Showcase: Kate Rigby
Kate Rigby was nominated as an Indie Author who deserves appreciation and acknowledgement of her work. I am pleased to present this author a showcase blog post.
Kate Rigby was born near Liverpool and now lives in the south west of England. She’s been writing for nearly forty years. She has been traditionally published, small press published and indie published.
She realized her unhip credentials were mounting so she decided to write about it. Little Guide to Unhip was first published in 2010 and has since been updated.
However, she’s not completely unhip. Her punk novel, Fall Of The Flamingo Circus was published by Allison & Busby (1990) and by Villard (American hardback 1990). Skrev Press published her novels Seaview Terrace (2003) Sucka! (2004) and Break Point (2006) and other shorter work appeared in Skrev’s avant garde magazine during the noughties.
Thalidomide Kid was published by Bewrite Books (2007).
Her novel Savage To Savvy was an Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award (ABNA) Quarter-Finalist in 2012.
She has had other short stories published and shortlisted including Hard Workers and Headboards, first published in The Diva Book of Short Stories, in an erotic anthology published by Pfoxmoor Publishing and more recently in an anthology of Awkward Sexcapades by Beating Windward Press.
She also received a Southern Arts bursary for her novel Where A Shadow Played (now re-Kindled as Did You Whisper Back?).
She has re-Kindled her backlist and is gradually getting her titles (back) into paperback.
Far Cry From The Turquoise Room,
Suckers n Scallies (formerly Sucka!)
Down The Tubes
She Looks Pale
Tales By Kindlelight (a collection of short stories, many of them previously published or shortlisted in short story competitions and soon to be in paperback as She Looks Pale & Other Stories),
Savage To Savvy (ABNA Quarter-Finalist 2012)
The Dead Club
The Other Side Of Carrie Cornish
Who or what is the other side of Carrie Cornish?
And who is the woman who ends up critically ill in hospital?
Rewind twelve months and Carrie and her partner Sandy have been asked to write a diary for a month by Environmental Health Officer, Mr Vowells, after a noisy family move in next door to them in a small quite market town in Devon. Set against a backdrop of austerity and cuts, Carrie and Sandy have health problems and are struggling with welfare reform policies as well as having to deal with noise on a daily basis: rows, repetitive banging, loud music, children shouting and screaming, dog noise and fouling. As the noise takes its toll on their health, Carrie begins to lose her grip, using her diary as a record of her fragile state of mind. Alternating between first person (Carrie’s diary entries) and third person, Carrie’s thoughts and diary entries reveal something much more than a neighbourhood dispute: a personal crusade against authority and injustices in general as her entries descend into paranoia juxtaposed with disjointed news items. Having stuck together and held a united front through their neighbourhood disputes, holes are now exposed in Carrie and Sandy’s relationship as the pressure mounts.
But just who are the victims and who are the perpetrators?
An account of an all too familiar situation we all dread – having our peace and lifestyle shattered from next door neighbours.
They say the way I see things is a bit hinky. Like when you take a picture and it needs straightening in iPhoto. Only it’s my mind that wants tweaking and you need a shrink to do that. I thought I would preface this with that information, Mr Vowells, as you’ve asked us to keep a diary for a month.
I don’t know how to begin or what sort of information you want from us, Mr Vowells, but you need to know that Sandy has MS and I have what they call Mental Health issues as follows: Generalised Anxiety, Panic Disorder, OCD, Social Phobia and some Agoraphobia. But Sandy and I are both articulate and responsible people who just want a quiet life. Sandy is in his early sixties and though I’m fifteen years younger, I’ve reached an age where I want the same too.
We chose to live somewhere quiet. The Torquay estate where we moved from was so rough that even the dogs were on an ASBO. That’s what me and Sandy used to joke about, although it wasn’t really funny. Not when you’re in the thick of it. Though when we first moved there we were probably the neighbours from hell with our loud music. But you reach a time in your lives, I suppose. You reach a point where you outgrow noise. Where you crave quiet. So we came here to this part of South Devon to get away from that kind of life. OK, it’s not proper country here, not like where my parents live. Where the air is filled with the sound of clip-clopping horses and tractors, and you’ll find sheep and cows and even alpacas in the fields, bred for their wool which fetch a nice price, not so much for the alpaca farmers but at the ready-made clothes’ end of the market. We didn’t want to be that rural, Sandy and I, but nothing too urban either. So we chose this small market town on the River Dart for its individual shops with hand-crafted knick knacks and none of your whopping megastores—they’d just make me giddy. We chose this town for its creative appeal and applied to live here.
We heard about some shared ownership houses being built through Shires Housing Association and we applied for our house here at Pennycott, before it was even built. We saw the architect’s drawings, beautiful white houses in a neoclassical style. Some with two bedrooms, some with three. The sizes of the rooms looked reasonable, and the two bedroomed houses had longer galley kitchens than we were used to. We had just enough money for a fifty per cent share between us, and we saw the land where our house was to be built. We travelled back and forth to watch its progress, we saw the breeze blocks going up, and then slowly a row of two and three bedroom houses began to take shape, cement mixers cluttering the site.
Later, when the insides of the Pennycott houses were almost complete, we came down to visit the house we’d reserved. There was a Portakabin and a site manager and a lot of smart sales people wandering about in the rain. There were no gardens, yet. Just concrete mixers and plenty of sloppy pink Devon mud. Without gardens the houses seemed so close together. Only a few footsteps from Number 3 (ours) to Number 1(two doors up). But space, like time, seems further away when it’s packed with lots of detail: fences and plants and sheds. And our walls grew—once we’d moved in—while the other walls around us shifted away.
Or her occasional blog: