Saturday, 26 January 2013

Get me to the registry office on time

Chardonnay sat absent mindedly looking out of the window as her dad squeezed her hand. She turned and saw his face beaming with pride. He looked so smart in his morning suit, his purple cravat matching the crocuses in her bouquet. She smiled back hoping he though she was just nervous. The biggest day of her life or the biggest mistake of her life?


The day before she had been finalising the wedding arrangements when there had been a knock on the door. She rushed to answer it whilst still talking on the phone.

 ‘No the buttons holes need to go to the groom’s address and the four bouquets to my address and they all need to be here before 10am tomorrow.’ She patiently explained down the phone. The woman at the door smiled and nodded to indicate she would wait. She was a wispy looking woman almost gossamer fine and looked like she might wilt away at any moment.

Chardonnay finished talking to the florist and smiled at the woman. ‘Can I help you?’

‘You don’t know me,’ the woman started. ‘But I need to talk to you. There is something you need to know before tomorrow.’

‘Really?’ Chardonnay was at breaking point with organising nearly all this wedding on her own. The only think Neville had managed to do was organise the stag do and allegedly the honeymoon but she wasn’t holding out much hope for that. Neville was the first man she had met that treated her right. They laughed at the same things and were best friends as well as lovers. She had never know you could have such a wonderfully fulfilling relationship with a man, all her other boyfriends had never focused on her feelings as much as Neville did. But when it came to organising this wedding he had seemed almost reluctant. She had worried she had rushed him into it but he had assured her that he loved her dearly and wanted to spend the rest of his life with her.

 ‘Come in and have a cup of tea, I could do with a rest.’

Chardonnay didn’t know why she invited the woman in or why after she’d heard her story she didn’t throw her out.


Neville had been at the registry office for over an hour when the registrar came and asked him if he knew when they would be able to start. There was still no sign of Chardonnay and the ceremony should have started over twenty minutes ago. Neville said he would try her again but was sure she was just stuck in traffic. So far only half the guests had turned up so he assumed there was a problem.

Neville walked over to a quiet corner and tried to call her again. It was ringing but she was not picking up. What could be wrong? Chardonnay was the best thing that had ever happened to him and he knew he could be a bit of a muppet at times but he loved her. Maybe Pauline had said something after all.


The previous week Pauline had come to him with an ultimatum.

‘You need to tell her,’ Pauline had said for the third time in as many weeks. ‘If you don’t, I will.’

‘I will tell her,’ He had promised. ‘But not until after the wedding. I love her and there’s more chance she will calm down and get her head around it if we wait until after the wedding.’

‘Neville you are twenty-six and know absolutely nothing at all about women. You need to tell her before the wedding and then if she comes back you know she really loves you. If you tell her afterwards she’s staying out of obligation and that can’t be good, and if she leaves people are going to want to know why and then everyone will know. Is that what you want?’

‘Listen Pauline,’ Neville was getting angry now, all the women he had ever know just pushed him around, this time he would do it his way. ‘I will tell her when I am ready and you can just butt out.’


Neville tried Chardonnay’s phone again. Still nothing!  Maybe Pauline had been right, he turned and saw no-one was looking and slowly made his way out of the registry office grounds and flagged down a taxi.

‘Where too mate?’ The taxi driver asked

‘Gosforth Street please.’

‘A water mains blown in the high street and its causing mayhem do you want me to go round the back?’

‘No go the usual route I need some thinking time.’


Chardonnay was shaken from her thoughts as a police car all lights and sirens blazing went passed.

‘What’s going on?’ she called to the driver.

‘A water main has burst up ahead. The traffic’s chaos. Hopefully now policeman plod’s here we can start moving.’  The driver smiled back. ‘Don’t worry, we’ll be a bit late but we’ll get you there.’

Her dad smiled and squeezed her hand again as she drifted back into her thoughts.


The woman had been called Pauline and had filled Chardonnay in on all the details over a cup of tea.

‘I felt I had to come and talk to you before the wedding,’ Pauline had said as she had first sat down at the kitchen table.

‘I’m not sure I like the sound of this,’ Chardonnay said as she sat down.

