Tuesday, 18 September 2012

fish, chips and crime

Just got back from my world tour of all over the place, including a brief trip to hell and back through high water and all kinds of other metaphors. There was no email access anywhere. No phone signal. Just blame hurricane Jordan. The actual hurricane that is not the page three model in a strop.

Bumped into a few celebrities on the way, some are just as lovely or not lovely off stage as on but they are what they are. Some are just dure money grabbing gits off stage yet on stage they are all bon homie and lovliness dahling and butter would not melt. Off stage they will snub you, stab you in the back as easily as they would steal your last Rolo. They snap their fingers at their PR people to get them a taxi ( just asking would do!), they are as nice as ninepence on stage and really horrible to the other panellists afterwards. Daft to do that to a crime writer, as they will just write about them and get their own back in the next book. Not brutally slaughter them in fiction as they might enjoy that  but write about them and give them a mullet  or make them a Take That fan or something equally awful.

I am refusing to acknowledge the sock puppetting scandal. There is a good reason for this. I  don't understand it. But Tony Black and  Zoe Sharp and  I ( three crime writers who should have been making better use of their time! I just put that in in case my agent reads this as she thinks I am blogging instead of writing my next book but this is a freelance stream of consciousness- typing rather than dense plotting while really having to  concentrate and do big  thinking, I am able to eat  pringles while blogging! ). We three invented a  new word... fingerbobbing. That means writing over the internet about folk and being NICE about them. 
Let's start a trend!

Firstly, the lovely but extremely stressed Susan. She is stressed every time I see her. She runs the Milngavie  arts and book festival and is a little superstar.  I might be talking rubbish but she owns the book shop in  Milngavie that used to be owned by Magnus Magnusson. Each year she has run this festival for arts etc and on the last night it reaches it's climax. The culmination of all that is great and worthy about the  world of high brow literature.. the fish, chips and crime night. It is  hosted by the  marvellous Len Murray- every body's favourite grandad. That is not the trade union one, rather the QC one. The  man is a natural wit,  he needs no mic (  just as well as one minute in to the event the sound system was making noises like a cow having a spasm of the vocal chords.) Len does not need a mic, he said that if he asked a question in court two, the answer came from court four. In fact, you could probably hear him in Quebec. The other panellist was Sophie Hannah, a great girl if I can call her that . She said that any gig where you get chips is worth doing! She was funny, witty, informative, and a  general all round good egg, ad libbing with the rest of us as we waited for the secret signal that the chips had arrived.  If you ever get the  chance to go and see her do so. I’ve read a few of her books,  more observation and psych thriller than the specifics of forensically who did what to who  and  why. I was telling her that I watched a  programme on TV,  getting forty minutes through it before I realised it was a TV adaptation of one of her books. She said that she watched the whole thing and did not recognise it at all!
 She did ask me an interesting question though. She asked me which of my books was my  favourite. I answered and then she asked.. but which do you think is your best... and the answer was different.
We had rather a good natter about that over our chip butties.

The three of us kept going -  ready to be cut off in our prime the minute the chips arrived... just imagine all these  posh folk, crystal glasses, champagne, chandeliers, then  the fish suppers arrive.. what joy! And they all turn into finger lickers ( not to be confused with fingerbobbers ) 

Poor Susan, stressed no doubt by being driven slowly insane by the health and safety Nazis, has said No More festivals.
Boo hiss, but  I do understand. it's too much.
Go and visit her book shop. It has a wee coffee house  at the back. Great  latte and the best egg mayo sandwiches  I have ever tasted. And that is true.
Not just a  fingerbob!

1 comment:

  1. Love the 'fingerbobbing' idea! Not nearly enough praise and appreciation about IMO.
    Here's my effort: really enjoying 'Dark Water' - so much so, that planning to catch up with the others.
    Sophie Hannah is a wonderful speaker (as well as writer), isn't she?
    'Bon courage' with the writing, and best wishes for 2013.