A month has gone past since I published the book “KELLY,” and I still find myself pondering exactly why I wrote it, what it all really means. I eagerly await some reviews, but I accept that it is quite a lengthy read. Let me say that it is unlike anything I have ever written, I normally write comedy but when I read or hear the news, all these sick and twisted events, be they person against person or country against country I think to myself that is sick, that is twisted and how can I be expected to make people laugh when these events happen in the world. That is the base level of my thoughts surrounding the book; I will go into more detail now and hope that this blog doesn’t contain too many spoilers.
The news, it’s what is new see, hence the name. We see and hear the news every day, the war, the murder, the corruption; it’s all there for us to digest but it is here today gone tomorrow. Tomorrow will bring us a new set of “news,” and the old stories of yesterday slowly become evanescent. I recall the Milly Dowler story, for those outside the UK she was a 13 year old girl abducted in Walton on Thames and found murdered in Yately Heath Woods, Hampshire some six months later.
Her case has been tangled up in the phone hacking scandal of the British Press, but this is not why I mention it at this point in time. I recall when they found the body in 2002, I heard on the news the whereabouts of the body and it was near to where my parents lived. It just so happens that I was on my way to visit them that weekend. As I pulled off the motorway I was wondering to myself where the location of the woods was. Then I pulled up to a roundabout to see many cars parked up randomly over the road and people were gathering to lay flowers upon the police roadblock off the first exit of the roundabout; it answered my question with a cold chill. It occurred to me that then that although I knew it was real, because I had heard it on the news, so many items I hear on the news and like I said they are there one day, gone the next. This was real, really real, this happened, I know I saw the aftermath. I guess what I am trying to say is that it felt more real, because I had seen evidence of it with my own eyes and my thoughts lay with all the people that were affected by the tragedy, her friends, her parents as for them this would never go away, it was not six months of news that would soon be replaced by another tragedy, it would live with them for the rest of their lives. It is all so obvious really, and rather sad to think that through all the horrific things we see on the news they start to become so commonplace, until we actually have some physical sighting of it; then we cry in shame that another member of our species could be so cruel and heartless.
Bob Geldof bought this to our attention when they first filmed the famine in Ethiopia. We saw this on our TV but if we chose to we could turn our faces away, we could pretend that these were just images on a screen, things happening somewhere else, to people so far away; we did not have to witness it with our own eyes. TV gives us so much fiction, it easy to blend the horror of reality into it too, so that we don’t have to face the sad truth. The truth is, it was real, it did really happen.
In 2011 a murder of a young girl in Swindon, our closet large urban area happened. People gathered to search the forest but it was a false lead and her body was found elsewhere. It was a case close to everyone’s hearts locally but when her mother came on national TV, as she had been kept silent from the press for some time I realised she was a lady I used to work with. I had not put the surname into consideration and it shocked me to see her on the news. She was always so happy and amusing at work, a lovely woman but now, her face on the TV was different, her expression was one I had never seen her use before, it was contorted with the shock, the horror and stress this event had caused her. I couldn’t sleep that night; the story took on a whole new sphere of reality.
I guess with KELLY I wanted to express this notion, to create a set of horrific scenarios which highlighted how sick some humans can be. I wanted to note that we all must have done something wrong in our life, no matter how small. It would seem that there is something fundamentally wrong with human nature, something evil, corrupt and wicked and am I’m guilty too?
I read an article that explained that the world of microbiology as a constant war, bacteria is always having a bit of a scrap. Just like it we fight, fight over land, money, religion and most ironically, love.
So the story began highlighting modern life, how everyone is out to buck the system, claim what they think should be theirs and generally go about pissed off with someone or something. I tried to recreate subplots from gossip and news items alike and weave them into a narrative that would be shocking and harsh but retain a certain reality. Then I began to consider how this could be changed, could we ever learn to live in peace. A hippy, am I a hippy? If it means I want world peace than maybe I am, either that or a Miss World contestant. The hippy though is a stereotype to be mocked, they wanted to “save the earth,” many decades before we realised they were right and the world’s governments try to convince the world they are doing their bit to help with this problem. Still though, the hippy is mocked.
So, call me a hippy if you will, say that my writing is left wing but I tired have I not to highlight the scandal in all walks of life as although the story lends its beginnings to social issues of the poor and working class as the story progresses we see the depravity that the middle and upper classes also involve themselves with. A solution you may ask, well, could we really find one without converting the narrative to fantasy? Paranormal you might think at first but as the tale reveals itself you might want to categorise KELLY as science fiction.
I tried to cross all genres with this book, in hope that people would not categorise it and read it with an open mind. I want to keep the notion real and so I held no bars and regulations, I wanted to evoke as many emotions as I could. If I want the reader to be sickened in this chapter I did it, if I wanted them then to feel love or even carnal desires than I did so. This book has some fairly erotic and romantic notions in it too in which I wanted to convey the same value of emotion within and so I did not hold back in describing the sexual scenes. Although I would point out this is far from labelled it an erotic novel.
So as it weaves and winds through the events they begin to build up to a conclusion in which I could not possibly have kept the reality about me, deciding that perhaps the biggest problem this world faced that our own emotions is the root cause, and that this was sadly something we could never fix; that thin line between love and hate. So then I thought as to what an outsider to the world might view as a possible solution, an alien or a computer perhaps and hey presto; the conclusion!
Now the reasons for book altered so that I saw part one as a social caricature, a sickening and depraved parody that turned horror. The girl is something more than human, we leave it at that; which is what I was going to do, leave it at that, as a short story with an open ending.
But I knew I could not leave it there. The second part is purely political satire, exposing the depravity within the upper and middle classes; bringing in the concept that power corrupts. I retain the unnerving notion that Kelly is not of this earth and her mystery grows with her power. By the end of the chapter all is made clear, the reasons are exposed.
The third part moves into science fiction as time rolls through a generation. The result is a return to part one and perhaps a possible better world, I’m not going to say much more than this; I don’t want to spoil it too much for you. I have kept the details of the book hidden, saying nothing in the blurbs and online descriptions. Keeping it mysterious allows the reader to go into the book blindfolded, I hope. The other reasons are that this book is open to interruption and maybe, even after writing it I am scrambling around in dark about what it all means as much as you are! I made reference to the books I have read that I think reflect and were an inspiration for KELLY, not that it could ever be as good as these but I only wished; Orson Wells’ 1984, Aubrey Huxley’s Brave New World and Joseph Keller’s Catch 22. With Kelly I wanted to reflect on social life, I wanted to rid myself of the notion that there is nothing that could ever be done to solve how shit human behaviour can be and mostly, to ponder how I am supposed to write comedy when the world is such a sick and twisted place to live.
So as our childhood heroes turn out to be nothing but untouchable paedophiles, our politicians turn out to criminals and our press turn out to be under such pressure they will stop at no moral lengths to get the scoop, please sit back and enjoy this pure work of fiction.
As the poor people around us suffer to such an extent that they live up the stereotype that higher classes label them with and become twisted and immoral and the upper classes thrive on this and look down upon them and laugh, read my work of pure fiction.
As the world’s leader’s pretend to be bothered about the issues that affect the future generations that will inherit this planet and continue to thrive on only one thing, money, please digest this work of pure fiction but know that that it all it is, fiction.
For all that has done wrong, for all that has sacrificed mankind to save their own soul; you go about your business. Everyone else note I may just be saying all this as just an excuse for writing some seriously dark and twisted shit! It you fall into any of these social categories please read KELLY and if you do, be careful what you wish for…..