Motherventing, the awful truth

24 January 2013

My friend Fran has written a book. In fact, she’s written two. The first one was great, and I’m one of the few people who got to read it. I read it while it was still a Word.doc, before it was sent to the agents and publishers who nearly, so nearly, decided to snap it up, but chickened out, curse their pusillanimous hides.

It’s on Amazon as an e-book now, it’s called The Dukkering Boy and it’s for young adults, as I believe younger teenagers are called these days. Go on, treat yourself.

But then Fran moved on and went from Pompey to Italy and then to Brizzle, where we occasionally share sardines on toast, tea, cake and chips. Nope, that’s not a euphemism, for any of the dirty-minded types who might be reading this and guffawing fnaar-fnaar.

Her life hasn’t been easy these last few years, not that I’m going to recount her life story here. Not that I could anyway, because I don’t know the whole story. But there’s quite a bit of it in Fran’s new e-book that’s nothing like the Dukkering Boy.

 This one’s called The Little Book of Motherventing. Yes, good people, mild-mannered, self-effacing, bespectacled Frances Lewis is Motherventing, the mummyblogger from hell your mother and your teachers warned you about.

The subtitle says it all; ‘Taking all the fluffy aspects of parenting and totally shitting all over them.’

And I gave her abuncha Amazon stars; not because we meet once a year and talk about books and stuff or because we shared a schoolbench once. nb, that’s also not a euphemism. And not because she gave any of my books stars on Amazon or anywhere else, because she didn’t, the ratbag.

I gave it its stars because it made me laugh, it’s absorbing and it’s well written – although the STUFF IN CAPITALS here and there makes you wonder what the hell’s going on until you remember that this is a book version of a blog. Fark knows what the film version will look like when it appears.

It’s all good stuff. Fran really does write magnificently, in both her thoughtful mode and in her PMT-ridden harridan guise.

The Little Book of Motherventing has both laugh-out-loud stuff as well as its heart-wrenching moments, especially as you bear in mind that this is all written in real time. It’s a blog, written as it happens.

Some of it makes you gasp, especially if you’re a bloke and have a fairly shaky grasp of some of this female stuff. Especially the stuff about y’know... girlie stuff, and muff-trimming. That sort of stuff, and the biscuits. Mustn’t forget the biscuits.

There’s also some excellent parenting advice in there. If only I’d known then what I know now, dammit. Such as:

Step Three: send the child to boarding school for seventeen years. They come back a lawyer. Easy.

There’s much wise advice, drawn from Fran’s Motherventing blog that ran (and still runs) for a couple of years and attracted a sizeable following. My vocabulary has been somewhat enlarged by following MoVo’s blog, mostly with words that I may well have been better off without.

For those faint-hearted among you, I should warn that the language is colourful. That means she swears like a farking bargee with a chip on each shoulder, but she does it with syle. Panache, even. MoVo does good swearing. Farking mingeballs kind of swearing, with giant bollocks on top There’s colourful as well without the swearing. I totally (See, it’s rubbing off on me now, I said ‘totally’) love the expression ‘unidentifiable dry beige crud’ and may have to have it embroidered into one of those framed needlework things that 19th century ladies used to sew before Eastenders was invented.

Unlike most of the vast international audience that hangs on Motherventing’s every online word, I have actually met the lady (yes, lady) and can confirm that she is in fact relatively civilised. She has never licked my face. She has never rabbit punched and left me moaning on the ground to ransack my schoolbag for the Jaffa Cakes she could smell in there. She has never unleashed her flying killer monkeys on me. Or if she did, they must have got lost somewhere, those bad flying killer monkeys. In short, MoVo is a rather lovely, demure, sensitive, well-spoken and elegant young lady who could outswear a crack team of squaddies specially chosen by an outstandingly rude sergeant-major for their foulness of language.

It’s quite a combination. Go on, give it a go.

Follow her on Twitter as well @motherventing. Because she’s worth it.

Oh, and the book has naked pictures in it. She asked me specially to mention the naked pictures.

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