Wednesday, 13 October 2021

Rebekah's SMILE

When I was teaching creative writing I would tell my students that a writer writes for himself, for his or her own enjoyment. It does not matter if anyone reads what they have written or not. If somebody does read it then that is a bonus. If the reader enjoys the story then that is a double bonus. If an author makes money by way of writing then that is amazing but  it is NOT the reason for writing. Not never NO WAY.

Speaking as unofficially the most prolific writer of Amazon Kindle e-books I stand by what I said but within my writing challenge which as of the of yesterday stood at 67 books wrapped in a total of 2,292,994 words there is more to writing than scribbling words on a piece of paper.

My writing challenge covers three years from 1st January 2020 to 31st December 2022 after

which there will be a bonus year ending on 31st December 2023. Time now for me to build into my scribble aka writing more than simply putting words on pieces of paper, or with Amazon words from my laptop to its bookshelf.

My family was one of the first to stay in the very first Ronald McDonald House in Britain. Today there are three hundred and sixty-five Ronald McDonald Houses around the world, I say that THE SUN NEVER SETS ON RONALD McDONALD but with each and every house being a house of love the truth is THE SUN NEVER SETS ON LOVE.

When Rebekah died she left it in her will that we should support Ronald McDonald House Charities.

Honouring Rebekah's wish I am now picking up on a project which the pandemic wrecked. It had been the plan for people to sign SMILE cards which we would post to ten different Ronal

d McDonald Houses round the world sending love to families with a child sick in hospital. With international post suspended this all came to an end.

BUT now with the post working I am picking this up and as I sit down each morning to start work I am signing SMILE cards.

Each month I will be swending cards to a different Ronald McDonald House in a different country of the world.


For the month of October 2021 I a busy signing SMILE cards for the seventy-nine families who are staying at Ronald McDonald House in Alberta Canada.

It is the same for every house of love around the world.

When a child is seriously ill and needs specialist treatment that is usually in a hospital away

from home. In Rebekah's case it was at Guys Hiospital in London. The strain on the family is very hard, I know I have been through it. It is then that Ronald McDonald House puts an arm of love around the family and says: Come and stay here close to the hospital. We will put an arm of love around your family and keep you together.

Since Rebekah died her freinds and family have done many things to support Ronald McDonald but support does not always mean money. Yes, money is important. Families are NOT

charged to stay at Ronald McDonald House and fund raising has to happen but there is more to support than money. No matter what form that support takes LOVE is at the centre.

These pictures I am now sharing have all been taken in Ronald McDonald House in Alberta, Canada. These are REAL people I am wrapping into my writing by way of our SMILE card.

By Sunday 31st October I will have signed seventy-nine cards then on Monday 1st November they will be posted to Canada and the lovely people staying with Ronald.

I make a few quid from book Royalties within Amazon and will use this to pay for the printing of cards, lamininating and then posting.

The cards will be sent quietly and anonymously. They will be quietly and anonymously sent from myself as the author of the books and those who read them.

Each month a different Ronald McDonald House and its families staying within its love.

Rebekah was always known as Little Miss Sunshine. She spent most of her childhood in and out of hospital. She had a very happy life no matter what her illness brought to her. I challenge anyone to find a photograph of her where she is not SMILING.

In my book Our Rebekah A Love Story From Our NHS I tell the story of how doctors and nurses did not treat Rebekah but cared for her so making that SMILE possible.

My recent e-book The Heart And Face Of A Coward - My Heart And My Face I speak about blood and organ donation. Rebekah's transplant was a special SMILE given to my little girl by a 

donor family who had just lost their little boy.

In the 2021 re-publication of my original 1991 book In Search Of The Leons i speak of the love and support my students at Leon School gave to me during thos hard times.

Yes, there is more to writing than scribbling words on a piece of paper. As I seek to establish myself as the world's most prolific writer of Amazon e-books this is one of the ways I will be building different SMILES and LOVE into those words.








Poetry in motion

 


What is your favourite poem ?

Three of my own personal favouites are depicted here on what will become an anthology I will publish on Amazon - AN A B C OF POETRY.

So can you identify the three I have chosen to depict on the cover ?

