Tag Archives: novel

they got him on milk and alcohol

A wee paragraph I like from a bit of an auld novel I really like

 

 

The yearning inside for the poison she fed me has shrouded my whole existence in a fog of decrepit uncertainly. I want to look in their eyes and reach in their pockets and take from them what I need, I know they have some, all these scumbags use it, little bags of pure muck far from the pedigree it once was when it grew in some mountain side field of a third world shit hole of a country. I have the money, I don’t have the balls. I have seen it done in films, the brown bubbling on the metal spoon, the sizzle of the demon being sucked into the plastic, the decaying teeth pulling the band tightly around a limb to coax a vein to the surface, the dribble of blood marking the incursion, the metal point penetrating, the skin lifting gently, the depression of the scene and of the plunger, the dragons blood mixing into the addicts stream, the eyes flutter, the face relaxes and they are gone, far from this world to ride on the back of whatever demons they fear and love the most.

() Francie McGivney

Apartment 45 a short extract: the Death Metal paragraph

The Death Metal paragraph

A racket is grating from behind the mould ridden door of one of the apartments, a din only a drug induced frenzy could produce, it screeches through the hallway. Beneath the plucked whines of the steel strings is the pulsating beat of a drummer who has lost the plot in a utopia of mind altering pleasure. The voice is demented, the vocal utterances reminiscent of someone been lowered slowly into a pit of sabre toothed, well fed but hungry boars. Jesus has long flowing hair apart from one side which he meticulously maintains shaved to an evening shadow consistency. His parents came from Africa where they had loved God enough to call their first born son after their saviour. I imagine the second went by the handle of Moses or Abraham. Jesus had inherited his mother’s propensity for excessive fat accumulation and his father’s poor taste in music. The cross upon which we were nailed grew in torture on a regular basis as the African prophet of Death Metal music practiced his self-composed creations with his fellow musically challenged buddies of Brad and Lucinda. Lucinda from the Bronx had a chewing gum addiction and drove men both married and single to distraction with her choice of minimal material based clothing. Brad was sired from the loins of a man who held greed as the central theme of his life’s philosophy. One day Brad would be saved from a detox centre by his Bentley driving daddy and taken to a better place. A world he should never have tried to reject where the girls all have perfect complexions and the staff enter by the back entrance hidden from view by an artistically designed hydrangea.

(c) Francie McGivney 26.01.16

Novel Extract Chapter 19

Chapter 19 Hospital days.

Then the night came when the ward was silent, apart from the background hum of various life monitoring or body function sustaining machines, the nurses in their station had their heads submerged in the reams of paperwork which accumulated during their daily shifts, the fellow residents either slept freely or in their coma’s and I silently put my foot on the ground beside the adjustable bed and the other one followed and combined they tentatively discovered they had regained the strength to support the rest of me. I stood up straight, and my eyes wandered around the ward and took in the view from this new higher perspective where the ancient cracks were subtly hidden behind the building’s sterile yellow paint, the oxygen bearing tubes stood out from their rotating connections, the sacred heart looked down upon the broken and battered, the injured and sick, the virtuous and the sinner. I breathed deeply, slowly testing the first step, feeling it give but not fully, then the next gave as well but didn’t disappoint. I looked back to the distance of a foot I had travelled and knew the road lay ahead of me once more. I took one sloping step after another until I found myself circumventing the separating curtain between my isolation and that of the man with the loud snores and pungent flatulence, who I had only saw in my imagination on account of his determination to grasp the final strand of his privacy via a blue and white striped retractable screen. I was aiming for the toilet, a noble destination for my first excursion unaided. The blood drifted from my brain as I rounded the bed of my hidden companion who looked at me with concern and a worrying curiosity as I leant against his mobile food table for support, trying to reconcile the withered specimen in front of me with the rotund grease-ball image I had imbedded in my visual cortex.

“Are you alright there buddy?” the old timer’s accent revealed a long forgotten hint of the old country behind his strong New York tones. It was always the Irish condition to retain deep inside of one’s soul the country’s accent for the benefit of fellow citizens of the land of leprechauns, irrespective of the length of time since its rhythms had dominated the person’s linguistic charms. It was a powerful sort of secret code capable of resurfacing the deepest held fears and feelings of inadequacy from years of religious based sexual and moral repression, in the most successful and confident of emigrants. Its malignant purpose was to restore the natural order of the Irish way, where no one was ever allowed to indulge in the audacity of stepping above their predefined station in life. A station based on parental roots, primary school inadequacies and level of skill with a hurley or football held in the hands of red faced youths who were expected to retain the national drive for homogenise behaviour and to avoid stepping beyond the safety of the proverbial rails.

