Monday, 13 August 2018

When 'Normal Me' meets 'Writer Me'

If you're old, like me, you probably remember the cartoon 'Hong Kong Phooey' in which a 'mild mannered janitor' transforms into a canine superhero. Sometimes I feel a bit like him, although in place of 'mild mannered janitor' insert 'not very competent office worker with a life-long phone phobia', and you might start to get the picture. Most people who come into contact with my everyday persona no doubt assume I'm quite stupid. I give that impression on a daily basis. I'm not very good at my job, and am very lucky to have any kind of job at all, having, ten years ago, almost literally just picked up my handbag and walked away from teaching. If I hadn't done that I'd almost certainly not be around now to tell the tale. But it's a tale for another time.

Anyway, there is another me, the Hong Kong Phooey me, the superwriter. OK, there's nothing super about me, but I am quite proud of some of the stuff I've written, and had published. And until recently, mild mannered janitor me and Hong Kong Phooey me have peacefully co-existed. Nobody from life 1 was ever likely to come across the things I wrote in life 2. I kind of liked it that way. Then, in June, I had a story published in The People's Friend magazine (available at all good supermarkets and newsagents).

Mild mannered janitor me bought several copies, on different occasions. Each time I somehow managed to resist the temptation to turn to the relevant page, wave it under the cashier's nose and shout 'I wrote this!' I'm glad I didn't, because I'd have been dismissed as a fantasist. As a rule, overweight middle aged people with mundane jobs don't get published in mainstream magazines. But, in other news, this overweight middle aged person with a mundane job has just had another story accepted. And hopefully there will be many more. Watch this space though, because if you know me in my mild mannered janitor life, I'll probably never get around to mentioning it.....


  1. You should be proud of your writing successes. There are so many of them and your stories have all touched my heart. You write with great compassion and your characters are all so rich and diverse. I hope you can eventually give up the day job. xx

  2. Congratulations! I wish you had told those cashiers, although I seem to recall one such writer did and was met with total indifference. I've read a number of your stories in various places and they are brilliant bit jealous really) so keep them coming. And power to all middle-aged(ish)and not-so-thin writers.