‘I am fairly sure that whatever I tell you now will not be what you are expecting.’

‘Now I am worried, go on.’

‘I am Neville’s twin sister and I told him that if he didn’t come and talk to you I would.’

‘Neville said he didn’t have any family. Why would he say that?’

‘Neville fell out with our parents a number of years ago and I have only just found him again. You see there are some, let’s say issues and that’s why I am here.’

‘Okay I still don’t understand why Neville didn’t feel he could tell me whatever it is, but carry on.’

‘Well the reason my dad won’t talk to Neville is because Neville used to be Lucy.’

‘What are you talking about? How could Neville have been Lucy? You’re not making any sense.’

‘Lucy and I were twins and as we grew up I was the girlie one and she was always a bit of a tom boy. Mum and dad always thought she would grow out of it but when she was fifteen she told us she was a transsexual. Dad hit the roof and told her she was too young to know what she was talking about. Things were fraught for a number of years until Lucy went off to university and when she came back she was manlier in her appearance. Whilst she had been away she had spoken to some people and joined the university gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender group and said she was finally happy with who she was. She told me the only way she could become the person she was meant to be was transgender surgery. She explained this all to mum and dad and dad threw her out. This was all about five years ago and last year I was walking down the high street when I saw Neville. I knew straight away it was Lucy. He tried to pretend he wasn’t for a long time but I knew.’

‘So you are telling me that my fiancé is a girl. How can that be so? You have to show your birth certificate to the registrar.’

‘Neville has a gender recognition certificate and that meant he could get a new birth certificate showing his acquired gender. He is legally a he and therefore can legally marry you.’

Chardonnay had asked Pauline to leave and had spent the night wondering what to do. She couldn’t talk to Neville but she had to before she committed the rest of her life to him.


Just then the car started to move and the policeman waved the limo through. Chardonnay looked up just in time to see Neville looking back at her from a taxi stuck in the queue of traffic going the other way.

‘Quick pull over,’ Chardonnay shouted.

‘Can’t stop here the traffic is already backed up,’ the driver called back.

‘Then drop me off and go and park somewhere,’ Chardonnay looked over at her dad. ‘Sorry dad but I need to get something sorted.’

Chardonnay jumped out of the limo and started running towards the taxi just as Neville jumped out of the taxi and started running towards the limo.

Neville grabbed her and gave her a huge hug, ‘I thought you had changed you mind. I was so worried.’

‘And so you might have been,’ Chardonnay pulled away and looked him in the eye. ‘I have spoken to Pauline and I know everything.’

Neville’s face dropped but then he realised she was in her dress and still trying to get to the registry office. ‘But you were still coming?’

‘I don’t know anything at the moment,’ Chardonnay started to cry. ‘I know I love you and that I don’t want to lose you. How many people can say that? But why didn’t you tell me? I needed to know something like this before the wedding, don’t you think?’

‘It’s kind of difficult to know when to drop into the conversation, “by the way I am a post-operative transsexual”’

‘I suppose it is,’ laughed Chardonnay. She hugged Neville tightly realising how much she truly loved him, and then pulled away once more. Looking up at him she smiled, ‘You better get that cab turned round then if you’re going to get to the registry office.’ With that she turned and rushed back to the limo.

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Diary of an aspiring writer – My first fan

For those of you who have been reading this diary I have this week had a real boost, for those of you that haven’t read it before I have still had a boost but it just might not sound so impressive. Believe me; to me it is hugely impressive.

I have had the blog ( since May last year and had been adding stories intermittently since then. I am a member of a writing group where we all produce one story a month to a set theme and I occasionally post my Open University Assignments and weekend writing challenges there.

As you will by now know, I am planning on writing a short story every week and posting it on that blog, however it doesn’t matter how my times I post if no one reads it. I will quite happily carry on writing stories but I will not improve if people don’t read them and give my some honest and constructive feedback. So I have been trying to expand my readership.

I always post my Open University assignments on the Open University groups I am a member of and also to all my friends and family on Facebook.  I then decided to increase my profile on LinkedIn. For those of you who don’t know LinkedIn is like Facebook for business. I have about fifty connections at the start of the year and I have steadily increased up to over one hundred by connecting with my connections, connections. I then post the link to my blog here every week and hope that some of my connection will read and enjoy my work.

