One Fine Day

This morning (24/08/02019) at the Presteigne Festival, I talked for the first time about my new project, which is called, as you might have guessed, One Fine Day. So It seemed an appropriate moment to do a first post here.

It’s a response to the diary of my seven times great great grandfather, old Thomas Marchant of Hurstpierpoint, which he kept (with a few gaps), between 01714 and 01728. I wrote a blog post about my discovery of the diary, back in 02015, but it was only talking to my seven year old grandaughter Violet at Christmas last year that I realised that this material was what I wanted to play with for my next t’ing.

I use the diary to tell stories from the day-to-day life of exactly 300 years ago, at the exact moment the United Kingdom came into being and society was poised on the edge of irreversible social and economic change. It’s a story of how to be first on the block with new transformative technology, and how to do well out of a civil war. It’s a story of dung-carrying, fish-farming, hangovers, of high politics and low morals, of the birth of modern surgery, the bad end of a buck in Regency Brighton, of madness, suicide, and lardy cake.

I want to talk to my seven times great great grandfather, and to listen to what he has to say. To see if we can have a conversation from the opposite ends of industrialisation.

There will be a book, published by somebody, at some point. Do write in, if you think that might be you.

At the top of this post is a first sketch by Jules Dicken, aka Moonshake Design, at a cover, or a covering logo, or something. He’s the genius who did the cover for the paperback edition of ‘A Hero For High Times’. He’s going to turn this sketch into a linocut, and then, hopefully, he’s going to do a series of 12 linocuts to illustrate the project. They’ll be in the book, and people will be able to get prints. There will be merch.

There will be regular podcasts, as I finally learn how to do them to a professional standard.

There’s going to be music stuff. A song is being recorded. Are we talking folk-psych? I think we might be.

In my dreams, there’s going to be stuff in Newhaven about Edward Gibbon, though I don’t quite know what or how.

This time, I’m going to be talking about the project while I’m writing it, instead of after, which seems a lot more fun to me. There are pictures to see, jokes and songs to hear, terrifying political conclusions to be drawn, and an eighteenth century version of hummus to eat.

I’ve got talks coming up this September in Lewes and Ludlow, after today’s highly well-recieved launch, say it though I do myself.

I will come and talk about One Fine Day, in YOUR village hall or WI or Rotary or whatevs. I am inexpensive for what you get. Book me, and I will come. Let’s put our diaries together! Email address above!

2 Responses

  1. Jo Conti says:

    Loving your book ‘One Fine Day’ Ian. Ali Kedge sent it over as I was particularly poorly with covid.
    I’m not a great history loving person but this gripped me.
    Btw is Richard ‘bug man’ Jones the Richard from Liverpool? Big blue eyes? Xx

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