Our Author and also:
Photographer, national well being speaker, ex-classical guitarist and teacher,
chocholate driller, mini shish-kebab maker and ex bus driver.
Frankie has lived in the litter strewn city of Coventry for quite a while now. He originally lived in the North, which doesn’t mean Manchester, because Manchester was due South from where Frankie called North; so anyone who says Manchester is in the North is a nutter.
Heard of the Lake District? Many people in Coventry haven’t and they really do think there is a fence just after Birmingham to stop them falling into another dimension. He has always written, but had a shaky start. He got psycho analysed in the infants school for writing the same story over and over again, week after week, well ok, it was the same story set in different places ... creativity wasn’t a strong point way back then. He was then banished from the infants and went to the next school, before the big comprehensive school to be factory and dole trained. This next, sort of middle-ish school was two hundred yards away at the bottom of a hill, so, he would quietly get in his parents car, let the handbrake off and steer down the hill going ‘brmm! Brmm! Mmmmmm!’ which was fun (no steering lock, phew!). At the bottom of the hill, his parking was rubbish, but at least he felt grown up; childhood is crap and so is being an adult, so it’s all freaking pointless.
He got selected for the Special English group, fell behind with the writing and hid his book in the classroom ... which was never found while he was there. He went to the big school and then took four years until he proved he was academically thick. He then got a job, found that work was crap so why all the fuss about getting a ‘trade’ he didn’t particularly want?
Humans were proving to be a right screwy bunch of badstars.
He left the job after fourteen years of Hell, and then went somewhere decent at last i.e. Blackpool College to study drinking photography. He believes any old crap, and when a friend from college told him to come to Coventry because the streets are paved with gold, well, they weren’t. The lying badstars.
After an extended period of time, he got a job on the buses, during which he discovered the sub-classes, normal loonies i.e. the general public ... he found that 99.99% of people are proper loony-bin mad.
So bizarre was the job he began to make daft notices for the staff notice board and eventually penned (tapped) 62,000 words about the total lunacy of the job; it’s now concentrated as the driver training in ‘Skid Marks’ (that doesn’t mean on the road ...). He then wrote lots of books and here we are!
A PEOPLE’S WRITER ?
Being a writer is/can be difficult. Being loved by lots of people is difficult and comfort drinking to cope with that amount of love/lust can be very expensive, which is why book sales are important. By far the most difficult part of that life of adoration is getting readers to feed back so one may become Royalty i.e. THE People’s Writer.
Here are my notes on the research I have done. As a reader, you may be interested.
In a world full of writers who want to be ‘people’s writer’, or, the ultimate accolade ‘THE’ People’s Writer, it is a difficult position to achieve, never mind hold. The answer? Be ‘different’. When the rest look South, you look North. I though have never been one to crave being part of a group, especially writer’s groups which tend to be full of people who either can’t write, don’t know how to write (it’s easy, write), or want everyone else to read ‘their’ book or manuscript but don’t want to read anyone else’s. Saying that though ..being a people’s writer is easy, as most people can read (optimistic I know, sorry, high no .... ‘high no, high no! To the DSS I go!’). But, saying that, a lot of people can’t read or write. So, to compensate, we here at Wonky have tried other species to build up book sales and popularity. Yes! It’s true! Believe it or not! Well, I say we, but the rest won’t do it because of phobias and allergies.
I have tried it with a non-people audience, several in fact, but results have been disappointing, because most animals and things, which I had harboured great hopes in have even greater difficulties in ordering books even if they want to. You may say ‘no animal has ever ordered a book’...really? How do you know? Therefore, reading to them is a lot easier. They obviously have active minds, plus an annoying lack of concentration, which, when you have worked hard on a piece, can really piss you off when the cat you have managed to coax into your house with a smelly mackerel just ups and wanders off (frustrated grrrr!). Dogs you can tie up but they just strain on the leash to get away and can howl like they do when their master is a folk guitarist and singer, which is ‘very’ annoying (as is the folk person).
Fish are, well, erm ... ok, but don’t expect much in the way of emotion driven responses. Bigger fish are better because they tend to move slower which is less annoying, because smaller ones in home aquariums can suddenly just dart off; and then it is sometimes difficult to catch them in a net and put them back where you need them to be when you read. Just reading at the side of the aquarium can result in the vibrating molecules (caused by your voice) to deflect and slowly slow down, lost in the rest of the air in your living room. A plastic cup is better with the bottom cut off so you can speak into it as you hold it against the glass ... I’m now talking of a visit to the Sea Life Centre.
Easiest of the lot are tortoises, especially those big Galapagos ones. People eat when they read or watch TV, so if a Galapagos tortoise is given a decent sized lettuce leaf, it will hang around for ages while you read your latest work to it. In the case of one which has an itchy arse (metaphor) and still just wanders off, there are two methods to keep it there. Firstly, salad dressing is a big turn off for these beasts, especially Newman’s Own for some reason (?). Using Reggae Reggae can, with it’s spice, bring out the anger which wells up inside these reptiles. But, like a fat man on a sofa watching footy and eating steak pies, or a sea otter eating a crab using its stomach as a table while floating on its back, well these animals can be turned over onto their shells and given a plain lettuce leaf and they will then listen until YOU get fed up. They may wave their legs around in the air a bit, but you must get used to that distraction, they can’t help it.
Onward I strive!
Snails are good listeners, especially if you capture one that looks like it may like a bit of humour. I place mine on the kitchen table and put a line of salt around it giving it about one centimetre either way to move. Grey squirrels aren’t good listeners and are lousy at being held in a trap, they just aren’t interested. The one rule I find is they must not be educated. Don’t educate an ant, he’s done nothing to you, there might come a day when HE educates YOU.
Going back to the Sea Life place. I’m reliably told that starfish only move at 0.3 miles per hour. Starfish though tend to be on the floor of the aquarium away from the viewing glass. I though have developed a device that enables these creatures to enjoy my words. It is a simple device, the hard bit is persuading the management to let me use it. It is a funnel with a polythene beer hose attached.
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