March 2009

Over To You Barbara!

Well, I said I’d post it as a main review, so here you are! I’ll make no comment at the moment except to say its considerably shortened my Blog for today and has gone up completely unedited.  I will answer a couple of points tomorrow though.  But for the moment, its over to you Barbara! . . .

 

  • barbara green Says:
    Here it is! Is your dob 1945 David–or is it 46?

    Hope its okay, its taken me a while and maybe I will think of other stuff later, but I think these are the main thoughts:

    In the Shadow of the Highgate Vampire by David Farrant.

    A Review by Barbara Green.

    First, the title. Shadow ? Vampire ? Have I missed the point or is this a deliberate pun? Vampires don’t cast shadows , but it could be said, with much truth , that the shadow the “Highgate Vampire” cast over David and others , has certainly been long and dark over the years .Who and what the “vampire” was is discussed at the end of the book, so you will have to read the rest first to understand the situation.(Even then, you will have to wait for Volume 2 to complete the tale.)

    In Volume One, David describes his life from 1945, the year of his birth, until 1974 when he ended up mouldering in a gloomy dungeon at Brixton Prison. The narrative is straightforward, well written and a truthful account of his life and loves up until his incarceration.Its main theme is his education, or lack of it , his Wiccan involvement, his romantic entanglements, his paranormal research and his fateful confrontation with the “Highgate Vampire.” If you didn’t know David to start with then this book will have you hooked and wondering what the dickens ……;and if, like me, you already know him and have read his work before, it is still a compelling read.

    There is a lot of candid details going right back to the swinging sixties, but the reason for this is not entirely due to David’s memories but the fact that these accounts were written, in diary form, at, or near, the time in which they happened. David tells me he hasn’t edited the stories but left them as written, although naturally they have been collated into a readable narrative. Many of us might have been tempted to “tone down” our youthful follies but David has not. At the end of the day there is nothing too shocking within these pages, though I am curious as to why David was so against education ; clearly he derived an education somewhere or he would not have been able to produce the volumes of work he has in the past, including this, his latest book ! As for his romances, well, it was the swinging sixties and I was also in my prime in those wonderful days of the 1960s , with, I hasten to add, less of the peace and love and more of make war not love!

    Now for my critique! Well, I was somewhat mystified over the Alison affair but can understand that David wanted to keep this private. But maybe he could have explained things a bit more clearly while keeping his precious personal memories in his heart. I would have rather liked some commentary of the times, you know, a bit of background and maybe some quotes from the famous bands and suchlike, to go along with the text. I am left feeling that David lived –and still does—entirely in his own world, if not universe, and remained somewhat oblivious to what was happening “out there”! Or it may just be the way he writes, so it isn’t really a criticism.

    Well we will have to wait for Shadow Volume Two, which I presume will cover the years from 1974 until the present time. Maybe the clear dazzling light of David’s books, including the fully fledged Volume Two, will eventually send the “vampire” packing in true vampire busting style, so that there will be no more shadows cast over the lives of those who have , like David,been victims of the moonshine and melodrama of the Highgate Vampire saga .

  • For the moment
  • David
  • (Not forgetting Barbara, of course!  Thanks Barbara)
  • ‘Plenty Of Time’ . . .

    Well, I bought some more of that wine today as there was still some left and it turned out to be very nice.  It is nice to relax in the evenings and its still too cold for beer though; and anyway, its not so ‘warming’.
     

    Barbara and Cat appear to be ‘arguing’ over on the relies, so think I’ll just stay here – its safer!
     

    But whatever Cat thinks, its very kind of Barbara to offer to write me a review here.  When she’s done it, I’ll probably ‘filch’ it and put it up as part of a main Blog here, but obviously, I’ll ask her first.  Flossie’s also said she’ll write something about the book and I’d like to do the same with her when she’s finished it – though obviously ask her permission first as well.
     

    You can’t really blame me.  The book is important to me which is why I took about 18 long months writing it.  I think people should be allowed their honest opinions as opposed to these just getting ‘hidden away’ in the replies.  Quite apart from that, it’ll help to shorten my input and probably keep people happy at the same time!
     

    Anyway, that should prove to you all I don’t – or won’t – cut or edit replies.  Whatever their opinions are – ‘good’ or ‘bad’ – they will be allowed.
     

