DEREK’S DIARY: Life full of amazing memories

Derek Allan with his daughters.
Derek Allan with his daughters.

In 2013, the Gazette published excerpts from the diary of Derek Allan, one half of the acoustic duo We Steal Flyers. After taking 2014 off from being a diarist, Derek, from Broomhill, is back again.

April 2

I played the guitar for a few hours today because I had an empty house. I also wrote the first few pages of the new novel, The Winter Man. I would write two novels a year if I had time. I love the world you take yourself into when writing a story. Many people like to get lost in books, but when you are the one writing it, you need to eventually find your way out. This is not easy during writing or at the end. Anyone that has written a novel is amazing, especially someone that has written something and there is not a lot of chance of publication at the end of it. It has nothing to do with how great your story is. You need the luck of a publisher opening your book and reading it and you have more competition now than ever in music. I have no worries about having a publisher any more. I will write it and once it is printed I will sell it myself on the road, poetry book too...just like our albums. Shaggy takes amazing photos too and sells prints and he is also doing canvas pictures. We as a team can create and tour a lot. People like what we do.

april 3

With Melanie, Ellie and Rebecca I went to Warkworth today. Stopped off near the cricket pitch, where I once lived and walked the amazing Warkworth adventure. This place is so special to me. I love being there. I love the school holidays so we have more hours to be in so many places. Sadly we missed out on our Blackpool days away, but it could not be helped and May will do. Past the village cricket pitch, along the castle, down to the river and towards the beach and off down a track to the magical end of the north side of the harbour. It is one of the greatest walks and when shared with the right people there is nothing more right. If there were family day tickets for sale for this walk, I would have happily paid. I spent many great years in Warkworth and would again if I could. If we do more then maybe when we come back this would or should be where it is.

We have to sort out the 24-hour charity mission. I love this annual mission. And the charity walk looks set for April next year now. I have an even bigger mission. I just need to save up first. It takes a lot of time, worry, energy and money to do any kind of charity work and I have to take a lot of time off so I need to do more now than ever to release a few months for next year’s adventure.

April 4

A good day home alone again. Almost went to write more novel, but I did not like the idea of going into the zone in writers’ world and then again for a gig. So I ran through more hours on the guitar. The gig in Alnmouth is always a good one. Some good friends and fans here all the time. The Red Lion is run by some of the nicest people I have met in all of my touring life. They make you feel good, people should all always make other people feel good. It should be the rules. Childhood friends Shorty and Hardy were there too. Life is filled with amazing memories and we make them with so many people so they can remind us of great times shared. There needs to be always amazing days ahead and behind. Every day should be better than you thought it could be.

april 5

Melanie and Caroline went out for Easter and for Lucy’s birthday. They had fun and met up with people and returned home happy. I had an amazing day with Ellie and Rebecca. Backyard sports. Rebecca wants to win running medals and a triple jump medal in the Olympics now so we trained for this and Ellie is working on bowling. Some friendly visits and an afternoon curry with a few films. I have just finished writing some pages of the novel tonight too. If it is possible I will do 2am to 4am on the novel as many nights as I can. I write by candlelight and the night hours are both silent and mine.

April 6

Today was as much as a day off from everything as I dare to take. I walked far with Ellie and we talked about her life. I love hearing her take on life and plans for the future. A few messaged from venues cancelling Flyers, Sam and Acoustic Magic on the happy walk, but other than that it was a nice day. The holidays are always special times. Melanie has a lot of work to do as always, but needed Rebecca to help so I was released with Ellie.

April 7

Day one for Durham cricket...the opening day of the cricket season, free entry. We went to say our hellos and get our minds prepared for the biggest season ever as now Ellie and I have season tickets for Durham and Ellie knows it. So we need to be at many games, such a wonderful and peaceful place. I love everything about cricket but not the selections obviously, they forever make me sad as the best players should always play. It was a great day and nice to see everyone and everything. Melanie and Rebecca are not massive cricket lovers so they found the park again. There is a well-known park near by.

april 8

We went on a walk to Cresswell and back. It was a long walk. I like that most of the people I have to talk with are happily busy in Easter so I need not worry about too much.

Sadly the Thursday and Friday gigs texted and cancelled this week’s gigs but we can have new adventures, just be poor for a week. Walking is such an amazing thing to be able to do and in such an amazing place.

April 9

More and more Acoustic Magic gig offers coming in. It is not so easy keeping up and it is difficult explaining how it all works to the venues. We book teams of players for gigs and this takes time, but these nights are doing well. We knew they would.

A tour of Bulgaria is now being sorted. This is the only overseas tour we have accepted as we can not accept much more than what we already do.

The cricket Indian Premier league has started now. I love seeing this and I record it for night-time company as I work the late hours writing.