Finally I decided I needed to embrace Twitter. I had struggled along on Twitter for about six months not really understanding what it is and how to use it. Then I read a book by @nicolamorgan and it became apparent. You treat twitter like a pub and just go it there to chat to people. Whilst you chat to one person he may be chatting to others who you don’t know but who may have similar interests, so you start chatting to them. If you like these people start following them and they might follow you. Like in a pub there will be loud opinionated people you don’t want to talk to and that is fine, ignore them. The thing to remember is that it isn’t all about you and you need to engage with other people. So I post my stories once a week. The rest of the time I just chat. In a little over two weeks I have doubled my Twitter followers and my blog hits have gone from twenty a weekend to nearly one hundred.

So based on all this extra work I was feeling quite pleased with myself and enjoy the fact that people were reading my stories when the icing on the cake came. I had a phone call at work about some recruitment we are doing. The young man chatted away to me about his company and how we needed to work together. All perfectly normal. Then just as we were finishing our conversation he mentioned we were connected on LinkedIn and how he was disappointed that the previous week’s story had ended so abruptly. He was quite insistent that I must continue this story and expand it. For the first time ever I had spoken to a real human being who I had never met before and he liked my stories. WOW! I have had positive feedback before but either from family, who are usually kind, or over the internet. Some how it feels so much nicer when you can hear someone’s voice as they say they enjoyed a story you have written.

So off now to produce this week’s story and also I must remember to continue my research into how to get my stories out there. Hopefully I can find even more people who enjoy what I write. If your one of them let me know and if you don’t like something let me know. I want to get better and I can only do that with your help.


Until next time – Happy Reading.

Saturday, 12 January 2013

Mr Jones' London Adventure

I hate it when the alarm goes off this early. It is still dark outside and it looks frosty. I have to be at the station to catch the 7:18 into London. I haven't been to London before. All in all seems quite surreal at the moment. I had an agent call me last week, I was being head hunted. Me, head hunted. I couldn't believe my ears. Johnny said it was a joke. He thinks it's the lads in the post room taking the mick. Johnny's like that. Nothing good ever happens to Johnny because he doesn't believe anything good could ever happen to him. I think you should try everything once. Regret things you've done not things you didn't do, that's my motto. I showered and dressed quickly and the taxi was sounding his horn outside before I was finished. I may have been head hunted but there was still an interview and I had to make a good impression. I had dry cleaned my one and only suit, had my hair cut and spent last week trying to get my spots under control. I grabbed my shoulder bag, glad that I had packed it the night before and rushed out to the taxi. Ten minutes later we were at the train station and it was 7.13. I already had a first class ticket, which had been a treat to myself, so I rushed down to the platform and stood in the middle, which end was first class at? Even if I did know that it would be at the front I didn't know which direction the train was coming in from.

I settled down in my seat and got out the letter detailing the job. A man it a white jacket appeared and asked if I would like breakfast. Wow I didn't know they did that. This was going to be a great day. I order a full english and must have looked a right idiot with my napkin tucked into my collar to protect my suit as I ate it. After breakfast I've still got another hour before I get to London so I read through the paperwork about the company and the job. About a week ago I had been sat in my office going over the banks investment opportunities when I received a phone call. At first I thought it was for Mr Toby Jones who is the bank's senior teller, people are always doing that, but the man assured me it was Mr Simon Jones they wanted to talk to. The company was a Japanese banking house that was setting up in London and they wanted to bring in some young talent that they had identified. There would be a senior management team who were Japanese but the rest of the staff would be Brits. Once the bank had been up and running a while the Japanese team would be slimmed down and the Brits would be promoted. I couldn't believe my luck at my current bank I would be lucky to get a promotion before I was thirty and this job promised one before I was even twenty-five. Johnny had said he didn't know why they would contact an idiot like me and not ask him. Johnny was like that, thought he was better that the rest of the lads in the investment room. Well he was already twenty eight and was not senior to me even if he liked to think he was. He had wanted to come with me. He said it was to protect me as it was obviously a scam and I was too innocent to spot it. I think he was hoping to get an interview for himself, tell them why he was better than me. The train got in on time, I jumped into a taxi and was at the address by nine twenty, ten minutes to spare.

