He loved where he lived and worked. Although he lived alone he was never alone, well alone long enough to feel it as a pain of isolation. In the mornings he was heartily woken by fisherman and greeted with shouts of: “John, are you awake; it’s time for coffee and scones?”
“Yes of course I am,” John would say because he welcomed this; it got him going for the day.
When he wasn’t serving coffee and jovially chatting he got on with his writing. Later in the day passers-by, usually holiday makers, dropped in for coffee. They too enjoyed a chat with John and had a yarn to tell.
At night he was sufficiently alone to do even more writing. This nightly solitude was only occasionally broken by late, but welcome fisherman ever thankful and eager to enjoy his coffee with scones, and part with their stories of fishing adventures; their new ones of that day.
You may wonder how a writer could write with all these disturbances. But John had grown into writing in the hard school of living ‘Chick by Jowl’ in the city where he and Joan ran a bookshop, open until late at night. Since school days John had an obsession about books and the stories they told him, and writing his own. He met Joan when she worked in a library. When they married they opened their own bookshop and lived in the middle of the city.
In the less busy hours of the day John wrote while Joan ran the shop. He became a very successful writer and was invited country wide to promote his books. John wrote under the pseudo - The Joker. They loved their life and lived like this for ten years; Joan now in child would keep shop while he was called out to promote his book. Late one evening he was invited to talk about his writing. When he arrived back at the shop there was a hustle and bustle of the presence of police. Joan had been stabbed. The tragedy happened just after they’d decided to buy, and bought the cottage, next to the boathouse.
Nobody knew that John was a writer until a journalist enjoying the cuppa with scones, cream and strawberries served by John said: “Hey I know you; you are the writer ‘The Joker’ whose wife was murdered.
“Damn,” said John. “I see I’ll again be living ‘Chick by Jowl’”.