I am delighted to share a fabulous guest post with you today on Blog Tour by Alice May
Hidden depths at The House That Sat Down
By Alice May
‘Most normal families keep their skeletons locked up in dark cupboards, rather than openly flaunting them in the front garden for all to see.’
When I wrote ‘Accidental Damage’ the first novel in The House That Sat Down Trilogy, I originally intended one particular protagonist – Skelly – to be a bit of light relief. Much later on, I began to appreciate that he had very profound hidden depths. These only dawned on me well after the shocking collapse of our home inspired me to write my novels.
Skelly – an artificial (we think) six-foot skeleton, who arrives as decorative embellishment during a Halloween party and never leaves – represents the extreme degree of exposure the fictional family feel during the events that followed the damage to their home. It is as if their skin has been stripped back and their very bones laid bare.
Privacy is a luxury that they simply don’t have. Should they need to – or want to – shut themselves away from the world to recover, it simply can’t be done. There is nowhere to go, nowhere to hide. The merry-go-round won’t stop, passengers can’t, simply, get off. They have no option but to endure it all, right to the bitter end. Their day-to-day lives continue, with one significant difference, everything they have is hanging out for all to see – quite literally, in the case of many precious belongings – lying covered in rubble and dust, exposed and unprotected in the ruined section of their cottage.
The arrival of Skelly in the storyline, at Halloween, just as the harsher autumnal weather is establishing itself – following the most bizarre summer the family has ever encountered – coincides with a time when they need to dig really deep to find the resilience to keep going. The onset of a genuinely cold winter and the approach of a highly unusual Christmas are well on the way. It is a time of realisation. They are in a really tight spot with no rescue on the way.
Living in the ruins of a property, with massive gaping holes in the wall that expose the family to the road outside and the whole world beyond it, is a massive load to bear. Their basic security is threatened, they feel as though every Tom, Dick and Harriet who might happen to trot by, can have a clear line of sight right through each and every one of them; right into their very bones. This leaves them feeling defenceless and weak, as well as being a bit of a novelty factor for local entertainment; the strange family living in the house that sat down. It is extremely wearing for them but they must learn to live with it. What else can they do? Just as they learn to accept rubble, collapsed walls, dangerously dangling mains electrics cables and randomly tumbling chunks of masonry.
The whole family are changed by their extraordinary experiences, which is why Skelly accompanies them through the entire trilogy to the end; as the house is rebuilt and they attempt to move on with their lives. He is representative of how, in life, we have to keep going, even though we often carry with us the injuries from past events.
Whether the scars are physical or mental, they are part of us. It doesn’t matter how we dress them up these wounds are always with us in some form or another, hence Skelly’s fancy dress obsession and his constantly changing outfits. Similarly, his wide variety of shifting locations around the property – the way he pops up where we least expect him – is indicative of the sad truth that you can never be sure where or when the experiences of the past will have an influence on the here and now.
However, we cannot let our past stop us from living as normal a life as possible. It is so important to blend our scars into our everyday lives. They are an essential part of who we are.
We should move forward in life with purpose and be proud.
Love Alice x
The House That Sat Down Trilogy by Alice May is available from Amazon amzn.to/2ZcZrKF
Accidental Damage – Tales from the House that Sat Down.
Book 1 in The House That Sat Down Trilogy
If you think the normal school run on a Monday is entertaining, you should try doing it from a tent in your back garden, surrounded by the jumbled-up contents of your entire home. It is vastly more diverting.
Our heroine has survived the sudden collapse of her home – or has she?
Certain events, two and a half years ago, led her to deliberately destroy an important piece of herself, hiding away all remaining evidence that it every existed. What happens when she decides to go looking for it?
Does she really deserve to be whole again?
Book 1 Accidental Damage – Tales from the house that sat down
Accidental Damage is also available in Large Print format
Restoration – More tales from the House that Sat Down.
Book 2 in The House That Sat Down Trilogy
Let us return to the crumbling cob cottage in the country, and our intrepid heroine and her hilarious family.
They are about to start rebuilding their home and their lives. Of course, nothing is going to go smoothly for them, is it?
In this sequel to ‘Accidental Damage – tales from the house that sat down’ we accompany our heroine on her journey as she bravely battles to restore everything that she loves; often against the odds and with a liberal sprinkling of humour, art and home-made cookies along the way.
One this is for sure, it’s going to be a bumpy ride!
Redemption – Moving on from the House that Sat Down.
Book 3 in The House That Sat Down Trilogy
Let us return to our favourite cottage in the country once again.
In this final instalment from the house that sat down, the family’s incredible journey is drawing to a close, leaving an unexpected bonus in its wake.
The cottage has been rebuilt and the family are moving on, but this tale has an astonishing legacy in store for our heroine, if she can find the courage to reach for it.
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