    In fact, do you know, I’ve never really had to edit anything here.  Well, tell a lie.  Only once.  And that was when that Cat put up some remarks about ‘Catholic schoolgirls’!  Even then, I left up most of the unruly creature’s post, but just left out a couple of ‘offending’ – or potentially offending – lines.  That was over a year ago, admittedly, but its why I have to watch him so closely.  Oh yes!  He did it yet again by giving a link which I did not check. It was to a picture of Barbara and the Yorkshire dumpling standing on some bridge.  First I knew of it was when I got a phone call  saying “That’s not your copyright, you’d best remove it”!  Well, I did. But that wretched creature certainly has to be watched!
     

    So what’s news?  Well, I’m giving a Talk near Brighton  next month (I mean May) with the book as its theme.  So that should be good.  Its only a hour on the train and I’m being picked up from the station.  It’ll probably take the best part of an hour to get to Victoria which will be half the journey time.  And then of course, I have to get back.  It is in the evening, but there will still be plenty of time to get back.  ‘Plenty of time’ is what I always prefer.  I just hate rushing things!
     

    I’ll tell you about that afterwards.
     

    Another guy has asked to interview me before 6th April for a magazine project.  I told him he could come here as that would be far easier.  I’ll tell you about that afterwards as well.  Or refer you to the publication so you can just go out and buy it.
     

    What else?  I’ve agreed to do some filming one day this coming week for another separate project.  But again, that’s indoors here again so minimum of inconvenience.  Been promised a DVD copy of it with permission to use after their showing.  So all said and done, the material is mounting up.  Have to start charging an admission fee for people to watch all this stuff!  I would never do that in reality but I could sure make a tidy sum!
     

    So anyway everyone, that’s today’s Blog.  Back to the other writing and maybe just one more glass of that lovely wine!  Give me a call tomorrow evening K as we arranged.
     

    Suppose I’d better have a quick look in at the replies after just to make sure that Cat’s behaving!
     

    For the moment though,
     

    David

    TV Things

    Well, not bad, its only Wednesday – only two days late!
     

    I know K cares about me really, which is why I try and please her even if I am a bit late.  I do see her point though.  If you have a Blog, you mustn’t neglect it, or rather, get in the habit of neglecting it.  Its difficult sometimes though to know exactly what to say; as I pointed out last time.
     

    Well, I suppose some news might be in order.  I’ve sold 9 books now which is not bad in only a couple of weeks. Might just get to make a respectable living out of writing yet!  Though I really don’t do it for the money.  In fact, I don’t do anything for money.  If money comes in out of doing something I like – fair enough.  Helps to pay a few bills I suppose
     

    Talking of ‘demands for money’, I still haven’t heard back from the TV licencing people.  They should really think themselves lucky really as I would definitely win.  Ironically, I don’t even use the video viewer much now.  Only really when I want to show somebody TV things I’ve done.  There have been more than most people might realise as some get repeated  aboard, and not always in English.  The funniest one I saw was shown in South America and I was dubbed in Spanish.  Then  there were also two more in Italy.
     

    A few more I’m still waiting for, but that could take months.  Nice to have them all on file though, when they arrive.
     

    I have now managed to get ‘KD’s’ name removed as the author of my new book  Only a comparatively small thing, I know, as everybody knows I wrote it and he (or she even!?) only wrote an introduction.  Very good Introduction it was too, so I’m not knocking that.
     

    Actually, Barbara has said she is going to review the book on here, which she’s now finished.  As I said Barbara, say what you want.  I welcome honest criticism as I said, and if there’s anything you might disapprove of, please just say so.  I can’t wait to see it!
     

    Well, I’m really looking forward to Sunday morning 2am.  Yes the clocks are going  forward if I’m not getting my weeks muddled up.  You’re supposed to ‘lose’ an hour’s sleep – but that really won’t affect me!
     

    Bought some half price wine in the store today.  It was £4.99 a bottle but the point is, it was originally almost £10 a bottle.  It should be good wine for that price.  Well, it better be!  I bought four!
     

    Try it was I get back to the new book later.
     

    And, that, everyone, is really it for now.  I really have run out of things to say.
     

    So for the moment,
     

    David
     

    PS Hurry up with your review Barbara!

    Hardly Short Of A Miracle

    OK  K.!  To save you a phone call I’m doing another Blog right now.  Don’t know what on earth I’m going to write about as I haven’t even thought about it.  In fact, I never do.  I never plan writing, and its just the same when I give Talks.  Obviously with the latter, I have some idea of the basic subject but I never work from any script.
     

    So that still leaves me with not knowing exactly what to say now.  The truth is I just don’t really feel like writing this evening; probably because I’ve been doing other things elsewhere.
     

    Well, I could be boring, so how about the weather?!
     

