I’m also working on a third project called¬†Crazy.

This is the story of the great eighteenth-century novelist, Laurence Sterne, (left) and his close friendship with John Hall-Stevenson – better known as ‘Crazy Hall-Stevenson’.







Here is a wonderful portrait of Hall-Stevenson from the 1740s.










They often met in Skelton Castle, close to where I live in the North of England – better known as ‘Crazy Castle’.

For Sterne and Hall-Stevenson the idea of ‘crazy’ was bound up with a wild sense of creativity, a willingness to break with convention and head off into ‘the beautiful oblique’.




Sterne captured this in his masterpiece,¬†Tristram Shandy, but the two men lived their own craziness too, and were part of a group of like-minded gentlemen who met each year at Crazy Castle in Skelton and called themselves ‘The Demoniacs’.