Death by Motorcar... Avoided

Dec 2nd 2012 

Yes, long time no see... but I have been traumatised by being 2 centimetres from death on a tiny pedestrian pathway on The Mancunian way can you jump off this walkway to get round the huge brambles which block your path.  BMWs and trucks  come round the corner at an amazing speed, and the tips of your trainers quiver on the kerb as they roar by.  Never try this, children. No matter how late you are and how far away is the big pedestrian flyover. Enough.... I want to share with you the best afternoon ever, which I had at Webster Primary School 
Go here to read all about it: 

October 5th 2012

First today it's Manchester Literature Festival again! This time at  The People's History Museum  to hear Alex Scarrow read from his work... the last few moments of the life of a waiter on the Titanic, the making of Bob.   Before that he gave us the most bizarre image of the festival - for me anyway - Hitler as Yoda. 'Invade Russia why don't I...'  think about it... it only takes your Hitler accent to slip a little and you are there... But there, through those big plate glass windows that I'd like to have in my house, well, a very big house that I haven't got yet,  is the River Irwell.
A bit brown, a bit litter laden but definitely got potential. Manchester's rival to the Venice canal system and not in immediate danger of sinking into the landscape.

Later had a birthday dinner with Di - did I swear too much in Da Carlo's? I can't gauge it, sometimes you think you are whispering but the wine tells different! Nice fireworky candle, though.  Amanda is delightedly pregnant, completely round tum and a big smile on top.  Next, a taxi to Derby Jazz
( again, I know) at Deda to listen to Cloudmakers Trio and relaxxx and .... mull over the aphorism on a stupid cup for sale in the museum shop at the People's History Museum. There were lots and I read every one, can't help it, just like I look for all our family names on the stands of personalised cards, but this one stuck in my head.  'What would you do if you weren't afraid of failure' it said. Well, what? I asked around me...some people apparently aren't afraid of anything and some think fear is a useful tool to stop us making mistakes - particularly life threatening ones like walking down the Mancunian Way. Enough of that. I'll tell you about me and the Mancunian Way later.

October 2nd 2012 

Manchester Literature festival, Ulf and the kids!!

September 23rd 2012

Sunday at the jazz cafe. 

If you happen to sit at the front table during  a 3 hour jazz cafe session - you might, say, be happily drinking your red wine and tapping your foot in a kind of knowledgeable syncopated way... just to show that you have some musical leanings....when you sneakily cast your eyes downwards to see if your foot tapping is successful...and you realise that your shoes were reduced to £29.99 from £100 because they have a turny up point that makes feet look very big. Other women have tried them on and seen this fatal flaw before parting with their £29.99.
You sip your wine and look around but then you cannot resist looking sideyways back at your feet. 
Not big. Enormous.  
You have enormous feet tapping away at the front of the cool crowd at the jazz cafe. Possibly your feet are obscuring  the view of some customers. Maybe someone from behind the bar will come out and ask you to move, or, at least tuck your feet under the table.
You reflect sadly on how often you have been mislead by price reductions in shoe shops. Those  turquoise 4 inch heels with cork platforms - they look amazing but require the wearer to hold on to an obliging friend  at all times. Not everyone has an obliging friend. Not at all times.
Those gold flatties which are like fairy shoes but which are obviously a size too small. Why did the woman in the shoe shop sell them to me. Hard faced bitch - was she on commission? Did she have a 4 children or a drug habit that had to be supported? How could she do it? More importantly why, when the evidence of the four little gold lumps of my squashed toes told another story, was I prepared to suspend all reason and agree with her?

September 7th 2012 Exciting!!

Signed an options contract today (Lordy, now I know what a quit claim is) with Katya Jezzard, a scriptwriter currently living in Paris who is really keen to turn Impostor into a TV or film script. She got the book, sat up all night to finish it, put it down, and immediately saw a film/TV plot with Ann at the centre.   Her agents Creative Media Management will be handling the acquisition (now I know what 'production values' mean). This will be great...  when I read Katya's work Mademoiselle London   I  fleetingly thought,  'hmm,  that main character is like Ann Dance would be, had she benefited from good health care, a new set of moral values, an education, lived in Paris and in this century, seriously, because, even although Katya and I were writing in different centuries and different formats these women smell the same... they have the same hunted look in their eyes and maybe the same nervous jumpy walk.  But I had no idea then that we would be working together...wonder what Katya will do to Ann...oho...can't wait to see. 

August 8th 2012 

Performed a poetry reading at Tregwynt Mansion. Wild Welsh venue for art, poetry and good conversation. Nrext day climbed an enormous hill, at the top , you look down on toy farms as the wind roars through your hair... suddenly felt like a cigarette... now, where did that come form?The scent of tobacco on the wind.  Ah, lost pleasures.
next day visited mills weaving all the colours of the land and always serving Lemon Drizzle cake - that happens everywhere. There is a vast cultural store of Lemon Drizzle cake baking knowledge, scribed on centuries old sheets of laverbread,  which is probably housed in caves under Cardiff.

July 22nd 2012

Did a reading of Impostor in a women's prison this weekend. Felt very strange, reading the chapter on Ann's escape from Markeaton Gaol. I was conscious of the irony and thought that maybe this was an inappropriate thing to be doing until someone said,'that's good. I like it. Read some more.' Felt relieved and a bit pleased with myself. Told a warder on my way out, and she said,'look, they'd say anything was good just to keep you going. Relieves the boredom, see.' 
Fair enough, I thought.