    Well, I expect I’m stating the obvious, but the weather has certainly changed for the better now.  I certainly felt that cold spell which lasted for well over two months.  It didn’t stop me working; just slowed me down a little!  But it couldn’t have slowed me down that much come to think about it.  The book came out on time and so will the next one.
     

    I’m seeing Gareth on Sunday this week (next week technically I suppose) and a couple of other people are coming over as well.
     

    I think I mentioned it, but I now have the 47-minute Talk I gave for a Community Centre on DVD.  How I spoke for that long continuously with hardly short of a miracle – but I did!  Hopefully you will be seeing a few short extracts from this film soon, but I have to get permission first.
     

    What else?  Well I started The Highgate Vampire Society online on Facebook.  Its got 28 members already and its only been going about a week   Not so sure that was a good idea at the moment as it means yet another commitment that I have to fulfil.  If, or rather when, I take a break from the current book, then I also have to deal with that!  People may say a lot of things about me, but never let it be said I lead a quiet life.
     

    My friend Kurt Essex also invited me onto his website “Haunted Britain” and I’ve also written a couple of short articles for that
     

    Flossie has also said she will be posting me that American book over in which I believe I am mentioned.  So looking forward to that.  (I think I am anyway – I don’t know what the author has said yet!).
     

    Well after this, I’m really going to have a ‘night off’ tonight!  No more writing, no more letters . . . no more nothing!  Just a couple of glasses of wine will do!
     

    Do you know, it really is good not having a television.  I’ve got so used to it now.  Having said that, I never really was one for ‘getting hypnotized’ by things in the material world.  Would you believe, I never buy newspapers either, and don’t even have a radio!  Its true I get occupied by writing, but I really wouldn’t say that’s quite the same thing.
     

    Well K., are you happy now!?  One Blog completed in almost record time, and I didn’t even have to think about it!  I didn’t really mean ‘don’t phone’ only you won’t have to if it concerns me doing a Blog now!  ‘Done and dusted’, as my friend Barbara from Yorkshire would say!
     

    Incidentally Barbara, how are you getting on with my new book?  I hope it didn’t send you to sleep too quickly!
     

    So, everyone.  That’s it for now.  Will probably write something again on Monday.
    For the moment though,
     

    David

    Up The Entire Night

    Had a phone call from K a little while ago.  I was told I have been neglecting my Blog.  Well, you know she’s right!  I just looked at it and realised I hadn’t posted since March the 10th.
     

    I do have a good excuse though.  I’ve been working on the new book and also been kept slightly occupied on Facebook.
     

    A funny thing happened there, so I might as well tell you.  I won’t go into it all again but basically, I originally only signed up for it trying to find a Swedish film Graduate who interviewed me back in 2002, called Elin.  Well I had her surname and I found her on Google, and it said she was on Facebook.  Problem is, there were dozens of Elins as it was a very common Swedish surname.
     

    Anyway, it was very difficult because 1) I hardly knew how to use Facebook then and 2) some of the photographs were hard to distinguish.  I mean, after all. This was back in 2002.
     

    But I decided to try my luck, so I emailed just two people hoping one of which might be her.  No reply from one, but then about 2 days ago, I got an email from ‘Elin’ asking me to explain how I knew her and to explain.  Oh dear!  Wrong Elin.  Anyway, I decided not to ignore it as it was my mistake, so I emailed her back explaining the above and apologising.  She hasn’t got back yet, so just hope my explanation satisified her.  After all, it was the truth as I wasn’t trying to ‘pick up’ strange women!  (Just shut up Cat – in advance!).
     

    No. But apart from that, I have been a little ‘side-tracked’ by Facebook.  It was basically because somebody recognised me as ‘the legendary psychic investigator’, (his words, not mine) and it just went from there..  Got 38 friends on there now, but not just ‘random’ one’s but all people involved in the field of the Paranormal. So it hasn’t all been a waste of time – except my Elin ‘adventure’!
     

    But K is right..  My Blog should really come first.  Even with that mad Cat on it!  So don’t worry Sweetheart.  I will not neglect all my loyal fans here!
     

    While I think of it Barbara and Rob, I posted your two books lunchtime so expect them tomorrow or soon after.
     

    Well its nearly 8pm now but it seems a lot later.  Probably because I was up the entire night last night and haven’t had any sleep since Monday.  I feel OK actually, but better try to get to bed around 1 this morning.  I really can’t go before that as am expecting a couple of late phone calls.
     

