Yes, I have one or two things 'bubbling under' at the moment. Both 'The Naked Doctor' and 'A Boy Called Audrey' leave the central character on the verge of adulthood - eighteen and nineteen respectively. Hopefully, a reader will want to know more. In the case of the former, certainly, a few people have asked me 'What happened next?'. As far as the latter is concerned, we will have to wait and see, as it has only just gone on sale via Amazon.
For anyone who is interested here's a brief outline of my work in progress.
The Doctor Up the Front
Evadne's Odyssey, Book Two
We left our eighteen-year-old heroine blissful in the arms of love on a terrace somewhere in Italy. But how did she get there? And where did she go subsequently?
This volume starts by describing the voyage of Evadne, Lavinia and Dougal from Southampton to Naples, and continues with their perambulation of the Italian peninsula. Of course, we will learn when, where and how romance blossomed; we will share the trio's astonishment on learning that the young English sensation, Miss Hilda Bracket will not be appearing in Tosca at the Teatro Regio, Parma, as advertised, but in a revival of Cavalleria Rusticana, conducted by none other than the revered composer himself, Sig. Pietro Mascagni. Of course, Evadne's adored father, Hector, was an intimate friend of the grand old man of Italian opera, so an invitation to supper follows the performance. Where Hilda and Evadne meet for the first time, and where our heroine encounters an old friend under highly unusual circumstances
We move to 1939. War breaks out. Dougal is drafted and leaves for the front. Evadne joins her old mentor, Myra Hess, in her valiant determination to keep the musical flag flying in war-torn London. And then receives a very unexpected invitation...
We follow Evadne through the war years. What exactly is she doing in occupied Paris, dressed by Lanvin and Chanel, on the arm of a high-ranking German officer? How did she get from there to equally occupied Greece? And who is this young soprano, Mary Callas, whom she accompanies occasionally in recital?
Peace breaks out. It is 1946. Back in the UK, Evadne is looking for work. Some touring opera group is looking for a musical director. The Rosa Charles Opera Company, apparently. Cue 'The Doctor and the Dame'.
Turn Again, Audrey
Pictures from an Exhumation, Book Two
I have left Glasgow and am en route for London. I am now George, and only George, quite definitely, which pleases my dear Tommy hugely. Audrey is out of the picture. A new life, a new future.
But Audrey is not to be dismissed quite so easily.
This volume covers the ten years from 1964 to 1974, going from my arrival in London up to my first real professional appearance as one half of Hinge and Bracket at the Edinburgh Festival, from where my life was to take off in a completely different and unexpected direction.
But Audrey is still pushing the boundaries, and I think it is fair to say that this volume covers as many outrageous and amusing incidents as did the earlier one. I meet some extraordinary people (and London in the 1960s harboured little else, it seemed) and land in some unexpected situations. Why was I arrested in Queensway, W2, in drag, and charged with soliciting, with a frozen lasagne thawing out in my handbag? My explanation, that I had been playing in a charity ladies' darts match in Wembley, that the drummer friend who was taking me home had just been arrested for drunk driving, and that I was looking for a taxi back to Willesden to enjoy a late supper was dismissed by the authorities as a fabrication. But it wasn't. Well, not entirely...
I plan at least one more book in this series, maybe two. That depends on whether or not my continuing and quite unmerited (considering the life I have led) good health continues to hold up. 'Carry On, Audrey' and perhaps 'Forever Audrey' may yet see the light of day.