On the toot, with drum and floot! By Jan Needle
Only a few hours until my next blog is due to burst upon the unsuspecting public, and I ain't got a thought in my head.
Added to which, I'm using my new voice recognition software, so it could be a damn long time before I've actually finished it.
(Actually, that wasn't so bad. I had to correct damn, which Dragon presumably thought was something you hold water back with, and it wrote I for I've. Not bad EH? And who cares if it put that all in caps.)
Where was I? Ah yes, a blog subject. Well on May 1, my ‘version’ of Wind in the Willows will be published as a paperback, and an e-book. Not just any old paperback either, it would bring tears to a rare book collector's eyes. Not to put too fine a point on it, it looks wonderful. And I says so as shouldn't!
It's called, for those of you who have been asleep at the back, Wild Wood, and it's Kenneth Grahame's masterpiece retold from the point of view of the Stoats, Ferrets and Weasels of that dark and mysterious deathtrap for the squirearchy.
Good old Toad is the chief villain, a capitalist fatcat who has as much idea about how the poor live as David Cameron, Mr Osborne, and all the rest of them.
(Oh dear, I'm in danger of sounding bitter. As the comedian with the twirly legs used to say, "it's all done in the best PAAAAASSIBLE taste." Some of my best friends are rich. Discuss.)
The trouble with writing through the mouth and not through the fingers I find, is that it's easy to lose one's thread. All I really need to say, is that the book is being published on May 1, with a launch party in a bookshop in London called Slightly Foxed, in Gloucester Road, on May 6. It's by invitation only, sadly, so I can't ask all of you to mob me with your £10 notes in your grubby little hands. But the Queen and the Dook have been asked, naturally, so who knows what might happen?
|Dramatic B/W poster designed for us gritty |
northerners, by Glossop artist Jean Hobson
I'm also having a launch in the Conservative club in Uppermill the following Wednesday, which will be a “free and easy” in the grand Lancashire tradition. With buckshee beer brewed and donated by my local microbrewery, and called Daisy's Special. Daisy is Ma Ferret, who brews beer in the Wild Wood to keep the animals from revolting. So to speak.
Yes, I did say the Conservative club. Any port in a storm for us socialists these days, eh? Sorry Dad.
And on the Sunday in between those dates, there will be yet another launch party in the Albert sports and social club in West Didsbury, Manchester. Greenfield Brewery will be providing beer for that occasion too. Spreading the joy about.
To add to the fun, the delightful and talented Eliza P will be performing a song she wrote especially for me, to celebrate the book. She tried it out at the folk club on Sunday and it went down a storm. It's lovely, and we're hoping to put it on YouTube. Keep you posted. (She wrote the tune as well. Words and music in about two days. I bloody hate her.)
In all my years as an author, I think this (or these) will be my first ever proper launches. And I'm terrified.
But the publisher is Golden Duck, whose guiding lights are no less a pair of superstars than Julia Jones and Francis Wheen, and the book has been designed and put together, also electronified, by my son Matti Gardner and his partner Kate Fox.
Far as I can see, I'm the only weak link. Please keep your fingers crossed.
Eliza P Songstress (Facebook)