…the most naturally funny man I’ve ever known… Billy Connolly…


…I make no secret of my admiration of the Scottish comic genius nicknamed ‘The Big Yin’Billy Connolly has had me convulsed with laughter so often for over 40 years… from the first appearance on the Michael Parkinson Show on a Saturday evening chat show, way back when… he came on stage in a leather suit, together with an enormous kilt sporran… he told the racy ‘somewhere-to-park-my-bike’ story… and the rest is history… his ability to take the mundane, everyday trivia that makes up our lives, and hilariously magnify bits of it, is the stuff of stage and television legend… over the years, I’ve been privileged to watch him perform in over half a dozen different countries at various stages in his peripatetic meanderings around the planet… sum’times I wonder, ‘who’s following who, here?’… he never fails to make me and whatever his audience respond to a brand of humour that’s born of the hard slums of Glasgow, honed in the pubs, clubs and cafes of the throwback ‘folk-singing groups’ of the sixties, and polished to perfection on the most prestigious international theatres… he’ll be the first to tell yeez that he’s not a ‘one-off’… in the shipyards in Docklands Govan, and the bars around Glasgow, there are hundreds of men (and women) whose wit sparkles with the mostly irreverent brand that he has made famous… now, ‘The Big Yin’ is 71 years old… I seem to have grown up with him as a constant in my own life… in Scotland… in London (first real ‘foreign’ posting for me)… in Asia… in the Middle East… I have just about every DVD of the comic tours and the superb ‘travelogues’ he’s done, which showcase not only his wit, but greatly insightful intellect… and like all the best performers, I can re-run any of his DVDs (and have done dozens of times) and still laugh as if it’s the first listening… I can only recall Peter Ustinov as another presence on live stage who so completely was able to hold an audience like that… I’m writing this coz I saw a snippet today on Facebook where he talked about his close friend, Robin Williams, not as a comic, but as a ‘pal’… and I just wonder how much guys like Billy and Robin realise that to hundreds of millions around the world they have been and are real ‘pals’… I’ll give yeez an early bit of Billy to laugh at below…see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!




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…reading yer own wee masterpiece ‘from a distance’…

…just over two years ago, in July 2012 to be precise, I published on the Great God Amazon the second book in my Jack Calder crime thriller series, VENGEANCE WEARS BLACK… a year or so later, in September 2013, I punched SAVAGE PAYBACK on to the same virtual shop window… and time since then has seen an immersion in the fourth in the series, current Work In Progress, KILLER CITY… why am I repeating all of this, Mabel?… coz, as an avid reader and reviewer of other quill-scrapers’ stuff, I get exposure to the product of many and varied scribblers… lots of them have my respect, and of course, as a fellow traveller on the Amazon-maze, I admire and recognise the sweat, toil and not a few tears that have evidently attended the birth of their respective wee literary babies… on a whim, I decided to re-read VENGEANCE WEARS BLACK… mainly to see if my view of it has changed since typing the last full stop… with no false modesty (not that I’m regularly accused of that attribute), I was gobsmacked… in a positive way… it didn’t seem like my own writing… I enjoyed getting into the narrative, as I’ve done with so many other writers’ books… I had forgotten many of the little nuances and quirks in the storyline, which had taken much late-into-the-night virtual-candlelit-garret labour as the novel was sculpted day after day, night after night… I felt like an escapee ant from the huge anthill… a detached onlooker… some of yeez may think this post is nowt but a puff piece for myself… and yeez are entitled to yer opinions… but yeez would be wrong… in all honesty and, yes, humility, I would recommend to any of yeez Lads and Lassies of Blog Land, to go back and have a read of yer own masterpieces after a distance of some time… it’s okay to like yer own WURK… even better if yeez feel yeez are reading the story for the first time… I’d be interested to know if any of yeez have had the same experience… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!





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…for Brits of a certain age… how many of these do yeez remember?


