All these writers be like I WROTE MY FIRST BOOK IN THE WOMB. You feel me? I’ll be honest. I haven’t got a clue how old I was when I wrote my first book. It was in junior school. That’s all I know. Ergo, before senior school. Senior school is generally 11-16 years of age. Ergo, let’s say ten. Maybe, I hope, just maybe, 9. Who knows? The one thing I DO know is that it wasn’t my own book. It was somebody else’s!
Yup, that’s right homies and folks, I performed plagiarism with a pen. Having this book in my home from the junior library was like having a Christmas gift before knowing what Christmas was. THE TAILYPO was a children’s book. I can’t remember reading it in school:
copying it out word for word at home in the cubbyhole, so I could keep the
story for myself. Life is all about keeping things, no?
THE TAILYPO is a spooky tale about a creature crawling up inside somebody’s bed.
My first original story belonging to me was entitled THE JOGGER. It was a page long, and copied/inspired from a TV show. I remember that clearly, yes sir. To this day, I have the idea of a story entitled BIG MAN JOGGING. It would be about a big man jogging, but you don’t see him until the end. Until then, for maybe an hour (if it was on the screen), you hear news reports and eye witness accounts from various people who have spotted him. It is all a big build up. A media frenzy, filmed like an episode of Neighbours. When he arrives, the camera does weird tricks to announce his presence: fast double zooms, special effects, music—filmed like The Matrix. It becomes a totally different movie. He bursts onto the scene knocking down a lamppost or something. He’s like the hulk, but a normal jogger. Bam! And nothing can stop him jogging.
Aged 26 I wrote A Short (1200 words) named GABRIEL AND THE PASSING FOX. It was inspired by an encounter with a real fox in the suburbs of outer Liverpool. This story was a direct homage to The Tailypo, except the fox was so big it filled the entire house, big bushy tail swinging out through the front door. I thought it was great, but a short story judge said she didn’t have a clue what was going on, underlining the word clue. It has since been touched up and printed in the KICKERS anthology, renamed FOXY GABE, which is proper flash fiction by the way. Nobody taught me how to do flash. The spirit of it came naturally. The only downside to flash pieces is that you need collections to group them in!