    So good people.  With that I will leave you.  Not hungry, but will open a bottle of wine to help me sleep.  Any excuse!
     

    For the moment,
     

    David

    Its The Thought That Counts

    I certainly got an expected surprise today!  Still in the process of a ‘clearout’ of the packed boxes, I discovered an invaluable little book called “Sylvaine Super Star”.  I had long given this book up as either been lost or loaned (really the same thing sometimes!) and there it was . . . right in the middle of a paper file, hidden for years.
     

    It’s a beautiful little book; self-published, OK, but it certainly doesn’t diminish its rarity or value.  (I’m talking about ‘value’ in terms of rarity, of course, as I’m really not interested in its financial value).
     

    This book was of especial to me as the French actress was a friend of French author Jean-Paul Bourre and he had introduced me to Sylvaine and given me this little book when I visited him at his home in Paris in 1980.  By this time, Sylvaine was already an established starlet in her own right.  She had played various roles both on the television and in films (as are detailed in the book) but her special interest was the macabre and the supernatural and she had had leading roles with the likes of the late Peter Cushing and Oliver Reed.
     

    Why she ever condescended to speak to myself, I will never really know; but she was quite amicable and polite and said I really didn’t deserve my bad reputation.  So that’s telling you!
     

    Anyway, I re-found the book, and shall put it somewhere where it won’t get lost again now. (Nothing short of a miracle in my flat!).
     

    Its sometimes difficult fr me to take stock of all the books I have.  Most of them have been given to me over the years at one time or another.  Some with genuine intent by people as gifts because they have some reference to myself or ‘vampires’ in them.  A few have just been loaned, but I always give loaned books back, so never have to look for those.  Some have just been presents and I tend to hoard those as somehow it just doesn’t seem right to throw presents away if they might not especially hold your interest.
     

    Which reminds me of a funny little incident when a lady visitor to London brought a book with her about ‘vampires’, and unexpectedly produced it from her case and said . . . “This is for you.  I was going to throw it out, as I didn’t want to keep it in the house”!
     

    Well, I guess it’s the thought that counts.  Rather give the book to myself to stop her putting it in the rubbish!  I kept it in fact, and actually later it came in quite useful!
     

    Well, the weather’s held out temperature wize; just a few spits and spots of rain today – nothing I can’t handle.  And I’ve caught up on some sleep as well, which is nothing less than a small miracle in itself!
     

    But work goes on.  When I say work, I really mean all the writing, which is really a full-time job in itself.  I guess the main difference is, I suit myself when I do it.  Well, I have never worked to time-routines anyway, and probably get a lot more done than the average person by sticking to that.
     

    DVD (plus copies) came in the post this morning of a London interview I made last year.  Now all I’ve got to do is find the leads to my DVD player which must be in the one or two remaining unpacked boxes.  “No rest for the wicked” as is said.  But I’m getting there!
     

    For the moment,
     

    David

    Crowded Monotony

    Sunday, and not one of my favourite days as most people know. Maybe its because most people are off work (and school) and there is some sort of ‘crowded monotony’ wherever you seem to go. Its in the streets; its in the shops; its in the churches; its all around you. And even if you can’t see it, its in the bloody atmosphere!

    Its alright K, I’m not going to get onto religion again (or the general lack of it); just trying to describe the day and my impressions! Maybe it’s a bad time really because I’ve had a hectic weekend – well, really starting from Friday. – and my mind has been a little ‘over-taxed what with events and people. I won’t bore you with all that because its mostly mundane stuff (sorry Gareth, don’t mean you!) and not things I can really write about without people thinking I’m trying to write another episode of Coronation Street. Not that I ever watch Coronation Street mark you, but I’ve seen it in the past and that sort of sums it up.

    No. I have been really busy – or perhaps the word is ‘occupied’. Maybe its also partly because of my recent membership of Facebook, although I’m not knocking that as they’re all good people on there – the one’s I’ve met so far anyway. But I’m not singling Facebook out as the sole reason I’ve had a lot to do. There’s all the independent emails to respond to as well as that.. Apart from that, there’s phone calls to be answered and physical letters to send. (Which just reminds me, I still haven’t answered that young lady’s query on ‘ghosts’. I should feel a little guilty there as she sent me an SAE!),

    But in all, I have been kept pretty occupied.

    I have had quite a lot of response now that my new autobiography has gone up on the main Website. Its early days for that yet but hopefully any response will be about the book itself, and not from people asking yet more about ‘vampires’!

    Talking of which, I have been asked to do a radio interview (three in all actually) about the new book. So listen out for one or more of them – I’ll keep you posted.