…toward the end off the 1950’s, our home in Docklands Govan was invaded by a visitor who’s presence would rule our lives forever more—television… television in the form of a four-foot high polished-wood cabinet, framing a 10-inch bevelled screen… two manually operated knobs controlled the volume and the channels… none of yer remote control mechanism rubbish… and yer transmission colours were black and white… or white and black… with varying degrees of greyness, and ‘screen snow’ depending on external weather conditions affecting yer rooftop aerials… channel choice included Auntie BBC or the local Independent Rediffusion channels, in our case, Scottish Television (STV)— ‘STV’—sounds like an early venereal infection… but, in amongst the mixture of great Cowboys and Indians Western series, Panorama and its splendid documentary coverages, we watched Armand and Michaela Denis traipsing through the jungles of far-off lands, capturing on black and white film the wonders of these distant continents… but  ‘les pieces de resistance’ eventually centred on the novelty of commercial television channel’s slew of advertisements… with jingles that still linger after 50 years… now that’s creating brand recognition for yeez… how many of these do yeez remember?…

…I’m still unable to eat only one of these ‘Caramel Wafers By Gray Dunn, 12 For Only 1/7d’ in a solo sitting…


…and, just imagine the Crooner of All Time, Mister Bing Crosby, warbling about the joys of being able to ‘Keep Going Well, Keep Going Shell’ in an age when a gallon (none of yer ‘litre’ stuff back then) of petrol cost yeez less than yer mortgage payment…



…dentists across the country rejoiced in echoing the fact that ‘Yeez’ll Wonder Where the Yellow Went, When Yeez Brush Yer Teeth With Pepsodent’



…countered by the same dentists’ occupational confection nemesis, ‘Murraymints, Murraymints, Too Good To Hurry Mints’


…for the majority of my countrymen, however, probably one of the more welcome exhortations was in knowing that ‘McEwans Is The Best Buy, The Best Buy, The Best Buy… McEwans Is The Best Buy…The Best Buy In Beer!’


…ah, the simple mem’ries, Mabel, huh?  see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!



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…what’s the ‘right’ age to become an Author?…


…the old story goes, ‘…an 800-kg Gorilla’s checking in at the front desk of the Waldorf… what suite does he get?…any bluudy suite he wants!’… I’m not aware of any 800-kg writers, and I’m unclear as to what kinda pull they may have in registering at the Waldorf… but I’m certain their age would never be a deciding factor… in much the same way, the question of what constitutes the ‘right’ age to become an Author is a massive red herring… the reason I bring this up now, is that this ol’ Jurassic has already taken his pension-level free Kamel-pass here in the Middle East… as my comedic God, Billy Connolly, says, ‘recently I reached the landmark age of 60… and even more recently, 65′… I was nudging the triple score birthday-cake event when I first began seriously to consider becoming a proper quill-scraper…


…have I already passed the authorial ‘sell-by’ date?… I’m aware of some raised eyebrows when I explain to emb’dy who wants to listen that I’ve only comparatively recently embarked on the scribbler’s path… six years hardly seems to merit the title, I can hear them think… of course, my view is different… I follow the daily ‘birthday’s list’ on Facebook, most of my links being other writers, and the majority reflect their age there also… at a guesstimate, I would pitch the average age on there as 50, give or take… food for thought… y’see, Mabel, my joints and limbs may be carrying the wear and tear of clomping around the planet for the last six-plus decades, but the wee grey cells, while certainly diminishing, I’m sure still hold enuff to be creative… in fact, I believe the longevity bit adds a broader and deeper well of material to feed the material for my masterpieces… and, at this time in my life, I’ve NUTHIN and NOB’DY around that I feel the need to prove anything to… so, what’s the ‘right’ age to become an Author?… like my Gorilla pal, any bluudy age yeez want! … see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!



