Sunday, 29 November 2015

Car Wash Wish

I have never had much joy in cleaning my car...but I loved writing 'Car Wash Wish' for Barrington Stoke (Edited by Emma Baker) and not once, but four times in the writing of this book, I  found myself sitting in a car wash making notes about such things as tokens and trying to capture the intense sensations that come from being enclosed in a world of water, sponges, brushes, buffers and bubbles while having one of the most important father and son conversations.

Just the other day I was telling a school group about my next book 'Car Wash Wish'  which comes out in January 2016 and a boy commented on the titles of my shorter stories for Barrington Stoke -
 'Brace Mouth False Teeth' and 'Car Wash Wish'  'They're weird but good,' he said...'makes you want to read them to find out what it all means!'

The truth is these quirky titles and stories have come to me, like any other stories do because I get affected by the characters and their lives. When I set out to write the story of 'Car Wash Wish' (About two generations of fathers and sons who have their very best conversations while in the car wash!) I had no idea that my character Hudson would be on the Asperger's Spectrum until the way his thoughts formed led me to that exploration.

Writing is such a fascinating process of discovery... often it feels like characters come to you and say 'What about me?' Can you capture my voice?' I discovered as I wrote the story that Hudson and his Dad have 'Zed - ish' (unusual and rare) shaped thoughts. Hudson finds it easier to speak to his unborn sister (Zygote) than to the people around him. As I wrote the character of Hudson I learned so much about the difficulties he faces in getting people to understand his world view and it's a real treat now to see his lovely smile breaking through on the cover of 'Car Wash Wish.'

Here is a sneak preview of Hudson's voice.

It's the day of his Grandfather's funeral and instead of being at the wake... father and son find unexpected comfort in the enclosed world of the car wash!

' I don't know what it is about being all cosy in this car wash together, but I wish Dad would carry on talking to me about Grandad. Or about anything really because it feels good to have the sound of Dad's Voice in my ear. I don't want him ever to stop talking to me. I don't care what the words mean. I wish they would just keep washing over me. Why do things have to end?

My dad talking and talking to's like the engine of a car that everyone thought was dead but someone's managed to fix it and now its spluttering back to life.'
(Pg 81 - Car Wash Wish)

Car Wash Wish comes out in January and is available for pre-orders. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed discovering the story through Hudson's eyes.

I am delighted that it is has been selected by The Bookseller as a January release to watch out for.