Saturday 5 September 2009

"State of The Nation" update.

I've finally finished the first draft of Dawn of the Brain Dead. As always it'll need a lot of revision (I'm a BIG fan of revision) but I'd say it's about 70% there (unlike The Lost Draft I did 2 years ago which was almost 90% there, before Bill Gates' incompetence consigned it to electronic oblivion....Grrrr. My hatred for the man still seethes uncontrollably).

It's got a nice Chuck Palahniuk vibe to it which goes well with the main plot and feel of the story.

That said, things are gearing up for another busy year at work. Technically, I still have four weeks to go before all creative thought will have to be shut down (it's going to be a Hell Year - not only do I have my University job (and the attendant overtime that that involves) but I've also got to do half a Master's degree in Dyslexia and Literacy difficulties, I've got three Examiner positions which kick into life at various points of the year, I've got my online tutoring job AND I may get an Associate Lecturing post with the Open University, if I'm lucky. It's a lot of work and it's all pretty interesting and enjoyable, but it does mean anything creative will have to stop for 9 months.... except revision of course). But I'm going to start having to do a day a week starting next week until the term proper kicks off. Still, hopefully I'll have the big draft of Brain Dead to revise, the draft of the First Love, Last Love radio play (which is getting there) and also, if I'm lucky, I'll have a draft of The Continuing Staggering Adventures of Bulldog Carruthers to work on, too. At present I've finished the research for this one and I'm just outlining the plot. But I'm looking forward to writing it and have been reading lots of W.E. Johns' Biggles stories to get my mind in that "Biggles mindset." Given what happens, that style should be fairly effective in highlighting the themes of the story and I should be able to adopt my "sneer at the characters" voice to a certain extent, which I always love using and often results in unintended humour.

Still, only 4 weeks to do something which I'm predicting may be 15,000+ words. It'll be tight.

But hopefully, it'll also be fun.....

Friday 4 September 2009

Reading on "Radio Wildfire", Monday 14th September 2009.

It look like I'm doing a reading for West Midlands Arts' Radio Wildfire on Monday Night. It'll only be a shortey (don't know what I'm doing yet) but it'll be broadcast on Monday 14th September between 20:00 and 22:00.

This will be a bit of a coming home for me as Radio Wildfire is hosted by, and is the baby of, Dave Reeves, the guy who published my first story, "BobandJane", waaaaay back in 1997 in Raw Edge Issue 4. Coincidentally, not only did they publish my first story near the beginning of its life but they also reviewed "Ugly Stories for Beautiful People" in their very last issue. It was touch and go if it was going to appear, but thankfully it did - especially as it was a really positive and insightful review. It's s shame they're gone, but at least Dave is still promoting literature and yet again he's given me a chance to do something new.

Now, I wonder if this little appearance will have a positive impact on whether the BBC take my first radio-play, First Love, Last Love, when I submit it later this year....