Tuesday, 19 December 2017

Scrooge and Marley (Deceased)

I only discovered today that Charles Dickens' perennial favourite A Christmas Carol was published on this day* in 1843! And it just so happens that my latest novella, which was inspired by the tale of Ebenezer Scrooge and the Three Spirits, is almost ready to be unleashed upon the world.

It is an idea that I've wanted to work on for a long time and I was starting to make more concrete plans back in 2013. However, other work commitments meant that it kept getting pushed back, or when I thought of working on it again there simply wasn't enough time to get it done in time for Christmas on the year in questions. The BBC's historical mystery drama Dickensian, which ran over the Christmas period in 2015, also put the kibosh on the project, for a while at least, as I didn't want people thinking I'd nicked the idea from there**.

But this autumn I made a commitment to myself to have the first Scrooge and Marley (Deceased) story ready in time for Christmas, and it very nearly is. To whet your appetite, here's the introductory blurb:

A year on from the events of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, Ebenezer Scrooge finds himself visited once again by the ghost of his late business partner, Jacob Marley, who brings with him a new proposition. Just as Marley helped Scrooge to avoid the cruel fate that the last of the Three Spirits foretold, Marley wants Scrooge to help him reduce his time in Purgatory.

And so begins an epic adventure that will see the former friends face off against all manner of phantasms, freaks and fiends, with only one thing at stake… Everything!

It's not the first time I've supplanted characters from other classic Dickens' novels and put them into A Christmas Carol. I did it back in 2001, when I turned the novella into a play that was performed at the school where I was working at the time. I wonder if that's when the seed for Scrooge and Marley (Deceased) was first planted.

Scrooge and Marley (Deceased): The Haunted Man will be released imminently, but in the mean time, check out and 'Like' the Scrooge and Marley (Deceased) Facebook page here.

* Which just so happens to be my wedding anniversary!

** I still haven't watched the series, for fear of being unduly influenced by it.

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