Sponsored or Unsponsored – Which Would You Be?
Am I alone in thinking sponsorship is taking over the world? Even advert breaks on television have their own sponsors – well, actually I think the sponsorship relates to the television programme rather than the commercials, but it won’t be long before we’re seeing this advert for Tescbury’s Supermarket is sponsored by Loan-shark-dot-com, which is sponsored by King McBurgers, which in turn is sponsored by the Campaign for Real Food…
Take football for example. The working class sport? Not any more! If a sponsor is loaded enough he can force a team historically known as the Bluebirds to play in red, or have a hissy fit and threaten to stomp back home with his ball (AKA money) if his pet club doesn’t change its name to the Multicolour Stripy Tigers. And if the fans, the so called ‘lifeblood’ of the beautiful game, complain about the sponsors’ ridiculous demands, the stock complacent reply seems to be: ‘Well, the sponsors are the ones with all the money.’
So let’s examine the evidence. Sponsors can do whatever they like because they’re minted. Those who accept sponsorship are required to be docile and obsequious. The sponsors are becoming complacent, and as a result their demands are becoming increasingly outrageous. Put it all together, and what have you got?
A splendid idea for a novel, that’s what.
Finally I’ve come to the point of my rant. My debut novel, Dory’s Avengers, hit the shops (well, Amazon anyway) last summer. It is set in an alternative UK, stifled and oppressed for over a quarter of a century by the dictatorial Sponsorship Scheme, and to all appearances it seems that any independent spirit has long deserted the downtrodden population. The Sponsorship Scheme is headed by the seriously nasty Lord William, a man as complacent as he is cruel. The view from his ivory tower is that his sponsored minions are all towing the line, accepting whatever the sponsors demand and never challenging their masters, while those who refuse sponsorship are too lowly to be considered a threat.
Ah, complacency. Lord William’s big mistake. While he sits smug in his ivory tower, the fight back begins – right under his nose.
When you read Dory’s Avengers – and I sincerely hope you will read it – you won’t be surprised to find where my sympathies lie. I really don’t like dictatorial schemes, sponsored or otherwise, and I took a delight in putting Lord William and his cronies in their place, via my cheerfully unsponsored band of unlikely heroes. It has been suggested that I probably won’t have sponsors queuing up to support my writing career now that I’ve vilified sponsorship in my debut novel, but I’m hoping there are one or two out there with a well developed sense of irony. Oh, and pots of money of course.
I intend Dory’s Avengers to be the first of many novels. Indeed, my novel number two, a paranormal mystery with the working title Shattered Belief (corny title? Good title? Opinions welcome) is well underway, and number three is simmering and ready to go. Writing is my passion and my joy, and I was born with a very active imagination which shows no signs of letting up as I ease (spread?) into middle age. Aside from writing fiction I enjoy blogging, and have been overwhelmed by the phenomenal amount of support I’ve received from fellow bloggers. Take it from me, bloggers are wonderful people. I also enjoy editing – hardly surprising as I love working with words – and my fledging editing business is gradually gaining recognition. Life’s good.
Dory’s Avengers can be purchased on: