It is said that when we seek a life-partner we look for what we want or desire but later, and often after the point of no return, we realise that what we have been drawn to is the familiar wrapped in a beguiling costume. Are we always attracted to the same situation in different guises, and the same mistakes in different garb, until we find a way of confronting them or merely run out of life-battery during the attempt to do so?
When I first met her, Vanessa seemed like a party girl to me and possibly to her I seemed a kindly influence in an indifferent world. Much too late, some might say, we discovered we were strangers: who became politely intolerable to each other over the ensuing years.
That’s where manners come in: confronted by an uncomfortable truth, you offer it a cup of tea and ask it…
For your enjoyment, here is the first draft of Chapter One of my new story…
The Power of the Mind
As far back as his early childhood, he had always despised certain individuals. In his eyes something had to be done. With his special ability, it became his mission in life to rid the world of those he deemed to be a blight on his existence! It wasn’t until he was in his seventies that he felt compelled to act. So long as he kept his mouth shut, one thing was certain, no-one else would know or suspect a thing, providing he stayed inside his home when carrying out his campaign.
In The Beginning
He sat in his chair with his laptop on his knees, and a look of deep satisfaction on his face, as he caught up with his emails. He wouldn’t have any further trouble from his bolshie neighbour in the house behind his, since he had rid the world of him. How had he done it? By the power of thought (aided by a dismissive gesture of his right hand)delivering the man to oblivion. He had contemplated simply dumping him in the Arctic Ocean, or the North Sea. But at this stage he wasn’t sure if someone might have noticed the lifeless body of a large middle-aged man crashing down from the skies, into the water in either location. What had the man done to upset him? He had been busy trying to write using his laptop while sitting in front of the window, when he was instantly distracted by movement across his periphery vision. It was the last straw! Weeks earlier a large hole appeared in the back hedge directly opposite his window, thanks to his neighbour. When he asked him what he was doing, he was told in no uncertain terms to “bog off you old cunt!”
How did he become aware of this weapon? It all started on his fourth birthday. He woke to find a book tied with a blue ribbon, laying at the foot of his bed. His mother knew how he loved to read. The book lookedancient. In fact it had been handed down through his mother’s family in France since the eleventh century, and now England. What the book taught had not been used according to his mother. But, should it become necessary, whoever had the knowledge would be prepared. He carefully untied the ribbon before placing it under his pillow, intending to return it to his much loved mother. He opened the book at the first page and began reading. It never registered with him that he was reading it in English. The book changed the language of its narrative to suit the nationality of whoever possessed it at the time of reading.Hours later his mother gently took the book and placed it beside him before kissing him goodnight. He hadn’t realised that he had spent the entire day reading. While he slept, the book instructed him with everything he needed to know.
Now, some years later he finally put into practice what he had learned so long ago by ridding the world of one thoroughly objectionable individual. Who would be next? For several weeks no one drew attention to themselves, at least not to him. Then, one day he was watching the early morning news. One particular individual captured his attention. It was the current President of the United States – a thoroughly objectionable billionaire who thought he could do or say anything without reproach, or indeed veto anything he didn’t like. He was a classic example of someone who should never have been elevated to the highest political office in the country. The man was an arrogantimbecile. Compared to him, most other American politicians made far more likely candidates for the position. The trouble was that he enjoyed the support of red-necks and others of their ilk across the fifty states of the union, angering the establishment and the intelligentsia. No one knew if he had ever been targeted for assassination. The White House certainly never made any claims in that regard. It’s a wonder it hadn’t happened considering the mix of often hostile nationalities, that goes to make up the American population.
Working quietly within the confines of his home, he began to picture the President in his mind. The more he thought about his target, the angrier he got! Would he consign him to oblivion like his former neighbour? Or would he choose an ocean with which to dispatch him? In the end, he chose another location entirely. With a flourish of his hand he dismissed him from the planet. For a few seconds the inhabitants of the InternationalSpace Station thought they saw someone vaguely familiar, floating lifeless in front of their eyes before the side effect of his action, collective amnesia, set in. Thanks to the same phenomena, back on Earth it was as if he had never existed.
Several weeks went by as he scoured the news media for any report on the missing President. But when a presidential election campaign was held in the US,thanks to the effects off collective amnesia, it was as if the former President had never existed…
(Due to some kind of WP glitch, the whole of this post appears in italics. I have tried to alter that, but cannot)
I am delighted to feature South African blogger and author, Roberta Cheadle. She is a very popular member of our blogging community, and her cake-making skills have transferred into a range of delightful illustrated books for family reading, written in collaboration with her son.
Read the book, and make the cakes!
Here is her bio.
Hello, my name is Robbie, short for Roberta. I am an author with seven published children’s picture books in the Sir Chocolate books series for children aged 2 to 9 years old (co-authored with my son, Michael Cheadle), one published middle grade book in the Silly Willy series and one published preteen/young adult fictionalised biography about my mother’s life as a young girl growing up in an English town in Suffolk during…
I’ve had an idea for a new novella or novel. Its size will be depend on its length.
