Category Archives: Good Days

A living van is conceived & born…

Rather more easy and straightforward than continuing with ‘The Grass is Always Greener’ series was the 9 days last month spent assisting Dad with the recreation of a living van he is building on a chassis acquired some time ago. Planing the timber and cutting mortise and tenon joints was very good practice for when I (eventually) build a timber-framed house…

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I’ll be back again in April to assist (more diversion from the written word), so we’ll hopefully get closer to the finished article, which will look something like this:

Soho nights…


Enjoyed a lively weekend in London for Neil Hodgson’s 40th celebration – a surprisingly singular festivity considering he had three leaving dos when he left London for Malta (and then came back anyway!)



Photo on 04-11-2011 at 16.10

The Grass Is Always Greener

I’ve been beavering away at THE GRASS IS ALWAYS GREENER since I got back to Malta from a very pleasurable & eventful family Christmas in Northamptonshire – the highlight of which was fitting a chimney to the Book Shed – & New Year in London – the highlight of which was NYE at the Royal Vauxhall Tavern.


Having been keeping up an average output of 3,000 words a day (and feeling quite good about it), I’ve just learned that Jean Paul Sartre was capable of writing 20,000! Am trying to use it as an aim rather than a discouragement.

Onwards & upwards…

Lord George Wilde’s Circus is taking shape…

My fictional ‘Lord George Wilde’s Circus’ (© Drew Thomas 2011) is taking shape at a pace that makes it seem that it was there anyway and that I just had to find it.

The dynasty:

‘Lord’ George Wilde (deceased) b.1893 = Wilhelmina b.1894

‘Lord’ George Wilde b. 1924 = Mary (nee Tapley) b.1948

‘Lord’ George Wilde Jnr. b. 1972 = Amelia (Mel) Wilde b.1973

‘Lord’ Georgie b.1995 & ‘Lady’ Sarah b. 1997

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‘The Shocking Sins of the Mother-in-Law’ (Amelia Wilde 1) is very nearly mapped out. If all goes to plan, I’ll start writing next week & have the first draft finished by the end of November.

Totally energised after Turkey tonic – now ready to go Wilde…

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I’ve just got back to Malta after two weeks in Turkey (& briefly Greece) on a gulet with ten friends and – thanks to Captain Mehmet and his crew Ergan and Hussein – a good time was had by all, despite the grisly murder of Texan tycoon Randy Alexander taking place at a dinner hosted by Molly & David Camper attended by the bekilted Bernard Haggis, the handsome Cecil Bellows, Sandi Toksvig lookalike Mermayda Swimmer, the lopsidedly mohicanned Claus Santos, the ultra-smooth novelist Robert Writer, the lovely but lethal Anna Paris and the somewhat bewildered science fiction writer Simon Fiction and his far, far, far younger Irish wife Valerie (whom it is rumoured had just left Dale Farm to escape eviction).

Now I’m ready to get going on the Amelia Wilde series, provisional titles being:
1) The Shocking Sins of the Mother-in-Law
2) Dicing with Death at God’s Acres
3) Prohibited Pre-meditation in Paris
4) Malicious Murder in Monte Carlo
5) Celebrity Slaughter in the Cotswolds

Onwards & upwards, here goes…

The Velvet Rage

Not usually one for ‘self-help’ titles, I chanced upon this one by accident. To be honest, I was quite rudely reading it over my friend’s shoulder and he kindly offered to lend it to me when he’s finished it. All I can say is that is confirmed a lot and – more importantly – offered solutions to problems and traits I had grown so accustomed to I thought they’d be with me for life. Thanks Damien and thanks Alan Down (the author). I’m not going to drone on about it (evangelists not being my favourite sort), but feel truly empowered and revitalised…

Agatha Christie meets Armistead Maupin (apparently!)

The temperatures here in Malta are soaring. I’m scared to look at the thermometer because it’s almost too hot to cope. At least it seems to have calmed the MMM down a bit – she behaved impeccably when we met to do the weekly housekeeping in Zebbug. Mind you, she’s off to the Costa Brava next week, so is no doubt revving up to hurl herself at the Spanish men.

I was very pleasantly surprised to see WHAT A PERFORMANCE in Amazon’s ‘Movers & Shakers’ list It’s in at 6th place (up 180% from 812 to 290). Along with a favourable review earlier in the week – ‘A great fast-paced read with a clever plot. Funny, sad, gripping and entertaining. In a nutshell, Agatha Christie meets Armistead Maupin’ –  things are looking good for that little tale of murder & intrigue in the West End…

Meanwhile, I’ve finally sorted out the best (I think) order in which to work on my current projects:

1) BEASTWAGON – which is all but complete to my satisfaction (which it damn well should be since I started it twenty years ago, not to mention selling the film rights a decade later) – needs some tweaking at the beginning. I’ve engineered a new prologue (actually, it’s prologue number 4) and at the moment it’s at no.19 on YOUWRITEON.

2) WALKING ON EGGSHELLS (London Legends 3) – notes accumulating by the day. I’ll really get going on it once I’ve got BW done & dusted.

3) WILDE – Emilia Wilde’s character is taking shape, but there’s still a lot of planning & development to do before I can really get going.

In addition, CHASING YOUR TAIL (tv pilot) is finished. Still no word. Should I send it somewhere else? There’s also THE GRASS IS ALWAYS GREENER (series of 4 radio plays), for which all the research is done and characters developed – in fact, 2 plays are almost completed.

So perhaps this means I haven’t in reality sorted out what I’m doing…

And it all looked better in the morning…

After a blissful night’s sleep, the whole situation didn’t look quite as desperate, so I trundled back to Zebbug to finish off ironing the Egyptian cotton, making the beds & cleaning the pool. The family from Lancashire arrived bang on time and were both delighted with the house and delightful in themselves.

Now I’m working on ‘Wilde’ – my new novel and it’s all coming together nicely (well, it’s coming together) – with Amelia ‘Mel’ Wilde’s character emerging quite stridently – which it needs to as she’s a thwarted ex-DC with a very big grievance.

Soon the sun’ll be over the yard arm & I can relax with a G & T and look at the photos from the trip to Sitges – which I have to say was the best holiday I’ve had in years…

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‘What a Performance’ available on Kindle


Olivia Greenstreet – former star of stage and screen – celebrates her sixtieth birthday by upholding her decision of twenty years to stay out of the limelight and live peacefully, if slightly precariously, in her crumbling country mansion with an array of companions whom she has helped to opt out of the rat race.

Justin Featherstonehaugh (‘it’s pronounced Fanshaw, actually’)  – writer, producer and theatre entrepreneur – is risking millions in a West End musical production based on the film ‘The Ball’ in which Olivia – who also happens to be Justin’s ex-wife – starred twenty years earlier.

Susie Venables – Justin’s vitriolic, pushy and opportunistic current wife – is playing the lead in ‘The Ball’, but her lack of acting talent is causing mayhem and concern at rehearsals. 

When Susie is found hanging from a chandelier in a macabre re-enactment of a scene from the film just before opening night, the hunt for her killer and the quest for a new leading lady turn chaos to pandemonium in the back-stabbing world of West End Theatre where secrets, lies, long-term deception and career-changing sex scandals seem to be the order of the day. A sexually frustrated vicar’s wife, a busty Jewish impressionist and an unfortunate case of mistaken identity lead to more confusion as suspects and motives multiply. The pace quickens, culminating in an unexpected but satisfying conclusion to the convoluted plot of this heart-warming tale of the importance and realisation of dreams.