THE SOLDIER by Pupert Brooke

UPON WESTMINSTER BRIDGE by William Wordsworh

TYGER by by William Blake

I am about to start work on the Letter K. This is going to be a major area with the anthology as I feature the work of this man.

He died at the age of just twenty-five and yet his poetical genius left so much beauty for us to enjoy.

John Keats who died aged twenty-five. He had contracted Tuberculosis - TB which was a feared and common killer in years gone by. My own grandfather died from TB which he originally contracted in the trenches of World War One. As a small boy I knew of people older than me who were being treated in special hospitals, called sanitoriums, for the illness.

In my youth there was hope for recovery but when my grandfather contracted this breathing disporder it was a death certificate. That certificate for Keats was called in when he was just twenty-five. Today Tuberculosis belongs to history.

Can you recognise this bird ?  What species is it ?

NO, it is not a sparrow. Now an endangered species this is a nightingale. Keats wrote a beautiful poem AN ODE TO A NIGHTINGALE. I love it.

I will be opening my letter K in the anthology with this poem.


Why did William Blake spell Tiger as Tyger in his poem ?

Stuffy academics will tell you that Blake used the Old English spelling. That, my friends, is RUBBISH !  Blake, in my arrogant opinion at least, spelt it tYger as he wanted to influence the way the word sounds.

Poems are not meant to be read in silence. Poems are meant to be read aloud. Preferably read aloud with the reader standing up.

A celebrated poet from World War One said that those who had died should not be remembered by monuments with names carved in stone. They should be remembered in peoples' hearts.

That was easy to say in the 1920's when there was an entire generation alive who had known them. No so now more than one hundred years later, we need those memorials BUT we should take the names off theem and do all we can to turn the dead back into living friends in our hearts. POETRY is a way we can do  this.

In my anthology I quote samples of a poet's work then tell the reader a little bit about their genius. This is not meant to be a boring academic study but a book of fun sending the reader off to find out more about any given poem or its writer that that inspires the reader.


When will the book be finished ?  When will Amazon publish it ?

As of my writing this blog the book contains 81,896 words. I think it will end up somewhere around 125,000. This will be my fifty-third Amazon publication since 1st January 2021 and my sixty-eighth since my writing challenge began on 1st April 2020. A while to go yet, the challenge ends on 31st December 2022. I am probably already the most prolific writer of e-books but, working with Amazon, I do not intend to claim the title until the end of the challenge in fourteen months time.

That challenge demands I write a minimum of 150 e-books wrapped in 3,500,000 words.

As of right now 8.30am Wednesday 13th October 2021 Amazon has published 67 books wrapped in 2,284,955 words.


SO WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE POEM ?




A

A




Tuesday, 12 October 2021

FAILURE - Google or Me ?

 

Is it Google that is the failure or is it me ?

Two things about yesterday 's blog:

Google does not use a spell checker ! The old system used to but the update does not !

However, yesterday I had the grand total of FIVE people read the blog complete with all the Google inspited typo's !

LIFE IS A TYPO - If you do not make any then you are not living it fast enough.

That, my friends, DOES NOT apply to the geeks at Google !


I write stories across many genre but liove stories are not quite my thing. However, I did dabble with something I called What Are We Going To Tell The President. It sat about for ever
then I used it partly within my book THE KEY IS THE ANSWER published on 6th July. I am thinking now that I may take it and hange things a little to write The Tennessee Waltz.

My writing challenge to date stands at:

2,268,860 words written with 66 books written

By 31st December 2022 I need to hit:

 A minimum of 150 e-books

Wrapped into a minimum of 3,500,000 words 

I think I am on target OK.

What do you think ?

Yesterday I sold 76 e-book downloads.


As a bit of research for IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF SAMMY LEON I went to look at the site of
the former Bletchley Park Pavilion. 

I am still struggling with what I found.

ANTI-SOCIAL BEHAVIOUR BIG TIME !

No !

CRIMINALITY BIG TIME.

I am going to have to alert the authorities today. When I have finished writing this blog I am going to write to all Milton Keynes Councillors representing the area. Will they take any notice ?  I do not know.

