Psst! Wanna gatecrash an Xmas party?

Do you?
Good, come over here and I’ll tell you about it.
No, no, no.
Quietly!
Don’t draw attention to yourself, we don’t want everyone to know, do we?
What do you mean, ‘Why not?
I’ll tell you why not – what about if her at number 33 heard about it and turned up too, eh? Her with the gammy leg and the boss eye, yes. You wouldn’t want to get trapped up a corner in polite conversation with her now would you? No, exactly. You know what she’s like, anything you say will be taken down and used in evidence against you. Nosey old bat!
And him from the local debating society. Can you imagine… Dear Lord, you’d never get a word in edge ways. Annoying git!
So let’s just keep it to ourselves, yeah?
O.k.
So, this do is at Southcart Books in Walsall.
Yes you do know it, it’s behind that new Poundland place they’ve just built.
Pardon?
Is it?
53b Lower Hall, Lane WS1 1RJ?
Well you obviously know the place better than I do then. Let’s face it it’s a long way from Dudley.
That’s the one, yes, run by Scott and Amy.
Well I heard that they’re putting on a bit of a do on Saturday 16th December between 11 and 4. There’ll be food and drink and everything. Even people telling stories and reciting poetry.
So anyway, I was thinking of going over and taking the Misty Books gang with me.

IMG_0373

Now the new book is out, yes. Have I mentioned that at all?
You’re sick of hearing about it?
Well I thought you might be pleased.
After all it follows on from DOGNAPPED! which I may have mentioned was a finalist in The People’s Book Prize earlier this year. And then there was IN THE DOGHOUSE of course which is coincidentally a year old now and of course the latest ON THE DOG WALK which I just got my hands on from the publisher.Image 19-12-2016 at 08.01
You can take your fingers out of your ears now, I’ve finished the promo.
I SAID YOU CAN TAKE YOUR FINGERS…
Sorry, I didn’t mean to shout but you did have your fingers…
What?
Yes. Ian R Ward has done the illustrations for the new book too and once again they’re fantastic.
Oh, you’re interested now then. Not a story person I take it, more of a picture looker.
Just as well they’re for kids then isn’t it.
Well now you’re asking they’re aimed between seven and eleven as rough guide, although a lot of folk seem to like the shared reading experience for younger kids.
There’s an Amazon link here so you can take a look. http://amzn.to/2e0GyRe
Of course they’ll be cheaper at Southcart but like I said, keep it to yourself, we don’t want everyone to know. They make great stocking fillers.
Yes I’ll sign it.
You want a what? A bookmark? Oh go on then.
I might even tell you a story, ‘Th’auld pol on th’ cut’, you like that one don’t you. Can I do what? ‘The Bard of Dudlay’. Surely you don’t want to hear that old chestnut again! You do? Oh, alright then, if you insist.
I’ll see you there then, on the 16th.
But don’t forget, keep it to yourself. Whatever you do don’t…
You did didn’t you.
I saw you just then.
Pressing the share button.
Bloody hell. I’ll have to tell them to order more sodding sausage rolls now!4a-300-copy24129986_2071662109729175_3232081706566700152_n

Be careful what you wish for…

Oh, hello, nearly missed you there – huddled up the corner like that.
Do you want me to..?
No.
Oh, o.k.
Well I’ll just sit here for a bit if you don’t mind.
No, I won’t say anything.
I’ll be nice and quiet.

Dum, de dum de dum.
Pardon?
Oh sorry, I didn’t realise I was humming, no.
Nor drumming my fingers on the table.
I’ll just…
Humming and drumming. Heh! I made a rhyme.
Oops!
Sorry again.
Yes – quietly.
Like a church mouse, eh?

Did you do it?
No, I know we agreed, but I was just curious.
About that thing you said you were going to do.
The New Year resolution, yes.
That.
Did you!
Really!
And how did that work out then?
Oh dear!
Still, at least you tried.
Well yes, I suppose if you had a pound off everyone who said that you would be very rich indeed.

And you never know it might grow back.
Eventually.

No wonder you look a bit…
I’m concerned that’s all.
I do consider you to be one of my best…
Oh.
Right.
Not if I were the last person where?
On Earth.
Oh dear.

Do you suppose that if the New Year thing had turned out better you might, you know, have had a bit of a, shall we say, rosier outlook on things.
And people, yes.

Well I suppose it’s a perfectly reasonable reaction.
Do you think you’ll try again?
If at first you don’t succeed and all that.
Oh!
Well can’t you make a new one?
Or claim on the insurance?
Oh it wasn’t.
That’s tricky.
But it was yours wasn’t it?
Really!
He’s not going to be best pleased is he?
Have you told him?
Well sooner the better I’d say.
Get it over with.
Give him the abridged version.
No need for all the nasty details.
Least said, soonest mended and all that.
Sorry!
Sorry.
Just an unfortunate turn of phrase.
No I know you can’t physically mend it.
Not when it’s in that many pieces anyway.
No!
Really?
Well I don’t know what temperature that stuff melts at but the flames must have been really fierce.
Who’d have thought…
Well I know you never did, obviously.
Otherwise you wouldn’t have…
Would you?

So what did the police say?
Now let’s get this straight.
They were here anyway.
Because the neighbours had already complained.
So they saw it happen?
Well that’s handy.
Can’t ask for better witnesses that that then.
They got what?
An ambulance each!
Gosh!

Yes I did hear the sirens.
And see the flashing blue lights.
I did wonder what was going on, but I never thought…

Tell you what though, look on the bright side.
Yes, of course, there’s always a positive spin if you search hard enough.
Well if you give me a chance I’ll tell you.

Come here and I’ll whisper.
No I don’t want everyone to know.
Lean this way a bit more.
That’s it.
Ready?

Just think of it like this.
Only 365 days and you can have another go!

OW!
That wasn’t very nice!
I wish I hadn’t asked now!