government

Career-Defining Breakfast

And so it was that on a Friday morning, in a restaurant in Sloane Square, I realised that my life would never be quite the same again. Over eggs Benedict and a pot of tea, I agreed to an endeavour that will find me hopelessly out of my depth, yet no doubt in exactly the place I was destined to be.

But more of that later. In the meantime, as another frenetic year slips into its final act, I find myself contemplating my place upon the stage. Most pressing, of course, is the matter of finishing the third PorterGirl novel. I have been distracted by writing a Poirot parody when I should really have been working on this, but as the second book was only published in June, I don’t feel too badly about it.

 

Then there was the horror anthology, The Box Under The Bed, which went to number one in the Amazon charts twice and features two short stories by my good self. That reminds me – I have another anthology awaiting my submissions. This time the genre is much more familiar ground – humour – so a few thousand words should only take up an afternoon, at most.

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Rather unexpectedly, my satirical murder mystery nonsense blog Who Shot Tony Blair? is up for publication in novel form next year. It will require a fair amount of work to take it from its current state to something fit for a bookshelf, but the bare bones of it are there nonetheless. There is an appetite for post-Brexit, pre-dystopian satire, it would seem – which brings me neatly back to the restaurant in Sloane Square, London.

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People will often come to me and say ‘I’ve got a great idea for a book, you should write it!’ And quite often these ideas are very good, but if I spent my time writing other people’s books I would never get around to writing my own. However, when the people saying this are impeccably connected senior advisors to the not only the British government but governments around the world, people who have spent the best part of two decades at the forefront of politics and economics, I think it prudent to pay particular attention. Particularly when such people offer to buy me breakfast.

In a few short hours I learn more about how the world works that I think I ever wanted to know – the people pulling the strings, their ideologies and the true end games in a web of power, manipulation and politics. With the rise of extreme views on both the left and right becoming commonplace, Brexit appears to be the very least of our worries. People tell them they should write a book. But they don’t know how to write a book. They would very much like me to write the book. Ideally, a light-hearted, easy-reading fiction that will make the complex and dark possibilities of the near future accessible to a wide audience.

The problem is, the concept is rather too complex for me to get a handle on, let alone write the buggering thing. Not to worry. I will be taught and trained in everything I need to know. The royalty agreement is generous. The forward will be written by a prominent public figure and unfettered access to the national and international press means that marketing will be simple and extensive. Global, in fact. Despite the nagging inclination towards the feeling that I am getting in way over my head, I simply cannot not write this book.

I agree to write the book.

Work will begin in the New Year and we aim to publish in 2019. And what a lot of very interesting work it will be. As I make my way towards the King’s Road to meet a visiting American friend to discuss his outfit for the Brit Awards, I marvel at just how different life has become, since my days portering at a Cambridge college.

 

Who Shot Tony Blair? – Watch Now!

Featuring the visual expertise of the legendary Tony Coleby

Visit the Minister for Good Ideas & Gin at her blog!

Pop along and see the President of the United States here

In a post-Brexit, pre-dystopian Britain, the traditional political system has collapsed and Tony Blair is back in Number 10. Only this time, he is tied to a chair in the kitchen under the watchful eye of the accidental Prime Minister’s mother.

Following several years of instability, Britain is more divided than ever. The country has devolved into a ragtag assembly of self-governing provinces, each with their own unique and particular arrangements. Elected to the position of Prime Minister of East Anglia by lottery (considered the only true method of democracy by some drunk Cambridge scholars), Lucy Wastell comes to power with the intention of reuniting her beloved country, establishing Cambridge as the new capital city and giving her chums all the top jobs. Which – considering she was a receptionist until last week – shows remarkable political nous.

When ex-Prime Minister and all-round war monger Tony Blair is captured by the Cambridge Militia, the new government see an opportunity to finally put him on trial for war crimes and strengthen their position in this brave new world. Unfortunately, no one in the newly-formed Cabinet has the first idea about how to execute such a task and so decide to lock him in the kitchen while they have a think about it.

Meanwhile – Boris, King of Oxford, has similar designs for his own city to become the capital and the ancient rivalry between the two municipals is reignited. But this is far removed from the good-natured jousting of old – previously played out on rugby fields and academic league tables – and a violent outcome seems very much on the cards. And with interfering travelling salesman and sometime spy Nigel Farage keen to stir up tensions wherever he can, the job of Prime Minister is looking less attractive by the day.

On the verge of war and with the world’s most wanted man locked in the kitchen of Number 10 (Downing Street, Cambridge – naturally), can a randomly-selected bunch of citizens really make a better job of it all than governments past?

The people really do have the power. Which is what we all wanted… right?

 

**Who Shot Tony Blair? Follow the action here!**

Who Shot Tony Blair? – The Trailer

I shall take a short break from banging on about my book – PorterGirl : First Lady Of The Keys available on pre-order here – to bring you a quick update on brand new project, Who Shot Tony Blair?

Preparations for the filming of the trailer are continuing apace and we are amassing a fabulous cast of Cabinet members and extras, not to mention securing a very swish location in which to film. My technical team are mainly German so I am expecting an efficient and well-ordered shoot. Possibly.

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Not the real Tony Blair. But it’s probably the sort of thing he would do.

 

Those of you who have kindly offered to appear via ‘video link’ – I haven’t forgotten you, I will be in touch soon about your contributions. And for anyone else with nothing better to do on the afternoon of Saturday 27th August, we always have room for people who are able to look delighted, shocked and confused – not necessarily in that order and probably not all at once. There will certainly be tea and biscuits. Anyone who comes along is of course automatically invited to the wrap party afterwards, which isn’t going to be half as glamorous as it sounds.

I shall resume my pestering about buying my book shortly, in the meantime have a chat among yourselves. Or something.