goodbye

Why I Love Tony Blair

No, not ex-British Prime Minister Tony Blair, obviously. If I loved him, I wouldn’t have killed him so blatantly and violently.

In a book. Not in real life. You would have heard about that. And, for the record, I wish no harm upon the sneaky, power-crazed war-monger, either. Because I believe that life has a way of quietly going about its own special kind of retribution with no need of the assistance of the likes of you and me. And it would only make a martyr out of the blasted chap and no one wants that.

But anyway.

No. The affection to which I refer is for my own self published novel, Who Shot Tony Blair? It wasn’t that my publisher didn’t want it. In fact, it was to their great chagrin that I published it on a whim one evening via that great tax-avoiding bastard in the sky. (Not God – the other one, much more popular. You know.) And why I did that is still a bit of a surprise, even to myself. It was helpful to know that publishing a novel can be achieved in under half an hour, should the fancy take one. I learned that, certainly. But that was a by-product of the experience.

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You see, I knew that this was the last thing I would be publishing in a while. And I also knew that, as raw and unpolished as it is, I couldn’t leave the writing world without this being out there. There has been little, if any, promotion on my part. A handful of enthusiasts, bless their cotton socks, have made a little song and dance here and there – for that, dear chaps, I salute you. Mind you, I backed out of all promotion and publicity for the much-vaunted and highly celebrated PorterGirl collection, Old College Diaries. Which leads us all to suspect that maybe I’m not overly fond of promotion and marketing.

Well, what’s new? I hear all authors cry. No one likes that! And you would all be right. Everyone hates that. It’s just that I’ve made the decision that I’m not going to do that any more. Why? There are lots of reasons. I am under no obligation to explain. In the words of mighty wordsmiths Run DMC – it’s like that, and that’s the way it is.

But back to Tony Blair. Who Shot Tony Blair? started as a drunken joke in a shed and continued as a huge in-joke as a blog series, featuring a cast almost entirely consisting of online and offline friends and family. It was the only major thing I have written purely for the sheer joy of writing, with a complete disregard for the the rules and norms of storytelling and literature. It is pure, unadulterated fun on a page, conceived and written before the whole Brexit debacle but with that very much at the forefront of proceedings. There is no real rhyme or reason for it at all – although it has proved uncannily prophetic in recent times. I wrote it for me and my readers. It is by no means a perfect or even a competent novel, but that is all of its charm. To place it in the hands of an editor and publisher would erode the sharp edges and jarring imperfections that make the book what it is. Which is joyful bloody nonsense, with no respect for either the authority of the state or the authority of the publishing industry. If this should be my swan song, then I delight in the fact that it is me, unfiltered and unrepentant in concept and prose.

I have written far better books. I have written much more accomplished things for fun – Poirot parodies Never A Cross Word  and Hide And Seek , for example. But part of me will never be more proud of anything than Who Shot Tony Blair? It is, without doubt, the most honest thing I have produced in my writing career. And, really, when you’ve done that, where do you go from there?

TAX AVOIDING BASTARDS UK

TAX AVOIDING BASTARDS US

Regular readers will notice that I have turned off comments on my blog. This is not because I don’t love the interactions and bloody marvellous conversations that have made many of us firm friends – not to mention being more interesting than the posts themselves! My life has changed and no longer affords me the pleasure of your company in the way it did before. Please do not think my lack of interaction on your sites means that you matter any the less to me. Find me on Facebook (Lucy Brazier) Twitter (@Portergirl100) or email lucy@verticalrecordings.com and I will be delighted to stay in touch. 

Veni, Vidi, Portavi

I came, I saw, I portered*

The great Judge Judy once said, “I think that you’re supposed to know when it’s time to say goodbye”. As I prepare for my imminent departure from Cambridge, I like to see it less as a goodbye to the city I have come to love above all others, but more of a ‘hello’ to new adventures.

Coming to the University city changed my life beyond all recognition and, despite not being a scholar or academic of any kind, I was able to realise my dreams and reach a potential I never imagined possible within the strange and wonderful walls of this esoteric world. More than that, I have been lucky enough to have you all alongside me for what has been a most unexpected emprise. And, as far as unexpected emprises go, this is just the beginning, I assure you.

But now it is time to go. There are those I love even more than Cambridge, endeavours even more pertinent than PorterGirl. Without doubt, Cambridge will always be a part of me, but perhaps more importantly, I will always be a part of Cambridge.

*Relying on schoolgirl Latin as opposed to being a Classical scholar, I struggled to find a direct translation for ‘porter’ as either a noun or verb. So, seeing as our English word porter is derived from the Latin portātor, from past participle of portāre (to carry) I decided to go with that, as it’s a nice first conjugation word and easily popped into the singular perfect tense. I am sure far better educated chaps than my good self will have plenty to say about this pitiful translation but, quite frankly, bollocks to them.

PORTERGIRL OCD 11.99 DRAFT MASTER COVER LB

AMAZON UK

AMAZON US

Goodbye, My Friend

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It is with great sadness that I report the passing of my good friend and once neighbour, Ian Course. Some of you will, of course, know him as the Chancellor of the Exchequer in Who Shot Tony Blair? and Cambridge-types will no doubt remember fondly his eccentric sartorial leanings, generous heart and absolutely lethal homemade damson gin.

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I lived next door to Ian for around seven years and we quickly became great friends. The wooden gate between our properties was always on the latch and (during the summer months, especially) one or the other of us would routinely trundle through, bearing gifts of the victual variety. I brewed wine and made jams from the fruits of Ian’s orchard and Ian shared his wares of the aforementioned damson gin and his own fiery brand of horseradish. I got used to his woolly menace of a dog, Bonkers, mounting regular invasions and gamely trying to make off with anything vaguely edible he could find. Once, Bonkers returned to Ian with a whole cooked joint of beef in his chops, but luckily it wasn’t mine.

Ian was well known for his love of classic Bentleys and delighted in ferrying friends and acquaintances around the South Cambridgeshire countryside, as well as touring around Europe, Monaco being a particular favourite destination.

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Convincing him to take the role of Chancellor was a masterstroke on my part, as he already had an extensive wardrobe that would dwarf that of any self-respecting eccentric political heavyweight. Whilst I could go on and on about the many attributes of Ian and the adventures undertaken, I shall say for now only how much I shall miss him as a dear friend and what a huge hole he has left in the Tony Blair team. With plans for the filming of the new book trailer well underway, I cannot yet bring myself to think about who might take his place on screen. Because there is certainly no one who could take his place off of it.

Goodbye, my friend. At least just for now.