My First Novel is Published!

When you’re sitting in various West End cafes watching the drizzle turn into a vast marquee of sun’s rays, looking at the tapestry dregs of your long-finished mocha and writing your first novel, you know the prospects of it being published are remote (apparently, about 1 in 750). So, when a publisher reads the finished product (is a piece of writing EVER finished? Yes! Otherwise you’d go mad…which explains a lot) and loves it and says, ‘Yes, we’d love to publish this’, your brain fills with that air of surreality that makes real life appear to be a TV drama and you can’t work out why there hasn’t been a commercial break for three hours. This happened to me a short while ago and, on Friday 25th July, my first novel, ‘The Last Taboo’, became a tangible, real thing instead of my imagination and a document on my laptop. A huge ‘thank you’ to Professor Mark Whiteley, Emily and the rest of the fantastic team at Whiteley Publishing for everything. So, the novel is out on Amazon and the idea is to generate as much publicity as we can to get sales soaring and stonking reviews (I just typed ‘stinking’…..Freud, piss off!), so we can get it up the Amazon charts and into the bookshops. Here’s the blurb form the back of the book to whet your appetite: ‘Sam Hatchington lost his virginity at a bus-stop (‘bit of a disaster; bus came before I did’). Since the, with the help of Old Thomas, his inspirational new friends and Gran (the connoisseur of footballer’s bottoms), he has turned his life around. Now, fifteen years and seven girlfriends later, he must risk his career and all that he has achieved in order to be honest with himself – and the public – about his love for another man. Because Sam – eternal optimist, book-lover, survivor of a deprived South London estate and an abusive father – is also an England footballer and the ‘wrong’ decision would create a furious media frenzy…….’ I’m told it’s very funny and moving. I’m also told by various readers who hate football, that they loved it because it’s more of a coming-of-age novel and that they actually got involved in the two or three matches because of what it meant to Sam. Suffice to say, I’m extremely happy that it’s been published. It’s an extraordinary thing to hold a book in your hands that has your name on the front. Also this summer, two of my adaptations have been doing national tours. Heartbreak Productions have been touring ‘Peter Pan’ and ‘Pride and Prejudice’. It’s an urban version of Peter Pan, mostly in verse (Peter and the Lost Boys are skateboarding orphans), and Pride and Prej is the version I wrote three years ago; however, the director, Maddy Kerr has allowed even more of the humour to come through. I’d like to say a huge ‘well done’ to the casts of both productions for their energy, commitment and talent. The same level of ‘well done’ to all the creatives for two fabulous productions. After a very long technical delay, the CD of war poetry that my production company, KK Productions (thank God my first name isn’t Kevin) is producing, is back on track. (When I say ‘my production company’, what I mean is that it’s me, a bag of Minstrels and a lot of comments like ‘Why the arsing cock won’t these graphics work!’). I’ve now got Rob Tofield and Tom Baynton on board. Rob will be mixing and Tom arranging the songs. I hope to have it up (Matron!) by the end of September. Add to this, recording two more plays for ‘Political Art’ in September and a commission to write a murder-mystery for Heartbreak, plus trying to find the odd nanosecond to write the new play ’20:40′ and add in a large dollop of three mortgage-paying jobs and you have a recipe for total ‘knackeredness’. I went to a party the other week and actually forgot what you do there! Oh, and after procrastinating for about two years (a blink of an eye, given my usual procrastinations), I finally moved into my new flat, gutted it with money I don’t have and decorated it with money that my credit card said I could have. AND, I bought a Macbook Pro. So now, when I’m writing in a cafe, I shall look professional. Pointless, really, as I write in longhand with a fountain pen, but at least I’ll be able to play Solitaire on it when I’ve run out of ideas. Anyway, hope you’ve all had a wonderful summer. And, if you have any spare pennies, please buy the book and have a good laugh and cry…with it, not at it. Take care, David.

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