Ley me shatre some pictures i took yesterday:





Way short of its glory days !






Monday, 11 October 2021

Is this going to be a waste of time ?

 

Is this going to be a waste of time ?

PROBABLY.

Google Blogger was once a great platform but the geeks destroyed it and turned it into the biggest social media failure. In the good old days when I first used it, that was in 2016, I never got less than one huindred readers a day, sometomes I topped the one thousand. But then after Google updated it and built failure into the system, right across the system, I was lucky if I ever hit ten in a day.

I have tried to use it a few times and have given up. Here I a, trying again.

It is not that I am wanting to use Blogger to promote my writing challenge but to raise awareness of the good causes I am not using the writing to support.

Another couple of months and YEAR TWO of my challenge to become the most prolific writer of Amazon e-books will end. YEAR THREE will then start.

The challenge is from Wednesday 1stJanuary 2020 to 31st Saturday December 2022 I will write: A minimum of 150 e-books Wrapped into a minimum of 3,500,000 words.

I probably am already the most prolific writer but will not snatch the title until Sunday 1st January 2023. On that day I am going to add an additional year - yeart four - where I try to promote and sell the books I have written from which I will use the royalties to support good causes close to my heart.

I am already doing this but am not actually in the process of any major promotion if you know

what I mean.

Each day I am signing SMILE cards which I am sending to families with a child sick in hospital. I am sending these via Ronald McDonald Houses ion different countries of the world. I am calling this THE SUN NEVER SETS ON RONALD McDONALD.

When Rebekah died she left it in her will that we should support Ronald McDonald Houses. My family was one of the first to stay in the very first Ronald McDonald House in England.



Starting on 3rd November 2021 which is my seventy-first birthday I am launching PLANT A TREE 'TIL SEVENTY THREE where I will fund one tree every week for the rest of my life to be planted by The National Trust. In support of this I have published both in e-book and traditional paperback format a book under that title. PLANT A TREE 'TIL SEVENTY THREE


And here we have the perfect confirmation of the idiot geek failings at Google Blogger. The system will not alloow me to format the picture in line with the text. IDIOTS.

PLEASE would you have a look at my Amazon Profile - CLICK HERE and encourage me in my writing challenge ?


You can boy a book or two if you want but that is NOT what I am asking. I am seeking your support and words of encouragement as I am coing towards the end of the second year of the challenge.

I know I can not count on Goggle's support !


But will you encourage me ?


Sunday, 30 May 2021

My new world record

I've done it, I've beaten the world record ! But it will not be stopping there.

In the 1970's Barbra Cartland set a world record for the greatest number of books published in a year by a single author. That recod stood at twenty-three.

Now with the publication of MIT CASE FILES I have overtaken her and since January published TWENTY-FOUR books on Amazon.

This and all other books can be found on my AMAZON BOOKSHELF. All, including MIT CASE FILES are very expensive to download ! Each cost 77p !

Are you going to read the book ?  Can you afford 77p or is thatr t oo expensive for you ? Click the link to check out the synopsis.

It has taken me five months to overtake Barbra Cartland and my writing will not stop there. I am not actually seeking for The Guinness Book of Records to revise its entry, I want to set  a new world record, a record firmly establishing myself as the most prolific writer on Amazon.

The original plan was to write twenty-four books accross the year of 2021 and wrap them into one million words.

I have written and published the twenty-four books and at the end of yesterday my word total stood at 765,626 words.

Only on 31st December will I present to the world record office my submission. By then I expect to have written about one and a half million words and published forty e-books.

Today I will submit for publication book number twenty-five. Every day I write a diary page and am publishing this month by month. Once I have completed today's entry Dave's Diary May 2021 will be added to the bookshelf.

I am hoping that lots of people will want to read MIT Case Files but my diaries are a bit different.

The diary will be part pof a time capsule I am putting

together to be opened on 1st January 2121 inviting readers in one hundred years time to have an insight into life during the pandemic.

MIT Case Files is, of course, a crime fiction work BUT it is NOT an Agatha Christie factory produced whodunit with riddiculous characters and unlikely plots.