“Yeah not a bother, just a bit of a head rush” I said looking down at his prone body sensing the danger in the way his eyes fixed upon me and in the look he had about him of a man who retained an interest in the goings on of the land in which he was born and raised, despite having lived longer away from its green fields than in them.

(c) Francie McGivney

the hospital part 3

The next half hour consisted of all manner of probing in a disturbingly gentle way by John who stuck needles into his arm, thermometers into his mouth, wrapped Velcro straps around his arm and finally probed his mind, asking him a heap of questions to confirm if Patsy was who he said he was. By the end of it he had forgotten his disappointment but wondered had he any blood left inside of his body. Even more unnerving was why anyone would want to pretend to be someone else, who was about to be half slaughtered on an operating table. Even one of the boys from the home of the deranged would have more sense surely than to have their back bone sliced and diced just for the fun of it. Yet going by the amount of times he had to give his name and date of birth there must be lunatics out there willing to take on surgery not meant for themselves.

“Is the accident and emergency room busy today John” Patsy enquired, a serious look on his face and twinkle in the one eye facing the nurse.

“I wouldn’t know Patsy, why?” John replied as he pulled back the plunger of the syringe, attached to one of three different needles sticking out of his arms and hands. A trail of rich red blood trailed into the test tube to be replaced quickly by another.

“It’s just you are after taken enough blood out of me to keep the whole of Dublin in blood for weeks” Patsy replied watching in fascination as the stream of liquid was pulled out of him.

“You’re a gas man Patsy. That’s fine strong looking blood you have there. Pure dark red, are you taking any medication or drugs or anything?” John wasn’t the type of man to indulge in humorous banter while caring for his charges.

“Not a thing” He hoped his face wouldn’t give away the slight bit of guilt, he felt over hiding the truth, but he was damned if he was telling them something which would for ever be on his medical record, to come back to bite him for the rest of his life. He had looked it up and there was no real harm in it anyway. The whole of the country were on some form of drugs and most of them used stuff which made you weak where as he took was something making you strong.

“Well you know it’s better to tell us, the anaesthetics can mix badly with some things. Especially the likes of steroids, you are a big lump of a lad.” The fun and games were gone now as John stared into Patsy’s eye looking for answers where none would be given.

Why had he tried to be a smart arse with the blood comment, now the fecking gobshite was looking at him all queer trying to delve into his soul.

“It comes from my mother side” Patsy said

“You buy drugs from your mother’s family.” John’s face betrayed his shock at hearing a bigger admission than even he had expected. Just then Gretha lost control of her footing as she leaned too far against the curtain to hear a bit better. She ended up lying across the bed with her face in Patsys groin and her legs straggling up in the air. Her head bobbed up and down as she tried to swing herself back up to standing. Patsy tried to move to help her but ended up with his hips going up and down in motion with Gretha’s as the drip in his arm restricted his movement. John jumped up and ran around to save Gretha. He had just managed to get her away from stimulating something she had never even heard of, not to mind practised up until then, when there was a terrible loud bang behind them. Bridie who had indeed not only heard of but had seen pictures of the same act, came in from the toilet to see her friend in such a compromising position and took a weakness in her knees and crumbled onto the floor. A smile crossed Patsy’s lips as the madness of the whole situation reminded him of an episode from a television comedy show from the 70’s. But the smile was put on the other side of his face when Gretha, who had realised he was laughing at herself and her best friend, suddenly took great offence and swung back a big leathery hand and planted him a slap on the side of the face capable of knocking a brewery strong horse into the middle of next week. Patsy slumped back against the pillow with his hand over his stinging face, struggling to hold on to consciousness, while Gretha ran over to Bridie who John was helping to get back in to bed.

This is a nightmare was all Patsy could think, as John shot him a filthy look as he ran out of the ward to get help. He decided he would try to explain to him later on, that he had only meant he was big because his mother side of the family were big boned farmers of decent stock, with women folk who were as strong as some of the bulls out in the fields. But for the time been he had to live as a drug taking member of a drug selling family, who had just been taken advantage of by a woman in her eighties, who had then given him a black eye when she realised that he had somehow degraded her standing in the community.

Chapter 2: The Move

“is there any chance of an ice pack for my eye?” Patsy asked John, once they were in the corridor and away from Gretha and Betty who were still not the better of the whole incident.

“Ah now John are you not talking to me, it wasn’t my fault” but still he refused to answer. The wheelchair cruised along the corridors with Patsy and his suitcase heading for the Neurosurgery ward.

“Fecking gobshite” Patsy mumbled to himself, he could never bear the silent treatment. He would get up out of the chair and walk only he hadn’t a balls notion where he was meant to be going. When they reached the new ward he was left in the hall as John whispered something to the matron. He didn’t need his ears to start itching to know who they were talking about, as the pair of them stood there throwing him dirty looks. Eventually John passed him by with what looked like tears streaking his soft cheeks and the matron who was a voluptuous woman, with a contemptuous look in her eye, came over to him.

