We’re on a two week break now. I’m heading home to the UK tomorrow morning with Turdish Airlines. People to see, things to do, places to visit. Beer to drink, food to eat, books to buy. And so on.
Once again, I’m going to be Internetless on Romney Marsh for a while. It’s never easy. And I’ll be on my own. Always easy.
I’ve put two books out recently – Smoke and Mirrors and He Made Me. I’m glad to get them off my hands before the break. I’m now free to concentrate fully on the project in hand. For a change, I will be taking my laptop with me because I’m half-way into R&M #5 and I don’t want to leave it. If I can keep it ticking over with an hour or two a night I’ll be happy.
Working title and almost certainly the one I’m going to end up with is Particular Stupidities. I know it doesn’t sound very ‘crimey’ but that’s not my biggest concern for this title, which is actually perfect for the book. My biggest concern is how a two word title – one of ten letters and one of eleven letters – is going to look as a thumbnail image. And I’ve got to find room for an ‘effect’ in there somewhere to ‘sex it up’.
Unless I can stumble across some free WiFi on my travels I won’t be able to respond to any emails or comments either here on the blog or on Amazon. Sorry for that, but I’m sure they’ll all keep.
Having been quite immersed in the second Booker & Cash lately I have a desire to visit some of the places what I wrote about. Particularly I want to visit St Rumwold’s church. I’m going to ride my bike the couple of miles out there and sit on the bench in the graveyard that overlooks Romney Marsh just like David and Jo. I might even pretend that I have a book-themed coffee shop in my life, a Range Rover and a Jo. (Trust me, if ever I strike it lucky two of those three will be high on my shopping list.) Maybe I’ll take some pictures.
And finally, at the time of writing I have one comment on He Made Me at Amazon UK. It’s a good one, which is always nice for the first. I want to share part of the reader’s feedback because it means a great deal to me.
I have never been to Romney Marsh but I must admit these books have made me really want to see the place, it sounds very special.
I was born and bred on Romney Marsh. I lived there for over forty years. It will always be a special place for me. It’s not perfect but it’s home and it does have a lot going for it. I would be thrilled to think that the books I have written and will write about the place could help to raise an awareness of it, to encourage people to think about paying it a visit. I’d like to give something back to it.
Like David Booker, I left Romney Marsh swearing I’d never go back to live there and like David Booker I’m now contemplating reversing that decision. There are a lot of worse places to live, especially with a young boy to raise.
Good for you Oliver, getting back to Blighty for a few pints of English Ale, I’m doing exactly the same myself this week and you are right there are far worse places to live. After 15 years as an expat, I get more homesick for the UK as each year passes. I really hope that one day your wish comes true and that you get your coffee cum bookshop and your own Jo Cash. Pretty sure that’s the two things you meant? You can keep the flashy Range Rover, but a nice classic Land Rover for trundling around the marshes would be cool.
I’m half way through “He Made Me Do It” and loving every word of it. What excellent and witty characters Booker and Cash are. So far, I’m really enjoying the story and their brilliant verbal duelling. Cheers for now Russell.
I do miss a lot of things about the UK – decent ale is a big one. I’m really looking forward to partaking of a few pints next week.
I suppose it all amounts to a kind of homesickness. Living abroad is quite limiting for me. I’m just not as comfortable as I am in the UK.
Like I said, if my ship comes in I’ll have that coffee shop and sit in it all day reading and writing, and drinking coffee, of course.
Good to know that Booker & Cash are performing. I really enjoyed the interplay of the dialogue between these two.
Have a good week.
My friend lives in the Old Rectory at the end of the road so was surprised to see this on here! Hence I am not a million miles away myself and I have coffee and wifi just down the road in Kingsnorth should you need it! Oh don’t forget the thermals been soooo cold here lately you will need them. Lovely lady doing samples in the Orange supermarket in Hythe done days too and she loves R&M telling customers about them so if you see me there please introduce yourself. Have a good trip
Thanks for your lovely message and kind offer. My apologies for the delay of my reply, but I only got back to sunny and warm Istanbul (and my Internet) yesterday. The UK certainly was cold.
I did manage to cycle out to St Rumwold’s and I had a pub lunch at The White Horse in Bilsington. One of the best days of my break.
It was the first time I’ve been home and NOT had a trip to Hythe. (I only go for the charity shops and the cheap books.) I’m trying to work out where the time went. One day I’ll tap you on the shoulder in the orange supermarket. 🙂
Would love it if you did that though not a here every day! Offer of Internet is always there if you are in UK.
Hi Oliver, hope you are enjoying your break. I have just finished reading He Made Me and was talking to my best friend in my brothers pub in Hythe (The Bell). My friend is a stained glass artist, (the best) and has actually restored windows at Goldenhurst! My Grandson was christened at St Romwolds, and lives with his mum and dad in Aldington. Having lived for some time in New Romney before moving to Dover, all the locations are familiar to us.
The story is great and I have recommended your books to all my friends in Dover, Hythe Folkestone etc.
I can’t wait for the next R & M, and the only down side is that the books don’t come quickly enough!!
Please, give up teaching and write full time!!
I am currently catching up on the Roy Grace series by Peter James, which are very similar to R & M, but not as familiar as I don’t know Brighton as well as I do Dover and the marsh.
Back in Istanbul and while I had a great break in the UK, it’s good to be out of the cold. Sunny and warm here.
Good to know that you enjoyed HMM. Thanks for your great comment on Amazon, which I will respond to there soon, and also for your recommendations of the books. Word of mouth is so important to self-published authors like me. I appreciate it.
How strange that you have those strong connections to Goldenhurst and St Rumwold’s. I did manage to get out to St Rumwold’s on a cold but sunny day. I love it out there. I also managed a few pints and a good lunch in The White Horse at Bilsington in front of an open fire. Bliss.(Glad I was on the bike.) I do miss a good pub, living out here.
I fear I’m a long way away from quitting the day job. And I do still enjoy teaching, unlike David Booker.
R&M#5 going well. Do you know any one in Aylesham? I’m not going to be popular there, I think, when this one comes out.
I caught the 101 to Dover on Tuesday. Did that charity shops, had a look about the town for a refresher and then it started snowing. And got bloody cold and wet. I was back in Dymchurch by two o’clock.
Best wishes and thanks again.
HI Oliver, The White Horse is a lovely pub, in fact we had the ‘do’ there after the christening, wetting the baby’s head etc!! I have no connections with Aylesham so no problems there.I wish I had known you were in Dover on Tuesday, I would love to meet you and buy you a pint, maybe on your next visit?
I am really looking forward to R & M 5, and hardly a day goes by without my recommending your books to friends, etc.
Enjoy the sun, and hope to meet up on your next trip to blighyty.
Cheers, Andy. Next time I’m heading over that way I’ll make an announcement. I’m actually FB friends with the landlady of The White Horse in Dover. I was intending to drop in for a quick pint just for fun, but the weather really put me off hanging around.
Wouldn’t you know it, fine weather here jinxed by my talking about it. Istanbul has gone back to Arctic temperatures over night. Still, keeps me in and working on R&M #5. Thanks for the recommendations.
All the best.