I stood outside the building. It was on Threadneedle Street. The building was one of those Victorian buildings you always see on the telly, tall and immense, with sandy coloured brick work that had been cleaned at some point to remove the London soot that would have built up on in since it had been built. Once inside everything was brand new and completely different. The reception desk was lit from below and most of it looked like it was made from glass. To the left of the reception there was a bank of golden lifts leading to who knew where. At that time in the morning people were rushing into them to try and get to their given offices on time. I walked over to reception and suddenly felt very small and not really understanding what I was doing here. I gave the lady a small smile.

'Name please?' She smiled but obviously didn't have time for a chat

'Mr Simon Jones.'

She checked her list, 'You are here to see Yokohama Banking?'

'Yes that's right.' I smiled back relieved to be on her list. This was definitely not a scam by the post room lads.

'Please wear this badge at all times and take the lift to the fourth floor, someone will meet you there.' She handed me a plastic badge that said VISTOR in large letters.

I clipped it to my lapel and headed to the lifts. It seemed to take an age to get to the fourth floor and when we did there was only me left. I exited the lift; there stood in front of me was the most beautiful woman I had ever seen. She was about five foot five, quite obviously Japanese and had her shinny black hair running straight down her back. Her suit looked like it had been handmade; it fitted perfectly and showed her wonderful shape off.

'Simon?' She said. My name had never sounded so beautiful. I nodded not trusting myself to speak.

'Please follow me.'

We walked along a long corridor with offices on each side. At the very end there was an old fashion oak door, she knocked, turned to me, did a little bow and walked away. I watched her go, enraptured.

'Yes she is a beauty isn't she?' The voice came from behind me and I blushed, embarrassed at having been caught when I should have been focusing on the interview. I turned to see an elderly man, white haired, very short and stooping. He held out his hand and I shook it. Good strong handshake, he was obviously not as infirm as he looked.

'I am Mr Welshmoore and I am acting for the bank at this first interview stage please come through.'

I walked through into his office; it felt like walking on air, the carpet must have been two inches think. He sat behind an old fashion desk which would have filled a normal size office but looked small where it was. The office was surrounded by windows and over his left shoulder I could actually see the Bank of England. I refused coffee and we started the interview. I answered all his questions easily, sometimes they seemed too easy. Although he seemed to focus on the fact I was an orphan and had no immediate family. I assumed that was as they wanted me to move to London. As we were coming to a close he asked me to wait and he went through a side door I had not noticed before. When he returned he was with another elderly man but apart from that the similarity ended. The second man was tall and round, exactly as you would have expected an old banker to look.

'Yes most suitable,' the second man muttered to Mr Welshmoore. 'The resemblance is uncanny.'

'Now Simon this is Mr English and he is going to explain the real reason for this interview.'

I looked questioningly at the second man.

'Simon,' he smiled but it never reached his eyes. 'My name is Mr English, myself and Mr Welshmoore manage the Dungannan Foundation. The estate is currently owned by Peter Dungannan. The bulk of the estate is in trust until he is twenty-five. Peter was very ill as a child and has had problems with his kidneys all his life. Last year he had one removed and he was told last week that his other kidney is failing.'

'Well I feel very sorry for him but I don't see how I can help I have never even heard of Peter Dungannan.' I couldn't believe I had come all this way and it had turned out to be a waste of time.

'We have done some extensive research, I think you can see we have the resources to do extensive research,' Mr English smiled, it still wasn't reaching his eyes and I was starting to find him a little creepy. 'You never knew your father did you?'

'Not that I can see what that has to do with anything,' I was starting to lose my temper, 'but no I have been brought up by my grandmother after my mother was killed in a car accident and my gran says my mother never told her who my father was.'

'We here at the foundation have reason to believe that you share the same father as Peter Dungannan.'

I look at the two men opened mouthed. I can't breathe, what is happening? They have found out about my father and I have a brother. This is all too much. Mr Welshmoore hands me a glass of water and I gulp some back. I slowly manage to get my breathing back under control and my heart rate is returning to normal.