“It wasn’t my fault you know” Patsy said immediately, determined to get his spoke in first. She stood there looking at him over the mounts of her sizeable bosom, without a word passing her lips and a face on her which would turn an alpha male grey back gorilla into a squealing baboon. A trickle of coldness ran down his back where it gathered along the band of his brand new red and green stripped y fronts. Her mouth opened and Patsys’s closed with a deep breath and then just as he was about to get up and do a runner and forget about the whole operation business, she burst out laughing.

“It’s the first time to have someone as famous as yourself on the ward. You’re the talk of the whole hospital, poor John may never be the same and I hear you have introduced two elderly women to all manner of wild practices and debauchery. The female staff will be delighted to get a chance of taking care of you.”

“It didn’t take much introducing, she knew exactly where to fall and what to do.” Patsy replied smiling, he was still too cautious to actually join in the laughing. His facing started to sting again now he had been taken back from the precipice of nursing horror.

“Do the women always fall into your lap in the right position” she replied patting the inside of his upper thigh, giving it a bit of a squeeze that drove a pulse of excitement and utter horror and confusion through him. He met her wink with a smile while inside he was trying to figure out what his penis thought it was exactly up to

Writing 

she didn’t look the maywest. Her nose was pointing in two directions which made the path of her tears meander in a most preciliar fashion. She was screaming and moaning and mumbling to herself. The neighbours stood at their doors with ears stretched to avoid missing the scandal.

“Bit of a domestic mr shanks” the auld bitch in 12a asked. Her look of concern failing miserably to hide her delight. I heard a thump from one of the floors beneath, where I stood thinking I should have pegged her out the window. It’s not like I didn’t appreciate short hair on a woman but I only put up with this one because of her Long blonde locks which now lay butchered on some gobshite hairdressers floor. I hoped the nutter in 3a wasn’t going to come up to see what was happening. He had just been released and looked like a man who wouldn’t mind spending another spell inside for the pleasure of beating lumps out of a woman beater. 
Francie McGivney on the iPhone with a version of an extract from the novel I working on. Just rewrote it on the phone just for fun

Thoughts on writing

There I was with the words on the page. The first attempts at a novel and the sentences were piled up and I had listened to the wisdom of writers and was trying to use it. Then one night you think that the boy who is the story needs to live in the shadows with a mind like my own but willing to follow his thoughts. And the story changes easily and although Im still only at the start of writing it I am really enjoying the whole experience. If no one else ever reads it then it doesn’t matter because I will have enjoyed reading it myself and along the way my mind has developed.
I think anyone who has any inclination should try it. I’m far from a good writer but that doesn’t matter it’s the experience that gives the therapy and healing not the finished product. And more importantly the fun.

a paragraph from the second chapter of Francie’s Chronicles

All of a sudden I heard behind me the sound of the master standing straight up, making a terrible screeching sound, as the pew he was sharing with the Principal was driven back a few inches into the knees of Tom Connolly’s mother, who leaped straight up and hit him an unmerciful clatter with her bag across the back of the head, by way of pure instinct at having her ankles nearly cut from her. She was a feisty woman was Ms Connolly and a fine looking one at that. I was sure there was more than just my class in the church that night who thought it was about time someone hit a belt to that auld master after all the beatings he had dished out to us and the generations of our brothers before us. I was hoping the whole gallery would erupt into a round of applause but instead the big lump started to shake and tears flowed down his cheeks in torrents. His tears didn’t empty the room in my head that I had locked away until the day I could get my own revenge on the pitiful excuse for a man. He made a run for the back of the church with Ms Connolly and the rest of the adults looking at him and me eyeing in a most peculiar fashion Ms Connolly who had a lovely way about her altogether, I was sat there in a bewilderment within myself about whether I had another sin to confess.

Start of a chapter from a novel i’m working on

Chapter Running With the Girl

It was the dreams that made me run away. They came every night with the wet sheets. I woke up cold and shivering, not knowing where I was or how I would get back to where I came from. My mother had turned into a robot in them. She still looked the same and moved the same but the heat of her love had turned into the cold of isolation.

Each morning my real world mother came in and took the wet sheets away, I could smell something different from her breath, that hadn’t been there before. It was the same smell that my Nan had after drinking a naggan of whiskey.

It was a Friday when I put a pair of jeans, three t-shirts and a towel into a bag and sneaked it out of the house. Cora knew something was wrong as we walked along.

“I’m running away” I told her.

“No you’re not” she replied smiling, that smile could feed any hunger I would ever have inside of me.

