Actionable information

I write for a living, but more than that, I communicate. This isn’t the place to talk about engaging narratives going forward, but we can throw that out on the stoop and see if the cat licks it up, if you like. Or run it up the flagpole and see who salutes it. Or not.

I’ve taken complex information from around the world on a huge variety of subjects from satellite communications to head lice shampoo and turned it into straightforward stories that provide direction as well as usable, understandable information.

People who run businesses do that. Sometimes when you’re doing it every day you can’t see what the customers see. Which means it can be really difficult to describe your business in a way that attracts more customers. Sometimes you don’t need or want a full marketing campaign. Maybe you just need some press releases written and placed. Perhaps your website needs some new words to make it come alive. Give me a call. I don’t just do big stuff. Although I’ve done a fair bit of that as well.



Reporting for business

Sometimes it’s hard to know who to go to, to get the information you need. I’ve helped all kinds of organisations do that, from simply going to a conference and explaining what happened there to confidential interviewing government bodies about institutional international fraud.  That project was submitted up to an EU Commission and oddly no, I’m not going into more details about it. All that and umpteen business interviews, reports, trade magazine articles, newspaper and trade journal pieces, conference papers, briefings and presentations. I can do them for you, if you like.

Full-length screenplay

Not Your Heart Away was based on my book, Not Your Heart Away, which is available on Amazon. I know, what a coincidence about the titles, eh? Somewhat to my surprise for a first screenplay it won the BBC Writers Room competition in March 2013 and was pitched.

Distressingly and unbelievably, my very first ever pitch of my very first screenplay didn’t take with the first studio. Unreal, isn’t it? Some people. Anyway, it’s in development, which in this case doesn’t mean ‘is stuck in a drawer to be talked about at parties’ but with a script-doctor. Apparently there’s a gap in my narrative arc. Just like there is in True Grit, come to think of it. Or The English Patient. Or Four Weddings…. Still, what do I know?


Half-hour TV programme scripts

I’ve also written broadcast half-hour training films for ACC. Aged Care Channel provides quality learning resources to the elderly care sector in a new and innovative way. ACC programmes are filmed in actual care homes, and presented by healthcare professionals who have expertise in their respective fields. Programmes are specifically designed to focus on key outcomes and the core performance indicators specified by the Care Quality Commission. They also focus on the issues and concerns that most care staff face on an almost daily basis. Most of these issues centre around dementia: 60% of people in care homes have it. Not the most comforting thought for your later years.



A half-hour radio play set on a construction site in a rural village. When wartime bombs are discovered on the course of a new by-pass some people in the community remember more than they ought to.

No Batteries Required

Half-hour radio play set in a celebrity chef’s kitchen. Desperate to appear one of the people the Prime Minister appoints his ordinary public school chums as Ministers.  Kirsty gets Housing, Clarkson gets Transport and Pew Farley-Totherstall gets the Minstry of Food Production. Which might be fine, except for the bankrupt chicken farmer who’s sworn to kill him.



All of this and more sometimes gets onto my local radio show, the Lifeboat Party, thanks to the wonders of the interweb available around the world.


Available now

As Roxy Music put it, you know where to find me. I’ll be waiting on the end of the line, specifically at 07881 206542.

Or message me here.


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3 thoughts on “Actionable information”

  1. Hi Carl. Interesting blog. I’m picking up on one of your posts in which you mention Paling’s Wine Bar in Hanover Sq. Reason I’m contacting is that obviously I share a name with the aforesaid bar, but more importantly a friend recently directed me to a shop in Brighton (where we live) that was selling a wine bar tin sign, labelled “Palings Wine bar.” Bought the sign, and a cursory web search revealed an old Daily Mail photo (1985) with the sign in situ outside the Hanover Sq venue. I’m intrigued to know more about the place but there is nothing on the net apart from your brief mention. You obviously know the place and I’m just interested to know more of the history. Just curiosity really. Anyway, anything you could share on the place I’d be interested to know – if you have time. All best

    1. Palings Wine Bar – what is there to say? It was where junior Sloane Rangers hoped to become senior ones, by snagging someone with more money and better kit who was prepared to put up with your nonsense long enough for their status to rub off on you. It was the far side of Hanover Square, the west side, opposite the Conde Nast offices where the Sloane style-bible, Tatler magazine was languidly cobbled together. If you timed it right most of their staff would pour across the square into Palings, because that was what people did in those days, often whether they were driving home or not.

      It was invisible from the road apart from the sign, because it was in a basement. No windows, down some stone steps on what must have been the kitchens for the grande house the building must once have been. I can’t remember what it was now. Or then, as now has turned into being these days. Offices probably. The Uruguayan Trade Commission. An insanely upmarket opticians where they made spectacles out of real tortoiseshell. A collection of brass plaques on a door. Something along those lines. It didn’t matter. Palings was just Palings. It was where you went on a Spring evening, huddled away from the growing light and the lengthening evenings because then, all the evenings were lengthening unlike my wallet, which seemed to be shrinking.

      Red braces and brogue shoes didn’t buy themselves, nor did wax jackets, the same knock-off Not-quite Barbour coats and silk ties and the etiquette of cuff links so much more important than sitting and listening to the nightingales in the Square outside only noticed as you stumbled to the Tube escorting some Nicky or Vicky to the Tube where she had no intention of saying ‘why don’t you come back with me? For coffee?” Coffee was very important in those days.

      We drank red wine or Noilly Martinis if we were anywhere close to pay-day, or if we were just showing off, which was almost all of the time. Someone I know did it right. He’d heard of AIDS, or “all these horrible diseases” as he put it, and the next time someone nice got talking to him he asked her to marry him, which she did. They’ve been married ever since. He walks with his dog on the South Downs now. I kept looking for someone nicer, Sloanier, taller, thinner, richer, with a nicer voice, with a better watch, anything really, except the person sitting next to me.

      That was what Palings was for. Its high point was one night I wasn’t there, when Diana Spencer and Fergie dressed up as policewomen (what a hoot – apparently it’s only illegal if plebs do it!!!) and went to Palings “incognito,” as if probably the two most famous and recognisable women in London wouldn’t be recognised, although so many women were wearing the same haircut maybe they got away with it for about 30 seconds. I wasn’t there. I don’t know if not recognising them was part of the game.

      I stopped trying to get the girl who did the classified ads in Tatler into bed. I didn’t really fancy her and she certainly didn’t fancy me. Her sister was a much different proposition, but in deference to the fact that she was a nice girl, the kind my friend on the South Downs would have liked, as well as being tall, nicely voiced and it must be said, nicely shirted, but also regrettably living with someone not entirely suitable. Her sister’s view. And I think hers as well, when we mentioned it, which at some point in the proceedings you have to if they actually are proceeding,which they were a bit.

      I only went back once, about ten years ago. I think there’s still a bar there, although why you’d change the name is beyond me. Everyone knew about Palings. Like the Zanzibar. It was a different world, the one in Martin Amis’s novel of the times, Money. It wasn’t the worst of times. But it wasn’t the best either.

      1. Hi Carl, belated thanks for this. Only just come across your reply. You paint a very vivid portrait of the place. I’ll hunt down the location one day and look for the ghosts.

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