Having studied English & Drama with the particular aim of writing, he fell into business, software writing, marketing and then music promotion. But he still carried a torch for literature, for debate and for dreaming. He now steps out of the copywriting and promotional world into one of fiction.
The Old Familiar Places is the story of a passage of time between the two funerals of Ruby & Freddie, 44 years apart. This is not a whimsical love story though it is tender. It has two heart stopping moments that shape and change lives, and reminds us all about our human frailties. Love can win the day, but grief & loss spare no man. Two coming of age stories. One in the past and one in the present.
Ruby & Freddie met in 1959 and were married just one year later. Freddie is a music lawyer travelling between Manchester & London, and Ruby has a love of life & lyrics. They live in Manchester but they party in London. Freddie introduces her to all the clubs and they become the couple’s familiar places.
Just 15 years after the wedding there was the accident and Freddie was gone. Ruby was devastated, a young widow with her whole life ahead of her. Wanting for nothing but without her closest ally, how would she cope ? What support network did she have ?
Sonny was the son of Jess, Ruby’s closest friends. He knew Ruby and Freddie from the parties his Mum & Dad threw. A budding musician, Ruby takes Sonny under her wing and projects her aspirations through him by paying for his musical education.
Ruby has known pain in the past but has kept It well hidden from nearly everybody. Jess knows the truth and thinks the accident is going to be too much for Ruby to bear. She is astonished to see that her own son matures into a loving and supportive distraction for her. Sonny thrives in her company, his piano playing reaches dizzy heights and his school work excels. He seems the perfect antidote to Ruby’s loneliness.
Freddie’s music room with his grand piano becomes the centre of Sonny’s world and he rushes around at every opportunity to practice. Ruby feeds him snippets of songs, tells him of artists she’s seen, writes out lyrics that have inspired her. He soaks it all up. It is a loving reciprocal relationship.