'Why would my mother have had anything to do with someone like Mr Dungannan's father?'

'Well it turns out she was his private secretary for a number of years and you know how women get around powerful men,' both men chuckle but stop quickly when they see my scowl.

'As you can appreciate I am going to need some time to take all this in so if you don't mind I will leave now.' I stood up to go.

'The problem is,' Mr English stepped in front of me, 'we have wasted a lot of time looking for you and Peter needs a kidney now. There is no time for you to think about this.'

I looked between both men unable to believe what I was hearing. They had bought me all the way here under the pretence of a new job and now expected me to give them a kidney. They were obviously insane or just so used to getting their own way that they never expected me to say no.

'I do apologies Mr Jones but I feel Mr English has missed something out,' Mr Welshmoore stepped forward and motioned for me to sit down again. 'There will be recompense for you trouble and the ongoing inconvenience of having to manage on only one kidney. All with the added knowledge that you helped Peter Dungannan to survive and his charity works helps thousands of people across the world, so indirectly you will be helping them too.

'How much?' I whispered still trying to take it in.

'Sorry what did you say?' Mr Welshmoore looked across at Mr English and smiled, they knew they had me.

'I said how much and when will it all happen?'

'The operation needs to be in the next seven days and you will need to stay with us for that time so we can ensure everything is okay. We have been authorised to offer you one million pounds for your kidney.'

I couldn't believe my ears. One million pounds. Johnny would be jealous as hell when I went home with one million pounds. Oh the things I could do. Wow. How could I refuse?


The week that followed consisted of multiple tests and examinations to ensure the kidney would be a match. I insisted that the money be paid into my account before the operation as people have been known to die on the operating table, so I watch the money electronically transfer into my account just before the sedative is administered.


The light felt very bright on my eyes even though they were closed. I slowly blinked and realised I was looking up at what must have been a recovery room ceiling. I had survived. Yes! I had always worried that the easiest thing would have been for me to die on the operating table and these people did not seem above the sort of practices that would lead to that. Suddenly the steady blip of machines in the room turned into the solid screech of a flat liner. It was coming from the next bed. Doctors and nurses were running around, crash carts dragged in and curtains were pulled around the bed.


The next time I come round everything is silent and I am alone. I try to raise my head and a nurse I've not seen gets up and rushes out of the room. The two elderly solicitors appear.

'Ah Mr Jones, back with us I see,' Mr English smiles, for the first time ever it reached his eyes. 'Glad to see you are back with us.'

It hurts for me to speak. My throat is dry and sore.

'We have good news and bad news,' Mr Welshmoore added

'The operation was a success and the kidney was transplanted,' Mr English took over again. 'Unfortunately due to complications Mr Dungannan died a few moments ago. As I am sure you will appreciate with the work the foundation does it is important to keep it going and Mr Dungannan had no relatives who could take it over.'

'Mr Jones,' Mr Welshmoore was beaming now. 'How would you like to run the Dungannan Foundation?'

'That would be an honour,' I whispered. 'But how can we get everything changed into my name if I am just his father's bastard child. Surely that is legally very difficult.'

'Oh that won't be a problem. You get some rest now and we will talk more tomorrow.' Mr English said.

The two men turned towards each other and in unison say 'After all the resemblance is amazing.'

