September 2010

Someone Called Anna

Me - 1971

Book not far off finished now,  Was working through till daylight on it yesterday (or should that be today, not too sure!) so slept a little late.  A little too late, in fact,  as I nearly missed the Post Office (another order for Pact) and DID miss the bank. Not a problem really as I can just from the book sales cash which should have really gone into the bank.

Someone called Anna contacted me on Facebook saying she still had a sketch of me (above) which she’d done at  school when she was 14.  I wanted to see it, and she gave me her permission to use it here.  Its from a book or magazine but not too sure which. 

 This is what I wrote to her on Facebook . . . “Yes Anna, that was one of the pictirues.  It was taken by a free-lance journalist in 1971 and published in Tit Bits magazine and the local Press in 1972.  Police found copies of the pictures in my Highgate flat 3 years later and used them as ‘evidence’ that I had damaged the coffin, when in fact, I hadn’t even touched it.  That was the ONLY evidence, save but for fabricated admissions (‘by’ myself) submitted by the Police to the effect I had ‘confessed’ to damaging it.  Mind you, my reputation didn’t help: in fact, that’s why the Police brought the charges”.

 That’s really self-explanatory for anyone wanting to know the basic history.  In short, I was set up by the Police for that offence and got 2 years in jail for an offence I had not committed.

 As to my ‘reputation’: well, I was really tried in Court (in 1974) because of this (admitting to being a ‘white witch’) and not over the actual cases of vandalism.

 As I have said many times before, the persecution towards perceived ‘witchcraft’  and the occult still goes on today.  It did not die out with the 16th and 17rg centuries.

 Well, I’d better try getting an earlier night tonight.  Got several things to catch up on tomorrow.  For the moment,

 David

          .

Just A Little Update

 

ME!

Just a little update everyone.  Just to say,  I have now hit Tennessee of all places.  Magazine came out two days ago and its an interview with myself.  I’ll do a further write up here, but just in the process of obtaining permission.

Other news is, I have just re-newed my film contract for another year, as it was decided to extend the content a little.  I have already showed the 10 minute trailer to a few people (with permission!) and the reaction has invariably been “fabtastic”!  Funny, I did not really plan on being turned into an actor, but life can be strange sometimes!  And I guess you are just meant to ‘go with the flow’.

Can’t do a long Blog now, as have a load of writing to do, but I thought some people might be interested in the latest news.

For now then

 David

Prison – Or A Bit

So, here it is everyone a bit from my new book due for release later this year.  Hope you enjoy,  READ ON . . .

David

“There was not really any difference between Wormwood Scrubs and all the other prisons I’d had the misfortune to be incarcerated in.  Still the same old grey walls, and dingy cells that housed three people.  The food was more-or-less the same, only a marked difference in location served to distinguish any difference.  But the buildings all seemed to be the same; a grey interior of sadness amplified by the imposing walls.  They were cold and bare, and all you really had to look at when staring at them by day or night.  An endless void of ‘cold stone’ all around,  that seemed to be crying out aloud for victory over its captives.

       Unlike Wandsworth, disciple at the Scrubs was far more lax; it was still a highly secure prison, but internally association periods (in the early evenings and at weekends) were more liberal and it was possible to visit the cells of other prisoners on the wing and exchange books and stories or even play draughts or chess if people felt so inclined.  But in general, the prison was still very overcrowded and three prisoners to a cell was the common norm.  Only the cells on the lower floor near the serving tables contained just two people and these were allocated to prisoners who helped to regularly served out food.

      Different ‘jobs’ were assigned to many other prisoners, by the chief officers in charge of the wings, which usually involved cleaning duties, working in the laundry room or preparing food and washing up in the kitchen.