This is what I have written for the introduction:

Allow me to introduce you to the Major Incident Team working within a divisional command which is one of the largest police forces in the country. Real crime has a truth excluded within fiction where stories are wrapped into unlikely scenario forming jumbled crossword puzzles to be solved by the most unlikely characters. Whodunit mysteries are fun if you like that kind of thing but nothing at all like the reality of day to day police work.


The same can be said of TV cop series. It is claimed that the BBC TV series Z Cars which ran from January 1962 to September 1978 is the closest to real life. All the rest are nonsense.

As I here bring you a selection of case files from this fictional Major Incident Team I am trying to steer a middle road, pushing aside the unlikely amateur detectives such as Miss Marple and Hercule Poirot but still retaining a small element of whodunit for my readers to play with and to challenge their thinking.

The series of cases our team is presented with do not immediately present an obvious
solution and guilty person but such are not all that far away..

In two weeks time while taking a short holiday in Devon I will be visiting Agatha Christie's home which is now owned ny The National Trust. I am going to set a story THE MURDER TREE in the grounds of the house. The pictcure on the left shows the tree in Agathat's garden.

But before then I am working on and will finish my current project IT'S A MAD BAD WORLD.

In this I contract the iconic decade of The Swinging Sixties with the 2020's which I am tongue in cheek calling The Roaring Twenties.

Chapter by chapter I am looking at different areas of society, within which trying to decide which is the better decade.

The opening chapter is POLITICIANS AND OTHER FORMS OF LOW LIFE. The conclusion there is the 1960's was a better time. I am not just finishing UPPER LOWER MIDDLE CLASS

debating the class system within society. For this chapter the 2020's will be the winner.

Perhaps I should explain: The world record as the most prolific Amazon writer will be in my name - David Ashford. That is who I am. My writing is done under a pen-name of Max Robinson.

Max comes from my childhood pet and Robinson is my mother's maiden name.

Something Barbra Cartland and I have in common beyond our world records is the fact that what we write is rubbish. Rubbish but I hope fun.

I honestly believe that Agatha Christie's whodunit stories are also rubbish but she is the world's biggest selling author. Long after her death her books sell, currently topping two BILLION in sales.

My books have sold 862 copies since 1st January 2021 so that is a world record I will not be seeking to challenge. However, a bit of a boost to my ego as I attempt to be the most prolific Amazon writer would be welcome. Can you afford 77p for MIT Case Files ? Go on take a chance. Check out my full Amazon Bookshelf - be a devil.



Wednesday, 26 May 2021

EVACUEES FROM LONDON:

Earlier I blogged about people writing their autobiographies to srae with generations in the future. Following is something my Mum wrote, something I included in my book INTERVIEWS IN TIME:

It was during the autumn of 1938 when the first thoughts of evacuation came into the mind of my family. War seemed to be rearing its ugly head. So off went Mum to the Powers That be to find out all about the evacuation plans and if my sister Margaret and I could go to our Auntie at Southend under the scheme. But because Margaret had caught Chicken Pox at the time, and it seemed highly likely that I would catch it, which I did, the authorities did not feel they could help us.

Fortunately war was not to come yet.

On Friday 1st September 1939 my sister and I were made ready for school. I was to wear my school uniform that day and my sister, Margaret, was coming with me to my school instead of the one she usually attended. We wore our best coats, which had labels with our names on, pinned to our coat lapels. So with gas masks and suitcases we went to assemble in the school hall.

From school we all walked two by two together with our teachers to the nearest railway station which was Vauxhall. I can not remember any tearful partings but we did not fully realise what was happening to us. Only that it was to be an adventure.

We all had raisins and a bar of chocolate to eat on the journey. A journey that did not take us very far, to reading. This was a disappointment to us as it was hardly the quiet countryside we had hoped for.

At Reading the billeting office took children to their allotted homes. Margaret and I were taken to a house where we were to live but no one was at home. So we were taken from door to door in the hope that someone would take us in. Eventually a place was found for us with a family that had two boys and a girl of their own. I could not have been easy for them to have two more children.

On Sunday 3rd September 1939 while out for a walk we met one of our school teachers. She said that we should return to the house immediately as war had been declared. Being of the generation who always did what the teacher said, we went back straight away.

