Category Archives: books and other things

I’ve always liked writing. My enthusiasm for writing has a number of threads to it. I enjoy the doing of it; trying to make it readable and useful or useful and entertaining. I enjoy sharing what I’ve had to root-around to find and have, very often, realised while doing that the need to have the information that I’ve needed to discover, and found helpful, presented in a more accessible way.
When I was a junior school pupil I enthusiastically wrote a story called The Gun Runners and Mr X. The action was mainly of visits to warehouses and car chases with gunfire. Bear in mind that I was 10 years old when writing the story and commercial television had just started-up then. My class teacher, Mister Rogerson, gave me an orange exercise-book to write it in to. I remember, fondly, the English lesson with him that involved us as small groups having to construct a newspaper on sheets of B2 paper.The planning amongst our groups, I remember, was exciting to us and gave us the romantic sense of being more grown up because we were trusted to work it all out for ourselves and determine amongst ourselves what we all thought we should do with our newspaper.
I started writing plays too, when I was still at junior school. The one play of mine that I remember was about a plane high-jacking; it was written on small squares of paper that my mother used to bring home for me from the suite of offices where she cleaned. The play was about a passenger plane hijack with bad-guys tricking the cabin crew into opening the usually secured door of the captain’s cabin etc.,. I’m impressed with my young self when I remember that I described the cast of characters and the details of the environment for each scene. Watching television probably influenced the threads of my stories and my drive to make up imagined worlds. Can’t think of anything else I could have picked-up-on to cause me to want to do it.
There will always be more to do.

A Rosey Glow

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Spent a wonderful day at the Royal Horticultural Society’s garden Rosemoor, in Devon, yesterday. I’ve never seen and smelt the wonderful scents of so many roses and other floribunda, in my life, before. It has been quite a few years since I visited the last time. Everything that was in its infancy is now mature and voluptuous. Such a relaxing place too. An added, unexpected bonus was the small exhibition of limited edition prints by Ted Naismith.

The Land of Love — a fantasy

Here, to give you a taste, are some of the first paragraphs of some of the chapters in my developing fiction about Mister Baum’s adventures in Oz:

The Land of Love―a fantasy

Chapter one

A family holiday

 There is something so utterly glorious about being on a holiday beach; standing on warm, light sand; feeling it slip between your toes. Not a thing to think about and not a thing to worry about. These times don’t come often to most of us but this time it is Mister L. Frank Baum’s turn.


The Land of Love―a fantasy

Chapter two

A story begins

 Standing there just then on that lovely beach during the summer of 1900, after his wife and boys had gone off and left him to find their items of fun, Mister Baum recalled the image of himself here on this same beach, last summer. Then, he was looking down at that unfamiliar object he held. The very strange object that he’d found and picked up out of its bed of sand.


The Land of Love―a fantasy

Chapter three

A dramatic event

 Unbeknownst to the Baum family, the one they had seen on the beach in front of them tackled overpowered and dragged away by the other two did not stay with his captors for very long after the incident. Away from prying eyes, their captive had drawn an apparatus from his pocket that he was sure they had never seen before; let alone would know how to cope with. They didn’t.


The Land of Love―a fantasy

Chapter four

Family time

 With his mouth and chin smeared with his favourite honeycomb ice-cream that each of his beloveds, in turn, had lovingly and in good fun poked there, Mister Baum was transported to the stuffed-full arcades in town by his family’s gleeful descriptions. Clothes stores, sports stores and the art stores they’d been to all of them. He could quite see what a marvellous time they’d all had by the amount of overflowing shopping bags they’d each managed to carry and had now dropped heavily onto the carpet.


The Land of Love―a fantasy

Chapter five


 We can sense from previous events and behaviours how distraught and understandably determined the device’s owner was to get it back. So it is not really surprising to us to have him suddenly appear in Mister Baum’s hotel bedroom. How he suddenly appeared there was a surprise.


The Land of Love―a fantasy

Chapter six

What it’s all been about

 Mister Baum had been standing motionless and amazed at the transformation to that ballroom; after the liquid was completely gone. He’d been standing like that for two minutes expecting any possibility in what might happen next. You see, he’d learnt that the impossible was highly possible where he’d ended up.


RegisWrites about books and other things


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Mister L. Frank Baum’s jokes The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, the first book in the series of 14 initially appears to have no humour; mainly concern, peril, hope and unusual encounters. There are jokes, however. Joke 1. In the chapter, The Road Through the Forest, Dorothy says to the Scarecrow, “Anyone would know that (if a road goes in it must come out)”. The Scarecrow replies, “Certainly; that is why I know it. If it required brains to figure it out, I never should(would) have said it.” Joke 2. In The Wonderful Wizard of OZ, the Wizard mixed pins, needles and bran together then put that mixture into the Scarecrow’s head saying, “ .. I have given you a lot of bran-new brains” “Why are those needles and pins sticking out of his head?” asked the Tin Woodman. “That is proof that he is sharp”, remarked the Lion. And “this (liquid) cannot be called courage until you have swallowed it.” Joke 3. The Lion … drank till the dish was empty. “How do you feel now?” asked OZ. “Full of courage”, replied the Lion.