Café Crem

Art, Music and Words around The Coffee Table

Fish out of Water synopsis

Vivienne Tuffnell


Synopsis: Fish Out Of Water



  Irrepressible artist Isobel has survived most things. She’s coped with everything from a sequence of miscarriages, her husband’s ordination, the birth of two small and demanding children, and finally the recent death of both her parents in a bizarre suicide pact. She’s managed to bounce back from everything so far. A sequence of domestic disasters finally signals to Isobel that perhaps things aren’t quite as rosy as she’d like. With her half of the inheritance, Isobel buys an isolated holiday cottage where she hopes to be able to catch up with some painting, as well as have the occasional holiday.

   The cottage is idyllic, beautiful and inspiring, but odd things keep happening. Doors won’t stay shut, objects go missing and reappear in the wrong places and footsteps are heard when there’s no one there. One of Isobel’s new neighbours suggests that it is the fairies who are responsible, but Isobel is more than a tad sceptical: there’s not a hint of glitter or tinselly wings or magic wands.

   Isobel’s inner turmoil begins to spill over into her daily life when she hits a deer while driving back from the cottage. Her family hold crisis talks, deciding that she needs to have time alone in the cottage to get over long repressed grief and to paint it out of her system. As she works at frenetic pace, the odd happenings begin to increase until even Isobel’s rational, sceptical mind has to sit up and take notice. And that’s when she gets really scared. Up until now, her motto has been that there’s nothing in life that can’t be made better by a cup of tea and some Hob Nobs. This time it’s beginning to look like it’ll take more than even chocolate biscuits to make things better.    

by Viv


January 11, 2009 - Posted by | books, Cafe Literati, death, drawing, God in our life, life, love, painting, Parents and Children, personal, Viv's Novels, women, writing | , , , , , , ,


  1. Great idea to put the synopsis here, Viv! I see, going on tantalising us… I guess you will have to feed us all with some more stuff from it, as long as the publishers haven’t done their job!
    Seriously, you should think about publishing some more random (or whatever) chapters from the book, it will automatically increase the readership and the probability that the “right people” find it. Anyway, when enough people scream that they want to know how it goes on, some people will have to do something about it!

    Comment by Miki | January 11, 2009

  2. I do hope so!!!
    I was thinking of putting up the odd chapter and synopsis of the others too but never a whole one until I feel that is the right option, and right now it doesn’t feel right at all.

    Comment by viv66 | January 11, 2009

  3. I agree with you. I would not put the whole now, but I can’t tell why not. Just a feeling, like you. I was thinking of only a few chapters, but of course YOU know much better what is the best for you.
    Anyway, to do the same with the other books sounds extremely exciting to me!

    Comment by Miki | January 11, 2009

  4. I work a lot of the time on instinct and the little voice in my head that tells me things and its telling me just this! Sure and steady and don’t rush things but take courage and act when the moment is right.
    I’m not a terribly courageous person, in some ways I am an utter coward, but I believe that I am slowly gaining courage. Each day I get up and start a new day, I face the same issues as I went to bed with, and maybe it takes courage of another sort to do that, not the derring-do sort that has you leap into swimming pools to rescue a drowning man(and yes, bizzarely I once did just that…)

    Comment by viv66 | January 11, 2009

  5. This is wonderful, Viv! I really want to get to know this character better. But it will be hard to convince me that chocolate won’t make things better 🙂

    Comment by shelleymhouse | January 17, 2009

  6. I tried to reply last night but we had to pull the plugs on the main computer due to an attempted virus intrusion.
    Thank you Shelley. I hope that one day you will be able to read the rest, in a book and not from a screen. This one got very close to being accepted and then the whole thing fizzled, due in part to an incompetent and dishonest agent.
    Chocolate is involved but isn’t the star!

    Comment by viv66 | January 18, 2009

  7. Good morning Viv!
    You seem to have problems all the time with your electronics! The computer, the camera… you should perhaps think of stepping UP to Mac! Everything is so simple with their Apples… whatever they said in the Bible, it is rare to have some worm in these ones…

    Comment by Miki | January 18, 2009

  8. To be honest, my dad and brother both have macs and it does seem simple. But much of our problems are actually down to having old equipment and not being able to afford to buy new stuff, or even upgrade much. And some of the problems are down to the whole world of the morons who think it’s funnyor clever to invent viruses, worms and Trojans that beset all computer users these days. We have excellent virus protection, which caught the Trojan as soon as it appeared, but then it meant we had to do a total scan to be sure nothing had gone through.
    And the internet connection problems are not ours; because we live in the back of beyond, internet speed and broadband generally are slower than in more civilised areas.
    As my dad has recently found to his cost, Macs have their issues too!

    Comment by viv66 | January 18, 2009

  9. I was just teasing you a little bit, the eternal Mac-PC war… I love my Mac, but there are enough occasions when I hate it, especially when the programs I need are only available for PCs.

    But really I am so happy that we are much less subjected to viruses, worms and other vermin… I couldn’t stand it would have no patience and nerves for it, and I am sure I would go away from the internet for ever!

    As to not being able to afford an upgrade or buy a new equipment, you know what you have to do Viv, don’t you?
    A best-seller would certainly help, and I believe you are on the right way…

    Comment by Miki | January 18, 2009

  10. ah what a lovely thought!
    We’re a make-do-and-mend kind of couple/family. Everything we have gets used and mended and then mended and recreated as something else and very rarely does anything get actually thrown away. There’s both ethical and spiritual reasons for this, which I do intend to discuss here at some point when I can get my phrases right for it.
    I’m frozen to the bone right now; I spent about half an hour trying to solder some eletrical thingy on the car back to where it should be; I’m pretty good with a soldering iron but this was very tricky. I burned myself twice!
    I get the whole mac-pc thing from my dad but he only got a mac cos my brother gave him his old one to play with. Dad spends a lot of time on it and I feel that at 75, I am proud of him for exploring a new media and a whole world. He often rings me up to tell me something amazing he’s just discovered.
    I am doing my best to create my destiny, but I can’t do it all, sadly. I need a helping hand from fate, God, or the universe.

    Comment by viv66 | January 18, 2009

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