Definitely an unexpected pleasure for me to be published in Glitterwolf: if I ever looked as fine as their cover model, we’re talking pre-history here. Although… perhaps fittingly, Laughter Lines is partly a story about ageing. And about the way that location can influence behaviour and outlook in ways that we are not always fully conscious of or don’t truly if recognise, even we’re aware of its history (and the ways in which that history tends to be interpreted). And it’s partly a story about how reconciliation can be as much of a challenge as leaving a situation unresolved and unspoken: an exploration of quite what ‘family ties’ might mean and how understanding and support are neither synonymous nor found where we might expect them.
Dashing. Now there’s something I haven’t done – or been – in a long old while. Nor something anyone’s probably thought about me, come to think of it. Not ramshackle old Gordon. It’d never do to be late for her ladyship, but it still feels strange to be hurrying home at this time of year, now that the last of the autumn tourists are gone. Maybe they’ve grown as immune to Munich or Tokyo as I have to Wiltshire, but I’ve never understood why you’d travel half the world to look at earthworks or long-barrows. A windy hilltop planted with fragments of broken skulls and not a scrap of evidence about who clubbed who. This place might have a long history, but it’s not a pretty one.
Maybe it’s Dad’s influence – always the proud teacher, even if it wasn’t at the posh school on The Mound – but isn’t the pleasure of history in discovering what it means? Selling the hippies crystals and dowsing rods might keep the gift shops busy, but there’s enough to fret about in the here and now without pondering the ancients. Judging by the museum displays we used to have in the library, they’d most likely have strangled you with your fancy rune pendant.