To the outsider, Tommy leads a very, very successful life. Which it is, but it’s also dull. And lonely. He has much to say, but no-one listens. He has strong opinions, but no-one cares. He has vibrant dreams, but no-one shares.
In a recent live radio interview Gerry Cryer talked about his new book. Here is an extract from the transcript.
MF Gerry, your second novel Blah Blah has just been published. It is very different from your first The Masterful Manipulation of George Cove. Did you find it easy to write in two such different styles?
GC Thanks you. It caused me no more problem than writing any novel. I was determined to change all the parameters to test my own skills and capabilities. While George Cove covers a long time span with a large cast Blah Blah covers just a few weeks with a cast of just two.
But more importantly I wanted it to be an amusing read with a strong sense of fun and humour. Something to read and make you laugh while relaxing on the beach.
MF But there are still some serious issues addressed.
GC Of course, but important subjects can still be treated seriously but in the context of humour.
MF Let’s get into some of the controversy. The female lead is called Scunt. That has raised objections.
GC Just as FCUK had problems. She comes from Scunthorpe and is therefore called Scunt. You are the one reading more into it. But isn’t that the point with all the furore that the book has raised. There are many serious points made in the book.
We all have preconceptions and normally we are dishonest with our beliefs. Too easily we jump to dishonest conclusions.
MF Is that why there is a powerful justification of prostitution?
GC I am not sure there is any more justification for prostitution than there is a for Tommy’s highly misogynist and very politically incorrect views.
MF Is that why you have a ‘prepare to be offended’ warning on the front cover?
GC No, not really but I found that some of the readers in the test marketing were sometimes a little shocked in the early chapters but eventually they came to really like Tommy.
MF Did you change anything because of this?
GC No of course not. We just added the small warning. I mean Tommy is a middle aged man who to the outsider, leads a very, very successful life. Which it is, but it’s also dull and lonely. He has much to say, but no-one listens. He has strong opinions, but no-one cares. He has vibrant dreams, but no-one shares. A sense of humour, but no-one laughs. He wants to be a hero, but he has no-one to save. Instead, he immerses himself in a private world of desire, fantasy and adventure in an attempt to escape from his flat-lining life.
Then he meets Scunt. She is young, feisty and deeply enthralling … and on the run from a violent pimp and the police. She needs help – and Tommy is there. Finally a chance to become a hero of his own life. And maybe hers.
I think there are lots of Tommy’s living in their dreams. They are polite to women and respect and maybe even agree with much of the feminist agenda but in their private thoughts they may not be quite as well behaved. They understand all the issues of political correctness, they understand all the whys but they are just being men!
MF But interestingly I thought the warning should be changed towards the end of the book. It is our own thoughts that are being tested.
GC At the beginning we are antagonistic towards Tommy and Scunt but as their story unfolds we are the ones that need the warnings as some of our basic preconceptions start to be tested.
I know this a programme about books and we have to be serious about the art form but I just want to say maybe we are taking this a bit too seriously. Blah Blah is a good and fun read and wont tax you unless you really want it to.
MF I agree and with that thank you Gerry and Blah Blah is now published by Brovary and can purchased on Amazon for Kindle and PaperBack and the normal sites for iBook versions.
Reviews of Blah Blah
“A clever, funny and insightful romp through the mind of a world-weary, world-wary man who doesn’t really care about ‘political correctness’. Prepare to be offended!”
“A 21st century man who just wants to be anyone but who he is, and do anything but what he does.”