From a transvestite employee who insisted in dressing up as a woman to do his job to a Walter Mitty punter who “killed off” his girlfriend, local man Andy Dunn has come across hundreds of real characters in his 34 years managing bookmakers’ shops.
Now the 56-year-old father-of-two and grandad-of-one has put tales of his experiences together to publish his first book on the internet.
‘From Royal Ascot To Portman Park!’ is available for Kindle devices through Amazon.
Andy told the News: “I like to think that I have a keen eye for observation and relate the anecdotes in a humorous manner which hopefully will make the book appealing, not just to customers or folk working in bookies’ shops but to the general public.”
Andy, who is originally from Burnside but moved in June to the Village in East Kilbride with his pet dog Sandy, said he has always loved to write. And over the years he has put pen to paper to write short pieces about various topics which have interested him.
It was always his ambition to writea book and a couple of years ago it dawned on him his ideal subject was staring him in the face – his own experiences.
For over the years he has met many fascinating and memorable characters. In penning the book, Andy says he had the support of his partner, Loretta, whom he has been seeing for more than a year.
“Loretta tells me I am a typical Piscean in that apparently we like to write,” Andy explained.
“The book took me about six months to write. I would write it in the local library during the day and continue with it at home later in the evening.
“I was really quite surprised how easily it came to me, but then again with such a length of service there was no shortage of characters or situations to write about,” said Andy.
“It soon became a labour of love.
“Even so, I was quite surprised when, on completion, it ran to over 73,000 words.
“Working with the public for so long yields a fund of funny stories and anecdotes.
“For example, for some years I found myself working with a boardmarker who liked to dress like a woman. He kept telling everyone he was waiting for a sex change operation – but years later he was still waiting.
“I also recount the tale of a larger than life customer of mine who lived in a fantasy land of his own whereby you could never tell if the outlandish stories he told were true or not.
“The defining moment came when it was with great sadness he stunned us all by informing us his Romanian girlfriend had tragically been killed in an accident in Romania.
“Needless to say there was such an outpouring of grief and sympathy by the local community towards him, all to be expected given the circumstances.
“But knowing Kenny as we did, my staff and I, while grudgingly joining in, still had slight misgivings about the whole scenario, even if we felt a bit guilty about doing so.
“Mind you, a year later we were so obviously right in having such reservations when, lo and behold, Kenny turned up bold as you like with his “dead” girlfriend on his arm !”
Andy, who is currently managing a bookies’ shop in Cardonald, said he has been asked countless times if his book is out in paperback.
“Unfortunately, it isn’t at the moment,” he admitted.
“But I may look into doing just that.
“However, I believe it may be quite costly to have it published, but if Icontinue to be asked then it isdefinitely something I will have to look into.”
In the meantime , ‘From Royal Ascot to Portman Park!’ by Andrew Dunn is available through Amazon.co.uk for Kindle, I-Phone , I-Pad and other appliances that are able to download the Kindle app. It is priced at £2.99.