Tuesday, 28 February 2012

My Book (ha!) and Henry gets Alopecia.

Vickie and Dave (quite foolishly, bless 'em) asked about me book.  Well, here's the pitch that I sent out to agents:

When Joe's Nan dies, he realises that - only aged 15 - he will not be allowed to stay in his flat alone. He understands the Social Care system and fears it. Therefore, he is persuaded to kidnap an old lady with dementia from a care home to replace his Nan. Now he will be able to continue at school without interference from the Social. However, events take a sinister turn when the replacement Nan turns out not to be suffering from dementia and is sought after by her criminal son.

It's a comedy thriller type sketch, about 90k words.  And the weird thing is, only the dear old Americans thought it was any cop.  It's now out with American editors and that's why I'm down to my last nerve with the waiting!

I had sent it out to a load of UK agents and none of 'em seemed to like it, so I thought 'bugger it' and sent it to some US agents and blow me down if they didn't like it!  I couldn't have been more surprised, especially considering that they couldn't understand the half of it and had to ask me what loads of the words and phrases meant!  The lovely agent I signed with got me to write footnotes explaining stock words and idiom, such as:
bob's your uncle
I should cocoa
Can't do right for doing wrong
Little gawdelpus
Carked it
The Old Bill
Half crown thrupenny bit etc etc

It was really quite the lark, trying to work out 'exactly' what phrases meant and where they'd originated from (which mostly, I have to admit, involved asking my sister.)  I tried looking things up on the internet but it was all half mental, and the other half I simply didn't believe!  If you are totally desperado for something to read (cos everything else has spontaneously combusted or that) if you look across the top of the block to the pale grey writing that says 'Scrap of my Almost True Memoirs' (or something similar, can't remember!) you can see what I write like.  I warn you tho', there's of a lot of what my old mum called 'language'!

Anyway, enough of that old gubbins!  Remember Henry (the dog who is shaped like an Ottoman)?  Well, I saw him the other day and dear oh dear, it looked like the moths had got at him.  Well, he was out with Esther and I said: 'dear lord, what's happened to Henry?' And she sighed and said: 'The vet says he's got alopecia.'  But she didn't look at all convinced.  So I said: 'I didn't know dogs got alopecia.'  And she said: 'Nor did I, love.  I said to that vet, I said so how'd he get that then, and you'll never guess what he said.'

I couldn't.

She said: 'Vet reckons he's got bad nerves.'  I must have made some sort of sympathetic noise cos Esther got a bit huffy and said: 'That dog hasn't got bad nerves.  He sits on the sofa all day eating biscuits, what's he got to be nervous about?'  I tried to make a joke and said: 'Perhaps he thinks the other dogs are laughing at him,' but I don't think she could see the funny side.  She said: 'He's already got arthritis, a bad heart and now he's got alopecia.'
'And didn't you think he was going demented?' I reminded her.
'Oh yes, that too.  Poor little sod.  And he's only ten years old.'  I said: 'But that's about 70odd in dog years, isn't it?'  And Esther said: 'Well, I'm seventy odd, dear - that's no excuse.'

So anyway, Esther said that she was going to have to buy Henry a lightweight coat to cover up the bald spots, in case someone thought he came from some rank skanky household.  Poor old Henry.  I'd like to see the dog coat that could actually fit him - he's such an oddly shaped animal.  I reckon Esther'd have more luck taking him upholsterers.

Oh yes - and 2 more weeks till D-Day for Melvis - Man Friday and me have totally agreed to lock ourselves in the casa till the dust settles.

p.s. what are you working on, Dave?  And Vickie, don't tell me that you haven't got a book in you!!  p.p.s. Debbie - thank gawd someone saw a dog (even with a cigar!!)


  1. Well I'm glad the dear old American's are good for something! And won't you just be able to thumb your nose at the ding-dong's that tossed you to the curb! When you're walking the red carpet ahead of that Harry Potter woman, whatever her name is, won't THEY just be crying in their beers or ale's or whatever they drink over there! HAH! Now that would be a great time to be showing your bare arse I'm thinking!

    KEEP WRITING no matter what & don't let them bully you into changing one word of whatever it is you're speaking because it is part of the great charm of yourself and your writing & that's why I've been coming here. You've got a gift lady, give it to the world.

    BTW, would you let me know where Esther finally finds a good coat for Old Henry? Might work for the old Scotsman I live with ;- )

    Two more weeks till we find out about D-Day for Melvis? This is a page turner all it's own!


  2. Hiya (northern colloquialism)Carol, It sounds like it could be: "bobs your uncle" with your manuscript. British sitcoms like : The Office are very popular in America. So perhaps they (literary agents) can see something good in your book. Why can't you have a book published in America?

    My books that I am working on are: a funny travelogue memoir (like McCarthy's Bar: Pete McCarthy, a collection of essays/short stories, a book about mad people's hobbies and another funny book with a smallholding theme.

    Keep writing those books Carol!