The following is its blurb :-
As far back as his early childhood, he had always despised certain individuals. In his eyes something had to be done. With his newfound ability, it became his mission in life to rid the world of those he deemed to be a blight on his existence! It wasn’t until he began to fully appreciate his unexpected gift, that he truly thought about what he’d begun. One thing was certain, no-one else would know or suspect a thing, providing he remained silent and stayed inside his home when carrying out his campaign.
As you can deduce it will be a mix of the psychological and suspense. I began writing it a few weeks back. Its been fermenting in my mind for several years. I’ll fill you in from time to time as I progress.
BTW If are wondering why the particular picture above, it is a clue to the content of the story.
If you were asked to name the one person in film who truly made you laugh, who would it be. Buster Keaton, Charlie Chaplin, Groucho Marx? For me the number one visual comedian was and still is Jacques Tati.
Born Jacques Tatischeff in 1907, Tati was a French filmmaker working as comedic actor and director.
After a career playing professional rugby, Tati found success as a mime in French music halls in the late 1930’s before changing direction to become a filmmaker.
In all Tati only made a precious few feature length films, Jour de Fệte (The Big Day), Les Vacances de M. Hulot (Mr. Hulot’s Holiday), for which he was awarded an academy award, nominated for best original screenplay, Mon Oncle (My Uncle), Playtime, Trafic (Traffic) and Parade.
The first film Jour de Fệte, was born out of a short film Tati made called…
I am very happy to feature the latest book from Marjorie Mallon. Originally from Singapore, Marjorie is now based in the lovely city of Cambridge, England. She is a blogger and published author who does a lot to help promote other writers. Please give her the support of this great community.
Marjorie has sent me a bio, and a complete synopsis of her new book ‘This Is Lockdown’.
I will let her tell you the rest.
I was born on the 17th of November in Lion City: Singapore, (a passionate Scorpio, with the Chinese Zodiac sign a lucky rabbit,) second child and only daughter to my parents Paula and Ronald, only sister to my elder brother Donald. I spent my early childhood in a mountainous court dwelling in the Peak District in Hong Kong.
It’s rumoured that I now live in the Venice of Cambridge, with my six-foot…
One of my earliest memories is of dreading bedtime every night when I was a small child of two or three. I should explain that back then we lived in a four hundred year old Flemish farmhouse, which is still on the farm to this day. I know because one of the first things I did when I came back to Beccles was to cross town to walk the mile and a quarter from the town sign to touch the southern wall of the house I called home back then.
Its only heating was from the ancient coal-fired range in the kitchen and the heavily sooted open fireplace in the living room. While it had electricity and running water, we all used to wash ourselves in a tin bath in front of the fire. As for the toilet it was a soil closet which dad used to empty every couple…
When a letter arrived, addressed to Mr B.J. Macintosh from L.J.Lemmings Ltd, digital security experts, who boast that even their luncheon menu is encrypted, inviting me to be interviewed for a position in their Cyber Security department I was baffled. I had not applied for a job with that enterprise, but obviously someone in that company’s HR department, with the inside track on undiscovered abilities, had discovered a seam of talent in the Macingtosh persona unknown to its owner, or anyone else for that matter.
Those of you cursed with an unnecessary familiarity with my life might know that appearance means everything to me so I set off wearing my only suit, and with a copy of the “Undercover News” folded discreetly under my arm.
Once settled in the dimly lit interview room a chap whose face was modestly hidden by a screen asked me a series of questions: here…
A daily morning routine is something the entire population of the world has in common. Mine consists of the following, barely changing, otherwise it wouldn’t be a routine would it –sheesh!
I slowly emerge from the land of nod as daylight brutally assaults my still closed eyes. No matter which way I turn in bed; no matter how hard I try to pull the duvet over my head, daylight wins.
My feet act on their own, swinging out of bed closely followed by my body. My brain however is still snuggled down in the warmth of the bed. Now in my divided state, I’m instantly grumpy as my body walks to the bathroom bleary eyed. Next comes further walking, this time to the kitchen.
My body goes into auto-pilot mode. Get kettle, take same to sink. Remove lid, place under tap; turn on tap, fill kettle, replace lid…
The topic of this weeks Open Book Blog hop is write what you know. I have heard this said may time since I started blogging and writing in 2016 and have found that I tend to do this unintentionally.
Some examples of where I have written what I know, outside of my fictional autobiography of my mother’s life, While the Bombs Fell, which is obviously based on the real facts of her life, are as follows:OCD / PTSD
Mental disorders: OCD/PTSD
I have a bit of experience with obsessive control disorder and some of the related conditions including anxiety disorders including panic disorder and social anxiety disorder, trichotillomania (hair-pulling disorder), excoriation (skin-picking) disorder and tourette syndrome (tic disorders). I have featured characters with OCD in a few of my short stories including The Willow Tree (Dark Visions anthology) and Missed signs (Whispers of the Past anthology). I also featured a…