We arrived in time to hear the announcement on the radio by Mr Chamberlain, the Prime Minister, that war had been declared.

We only stayed in Reading for a few weeks as our parents thought that we may as well be in London as reading. So it was back to London and of course we were pleased to be home again. We missed our friends but they too gradually drifted back home to London.

School life started again although not very regularly once the bombing started. I had locked up my books in the desk at the beginning of the school summer holidays and never saw those books again because the evacuations had started before then next term could commence.

Sometime later it was decided that Mum, Margaret and I should be evacuated again. This time mothers were being allowed to go with their children. Once again we gathered at the school hall and off to another unknown destination. This time we had a very long journey which took all day and it was dark when we arrived in Cornwall.

Some of us were taken to a big house where a lady in a nurses uniform came to meet us at the door. I remember thinking how lovely, we were going to live in a big house with a nanny to look after us.

The nanny turned out to be the matron of the workhouse we had just arrived at and were to stay until proper homes were found for us.

We were made very welcome and the food was good.

Mothers, boys and girls all slept in one long dormitory with just one toilet. It could not have been very nice for the Mothers with no privacy whatsoever but we all seemed happy enough and able to relax away from the bombing.

But in London Dad was getting fed up with being on his own so wrote to say that the bombing raids were not too bad. So after a few weeks of getting no nearer to having a place of our own to live, we returned to London.

We settled into a routine of school and air raids.  During the daytime the air raid siren always seemed to sound just as we were sitting down to a meal, Most night we spent under the stairway. Auntie and Granny, who lived next door, would come into us if the raids were very heavy.

Granddad did not bother to come as he was deaf and slept through most of the noise although he did feel the vibrations when bombs dropped nearby.  We also had too neighbours who liked to come into our house when things got too bad because they were frightened to be on their own. It was very cosy in the big cupboard under the stairs where we drank cocoa, ate crackers and sometimes sang hymns.

Dad was always on night duty at the railway so we were worried when he went off to work and wondered what the night would bring.

One morning he came home with his hands bandaged up but as he was always one for a joke we did not believe him when he said he had burnt them. But indeed he had got his hands burned while fighting fires at Nine Elms Railway Depot.

Eventually the inevitable happened and in April 1941 our house was blasted in the bombing, too badly for any more repairs at this time. A land mine had dropped a short way away killing some of the neighbours and leaving an enormous crater. We were lucky to be just covered in soot, dust and grime but alive.

Now we had no home and so lived with relatives for a short while. So while Mum and Dad found a new home for us, Margaret and I were top be evacuated again. My Auntie’s friend had kindly offered to have us. The friend was a widow with three sons and they lived in the Midlands. The Midlands, where was that ?

We were Londoners who only travelled south for holidays, never to the North or the Midlands.

It was a real blessing for us to get out of London once more as by now our nerves were in a very bad state.

This journey was to shape my future although I could not have known it at the time.

The Midlanders were all very kind to us and we soon settled down and felt at home.  It was lovely to be able to walk in the countryside of Sutton Park and not to worry that the sirens would go off and the bombs fall. Even though we were so near Birmingham, which also was having bombing raids, it seemed to us another world free from all the stresses we had come from.

Also we were living in a house with a bathroom, a luxury we had never known before.

So life went on very happily. Margaret returned home before I did. I went back to London when the war ended but returned to the Midlands in September 1948 when I got married to one of the sons, Ken.

So the lady who was my Foster Mother for four years became my Mother ion Law.

I now regard myself as a Midlander but of course can not forget that my roots were on London all those years ago.

I am very thankful that Ken and I never had to make the dreadful decision to part with our two sons because of war and the need to evacuate them to a safe place.

Pray it will never happen again.

Tuesday, 25 May 2021

Can I invite you to write your life story

AUTO BIOGRAPHY – AUTO BIO GRAPHY – SELF LIFE WRITING

When it comes to writing I think that everybody should write their life story. To write it for future generations in their families: for their children, grandchildren, great-grandchilden, for those who will be alive in 2121 – 2221 and even further into the future. Everyone should write their autobiography.