“I am, serious. I am going to get a bus up to Dublin.”

“Your only twelve, you can’t run away.” She had stopped and was holding both my hands.

“Why not? I can get a job or something.”

“Francie you can’t, honest to God, why are you going? You won’t be able to get a job, you don’t know how to do anything.” the softness in her voice was breaking me down, I didn’t know now if I really wanted to go. I didn’t want to go anywhere she wouldn’t be.

“I don’t know Cora. I just have to.”

“I’ll come with you.” she replied, her voice filling back up with its usual enthusiasm.

“You can’t run away.”

“Why not? Are you saying girls can’t do what men can do? You better not be saying that, Francie Kelly or I will never talk to you again.” she was looking straight into my eyes. She kissed my lips gently, when I didn’t reply. I didn’t know what words to say, even if I could manage to talk, as my face went crimson from the wonderful heat spreading all over me from the quick feel of her lips on mine.

“Wait there, don’t move an inch” she ordered and then she was gone back the way we had come.

It felt right having her sitting on the seat beside me on the bus. The driver had barely acknowledged us when we got on and paid. I had the communion money, I had saved in the wallet that my daddy had given me. It had been a present from his brother in Australia. It held the two hundred pounds easily. Even if I didn’t get a job surely that would keep us going for ages.

She leaned her head against my shoulder after she placed the bag she had taken from home under the seat.

“Put your arm around me Francie, make me feel warm” she whispered and I did. I looked at the blonde hair and the top of her face, while she looked outside at the trees and nature. Every time the bus drove through a town she sat up and leaned her head against the window turning from side to side so she didn’t miss anything. I saw glimpses of the things she pointed out to me, but mainly I just saw her. My side felt cold while she was at the window. Each time the towns retreated behind the bus, she leaned back into me and we shared the heat of each other once more. I kissed the top of her head and she looked up at me and smiled. I smiled back as the rest of the world faded away and I felt something inside of me that I never felt before.

“Listen to this Francie.” She took out her Walkman and put one plug in my ear and the other in hers. Her fingers on the buttons were as soft and gentle as the rest of her and they fascinated me as much as the words of her mind. There was a whirling sound and a guitar riff was followed by Bruce Springsteen singing about never retreating and never surrendering.

“That’s me and you Francie Kelly. No retreat and no surrender.” She said suddenly turning around and kissing me on the lips for the second time that day, before quickly sinking back into my arm and holding my hand where it touched her shoulder.

“What will we do when we get there Francie?”

“I don’t know but we will find out together, it will be the start of our adventure.”

“Will we travel to different countries?”

“Of course but the ones we will go to will be those with the wildest of adventures, where the most beautiful of nature’s animals live and where the plants have the strangest and sweetest of smells and trees with leaves of all the colours of the rainbow stretch up in to the sky.”

“Will we meet many people?”

“We will meet hundreds and each one of them will let us life with them for a while. They will tell us all about their lives and show us where and how they live?”

“What about the ocean Francie?”

“We will sail down the Amazon and life in the trees and at the end of the river we will reach the ocean and swim in it among dolphins and schools of fish. A whale will come along and pick us up on its back and we will go out into the deepest part, to see the sunsets that only the creatures of the sea have ever seen.”

“Will you stay with me for ever Francie?”

“If I ever leave you Cora then the seas will dry up and the sun will burn out and the world will come to an end.”

“Wow we better stick together then.”

We sat in silence until the bus stopped at the depot. We stepped out and we were swallowed up into a different world. Everywhere we looked people walked faster than they did at home. There was so many of them. The noise level was the scariest. It was deafening yet we could hear no one particular sound. The car horns, the people talking, the birds squawking, the rustle of newspapers, the engines of the cars all of it just combined into one operatic rush of sound that surrounded us, as we stood motionless looking out at the city streets. The smell from the river mixed with the filth on the pavement created a thickness in the air, making it harder to breath than at home where fresh fields were everywhere to be seen. A woman in rags who looked like the victim of a famine country in Africa, except with pale skin turned black with dirt, stood beyond the glass door that separated the relative safety of the depot from the noise and our potential future. In her hands she had a bundle of The Big Issue magazine for sale.

Character

A client was in with me today and he told me this story about a lad he used to hire a house to. It was shocking funny one but better than the laughter it caused was the character it gave me for one of my novels. I was just writing and I thought that yeah this lad is who I need and then I thought of another story someone else told me and I thought what if they were the same person and so they became the same person.
I think I am going to like this guy I hope he doesn’t go of and get himself killed or clean up his act before I get a couple of thousand words out of the mad lunatic
The picture is of a bottle of tullamore dew I got for birthday from my big sister. It’s grand sup of whiskey as pure as a virgins thoughts in mass