A Life of Firsts

80s chick

A few days before Christmas 2015 I had my first ‘non-sales’ day. As the evening wore on and I realised that no-one was going to buy my book, I felt a weight descending on my shoulders. I thought this was it. It was over. I’d never make it. I went to bed with my lip hanging out and my chin on my chest, desperately resisting the urge to post a ‘PLEASE BUY MY BOOK (wail face)’ post on Twitter every three seconds.

But when I woke up the next day, I managed to shrug it off and, actually, I felt glad that it was over. The day was always going to come, and it came much later than I expected. Then I got to thinking about all the ‘firsts’ in my life, and how they’d set me up for the life I’ve got now.

Since this is my first ever blog, and it’s the 1st of January, I’m going to tell you about some of them. Please do post some of your own ‘firsts’ below. Memories are made for sharing.

First day at school. This is my first childhood memory. I don’t remember much, but there were nuns and outside loos and I cried a lot. I needed a poo so my mum had to take me to said outside loo. I was, therefore, late for my first day at school. I am rarely late for anything.

First kiss. Danny Stephenson, 1983. Tune Playing: True by Spandau Ballet, a song I know every word to and will sing with utmost abandon after a bottle of fizz (or two – yes I can drink two bottles of fizz but I may well fall over). My diary entry reads: “urrggh! His tongue filled my whole mouth!!!!”  Thankfully other men in my life have known how to kiss and I wasn’t put off.

First time…. I won’t go into detail, but I will say that ‘Liberator’ by Spear of Destiny was playing on the ghetto blaster. Now you might think this is very unromantic, and you would be right. My friends talk of ‘My Cherie Amour,’ and ‘The Power of Love.’ He was from Birmingham so stick a Brummy accent onto Spear of Destiny and you’ll see what I mean.

First single.  The Baron Knights, A Taste of Agro. Beat that 🙂

First job. This was in a fish and chip shop. I actually really liked it, and I got loads of free chips. I LOVE chips. My claim to fame is serving Ken Livingstone and asking him if he wanted them open or wrapped.

First day at college. Let’s not call it University because it wasn’t. It was a Polytechnic in Lancashire. It was the first time I’d worn contact lenses and people thought I had some sort of affliction. It was also the day I decided to lose my Northumbrian accent, and this I regret very much. I am now what’s known as a ‘posh Geordie.’

And finally:

First review. This was by a lovely lady called Elaine who’d been waiting for The Prodigal to be released for months. She gave it five stars and I leapt about Julie’s office like a mad woman. Thank you Elaine, it set me up to appreciate every single individual review of The Prodigal.

So, yes, I’m going to have no-sales days, but I’m not going to worry about them. People like Elaine, and all the amazing readers, bloggers and other authors who have supported this book over the last six months absolutely drive me on. Our second book, Heads, will be released in the Summer, and I’m going to simply love referring to The Prodigal as our ‘first’ book.

Big shout out to Julie Blackie, the other half of Nicky Black. Mmwwah!


Be good xx.


2 thoughts on “A Life of Firsts

  1. Just started reading your blogs… I do believe the Danny kiss was at my leaving party and remember thinking “howay man Danny, shes two years younger then you” :). I still have many happy memories of the chip shop, Old ernie (great work ethic and always said it as it was), serving at fair week in just overalls n underpants and still sweating like a bull. Happy, happy time, our whole families got fish n chips at a totally ridicules discount. I agree with you blogs regarding the “insular” wiew we all held of “doon sooth” and part of the reason I think people are a bit less friendly is the demands and presures put on them by employers. Their minds never relax a free time is spent mentally sorting and planning for the next day/week.

    There is a certain “someting” I miss about Alnwick, perhaps its all gone and now just memories, I havnt been up infar to long. But if Im ever cut in two, Im positive “Alnwick” will be spelt right down the middle!!


    1. Hello Gary! I don’t know whose 18th it was, but it was at the Squash Club haha. They were great days, and you don’t realise it at the time. Have a great weekend!

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