Nobody know the subject matter better than the writer and the writer knows no subject matter better than the person who has lived it. The rich, the famous and the self-important write their autobiographies but it is the ORDINARY person who has the REAL story to tell.

Within my Amazon Bookshelf I have a few autobiographical bits and pieces.

On 1st March 2017 I published by schoolboy autobiography THINGS WERE DIFFERENT IN


MY DAY – DIFFERENT DOES NOTMEAN BETTER.
As a former school teacher I would be embarrassed if any of my Leonite student read what an educational waste of space I was.

Then on 11th April 2017 I published my teenage autobiography THE STORY OF A TEENAGE ENTREPENEUR (FAILED)  The failed bit does not explain that I was rubbish as a retail management trainee but how a change of career took me into a completely different direction.

Oh how I wish I was a teenager again !  I would even put up with

having to go to school in order to be young again.

Then on 22nd February 2020 I added THE RAMBLINGS OF A SILLY OLD MAN to my Amazon Bookshelf.

I hate being old. Although born in 1950 I really grew up in the Swinging Sixties. What a decade that was and how it has gone down in history !  I put my memories together in SWINGING THROUGH THE SIXTIES which was published on 25th September 2020. If you also grew up in that magical decade have a read and see what you  remember from the bits and pieces I talk about. If you were not born then read and see just how much you  missed out on !

SWINGING THROUGH THE SIXTIES was originally intended to be a one off but when my

Mum and Dad read it and enjoyed what I had to say I reached deeper into my memories for YOU NEVER GROW OLD WITH ROCK AND ROLL my s tory of the 1950’s published on 10th October 2020.

Musically the 1960’s and the 1950’s were great but it was the 1970’s which was the most special time. I tell of this inLIFE IS A DISCO SO DANCE which was published on 31st October 2020.

I believe that if it had not been for Margaret Thatcher in the 1980’s Britain today would be a third world nation.  I recall my memories in THERETRO EIGHTIES which hit my Amazon Bookshelf on 31st

December 2020.

The Naughty Nineties, the Tony Blair years !  NO, I am not going to recall the rubbish our country went through !

I am enjoying reading the draft text for MIT CASE FILES and making a few revisions. The early chapters I was not quite so keen on but right now with EVIL’S REVENGE I am having a lot of fun.

I am going to stop setting target dates for adding this to my Amazon Bookshelf, it will be done when it is done but I am really excited about my next writing project IT’S A MAD BAD WORLD. This will be autobiographical as I compare the 1960’s with the present day 2020’s. The sixties were MAD, the 20’s are BAD.

So why don’t you have a go at your autobiography !  Go on, write something for your generations to come.


IF YOU DO WRITE PLEASE TELL ME - I WOULD LOVE TO READ YOUR STORY

e-mail me: dashford566@gmail.com


 

Saturday, 22 May 2021

Whodunit ?

Whodunit ? It was the Avon Lady in the downstairs toilet with the left-handed screwdriver !

A few years ago I put out a survey on social media asking people what their favourite reading was. The response was overwhelmingly in favour of crime fiction. I had never tried to write in that genre before but came up with what I think was a unique style with THE CASE FILES OF DAVE McDERMOTT. I gave my detective three cases to solve and told the story both from his point of view and from that of the perpetrator. Friendship is the wrong word but I brought the two together as a bond formed between them when the case was solved.

THE CASE FILES OF DAVE McDERMOTT was published on 8th March 2017. I enjoyed writing the book but crime fiction was not really my thing so I did not publish anything more until 31st March 2020 when I gave Dave a new case to investigate THE LOTTERY OF EVIL.

I am not a fan of crime fiction myself and find the plots and characters of the world’s best selling author, Agatha Christie, totally ridiculous. I seldom watch any crime drama on TV where the plots are usually as ridiculous as those of Agatha !  I do enjoy Foyles War but not that many episodes were made so I have seen them all many times over. I like David Jason in Frost, have the box set but Maureen is not a fan so the multiple DVD’s seldom come out of their box.

Whodunit ? It was the window cleaner in the boiler cupboard with the coat hanger !

