Wednesday, 11 July 2018

Who's for a Dirty Weekend? Guest Post Deirdre Palmer

It's always a pleasure to have returning guests on my blog. Today, it's the turn of my good friend and author, Deirdre Palmer. It isn't just Deirdre who is making a second appearance though - her two great books, Dirty Weekend and Moonshine (both set in the 60s) are also having another outing. Check out their fabulous new covers! 

If you haven't already read Deirdre's novels, I'll let her tell you a little more about them. Over to you, Deirdre.

When Wendy heard I was re-launching two of my books, she kindly invited me onto her blog to spread the word. Thanks, Wendy!

They say ‘write what you know’ and that was the advice I had in mind when I wrote Dirty Weekend. It’s also said that if you remember the sixties, you weren’t there. Well, I was there, and I do remember, which made this book a whole lot of fun to write!

Dirty Weekend was taken up by my publisher at the time, and looked after very well, as was Moonshine later. Recently, with the future of those books with the publisher looking uncertain, I took the difficult decision to liberate them from their contracts and send them back into the world with a fresh new look. The stories might be set in the 1960s but the problems that face the characters are universal and just as relevant today.

Without giving away too much of the plot, in Dirty Weekend, Jeanette doesn’t see the weekend in Brighton as just a bit of fun. For her it’s an escape from the unspoken horrors of her home-life. In Moonshine, Beverly’s first experience of unrequited love sends her emotions and actions into free-fall, almost wrecking the holiday on a Torbay caravan site. Also in Moonshine, an unexpected find on a removals job pitches Terry into agonies of indecision when he learns that doing ‘the right thing’ is never that straightforward.

But it’s not all gloom, far from it. Themes of friendship, loyalty, love and sex, run through both books, and there’s a whole lot of laughter, too. At least, I hope my readers find plenty to laugh at!

Here’s a taster from Dirty Weekend.  The grim reality of arriving in Brighton without booking a B&B beforehand has just struck home…

“The room was fantastically grim, Mark thought, looking about. For a start, it was up four flights of creaky stairs and slotted in under the eaves so that you couldn’t stand up in the parts where the ceiling sloped down. The bed was missing a leg and had a fishing tackle box supporting the fourth corner, and the bedspread thing thrown over the blankets must once have had a pattern on it but had migrated into a murky mixture of oranges and browns with no distinction between the two. As for the mattress, well, he didn’t even want to think about that, let alone take a butcher’s at it. He couldn’t see any actual dirt anywhere, but everything in the room was so worn out it must have pre-dated the D-Day landings.
Remembering Terry’s prior claim to this room as his and Carol-Anne’s love-nest, Mark laughed to himself. Terry seemed not to have noticed the state of the place, or if he did, he didn’t care. He definitely hadn’t spotted the fishing tackle box, but there was no point in bringing it up now.
Yes, on balance, he approved of Terry’s version of tonight’s sleeping arrangements. The girls’ room across the road in Pier View was probably a damn sight better than this one – it could hardly be worse – so all he’d have to worry about, providing Jeanette didn’t take it into her head to spoil the party, was getting into Pier View and up those stairs without having his collar felt by the landlady.”
© Deirdre Palmer 2015

Dirty Weekend and Moonshine are available from Amazon.

Deirdre is the author of seven novels and a collection of short stories, writing under her own name and as Zara Thorne.  She is published by Crooked Cat Books, and independently. 

To find out more about Deirde, visit her website


  1. Well done on reclaiming your books and republishing them, Deirdre! Your covers are great.

    1. I agree, Rosemary. I think Deirdre’s new covers are even better than the originals 😊

    2. Thanks Rosemary. Glad you like the covers!