty Eva's long-gone friend, Cecil, who always had a very interesting story to tell! 

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