Return of the Grievous Ridgwell

by joseph ridgwell

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Gather round lit fiends and listen in, I have lit gossip to spread, for verily by reading this post you will be party to some Ridgwell revelations that will truly twist your melons and make you end up vibrating, like someone has just spiked your drink.

‘What’s happened to you man? Said some long-haired freak just the other day.  ‘You’ve been in the JOB too long, you’re just not hip with it anymore. Word on the street is that you’ve slipped.’

This gimp was not giving out any rays, not good ones anyway. In any other circumstances I would’ve done a Rambo on the mother. ‘Yeah, and why’s that then amigo?’

‘One fucking short story Ridgwell, and a very short one at that.’

‘Meaning?’

‘That’s all you’ve published all freaking year. Word is that you’re now a drinker who writes as opposed to a writer who drinks.’

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It was true, I had only published one short story in 2013, The Famous Ice-Cream Run out on 3AM Press.

‘What about PUSH magazine, work of mine appears in every edition and they are now up to PUSH 6.’

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‘That doesn’t count.’

‘Why the fuck not hammerhead?’

‘The editor of PUSH goes by the name of Joe England – word is that you are JOE ENGLAND!’

‘Don’t be brain-dead, being half Irish and one quart Spanish & French, I would never call myself Joe England, Joe Cockney, or King of the Cockneys, but not Joe England.’

‘The Jury’s out. One short story and we’re now in August, what the fuck do you say to that?’

‘Jack shit.’

‘Jack shit?’

‘Diddly squat.’

‘Are you serious?’

Was I serious? Truth, lit fiends, was that I’d been biding my time and the time was nigh.  Things were about to go overground big style. like a duck on the water it may have appeared on the surface that I was doing nothing, but underwater my cockney pins were going twelve to the dozen, and now it was all happening. I eyeballed the longhair and smiled a victory smile.

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‘A Child of the Jago.’

‘Huh?’

‘Artwork is being printed this week by a Master printmaker. Poetry collection about my childhood in East London to be published by Kilmog Press. The book about East London the world has been waiting for and written by a genuine Cockney.’

‘Woah.’

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‘Take the shame. Short story collection out early 2014 with the mighty Bottle of Smoke Press.  Cover artwork and illustrations to be done by senior lit fiend head, Pepe Arroyo, Calif’s finest.’

‘Oh shit.’

‘Pepe might just be busting out his knives as we speak.’

‘Busting out his knives?’

‘I’m talking woodcuts amigo.’

‘Holy moly.’

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‘Stay sane. The hardbacks of Fire Island are also close to seeing light.’

‘Man, I never thought I’d see the day.’

‘Nor did I, but it just goes to show ya never can tell. One more thing.’

‘I’m not sure I can take anymore.’

‘Don’t be a fool. Word is that the legendary Blackheath Press are gearing up for the release of a prequel to Last Days of the Cross.’

‘Oh, shit, I think I just came in my pants.’

And another thing, PUSH 6 will be out within weeks.’

‘Don’t tell me…’

‘That’s right I’m in it.’

The long hair started crying, just like a little girl.

‘Like my Jamaican friends say, ‘Ridgwell time soon mus come.’

‘Ahh, ooohhh, wahhhhhh…’

So long sucker.’

So that’s it lit fiends, all the lit gossip I can muster. Now sit back, pop the cap on a cold one, check out the retro girly card set and listen to Gram Parsons and the Fallen Angels. And remember, no matter what shit is going down in your life, stay groovy, always…

nudies

Joe Ridgwell

Burntyisland