Kirsty Eccles' Short Stories
The Price of Fame
The Price of Fame (and other short stories) is available for Kindle HERE
At times truth may be stranger than fiction. But sometimes fiction is the only way you can tell the truth. This is a fictional representation of things that really happen. In The Price of Fame, the narrator Kirsty talks about her life with ‘Billy’ the celebrity she fell in love with at thirteen. It’s hard hitting. It takes you places you’d maybe rather not go. Talks about things we generally turn away from. But they happen and turning the head often results in an act of complicity. The other four stories in the collection: Girls and Boys Come Out to Play, Between Seeing and Believing and Shona's Magic Shoes voice other true 'stories' as fiction.
The stories are insightful and shocking but they are important. They grip you in the guts and don't let you go.
It’s not a comfortable read. This is the world of grooming and child abuse. Of domestic violence and family breakdown. They are also stories of love, of hope and of the power of the human spirit against all odds. The power of fiction is that it is able to address questions from a ‘position of safety,’ though there is nothing safe about what happens to the fictional Kirsty or the other characters who populate her stories.
McVoices' Brendan Gisby is so far the only person to have reviewed this collection - is he the only man brave enough? Is he the only man to have read it?
Here is what he said:
I was warned that this story would not be a comfortable read; it's about child abuse, after all. I can now confirm that it did cause me discomfort. But that's not because the story is graphic or lurid or salacious in any way. It's the exact opposite, in fact: a gentle, matter-of-fact and sometimes embarrassed account of the narrator's journey into and out of a world of abuse. What's discomforting about her account is its searing honesty, its authenticity, the reality of it. You just know that these things actually happened to the author or someone close to the author; perhaps not in the precise way they are chronicled here, but they happened nonetheless.
And that's what's so compelling and electrifying about the story. The truth behind the fiction makes you want to give your fullest attention to the narrator. You empathise completely with the innocent thirteen-year-old as she is drawn inexorably into a web of abuse that will trap her for many years to come and scar her for life. You condemn without compunction the spinner of the web, the loathsome predator who stalks his victim with spider-like patience, who smiles and charms publicly, but who is utterly, utterly callous in private. And you conclude that these twin portraits of the abused and the abuser simply could not have been imagined.
My guess is that Kirsty Eccles has waited a long time to tell this story, having probably found the courage to do so because of the many women who have come forward recently to expose the evil of Jimmy Savile and his cronies. I'm glad she has managed to bare her soul at last. I'm glad I've read her story. And I would urge the whole population to read it - fathers, mothers, grandparents, brothers, sisters. Truth or fiction, it'll help you understand, it'll help you spot the signs, it'll help you act.