The Backstreets of Purgatory

By Helen Taylor

Caravaggio in Glasgow: A Tale of Art, Insanity and Irn Bru

Tuesday, 4 October 2016

SemifiniSHED (or 9 out of 10 people won't get a single answer in this competition correct)*

*this is a blatant click-bait lie 

The Backstreets competition has almost reached its deadline. SemifiniSHED you might say. (Is it me, or are the shed puns deteriorating by the blog post?) But not quite. As they say (or maybe they don't): it ain't over til it's over. You have until the end of this week (9th October at midnight, no less) to test your knowledge of Caravaggio masterpieces. And all for the stunning prize of a Backstreets Tour and a six pack of Tunnocks Teacakes. Terms and conditions apply (ie you have to be a supporter; if you're not on the list....).

I have it on good authority it is devilishly hard. Although, a few people have already sent in the correct answers so it certainly isn’t impossible.

So what about you? Do you reckon you can do it? A quick recap for those of you who are new in here (and very welcome you are too). Identify the paintings and spot the odd one out. Email the answers to my special Backstreets email address:

One or two other bits and pieces. Progress is steady and encouraging. Here’s a graph to make it look scientific.


A great big thank you to all the folk who have pledged recently and bumped us over the half-way mark. I imagine the next 50% might be a bit trickier as I try to expand my network, but it is very encouraging that there are already plenty of supporters whose names I don’t recognise, so you are either friends of friends, or previous Unbound subscribers or have found your way here by another path. Wonderful. I'm using different ways to find interested readers, including blogging about the Unbound experience over at I’m really impatient for the project to reach the target for the sake of you guys as much as for me. Some of you pledged right at the beginning, and I don’t want you to have to wait too much longer. Let’s see what we can do. If anyone has any bright ideas, let me know below.

In the last few weeks, I’ve had some brilliant opportunities to present my work to new audiences, including the two readings I’ve already spoken about. My lovely friend Hélène held a café-rencontre with some of her French students (English speakers learning French) where I had the chance to present my book, and we had the slightly surreal experience of discussing my novel in French. Mes devoirs pour l’année prochaine? Faire un traduction. Er, I think not. My...let's say...informal French just ain't up to it.

Final thing for now, for those of you in Edinburgh or nearby, a bunch of us Unbounders have a reading planned in Blackwell’s for November. Will keep you posted when I have the exact date and time. Pretty exciting stuff.

Back to project page
Share on social

Top rewards

£25  + shipping
181 pledges


A first edition of the hardback plus the ebook
Buy now
104 pledges


An ebook edition of the book
Buy now