Creative Input: Dystopian Times

I just love a little bit of dystopia. I think I might have an addiction. But it’s a damn good addiction – one, incidentally, that can be enjoyed while eating enough chocolate to make you sick over a bank holiday weekend. Just saying. And here’s how I’m currently drowning myself in dystopia – in the thoughts and dreams of what happens when things go wrong. When humanity goes wrong. When we forget to safeguard the good things. Reading: I picked up Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro yesterday. I’ve barely scratched the surface of it yet but I’m already…

Creative Input: The reading, watching, listening files

It has a name, it has a name! *Flails arms, watches lightning crackle down the tower, smells hair burning* And it is called CREATIVE INPUT. Creative input to expand your horizons and fill your brain with ideas and inspiration. Creative input to perhaps try something new, something you might not have picked up before. Creative input that hopefully you’ll love and share with someone else, and they’ll love it too and pass it on, and it will be like some sort of brilliant, magical plague made of words or sounds or pictures. Because everybody needs a magical plague in their…

Long live the beards

So it was my birthday this week. I know, I kept that one quiet – announced with the hushed reverence that goes hand in hand with the celebration of another day more mouldy, another day more rickety. But on the plus side, it involved CAKE, some more CAKE, and BOOKS. Which is always a good thing, especially in that combination. It also involved a checked shirt, to support my aspirations of becoming a rocking-chair-on-the-veranda dwelling harmonica player. Just need the beard now, which was not forthcoming with the birthday post. So: Cake – check. (Chocolate cake, chocolate icing, the sort…

Grind Spark – the complete earworm sessions

It’s time to close the book on Grind Spark. Not completely, there’s still tweaks and edits afoot. But times are a-changing and new WIPs (Work in Progress, Walrus in Pants, Wet Insidious Pulses… whatever takes your fancy) with whole new earworms are calling. So it’s time to wrap up the Grind Spark playlist. I present to you here, in one place, for your most decadent earjoy, the majority of songs that I listened to while fighting words and wrestling keyboards, and also while writing Grind Spark. Genesis by Justice Utopia by Jackson and His Computerband Ain’t no sunshine by Liz…

Grind Spark Earworm #15 – John Murphy

It’s Grind Spark earworm time everybody, and this week we’re sort of staying with the soundtrack theme. Last time we listened to the hauntingly beautiful Hungry Face by Mogwai, featured on the TV series Les Revenants. This time we’re listening to a song that still sends shivers up my spine. A song that spreads out across an empty city, while a lone man looks at empty roads and wonders what’s happened. A song that sets music to zombies, with a backdrop of cruel humanity. Not that there are zombies in Grind Spark. But if I was all alone at the…

Grind Spark Earworm #14 – Mogwai

HAPPY SUNDAY, GUYS! HAPPY FIRST DAY OF JUNE! Wha’? IT’S THE FIRST DAY OF JUNE, MAN! Are you smoking that shit you bought off the purple crocodile living at the bottom of the garden again? ERM… NO… Right… THAT WAS THE SEASONING FOR LAST NIGHT’S PIZZA. *Rolls over, digs in under the blankets* BUT IT REALLY IS JUNE. Which it is, as I gulp down mugs of coffee and wonder what’s happened with the rest of the year – perhaps that pizza knocked me out for months and now it’s Summer (only wet and quite cold). So now it’s time…

Grind Spark Earworm #13 – Moloko

Woah, it’s only come around to that Grind Spark playlist time again. There’s been less posts recently due to my head being buried in a couple of new WIPs and running through final edits on Grind Spark – don’t worry though, there’s wordage being stored up to shortly be spewed into bloggity format for your eyeball delectation. Last week we went on a little trip off piste to check out DJ Snake and Lil Jon’s Turn Down for What. I trust you all played it appropriately loud. This week I’m picking probably the lightest song from the playlist. Well, when…

Grind Spark Earworm #12 – DJ Snake and Lil Jon

Is it Grind Spark playlist time again? I think it might just be. Last time we went for rage and dancing with The Prodigy. This week we’re doing something different. This week we’ve got a BRAND SPANKING NEW addition to the playlist. Not spanking like paddles and chains and red lights. More spanking like Julia Childs with a nice piece of tripe. And the new addition was suggested by Gabriel Novo (find him on Twitter as @GabrielNovo). He’s a pretty darn cool dude, who seems to have got things pretty much right when he suggested my musical tastes seemed to…

Grind Spark Earworm #11 – The Prodigy

This week I am finally able to share the news that Grind Spark hit the longlist for the Bath Novel Award – one of only 32 novels out of 649. This is all pretty darn cool and since I heard the news I have celebrated appropriately with wine, beer, chair dancing and shouting HAVE YOU HEARD THE NEWS? NO, WAIT, I CAN’T SAY YET BUT IT’S AS EXCITING AS A KANGAROO FIRING PARTYPOPPERS FROM ITS POUCH. Ok, well, maybe not that exciting. But I’m not sure anything is ever more exciting than kangaroos. But enough shouting and partying, time to…