Added on 15 January 2014

Here at Long Midnight Publishing we're just throwing together some leftover pieces of Barney Thomson to make a new short volume of stories and previously discarded barbershop scenes, which will be released shortly as THE CURSE OF BARNEY THOMSON & Other Stories. There will be five Barney shorts in all, including an all-new one on which barbershop death junky author Douglas Lindsay is currently working.

'The whole thing has the feel of the Beatles Anthology, or perhaps one of Dylan's official bootleg series,' said Professor Malcolm Connery of the Glasgow Institute of Special Things this morning, as he looked out over the ancient City Library which sits on top of Glasgow's legendary Hill Of The Seven Sisters. 'The question is, of course, which will it be? The Anthology really was a lot of stuff and nonsense, with nary an unknown gem amongst the three albums. No one was sitting up all night listening to What's The New, Mary Jane? on a loop. Dylan, on the other hand, has often left his best tracks on the scrapheap, only for them to appear ten years later on a bootleg.'

While it's too early to predict exactly how The Curse of Barney Thomson will be received by the public, let it not be said that we here at LMP are scraping every barrel to make sure that the quality of the finished article is top-notch. With a great retro-cover from design genius JT Lindroos, and words from original Barney Thomson author, Lindsay, the book is certainly off to a great start.

Here are some of those words:

The door opened and a young woman entered the male domain. The men all turned and looked for a moment, before three of them got the better of themselves, leaving just Keanu staring at the newcomer.

‘Yes?’ he asked awkwardly.

She was in her early twenties, had the most wonderful long flowing straight black hair, half way down her back, and was quite the most beautiful woman Keanu had ever seen in his life. Even McGuire, sneaking another glance at her in the mirror, would have had to admit that she was – like a fifty yard touchdown pass from Tom Brady to Randy Moss – a thing of beauty.

‘Do you do women?’ she asked.

Keanu looked at her hair for a second, and then back at her breasts. Then her eyes.

‘I can give it a go,’ he said.

‘So, you don’t?’

‘Not usually,’ said Keanu, ‘but I’m a qualified, you know, hairdresser. I can do all kinds of shit. What was it you were looking for? You hair looks lovely as it is…’

‘Can you give me a Brazilian?’

The shop stopped for a second.

A car drove past outside. The mild wind of the mild afternoon drifted in off the sea, the waves rolled against the rocks beneath the white promenade wall over the road. The seagull, perched in its usual spot, lifted an eyebrow as it looked into the barbershop. Far out to sea a ship sounded a horn, and somewhere in the sky a crow squawked.

The silence in the shop was shattered by Igor dropping his broom. Barney, giving the woman the same eyebrow as the gull, glanced at her, and then returned to the intricacies of McGuire’s left ear. McGuire stared at her in the mirror, his mouth slightly open. He remembered to swallow, so that he wouldn’t start drooling.

‘What?’ said Keanu, after a while, as it was all he could think to say.

‘A Brazilian,’ she repeated.

‘You mean, a Socrates or a Ronaldinho?’

She giggled. The most wonderful infectious and attractive laugh.

‘No, a Brazilian. You know what a Brazilian is, don’tcha?’

The Curse of Barney Thomson & Other Stories coming soon to an ebook store near you.