       I was lucky, and escaped the more menial tasks by being assigned to help to serve food at meal times.  My cellmate was called Jim Young, ‘in’ for embezzlement, and he was also assigned to help serve out meals. This basically involved scooping out ladles of soup or food from huge pots lined up on tables to prisoners as they filed past holding out their aluminium trays.  Talking was permitted, although some of the remarks were virtually unprintable: my usual reply was . . . “Don’t blame me, I didn’t cook it”!

       But one advantage of my ‘cushy job’, was that it offered more freedom to move around as it was necessary to go ‘to and fro’ into the kitchen.

       One advantage of this was that you could obviously associate more freely with prisoners who had ‘kitchen duties’.  Another, was that here were quite a few ‘inaccessible’ items of food in the kitchen which turned out to come in very useful!

       Jim and myself saw this as an opportunity too good to miss,

and we began to plan a way to use all this ‘fresh food’ to full advantage; by fermenting  some ‘illicit alcohol’, which we could hide in the kitchen.

       Now, the kitchens were very large and steamy.  I recall that there were two huge aluminium sinks in there, where certain prisoners were selected to do the voluminous washing up.  On the other side there were long shelves, installed underneath these numerous White containers which contained such ingredients as rice, potatoes, chickpeas, obviously used to protect these from the excessive grease and moisture.  It did not take us long to empty out two of these plastic containers, fill it up with water, and add ingredients to it, designed to make a crude wine or beer.  Everything was put into this, from potato peelings, diced up apples, orange peel, grapes (when these were available), and other pieces of fruit that could be allowed to ferment.  There was of course the added advantage that some prisoners had access to yeast in the kitchen, and of course, sugar was quite easy to come by.  When finished, these two containers were placed amongst others under the shelves, yet ironically in full view of prison officers who had not the slightest idea of what they contained.  The concoctions certainly brewed very quickly – the kitchen heat obviously helping.

       In less than a couple of months, we had succeeded in brewing up alcohol that was really a cross between beer, Chinese rice wine, and vodka.  It tasted terrible!  But we somehow managed to transport this to our cell in plastic jugs where it was shared with a couple of other prisoners.   It may have been vile, but was nevertheless extremely strong, as those drinking it readily confirmed.

       But we were not to be quite so lucky, as before the second barrel of illicit brew had been consumed, two prison officers discovered the half-empty barrel whilst searching the prison kitchen.  Whether this search was instigated by rumours that might have been inadvertently released by some other prisoners, is uncertain.  But it is a fact that the prison held a special internal inquiry to attempt to find out who had performed this terrible deed of making ‘illicit alcohol’ right under their very noses.

            Speculation aside, I can say that within only a day or so of this inquiry being announced, I was suddenly moved to another wing of the prison. . .”

[Adapted from “In the Shadow of the Highgate Vampire” (Vol 2) by David Farrant

Positive Filming Date

Fairly quiet day, but having said that, doesn’t mean I have stopped working.  Quite the opposite,  ad the good news is I’ve nearly finished that  tricky ‘prison chapter’ now.  I spoke to K last night and she’s pleased; so pleased in fact that she’s actually agreed it might be about time to put up another ‘sneak preview’ of the new book, as I do keep talking about it.  I’ll select something tomorrow as it’ll make a change from the usual Blog.  But you ain’t having much!  Do it tomorrow.

Got a positive filming date for the new DVD.  That will be very soon and the whole thing should be finished in about a month.

Also, heard from the other people and the new film is going fine.  I’ve seen some of it and the quality is very professional. 

Incase you haven’t heard (although most of you probably have), we are planning another trip to ‘haunted’ Robin Hood’s Grave next Spring (lae Spring) and my good friend Barbara has agreed to put us up for one or two nights.  That’s one worry less having to worry about accommodation anyway.  Still a lot to get arranged though, so not THAT easy!  But I’ll manage it . . . somehow!

 What else?  Well nothing really, things have been pretty quiet apart from this.

But I have had quite a few more book orders though, which have all gone now. By that, I mean the books have all been received and acknowledged.