    Incidently KD (I’m referring to the original one this time), if you’re reading this (as I’m sure you are) do you remember back in 1999 I gave you (loaned you) a copy of a manuscript on the infamous Old Bailey trial? Well, I’d rather like to have this back now as it would save me considerable work and time trying to locate the original. Its here somewhere, but ‘somewhere’ is the operative word! So if you could give me a call about this, I would be grateful. Number is still the same. Thanks.

    What else? Well, there is also a filming project coming up soon to do with the new book. I won’t put details up yet. Last time I gave prior details about a public event (a Talk in fact) some sanctimonious hypocrite tried to disrupt (unsuccessfully I should add!).

    Well everyone its getting late now (or I should say ‘early’ really) so I guess I’d better sign off. Don’t feel at all tired yet, but then us ‘witches’ have strange sleep patterns!

    For the moment,

    David

    ‘Open Secret’

    Making great progress with the next book.  Its well over two thirds completed now and looks as if it will meet the late Spring schedule.  There was (still is) great interest in the autobiography of course, but people seem to want the next one even more.  The reason is this will prove to be greatly controversial (that seems to be an ‘open secret’) and people just seem to love scandal!  Not that I’d personally call it ‘scandal’; it simply tells the truth about events as these actually happened fairly recently, and some of these are quite tragic if anything.  If there was any scandal involved at all; well, then this was created by the characters themselves. People really ought to think twice before putting untruth’s on public record!
     But its coming along nicely but, as I’ve already said, it will not be accessible on the Internet; although I may publish a few advanced extracts due to demand.  But then people will just have to go out and order it!
     

    My recent Facebook membership has not really helped its progress though..  I have been besieged by PM’s and/or emails from people asking the most complex questions.  Answering questions takes time, of course, but as a dedicated author, I feel obliged to answer questions – at least, the serious one’s.  Let me explain:  most of the questions I receive on the main Wedsite are ‘filtered’ for me and then forwarded.  This itself saves a lot of work, but there are still quite a few personal queries to answer.
     I don’t mind too much if these  questions are simple, but when I get impossible one’s such as . . . “Can you define God?” I have to decline from answering.  I’m sorry Cassie!  Look, nobody can define THAT which is indefinable.  The closest I maybe got to doing this was by spending over 7 months on the James Randi Forum in the midst of dedicated sceptics.  What I was pointing out, I suppose, could be summarised in a few words:  If you want to understand Divine Principle (or prove that such exists) first you have to understand your own Consciousness.  For it is only this Consciousness that can connect us with God – there is no other way.  So that is really your answer, Cassie, to save me going through all that again!
     

    But I did try, I can say that.  So maybe it wasn’t all a waste of time, in general anyway.  Though a bigoted minority could not understand what I was conveying,  and I was branded as a heretic or a ‘Satanist’ for my trouble!  How strange is petty human nature sometimes!
     Well its nearly 11 (pm) so I suppose I better get on with some more work.
     

    I’ve still got to write to get that written apology from the TV people, but that can really wait – at least, for a little!
      For the moment everyone,
     David

    Better Late Than Never!

    Just thought I’d come back again quickly everyone.
    Two reasons really: 

    I wanted to give you a direct link to the page on the main Website that deals with the new book. Here it is . . .

    http://www.davidfarrant.org/writtenword/books/shadowof.html 

     

    Enjoy!

     

    Also the postage of the book will be £2.99 (add 70P if you’d prefer it by RD) or, of course, the book can be ordered in all main bookshops. (I got it wrong in my previous post!)

    To save the middle man, you can also purchase the book directly from me and if need be, can be signed!

    Please send all cheques or Postal Orders to:

     BPOS
     P.O BOX 112
     LONDON
     N10 3XE

     

    Anyway hope you enjoy the extracts, and enjoy the book should you wish to purchase it.

    For the moment,

    David (Farrant)

     

     

    Still Getting Over Friday . . .

    I’m still getting over Friday – and its now Sunday evening!

    Gareth and Speedqueen came over, that’s why! No. We had a good time but everything somehow spilled over into Saturday, and I have subsequently done virtually nothing.

    But we took some good photographs .on Friday. I took some with my camera, and Speedqueen took some on her mobile phone. My gosh! Has that girl got some cleavage . . . but I mustn’t say naughty things here!

    Anyway, that’s why this will be a very short Blog at the moment.

    I really just posted to say, look out for a news update later re. the book. Sorry its late. But are we ever on time!!?

    For the moment everyone,

    David