Albert and the little bird
Albert and the policeman
Albert and the school play
Albert and the stockmarket
Albert and the wedding
Albert finds out about santa
Albert goes missing
Albert goes to gnomesville
Albert goes to king island
Albert goes to quindalup
Albert goes to sunday school
Albert goes whale watching
Albert makes new friends
Albert runs away from home
Albert takes piano lessons
Alberts birthday party
For many years my Mum, Dorothy, has
been reading Marriott Edgar's Albert Ramsbottom
monologues to live audiences and on radio - you could say I have grown up
listening to the adventures of Albert!
One Christmas, when I was sailing from Fremantle to Quindalup, I had an idea
to write Albert goes to Quindalup. The years passed and it wasn't until July
2007, when ABC 720
radio presenter Ron Tait seeded the idea to mum, during one of her
"Dorothy's Dittys" segments, that it was
time for a new Albert poem to hit the stage. That's how Albert goes to
Quindalup was born!
I so enjoyed this writing experience that it wasn't long before the idea for Albert goes to
King Island was conceived. King Island is a small island off the north
coast of Tasmania, famous for its beef and cheese. I had visited my sister
and brother-in-law there in 2001 and it seemed like the perfect place for
young Albert to turn up!
Eric Bibb once said, "songs often come in
threes" and sure enough Albert goes Whale Watching came to life after a whale
turned up in the bay near my house! So now I had three and I said to Mum
"I guess that's it unless another idea emerges where Albert could have
Little did I know Albert number four was just around the corner.
As Christmas approached my mums friend Maria said
"I wonder if Jane could write you a Christmas Albert to read on the
radio." This was the only excuse I needed to write Albert finds
out about Santa!
But my adventure with Albert was far from over! My nephew, Adam, was married
on the 1st December 2007 and by Christmas I had written Albert and the Wedding.
By now, Albert Ramsbottom was well and truely part of my imagination. I opened my mind to the
numerous adventures of my favourite little character. After Christmas 2007,
Steve and I set off on another long road journey, across Australia, on
motorcycles. Travelling by motorcycle was very conducive to writing about
Albert. The Wind In The Willows, by Kenneth Grahame, was the first book I
read while lazing around the camp site. I was so taken by the characters in
this book that I couldn't stop myself from writing Albert makes New
the Little Bird was written during a wintry day while we were camped on
Phillip Island and Albert
goes Missing was written on the road, on the way home. I had a great time
composing the verses while I was riding along and then jotting them down at
each pit stop! As soon as each new "Albert" was completed I always
phoned mum with the exciting news. Ours is a team effort. I am writing them,
and mum is reading them on the radio. We were starting to have real fun by
now as I had written eight.
The real wonder of writing these monologues is I never know where the story
is going to take me. I just come up with the idea and start writing. The
stories unfold before my very eyes and no one is more surprised than me! Alberts Birthday Party
goes to Sunday School were both written at our country hideout in the
South West of Western Australia, always a wonderful place to write.
Piano Lessons was a story I just couldn't resist, especially with mum
being a music teacher!
Now I had 11. But 11 is a strange number and I just kept thinking "I
can't stop at 11!" So number 12, Albert and the
School Play came along!
Luckily I didn't stop at 12! Albert is part of my life now, and as the ideas
continue unfold, I love to find a quiet space to write. Like all small
children, Albert runs
away from home as well!
With the 2008 world economic meltdown, I just had to write Albert and the Stockmarket!
While the Ramsbottoms were touring Western
Australia they happened upon the small village of Gnomesville.
to Gnomesville will tell you all about their
visit to the village where all the gnomes live!
I hope you enjoy these monologues. The escapades of Albert live on in every
verse I write and writing them has seemed like magic to me. It would be true
to say that writing about Albert Ramsbottom has been one of the most joyous writing experiences I have ever had.