Regarding my new book again, don’t forget to look here tomorrow as I will put up a couple of advanced  pages.

So for the moment everyone, that’s really it, until tomorrow.

 David

I Can Only Agree With You!

Well, just a little more to add to my last Blog.  I was waiting for clearance from K. as I promised her some time ago I wouldn’t ‘give anything away’ before asking her beforehand.  Its just to announce the release of a new DVD on the Highgate ‘vampire’ case, and its release is now imminent.  Full colour, of course, and excellent sound quality AND there’s a couple of surprise guests, but I’ll leave those as a surprise!  (And it really will be!).

 Obviously the star of the film is myself (who else?!) and its brought to you courtesy of . . . well, think I’ll leave that as a surprise as well.

 I think I mentioned before that I have had to put the price up of several of my books on Nielsen’s and Amazon, and this has now been effected.

 I have now also been reliably informed that Amazon has at long last sorted out the money they owe us for Patsey’s book “The Highgate Vampire Casebook”.

 Finally, want a laugh everyone!?  I am pleased to say I have now found an exact copy of that quote I mentioned briefly on another Forum.  As I know many of you also read this Forum, you will know the context in which it was used.

 It was from the ‘Actress to the Bishop, when she was ‘telling the person off’ about something.  The ‘Actress’ said . . . “At least David (myself of course!) is consistent in what he says, and doesn’t try and pretend to be something he’s not”!

 Well, thank you my dear, and on that note I will finish because I can only agree with you!

 Till next time everyone,

 David

It Is Her Book, After All

Would you believe it?  Sept 1st already.  But at least its still warm, so enjoy it while it lasts, I suppose.  I went back to drinking beer again for the Summer (well still am) but its not quite so enjoyable in the cold of winter.  But then there are always other ‘herbal remedies’ available!

I am pleased to say, my new Pact with the Devil book has caused a LOT of response, and, from some very unlikely quarters.  Its not only brought some welcome cash in, but attracted quite a few comments to the effect of. . . “NOW I understand”!  I’m not going to name names here obviously (well this has always been part of my normal policy), but the book seems to have cleared up much of the ‘bile’ and misunderstanding.  If it continues to do that’ then it will have served its purpose – indeed, that is why I wrote it.  Believe it or not (and bigots like my friend ‘Anthony’ never will), I did not write it for the money, but as a signed record of what happened in those bleak days of 2007 (well, and after).  Some more discerning readers may have noticed that I stopped short from the end of the story.  This was really deliberate as I saw no point in describing the person’s humiliation at the hands of the authorities after she had made a false statement with the intention of maybe serving myself with a fraudulent conviction.  This failed miserably, but I saw no point in ‘rubbing it in’;  she was left with her conscience to account for that.

On the subject of books, I am pleased to say that Patsy’s book on the Highgate ‘vampire’ case has sold out on Amazon.  I mean, I’m not so glad that Amazon are temporarily out of stock because it means I have to get another batch re-printed.  That’s not so difficult really, as the master plates have already been made and its only a question of a ‘straight re-print’.  I have put the original pages back  at the beginning (where they should have been) but I have also changed the cover  and added a b/w photo inside.  The last batch was of 500 (which is not bad from 2006) but this time I will do 1.000 to keep us going for a couple of years more.  And ‘no’, I am not doing this for profit, but because the book has been so popular.  I’ll have to reclaim the printing outlay obviously, but the rest goes to Patsy.  It is her book, after all.  She wrote the whole thing, not myself.

Volume 2 of my autobiography is almost finished, so you see, with one thing and another, I have been kept pretty busy!

Seeing Jamie again soon.  Says he’s bring me a new chair to replace my ‘battered armchair’.  I’ll hopefully get him to take a photograph of myself sitting in it for posting here  (which should please Claremond!).

Nothing else really.  Just wanted to bring you all up to date.  Now, where’s that other beer?!

For the moment

 David