Thursday, 23 June 2011



Academy Award-winning movie maker Errol Morris has premiered his latest super-production, Tabloid, in Toronto and London. And – as a star attraction – it will be featured at the world-famous Sundance Film Festival on July 15 ... but the picture still hasn't yet been distributed and released to the general public.

Splashed all over the internet, in TV interviews and the world press, Errol gleefully says it’s his favourite piece of work to date. Maybe, in a year or so, it’ll see the projectionist’s light of dark at a cinema near you when Errol’s Hollywood fishing results in an inevitable bite. He’ll doubtless pick up yet another trophy for yet another blockbuster. Maybe another Oscar for his mantlepiece collection. So far, though, not many folks have laid eyes on the film.

So it's with sincere apologies to that wonderfully talented and acclaimed gentleman and his dedicated team of movie professionals, intrepid researchers and skilled interviewers (the credits threaten to beat the record set by Ben Hur) that BeWrite Books today spills the beans by beating him to it with the first international ebook editions of the story that inspired this insightful and intriguing – sometimes shocking, more often hilarious – docudrama.

Proud, tickled pink and not a little smug, we release – in glorious ebook editions and in cahoots with Revel Barker Publishing – Anthony Delano’s warts-n-all, blow-by-blow insider account of the whole murky and side-splittingly funny shebang: Joyce McKinney and the Case of the Manacled Mormon. It’s also available in paperback from RBP here.

Anthony Delano
US beauty queen Joyce McKinney hit the international headlines in the seventies when, love-struck by a straight-laced Mormon missionary, she – and a devoted minder – stalked him to England, kidnapped him (magic Mormon underpants and all) and manacled him to a bed in a remote country cottage where the magic underpants were immediately confiscated and Joyce had her kinky way with him on a regular basis and he, presumably, thought of Utah and hummed hymns he’d learned by heart from recordings of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.

She skipped bail and fled home to America, under one of her many, many exotic aliases on one of her many fake passports, before she could be fully tried for what amounted to charges of the abduction and serial rape by a beautiful woman of a helpless, God-fearing man she'd held captive and chained to a special love bed she’d had shipped over the Atlantic. Imagine the sheer torture the poor evangelist must have suffered as he lay there, chaps.

Great tabloid newspaper fodder was that tale. And, wow, did it hit the headlines big time and long time! But Joyce herself is just one act in the circus ring. The real stars – both of the book and the movie – are the expert trapeze artists, jugglers and lion-tamers; the crafty, cut-throat and amazingly skilled and resourceful journalists who competed around the world, daggers-drawn (until the pubs opened and they were all pals again), to unravel the weirdest tale even the most hard-bitten had encountered.

Delano’s book (which Morris bought for three hundred bucks as a collector’s piece when the first edition was out of print) tells all in this extended and updated edition ... the tragedy and the travesty, the mystery and the almost unbelievably comic of la crème de la crime.

Joyce, of course, is now back in the world news because of the movie, this book ... and because her true identity was discovered accidentally when she boasted on TV of having a litter of puppies cloned from the severed ear of her dead pet dog. That is one time she wasn't telling fibs and little black lies. Even though she’d assumed yet another alias and changed her appearance to spread the cloning tale, baby-boomers clocked her at a glance.

Joyce McKinney is what we called in the world press hub of Fleet Street ‘good value for money’. 'The REAL McKinney', Derek Jameson, old Fleet Street editor and BBC radio star, said of the book. Her secrets – and those of the newspaper wolf-pack that followed, and continue to follow, her every move – are told in this unique and internationally released, mind-bogglingly quirky third title in the ongoing BeWrite Books Hack-Lit ebook series in collaboration with RBP Publishing of London.

In Fleet Street currency, this wonderful yarn is the price of two pints of best bitter beer in ebook, maybe four pints in paperback. Depends where you take your leisure. Lounge bar or tap room. Whatever: The Manacled Mormon is  'good value for money'.

Oh, and apologies to Joyce, too (she prefers to be called Joy ‘like in the hymn, doncha’ll know?’). She, for reasons that escape us, hates the book and detests the movie. Says it makes her look bad ... as though anything could make her more devilish and outrageous than she makes herself. Lots of fun is Joy. Plausible she ain’t. At least not always. Pick out the truth from the whoppers yourself. It’s not exactly a challenging exercise to sift the wheat from her chaff in Delano’s book and to re-Joyce.

You can read more about the book and the author and read the first chapter and reviews in the bookstore section of the BeWrite Books website here. The ebook can be bought from us or any major online ebook store (but more often than not, cheaper from us). It’s available for reading on PCs and laptops, all dedicated ebook-reading devices like Kindle, Nook, Kobo, Apple iPad, etc, etc, etc, and also on iPods and smart phones. You can even read about it and buy the ebook through iTunes now. And you can buy it direct from BeWrite Books in all popular digital formats. Paperback from RBP again is here.

What’s Hack-Lit? Hack-Lit (named as such by no lesser an authority than the mighty Independent ‘serious’ daily newspaper in the UK) is books by ace international journalists with proven mass-appeal to millions of general readers on a daily basis. You see, within the old school of journos who ain’t dead yet, to be described as a ‘hack’ is praise indeed from a trusty colleague. I recently applied the term ‘sodbusters’ in a note to an old boss and brilliant investigative reporter called Brian Hitchen. He thanked me profoundly for the ‘pat-on-the-back’. If you’re an outsider and use the term, you’ll be punched in the nose and thrown out of the bar on your asterisk.

So become an insider with BB/RBP Hack-Lit. And if you’ve not enjoyed that privilege yet, Anthony’s Manacled Mormon is the key card to our members-only club. You’re welcome. But it’s your round. The tab's $5.95 or its equivalent in whatever pennies you count in your neck of the woods. OK?

And here’s a wee secret about those Old School hacks that not many folks know. They adapted to new technology in newspapers as though they’d been breast fed via USB cable. But can they handle a simple ebook? Can they heck as like! For evidence of that failing, read the wonderful Friday news at Gentlemen Ranters. It's the last pub in the street (Fleet Street that is) and where we Old School hacks from around the world gather over a virtual bar top to tell tales of yore ... the long and the short -- and, often, the extremely tall.

So cartoonist James Whitworth has run up this wee strip for our Gentlemen Ranters and for BeWrite Books' readers today. James himself is an old hand and he’s currently covering three BeWrite Books in Peter Maughan’s rib-tickling Batch Magna series of novels. The rib-tickler below shows exactly what James thinks of the technical skills of his old colleagues and bar buddies.

The son of a cartoonist, James Whitworth drew for the university magazine where he developed his style as well as a reputation for making deadlines with seconds to spare. After graduation, he dabbled in journalism working on the regional newspaper’s newsdesk and then writing features for a range of newspapers and magazines. He now creates the Rudge strip seen every week here, a daily news cartoon for online magazine Creative Boom and is the Jewish Chronicle’s topical cartoonist. He also regularly draws for the national and regional press. In his spare time, James is committed to keeping his local public house in Sheffield, UK in business. He is widely and loudly applauded for his success in all fields of endeavour. If you would like to contact James (perhaps to assist him in his charitable work to support local business), you will find him here


Best wishes as always. Neil Marr et al at BeWrite Books (And have a fun weekend folks -- the alternative is grim.)

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