Sunday, 6 January 2013

Diary of an aspiring writer – Week one

So that is the first working week of 2013 finished. I had resolved to work much harder on my writing and as those who have seen my tweets will know this did not exactly get off to the best of starts.
Day one the plan had been to get up early write for one hour and still have time for breakfast and to get to work at the usual time. Early is between 6:30 and 7:00. So when I rolled over at 8:15 you can guess the panic that set in. The rest of the day went much the same way and by the time I got to bed I had the distinct feeling I had spent the whole day “Busy doing nothing”.
I have been a member of the Daily Telegraph Creative Writing Group (DTCWG) for some time but I have recently joined Shock Totem who has a flash fiction competition in January and I had decided to enter. I have been struggling to find my genre and so I thought I would give horror a go. I have read horror for many years and have read all Shaun Hutson’s work and a large amount of early James Herbert so maybe I could come up with something. So day 2, I actually managed to get up with plenty of time to write and I did just that. The premise of the competition is that a prompt is given and you have one week to write a story in one thousand words or less. By the end of my morning session I had thirteen hundred words and I had a completed story. Day three involved editing the story but something wasn’t quite right. I had come in just under one thousand words but as I read it out loud it sounded really flat. I knew in my head how spooky the story could be but it just didn’t have the punch I wanted. I put it away and decided that at least I had something to submit and that maybe some of the feedback given with the competition might help me improve for next time.
Then 6:30 on Saturday morning (why always on Saturday’s?) inspiration struck. Suddenly it all made perfect sense. I had written the whole story from the wrong point of view. I introduced a policeman and got him to tell the story. He could see so many things that the previous narrator couldn’t see or know. Within one hour I had the story written and it finally sounded like the story I had originally had in my head. It may still not be good enough to get any votes but at least I know I have tried my best and put together the story I wanted rather than a poor attempt. The story is ‘The Red Shoes’ and is also somewhere on this blog if you would like to have a look.
After writing that story I was suddenly on a roll. I remembered I had suggested a weekend writing competition with my Open University Group so I had to go and set that up and then I headed off in search of a new laptop. I usually do my typing on my ipad and I then have to convert to word and move it onto the family computer to get it formatted for any kind of submission. Now as I write to you I am on my new, well new to me, Acer aspire one with a ten inch screen. It is so dinky it fits in my handbag, no jokes about the size of my handbag please.
I have spent the rest of the weekend working on the poetry module in my Open University course and I can assure you, you will not be subjected to any of my efforts there. Poetry is so far not for me.
I one regret I have this week is that as yet I have not started editing my novel. I think I am worried that when I start reading it I will find it is a load of old tosh and not worth the effort. These are very similar feelings I had when I wrote it but the National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) gave me the push to get it written. Maybe now all I need is a National Novel Editing Month (NaNoEdMo) to get me through the next stage.
I hope you are all progressing on your own journeys and that those resolutions are still holding strong. Until next time…

Saturday, 5 January 2013

The Red Shoes

'As you can see Miss Kitson this is a very serious matter.'

'Of course Inspector Ash, I totally understand. For a child to die and in my crèche. I'll do everything I can to help you. Please call me Kath.'

Kath Kitson was a stunner. She looked like Marilyn Monroe only sexier and here she was in my town. Everyone was sure the child's death was S.I.D.S., but these things had to be investigated. There were five children at the crèche and as they started to wake after their afternoon nap one of the children hadn't. As far as I could see Kath had done everything she could. As soon as she had realised she'd called an ambulance and tried to give CPR but on such a small child there was little more she could do. The parents of all the children had been interviewed and all of them couldn't praise her enough.

'Well thank you for your help Kath,' I shook her hand and stood up to leave. 'I think everything is fairly clear but I will let you know if I need anything else.'

She rose from behind her desk and walked me over to the office door. As we walked I glanced down and noticed she was wearing the strangest shoes. They were flat, bright red and covered in elaborate beads. They most certainly did not go with the rest of the Marilyn look.

'I see you've noticed my shoes,' she said. ‘Not exactly high glamour but they are so comfortable when you are on your feet all day.'


The cause of death was cot death but the autopsy did report that the child had some illnesses that would normally have been seen in an aged patient. These were all assumed to be birth defects that had led to the cot death.


Six months later I went back to do a check on the crèche and to reintroduce myself to Kath Kitson. It was never ethical to go out with someone who you have investigated but after six months, well you know!

'Good Morning Inspector,' a woman in her mid fifties answered the door.

'Good Morning,' I said. 'I have just come to check on the crèche after that terrible incident. Is Kath in?'

'I'm sorry inspector she has had to go away for a few days. She has left me in charge; I'm her mother, Kathy.'

As I looked closely I could see the family resemblance.

'Well if I could just have a quick look round, check everything's okay.'

'Of course,' she smiled and opened the door for me to enter. As she did so I noticed her shoes. They were exactly the same as her daughter's.'

'Comfy hey?' I nodded at the slippers

'Sorry what do you mean?' she flustered and started to stutter.

