By Richard Vere-Compton
ISBN: 978-1-84747- 547-3
Key Themes: dyslexia, dyspraxia, autism
This would make an ideal film script. The virtue of the intense imagery means that storyboarding, almost every scene, is already there in ones minds eye. The story contains almost every element of human emotion, greed, romance, lust, envy, hatred, friendship, and betrayal. All with just a handful of ‘cast’ members. Later chapters pick up on clues left in earlier ones, which act as hooks pulling threads through the entire plot. Throughout the serious plot, there are almost throw away, priceless, ‘one liners’ that add to the readers/watchers pleasure. The very fact that the ‘leading lady’ had hopes of going to RADA, lends itself to the ideal players, cast, stars, call them what you will, being composed of relative ‘unknowns’ from the acting profession. It would seem to do poetic justice to the memory of ‘Maggie, the heroine.
About the Author
I am writing this at the behest of Richard, who I have worked closely with for the past 18 months, during which time ’we have rattled a few cages’ and Richard has tilted at a good few windmills.
Although our acquaintanceship goes back over 10 years I jumped at the opportunity to transfer his archives into electronic format, a task that I have only scratched the surface of, as it is with great reluctance that I must pass the baton on to others.
As in all archiving activities, the amount of hard copy accumulated over 35 years by Richard in his capacity as a creative market consultant is vast and hugely diverse. The promotion of which has had some label him a snake oil salesman, selling his wares on the back of gloom and doom.
The emperor’s magic suit of clothes and a charlatan parroting scientific gobbledegook are labels that he has worn with pride, befitting his projected persona of a mild eccentric, which is a mask for his preferred preference to remain an enigma and as such treats all his dealings with others with the sanctity of a confessional.
Under my stewardship only the last 10 years of his copyrighted material and IPR are available; and these are contained in the folder “Save The World 2006/2007”. This folder is dedicated to those who are suitably motivated to delegate others to dive into this Aladdin’s cave of intellectual ’wonderment’
All the above can be accessed from the live URL link: http://swashball.qdtech.co.uk
In spite of my honesty in repeating others’ comments, Richard moves like a celestial comet. His trail is a breath of fresh air, sadly missing in our busy lives.
I have been reliably informed that his boyish enthusiasm, driven by a still youthful mind, is acceptable in small doses and at worse mildly irritating to those who are well organised and have disciplined minds.
However, it is better to have Richards voice on the end of your phone, and know what he is up to, and not need his snake oil, then for the phone to remain silent and need his ‘cure all’ and not know about it. Do you not agree?
Poor Maggie sat dejectedly on a park bench surrounded by the overpowering grandeur of City University. Maybe she had made a mistake, maybe she should have stayed in her home town, a little village, in a little known part of the north of England.
Some would say that Scarborough was well known, Rochdale, Sunderland, Barnsley, Huddersfield, names to conjure with if you trod the boards, and it was that lure of the stage that had brought Maggie to London. She couldn’t face being another number in a main frame computer, another person arguing with personnel, somehow being treated unfairly and passed over for promotion because her face didn’t fit.
What did fit was her personality, and it fitted into that wonderful, glamorous world of the theatre. Could she sing? yes, she had an ear for music. Could she dance? yes, she had rhythm in her blood. Could she act? yes she could, but that was her downfall, for Maggie had acted herself out of her school, out of her community and out of her home. A prima donna without portfolio, and why London? because London she had been told, was the Hollywood of the Common Market, where the streets were paved with gold if you knew how to duck and to dive and to take chances.
Her mind took the six month journey back home where, it seemed a lifetime ago, she used to lay on her bed on a hot summer night, listening to all the others hi this big wide world chatting, giggling, laughing, exciting themselves and letting their inhibitions be carried free on the either, waiting for that sudden chemistry, the awareness sparked when eye meets eye, lip meets lip and the tender embrace that makes the world a beautiful place.
The reality of the here and now wasn’t so beautiful. She sat with her head in her hands, and let the last of a summer shower dry from her hair and her eyebrows, the sides of her cheeks and her blouse; the light weight blouse that she had to wear to conform to some petty bureaucratic edict, that said all Sales Assistants in Messrs Bourne and Hollingsworth, must dress as if they were cloned copies of each other, black skirts, white blouses, black stockings and sensible black flat shoes. She had bitten her tongue on so many occasions, but after six months the strain was beginning to show.
Every night she brushed the frustration out of her thick brown hair, It was the one thing that Maggie promised herself she would never ever tamper with, her hair, no highlights and just a trim along the edges when it became too long. Her hair was going to be her crowning glory.
“Maggie now you’re in trouble”. She said it aloud to herself. She wasn’t aware that somebody else had joined her on the bench, had in point of fact been scrutinizing her, so she was a little startled when a cultured voice said “Come on missy, tell me all about it”. She turned and looked up, and as she did so her hair danced in the sun, lifted by the static in the hot thundery summer air. “My God you are beautiful”. There were no apologies for that statement, and it was exactly what was needed to jolt her out of her mood. She took the compliment as if in a spotlight and this one man was the entire auditorium filled to capacity. She stood, twirled around and curtsied, he stood and bowed, and said the only words that made any sense in that unreal situation – “May I have this dance?”. To the imaginary strains of Richard Strausse they danced around the square. He was an accomplished dancer, and moved with style and grace, holding her with confidence as he swung her around and around. He moved from one century to the next and introduced the tango. Maggie was aware that people were staring. She saw their faces in a blur as she panned round but dared not break the spell, for going through her mind was a Sunday school talk about Peter walking on the waves to Jesus, and as soon as he realized that he was treading on the water he began to Sink.
She held the moment, he held her, and just as this wonderful cameo had started, it ended, in a magnificent embrace with his lips falling lightly and tenderly onto her bare neck. He held her for what seemed like an eternity, but it was only just another moment in time. He cupped her face in his hands and murmured again “you really are beautiful” and pressed his lips against hers. She responded in true Hollywood style, tightening her grip around his broad back and sliding her hands to the base of his neck.
Any minute she expected to hear someone shout “Cut, take five”. And that’s exactly what she did hear, along with a round of applause from the group of people who had formed a ring about the romantic couple. The return to reality brought its own embarrassment, and in order to cover it Maggie feigned exhaustion and dizziness, and would have sunk to the ground had not the handsome perpetrator of this charade scooped her up, carried her over to the bench and laid her down in such a way that her head rested on his lap. He stroked her beautiful hair and said without prompting “I think I’m falling in love with you”.
Maggie looked up into those hazel eyes, and the length of his eyelashes with a tinge of jealousy. His babyish complexion told her that he was man enough to shave, but soft enough to understand the sensuality of a woman. If she’d ever had a dream, a vision of the man who was going to carry her off into the sunset, it must surely be this classic figure that now held her, and in whose lap she now nestled comfortably and confidently, and with complete security.