Going Underground is my first novel and its setting was inspired my observations of the Mod scene, having been married to a Mod for quite some time. Of course, it’s not a social or cultural critique in any way – it’s an entertaining series of journeys (physical, spiritual, emotional and metaphorical) that use the fun and nostalgic elements of Mod to weave a story; elements that everyone can enjoy and identify with.
It’s a very human tale, primarily about a guy (Jonathan) who is forced to return to his past in order to get on with his future and in his case that means returning to the Mod scene that played a heavy part in his youth. It’s a fusion of comedy and tragedy that demonstrates how very often one stems from the other, with musical chapters that reflect what’s going either lyrically or in tone, as the protagonists’ stories progress (and I use the plural because the reader is also given Jonathan’s long suffering wife’s point of view, in her desire to uncover his long held secret). The dated playlist was a conscious decision; I wanted it to represent just how much Jonathan’s mindset is stuck in the past. And it’s only when we get to the epilogue that the song choice jumps on a few years, letting the reader know he has, at last, moved forward in his life – albeit him still having someway to go.
With regards to my hopes for the book, I just hope everyone enjoys reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it. And like I said, there’s something for everyone – from my descriptions of the comradeship given within the Mod scene, the scooter ride outs and rallies – to the distinctive iconography; as well as the very human story that I’ve tried to tell, inter-twining both laughter and pathos throughout. I also think in the future it would make an ideal film project. It’s very visual read from start to finish and in my view, would make for a great Brit Flick adaptation...
And now something about me:
Ever since I can remember, I’ve always had something to say and I’ve always written. But whereas I’ve continually been more than happy to share my opinions, the same most definitely couldn’t be said of my scribblings...
I was born and raised in Lancashire and after leaving school I undertook a variety of jobs – from office work to teaching in Further Education, from managing a Training & Advice Centre to being an outreach worker for Women’s Aid. So, it’s fair to say my working life has given me the chance to get to know all kinds of people, from all kinds of backgrounds; a definite asset for anyone looking to write for a living.
Amidst all of this, I was also raising a family, whilst at the same time working towards a BA (Hons) in Women’s Studies. The latter being something that finally encouraged me to take my writing aspirations more seriously and as such, I then went on to obtain a MA in Television & Radio Scriptwriting. Fortunately, this led to my being chosen by the BBC for their New Writers’ Initiative – a break that culminated in the opportunity to develop ideas for their continuous drama series, Doctors.
Even so, this still didn’t stop me continuing to dabble in the world of prose – a genre I, personally, feel more comfortable with. And testing the waters with a bit of poetry and a few short stories, I was lucky enough to garner a modicum of success through publication, allowing me the confidence to put a future in scriptwriting to one side, in favour of a career as a full-time novelist.
Reading, writing, people watching
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