Thursday, 30 July 2015

'Updike Willow': the first proof-copies

Updike Willow

By Chris Soul

I was born in a lorry outside A&E of the Royal Surrey County Hospital on June 6th 1980. Apparently my so-called father, having been a lorry driver, had rushed my mother to the hospital but at a very late stage; resulting in my unfortunate birth over the gear stick. I can only imagine the chaos of my entry into the world with nurses raising their hands to the high open lorry door hurrying to catch my head...

Updike Willow has always had a difficult upbringing. With an estranged father and an alcholic mother, he has had to find his own way in life. After terrorizing a girl at school with a rat sandwich, Updike is dumped on the doorstep of Aunt Ruth; a formidable iron-lady who means to transform her troubled nephew. But this is the 1980s and the 1990s will promise no better. Can Updike become the man he should be? Can he make sense of his life and unravel the secrets of his mother's past?

From 1980 to the present day, Updike Willow is a funny, poignant, troubling trek through our times'

Adrian Mole' meets 'David Copperfield'. This is one of my usual responses to describe my novel 'Updike Willow' which I have recently completed and printed as a set of initial proof-copies. It has taken me three years to write; mostly in evenings or at weekends after teaching children all day! Most people ask: 'how can you do that? Aren't you exhausted?' Well, yes, but writing is what makes me relax and keeps me sane. If I don't write I turn into an irritable grouch!  

I hope to detail the progress of this novel from now until possible publication or even self-publication. I will post some extracts and offer tips as I go. The aim is to develop an initial readership but also to form links with the industry or even other authors and hopeful authors who can offer some invaluable advice. Who knows? You have to start somewhere and so here I am...

Hopefully you will notice that the cover looks great and I owe Rosie Chillingworth (my girlfriend) a huge debt for the striking design. This, surely, is a good start. 

Secondly, I hope the blurb catches your interest and the title is unusual enough. I think being striking and unusual in the first instance is paramount to getting noticed. 

Anyway, please feedback any comments and start building up interest. The book is funny and as people start to read I am getting some positive feedback. Every author will surely say this but, hey, there's no point shying away either!


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