Showing posts from March, 2010


I woke up this morning fully intending to do some writing. It was going to be a good day. Problem was I made a mistake. I thought that whilst I sort out my emails etc I'd pop in the first of the season 3 DVDs of House. I should've known better. I really should.

I know I am a complete addict of this show - even if I didn't notice its existence for over five years. I've never yet managed to watch just one episode - well except when I first saw an episode on TV when I only had one to watch.

Since I went out and bought the box sets I've not settled for just one. It's just totally wonderful. And I'm hooked. But I'm determined. I'm only going to watch one more and then I will do some writing - honestly!

New Sales

UK sf/horror magazine Murky Depths has picked up another couple of book reviews from me for their twelfth issue.

These are for Mike Resnick's Shaka II and Gord Rollo's Strange Magic. It's a good feeling - Murky Depths is a great magazine and it's great to see my name in there.

Go check out their website


We're heading for a general election in the UK. We'll all have to go to the polls and put our mark against one name or another. It's a responsibility for everyone who lives in a democracy.

The problem is I'm not sure just how many people here in the UK would want to vote for any of them. Okay, this is being unfair. There are nearly 650 members of parliament in the UK and only a handful of them have been in the news for the wrong reasons.

But there's been so much in the news in the last few months. Expenses scandals; MPs accused of using their position to earn outside money and so on and so on.

I guess in some ways it's a matter of timing. If it wasn't for the small matter of the economy being royally screwed we might think that they were able to do their jobs. So when they're no good and filling their own pockets... I'm talking perspective here not the total truth.

The economy is screwed. Hundreds of thousands of people have lost their jobs through this…

Christopher Moore

I read this guy's stuff a few years back- Practical Demonkeeping to be exact. I liked it. I remember liking it a lot.But I've not read anything of his since. I've bought a few, but never actually read them. Don't know why, just never got round to it.

This week though that changed. I picked up a book called Fool. I'm glad I did.

The idea of this book is simply briliant. It's such a complete switch about. Fool retells Shakespeare's King Lear, in my opinion the best of his tragedy plays, as a bawdy romp - complete with large amounts of shagging and single-entendres (why go to all the trouble of a double when you can just be opaque about things).

I'd never have believed it would be possible to retell Lear in this kind of way but it works brilliantly. You just have to read this book.

Slow on the Upchuck

I like episodic television. Okay most of it tends to be science fiction in nature but I do occasionally venture outside sf. I followed ER pretty regularly. I watch CSI and Bones.

Okay looking at those alternates I guess they are fairly science based. So it might not be that much of a remove.

And I've found another series that's hooked me - House. Again not much of a departure I guess as it's heavy on the medical science. But evidence that I might not be up to date with things. After all House has been running for five years before I happened upon it.

Never said I was the most observant of people. Still at least it does mean I have quite a number of episodes to catch up on - thanks be to the people who first thought of selling episodes of TV shows on tape or disk.

Ah well, another rejection

A little while ago I sent off a short story called "Have a Nice Day!" to horror website Night Chills. And yes they turned it down. Such is life. Still at least the acceptances from New Myths made me feel better.

New sales!!

Website New Myths has bought a couple of pieces from me (huzzah!). First couple of sales I've had for a while. Ok, maybe a bit of this is because I have not written all that much of late. Still hope it will make me get back on with it. I need to get a number of book reviews sorted in the next week or so.

But enough of that - the sales.

First was a review of Patrick Moore's Legends of the Stars - a book describing the stories behind the constellations named by the ancient Greeks.

Second was a hopefully humorous piece called "Ten Science Fiction Novels to Give your Father-in-Law" which details ten books that I felt could prove to my non-sf inclined father in law. It's a bit of a true article, this actually happened. My father-in-law is not a sf fan. He's never going to be one. But I did manage to persuade him to give he genre a try a while back and started selecting books for him. As for whether he liked them, well you'll have to read the article. I will post …

The Fog

I had really, really low hopes for this film. I can remember John Carpenter's original of this movie somewhere back before the dawn of time. My memory of it was that it wasn't one of Carpenter's best movies. So a remake...? Hmmh!

This onecomes emblazoned with the banner "From the Makers of Halloween". Films that have "From the makers of..." on the front always worry me a little. They make me think they don't have a review quote good enough to help sell the film. Still is the film worth watching?

Well to be brutally honest I couldn't tell you. I mean it. I watched this a week ago now (admittedly before succumbing to a rather unpleasant virus over the weekend) and can hardly remember anything of it. It made next to no impact on my memory whatsoever. Never mind, eh?

Long Distance

I had absolutely no idea what this film would be like when I popped it into the DVD player. I'd never heard of it before I saw it on the shelf in the video store. I find that's often the best way. I've seen far too many films with pre-conceptions they just didn't live up to.

Long Distance centres on a young woman called Nicole who one night dials a wrong number. Sounds innocent and safe enough, except the man that answers calls her back repeatedly. The following day she finds out he was calling from the house of a woman he'd just murdered. And now it seems she's the target of a killer's obsession.

This is not a bad film at all. It manages to build a pretty decent level of suspense. Decent plotting, good direction and fair acting. But it does rather have a telegraphed ending. I'd imagine they were going for a serious twist here, one that might grip the viewer. The only problem I had was this "twist" was pretty obvious - which meant the ending was…