|Desperate Housewives Photo: Sidereel.com|
Some thirteen years ago we swapped our house with a family in LA and spent three weeks in a suburban Desperate Housewives-type cul-de-sac, in a house with a kidney-shaped pool in the back yard.
I was asked to do a guest post about this experience on Graham Norwood's excellent Propertynewshound website, and writing the post made me remember that the holiday also generated an idea for a novel.
The manuscript reached only about 30,000 words. I guess real life got in the way again, but I still remember the awful feeling in the pit of my stomach that the plot (I'd conjured up) gave me while writing it.
When we visited San Francisco during the holiday, we went on a trip around the Golden Gate bridge on a small tourist boat. The children were nine and seven and we had no life-jackets. The weather was quite stormy and I remember that I spotted concern in the Englishman's eyes (real of imagined) when the waves began to overlap the sides of the vessel.
I started writing the manuscript as soon as we got home. This was a few years before I took the MA in Creative Writing so I really didn't know what I was doing, but I can still remember how strongly I felt about the story. I imagined a couple whose marriage was falling apart, a fatal accident, deaths in a foreign land and the tragic return home to England.
Although my MS was written years before the Desperate Housewives was dreamt up by American TV Executives, the US soap reminds me of it. Perhaps I should dig the story up from some remote corner of my computer disc and make it into a full MS? Or perhaps I should let sleeping wives lie...
But getting back to reality for a moment...do pop over to the excellent Propertynewshound site and read my guest post. I hope you enjoy reading what actually happened on that holiday.