Friday, 2 August 2019

The Lady Who Steals Sandwiches

We have almost reached the half-way point of the small blog tour for 'My Daughter’s Wedding'. So firstly can I send an enormous thank you to everyone who has, or will, make a contribution this week or soon after.
One of the things I really like about blog tours is that they are very flexible and still developing. There are no real rules. A blog tour can be any length, any frequency, include experienced or first-time book bloggers (they are all wonderful). So, as the organiser of my own little blog tour, I have dared to include a contribution from myself. I hope that someone out there finds it interesting.
I want to share a few thoughts about one particular aspect of the story-line in my latest book, namely the lady who steals sandwiches…….


Where did the idea come from?   
I belong to a small social group in my home town of Bexhill on Sea. We organise loads of different activities, but most Friday mornings we meet for a chat at a little cafĂ© on the seafront. Almost three years ago, I was sitting at one of these meet-ups, and, for some reason, we found ourselves sharing anecdotes about funerals. Someone in the group (I wish I could remember who) told me a true story about a lady in Bexhill who used to gate-crash funerals and sneak off  afterwards with a bag full of sandwiches. I was still editing  my first novel ‘Different Genes’ at the time, but I remember thinking that I would like to include this character in my next novel. I wondered who the lady was and why she chose to steal food on such occasions. Was her behaviour a compulsion? Was she hungry maybe? How old was she? What did she look like? And by the time I was editing the second novel ‘My Daughter’s Wedding’, this person had taken up a third of the book. Not wishing to give the story away, I can’t tell you much about her, but I can say that she was responsible for the three part structure of the book. It was the 'sandwich lady who allowed me to use the knowledge of children in care and social services which I had gained in my career as a primary headteacher.
Is this lady a credible character? Readers will have to decide for themselves, but I do believe that her words “It's being brought up in care. You're considered to be a responsibility, rather than a person” reflect many of the experiences of  the ‘looked after' children who I met over the years.

If you want to find out more, the novel is an easy read story of love in later life called 'My Daughter's Wedding', and the lady who steals sandwiches finds herself caught up in the plot.

Thank you to everyone who has taken an interest in my latest book. If you do decide to read it, I hope you will find yourselves wanting to turn the pages.  This is the link     

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