Tomorrow my book “Flights of Fantasy” will be launched into cyber space.
In the interim, a little about its intriguing backstory that began many years ago, through a combination of coincidence and good luck . When I was a kid, knee high to a grasshopper, Dad used to take me for a Sunday morning stroll through Liverpool City centre, where four years later, the devastation following the Blitz, in which George had been an Auxiliary Fireman, was still like the aftermath of an earthquake.
On the rare Sunday it rained – doesn’t the sun always seem to shine in childhood days – he’d let me look through his water colours and sketches of an esoteric range of subjects. Sadly, when he died, still young and very unexpectedly just a few years later, I inherited his paintings and sketches. The only problem was, they were missing. After an in-depth search, without success I reluctantly came to the conclusion that perhaps they’d been consigned to the scrap heap.
Many years later, my mother relocated to more practical accommodation. The furniture had gone, and I was taking a last look around when something told me to climb into the rarely-ventured-into loft. In the gloom I found an old tea-chest full of old magazines and buried beneath them, a cardboard box.
It contained two books, one an old, dog-eared, hard-backed exercise book, its yellowing pages packed with the water colours and sketches I’d seen as a child. The second book was an Auxiliary Fire Service (AFS) Training Manual, with cartoons sketched on blank pages, pictures that illustrated the lighter side of Dad’s traumatic experiences in the fire service during the Liverpool Blitz.
Too good to gather dust, they needed to be shared. And that’s how “Flights of Fantasy was conceived. Now complete, links to the publisher, pre-order details and lots of information will be posted tomorrow (Tuesday) afternoon. Why not check it out…