'I only meant that your daughter has the same shoes and she said how comfy they were.'

'Yes, yes. Sorry I see what you mean now,' she seemed to calm down and showed me around the crèche.

After the tour everything looked fine and I told her I would not need to visit again for a while.


A year after the death of the child I got a call from the courts reminding me I had to do one last visit to the crèche. I had just been handed a rather vicious mugging to investigate and I had got a girlfriend so the visit held no excitement for me. I sent my sergeant.

'How was the lovely Miss Kitson?' I said as he handed me the report after his visit.

'I take it your being sarcastic,' he snarled. 'She must be ninety.'

'What do you mean Kath Kitson's in her twenties and Kathy, her mother, is in her fifties but both women are easy on the eye.'

'Well apparently I met the grandmother then. Katherine she informed me her name was and she was not the friendliest woman I have ever met. She was wearing the weirdest shoes you have ever seen, all red and Arabic looking. Still the crèche was fine so you can sign off the report.'

As the sergeant left the room I started to wonder if everything was as it seemed. Three women all with similar names, never seen together and all wearing these bizarre shoes. Oh well not my problem, the crèche was fine so back to my mugging.


The next morning I got a panicked call from Mrs Eccles, her son had just been rushed to hospital and he belonged to Miss Kitson's crèche. She had heard of the other death and thought I should get over there as quickly as possible. Normally I would dismiss this as an overly concerned mother but with the strange coincidences at the Kitson's I decided to pay them a visit.

As I arrived, there were cars parked all over the place and people carrying children out of the crèche.

'What's going on?' I asked one of the dads

'I have no idea. I just got a call saying the crèche was closing and we had to collect our children now.'

The Kitsons were nowhere to be seen.

I managed to calm all the parents down and insisted that they take their children to the local hospital to be checked over.

Mrs Eccles son died of a stroke, two of the children had arthritis and one was suffering from high cholesterol. They all seem to have illnesses of the elderly.


I headed back to the office and decided to see what I could find out about the Miss Kitsons. I searched for hours and there was no record of any Miss Kitson and then finally an old newspaper clipping showed up.

A photograph of Kath Kitson accompanied the article "Katherine Kitson, also known as Kath or Kathy, was today convicted of the murder of her son. She will be hanged by the neck until dead at 6:30am on 23rd January 1912."

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Diary of an aspiring writer - New Years Day


New Year, new me. How many times have we all said that to ourselves? But this year I have finally realised that if I want to be a writer I am going to have to work at it. It all makes sense really. I am an accountant and a bloody good one, if I do say so myself, but to get this good I had to study for seven years and then spend the next fifteen year honing my craft. I am still learning and will hopefully continue to do so until I no longer want to be an accountant.

Look at our Olympian heroes. Did Sir Bradley Wiggins just jump on a bike and ten minutes later win the Tour de France? Was Sir Chris Hoy born with those thighs?

Why then should a relatively intelligent woman think that she could just sit down and write and be good enough to be published? Because we are told there is a book in all of us and some of the tosh we see published shows us it can't be that hard. Unfortunately this is not the case. You either need to be lucky or a "celebrity" to get poor quality prose published. Not that all celebrity books are rubbish.

I am now half way through my Open University course and I completed NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) in November so I have the bare bones of my first novel but this is still not enough.

2013 is going to be the year I give it everything I can, except giving up work as I still need to eat, pay bills etc. I hope you will follow me on this journey and maybe even bring some of your friends with you too. Becoming an accountant meant studying long and hard and then putting everything I had learnt into practice and that has stood me in good stead all my working life. I am going to try a similar approach here. I have received writing advice books for Christmas so I shall be reading them along with the Open University course and then I shall try to put what I have learnt into practice. I am aiming to write my diary as and when things occur to me, one short story a week and I will start to show you chapters from the novel once I have finished editing it.

I hope you enjoy following my journey and will let me know about your own journeys and experiences as we can all learn from each other. Anything I put out there in the ether can still be improved upon and I appreciate any constructive criticism that you might like to offer.

Back to work tomorrow so lets see how well my resolve holds once the pressures of a yearend are forced upon me.

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