Within the year of 2021 I have set myself a challenge to write a minimum of one million words and wrap them into a minimum of twenty-four works on Amazon. This will beat Barbra Cartland’s world record from the 1970’s where she published twenty-three books in a single year. Barbra Cart land, of course, did not write crime fiction and her books are only marginally less rubbish than mine !

As part of my writing challenge I wrote a book where the killer was telling the story with the detectives orbiting the story in an attempt to solve the crimes. The story has a twist within it which different readers may use in different ways as they read: BY THE PRICKING OF MYTHUMBS – THE DIARY OF A SERIAL KILLER,  That book was published by Amazon on 3rd February 2021.

Whodunit ?  It was next door’s cat in the greenhouse with the knitting needle !

So what is your favourite genre of story ?  From the point of

view of a writer mine is what I call discussion and debate. On 11th February 2021 I published BEHIND THE NOOSE OR NOT where I discuss the rights and wrongs, using specific real cases to support the argument, of capital punishment.

Last summer I visited Agatha Christie’s home in Devon. I may dislike her writing but I loved her home. Beautiful grounds and while the house, Greenacres, is a mansion it is so liveable and warmly homely I would love it to be my own home. I know if it were my home I could write far  more than I do.

I am returning to Greenacres next month where I plan to take inspiration for a story I will call THE MURDER TREE. During World War Two American troops were billeted on Agatha Christie’s home. I am going to, in my story, have a team of American secret agents living there. With America not being in the war at the time this secret was top secret. When one American secret agent is murdered the

authorities directly acting on Winston Churchill’s instructions cover it up. When The National Trust, now the owners of Greenacres, discover the body a modern-day investigation begins. The story will be set in 2018 so I may write in Donald Trump !

Whodunit ? It was President Trump on the golf course with Twitter !

I am about to publish another crime fiction work MIT CASE FILES. I am working through the initial draft taking out the typo’s and revising the text a bit. I am then going to run a spell check before going completely through the text for a second time. Today, Sunday 23rd May 2021 was my planned publication day but I have pushed things back to next Wednesday. Realistically I think that date will be too ambitious. Providing it is on my AMAZON BOOKSHELF by the end of the month that will be OK.

Within the introduction to the case files I have written this:

Allow me to introduce you to the Major Incident Team working within a divisional command

which is one of the largest police forces in the country. Real crime has a truth excluded within fiction where stories are wrapped into unlikely scenario forming jumbled crossword puzzles to be solved by the most unlikely characters. Whodunit mysteries are fun if you like that kind of thing but nothing at all like the reality of day to day police work.

The same can be said of TV cop series. It is claimed that the BBC TV series Z Cars which ran from January 1962 to September 1978 is the closest to real life. All the rest are nonsense.

As I here bring you a selection of case files from this fictional Major Incident Team I am trying to steer a middle road, pushing aside the unlikely amateur detectives such as Miss Marple and Hercule Poirot but still retaining a small element of whodunit for my readers to play with and to challenge their thinking.

The series of cases our team is presented with do not immediately present an obvious solution and guilty person but such are not all that far away..

A VERY BRITISH ASSASSINATION

THE FOOD BANK POISONER

RALPH’S TENT

THE LONE RANGER

OPERATION LETTUCE LEAF

ANGELS OF THE ANTI-CHRIST

I THINK MY NAME IS RICHARD

EVIL’S REVENGE

DOCTOR STRANGELOVE

SINS OF THE FATHERS

LOST AND FOUND

AN INVESTIGATION TOO FAR

A NIGHT ON THE STREETS

This book will be number twenty-four in my writing project so I will, when it is published, have beaten Barbra Cartland. I think my running total of words will be three quarters of a million.

Whodunit ?  It was the gardener at the back of the compost heap with the typewriter !

The end of May leaves me still with seven months to go in my 2021 writing challenge. Will I write another piece of crime fiction ?  I don’t know, I honestly don’t know but I may have a try at comedy where Dixon of Dock Green investigates the murder of Hurcle Poirot by Old Biddie Miss Jane Marple !

Whodunit ?  It was Boris Johnson in the newly decorated Downing Street Flat with a bottle of blond hair dye !