Breakfast in Albertopolis

Good morning all! And first of all, apologies for disappearing for a bit – it’s been a hectic few weeks of settling into the new place, and generally getting things sorted out. Secondly, much excitement, as new stories have hit the streets. Online, my story ‘Fallen’, which is a stonepunk mini-epic that implicates the MayansContinue reading “Breakfast in Albertopolis”

Aliens, invasions, and the act of reading

Nigel Kneale’s masterpieces ‘Quatermass and the Pit’, ‘The Quatermass Conclusion’ and ‘The Stone Tape’ cast a fascinating light on the nature of fiction, because each one shows the future invading from the past. In ‘Quatermass and the Pit’, the Martian invaders are five million year old fossils, in ‘The Quatermass Conclusion’, Neolithic stone circles becomeContinue reading “Aliens, invasions, and the act of reading”

Dispatches from a moving time

Well, the process of moving continues – silence for the last week or so as I’ve been deep in final moving and decorations (with hugely invaluable help and support from H) before the new carpets go in at Allumination Central. More busy-ness continues – furniture ordering, sorting estate agents, etc, before the upcoming move toContinue reading “Dispatches from a moving time”

Batty falls from the stars

Screens in Blade Runner; for a movie that’s always been billed as a key cyberpunk progenitor, they are – for the most part – remarkably large, and remarkably one way. A core essence of cyberpunk is the hackable system, the two way engagement with the data stream, but there’s precious little of that in thisContinue reading “Batty falls from the stars”

(Un)Real city

Just been reading over yesterday’s post about Zola, and I realised that there’s an unstated assumption about the actual process of writing underlying it. I don’t think that any writer pulls something from nothing. Rather, I think that the act of writing is an act of interpretation. Details of the world are pulled into fictionContinue reading “(Un)Real city”

(Even more than) 99 red balloons

I was sat in the Red Lion on Kingly Street the other day – excellent pub, it’s a Samuel Smiths house so the beer is both good and cheap, and there’s no music, so instead there’s just the wonderful susurrus of people just chatting – and I overheard someone say ‘I’ve spent four hours makingContinue reading “(Even more than) 99 red balloons”

What’s a person anyway?

So much narrative removes the possibility of change. Although faced by risk, the hero always win out, the quality and correctness of his or her original vision unchallenged. They’re superficially about progress, but in fact such narratives privilege stasis. The hero might develop new skills (whether practical or emotional) to allow them to achieve theirContinue reading “What’s a person anyway?”

A pirate’s life for me, Pt 2

Well, more on pirate narrative structures. Today, it’s Key Equipment and Supporting Characters, below. What interests me about this exercise is not so much the usefulness of better understanding pirate stories, but rather the way it reflects onto the construction of fiction in general. A story of any kind is an end product of aContinue reading “A pirate’s life for me, Pt 2”

A pirate’s life for me, Pt 1

Well, not much time to write today, so digging through the files I found my ‘how to build a pirate story’ document from a while back. Which set me thinking about how much narrative structure is pre-formed by subject matter in general… So, in honour of general piracy, here’s Part One, dealing with Subtext andContinue reading “A pirate’s life for me, Pt 1”