Brian Blessed meets Ena Sharples


Maybe you want to protect your hearing. Maybe you have had enough of screeching Northerners to last you a lifetime – thanks to Coronation Street and/or Emmerdale – and would prefer to skip this small audio clip I have made. The decision is completely yours and the onus is definitely on you.

You’ll be pleased to know I haven’t gone to town and read the whole book. All you will find here is a small sample from the beginning of Chapter Two of Still Life. To be honest, I think I may be coming down with a cold … or my voice is becoming more blokeish. I am leaning more towards the advent of the sniffles – whilst crossing my fingers that my voice will not always sound this deep – and mentally checking out my medicine cabinet for Vicks Vapour Rub and Lemsip.

It may be an idea not to listen to this through headphones, initially at any rate, especially if you have never sampled my dulcet tones before. Hearing my Mancunian accent (with added butchiness from potential germ infestation) may make you a tad nervous and grip onto your valuables. My apologies to other Mancunians for the stereotyping, but if you are true Manc you will laugh at that bit.

If you do find that you like the sound of my voice, or like to punish yourself for some reason (aural flagellation), I am sending a larger file to my publisher to see if they want to put it on their website. Maybe, just maybe, I might put it here too at a later date, although the ‘here’ in question is actually Youtube instead of my blog. As you can tell, I also spent hours on the video editing. James Cameron eat your heart out (and contact me privately if you need an understudy director for any of your up and coming movies).

However, I think one file at a time is more than enough for you to bear for the time being. And please. Please, please, please. Don’t let the sound of me rambling on like Brian Blessed put you off the story.

To prepare for listening, think Liam and Noel Gallagher, Gary Barlow and Ena Sharples (for those who don’t know, she was a central character in Coronation Street way back in the day – hair net, purple granny rinse, gravelly voice and attitude – check out her foxy pic).

Now it is time to get my hot water bottle and Lemsips out.

Quick question: why are Lemsips called Lemsips even if they are blackcurrant flavoured?