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Here is my interview with Seumas Gallacher

Seumas Gallacher:

..what an amazingly good interviewer Fiona Mcvie is… thanks for that, m’Lady :):)


Originally posted on authorsinterviews:

Name : Seumas Gallacher
Age : 193 going on 10 ½
Where are you from :
A little fishing village on the Clyde called Glasgow, more exactly, Dockside Govan, of which Google Earth asked ,’Where?’
A little about your self `ie your education Family life etc :
Primary schooling in Greenfield School (a misnomer if ever there was one). Was discovered to have an IQ larger than my shoe size, and won a bursary scholarship for higher education at Allen Glen’s High School of Science in Glasgow (famous for being ‘tiled halfway up like a public lavatory’). Left school at 15 ½ (that ½ keeps getting in there) ostensibly to contribute to the family’s (non) income at the time. Hardly helped that by beetling off almost immediately to the Scottish Hebrides as a trainee banker. Started learning Gaelic (doesn’t everybody?), then competing in the lingo successfully enuff to garner several…

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Feeling Your Nuts For a Good Cause

Seumas Gallacher:

…great message for all menfolks here from my pal Author Heather Hill… for all gentlemen to take note… when someone asks yeez to show them yer nuts , they don’t always mean to prove that ye’re crazy… strong message in here re testicular Cancer..well worth the read… cheers , Heather… :):):)
….for all gentlemen to take note… when someone asks yeez to show them yer nuts , they don’t always mean to prove that ye’re crazy… strong message in here re testicular Cancer..well worth the read… cheers , Heather… :):):)

Originally posted on Heather Hill, Author & Comedy Writer:


Illustration by Rob Dicken

Sometimes I agree to do things, then only afterwards wonder if I have the necessary tools with which to complete the task in hand. Case in point – my latest endeavour to write a post for the CheckOnetTwo #feelingnuts campaign.

CheckOneTwo was founded in 2012 by brothers, Simon and Andrew Salter, who were inspired to make a change after recognising that men are needlessly dying from one of the most preventable forms of cancer.

If testicular cancer is caught early, it is 100% curable. However, being blokes themselves, they understood the male attitude towards health and knew that guys are all a little too laid back to keep a check on their love grenades.

Last month CheckOneTwo approached me asking if I could write a blog on their September challenge subject: naming your balls.

‘Sure, I’ll do a blog,’ says I. ‘Anything to help raise awareness for a great…

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…Work Space Blog Hop…LUV this one…

…some ‘Blog Hop’ requests are more unusual than others… I kinda like this latest one that my pal, Author, Pamela Beckford has tagged me into… show the good folks around the virtual quill-scrapers’ planet where yeez customarily produce yer masterpieces… easy-peasy for this ol’ Jurassic… my sidebar already carries a wee snippet about the Jumeirah at Etihad Towers Hotel in Abu Dhabi


…and as if that’s not enuff, I even smooch onto the sidebar  a bit about my walk through the Avenue at Etihad Towers to get there and back home again… who says yeez can’t at least pretend to be posh as a writer?…

Avenue_Blog Image


…if it’s at all possible to ignore the (very) upmarket brands on show in the windows on the way through the Avenue, yeez eventually settle into the 5-star lobby of the hotel… its ’5-star’ coz yeez aren’t allowed to go higher than that or people just plain won’t believe yeez… truth be told, when I get into my scribbler’s mode, I can write anywhere… noise, television, (except when football’s showing) are no distraction… similarly, I enjoy the ‘people-watching’ aspect of being in a grand hotel lobby… all human life form is there, Mabel… and some yeez have yer doubts about… being an international tourist and business resort hotel, yeez get all kinds in there… some plonkers, it must be said, some captains of industry, strutting around with  their attendant ‘go-fers’, but best of all are the various nationalities’ families… kids are amazing to watch… really… when I do get my head up, the respite from the laptop provides great amusement observing the antics of the children…and by the way, they don’t stand on ceremony when it comes to making pals… of all creeds and colour… that’s why it reinforces my notion that if yeez want a better WURLD, give it to the children to run!… so, my writing nest doubles as a spot to churn out my future Nobel Literature Prize stuff as well as a window on the WURLD… where better place to generate characters and ideas?…

…now others to tag, (only if yeez feel like joining in—no obligation, as usual), howzabout these:

D.S. Butler

Matt Hilton


John Holt

Gordon Milne

Alex Shaw

…see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!…



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