About Me

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I am an aspiring writer living and working in Hull. I working on a novel, as well as writing short stories to keep my writing skills fresh. I decided to start a writing blog to connect with other writers. So please, take a look around and leave some comments - I'd love to read some of your writing blogs too. Nari X

Monday, 29 November 2010

Walks in The Snow

The first part of this post I wrote last night, but I never like to actually publish anything I write past about midnight until I've looked over it and edited it. The latter part I've added this afternoon.

"You know those days where you lie in bed at the end of them and just smile? I've had one of those days. The world is draped with fluffy white blankets, snowflakes spiralling their way down from a bright white sky, and clinging to each other as they fall softly to the ground. You can't help but stop and take it all in. I love what snow does to people.

Not always, and not everyone, but I love what I witnessed today; 
neighbourhood kids in the street having a snowball fight, and genuinely having fun, not destroying something. Joining in as we pass.
A giant snowball in the middle of the path, two guys look at each other and before long are rolling it along, making it bigger.
A snow penis blocking someone's doorway...  
A couple of guys playing ice hockey in the street. Never thought I'd see that in Hull.
Parents and their children lobbing snowballs at each other, laughing and enjoying each other's company.

The icing white eradicates the grey beneath, and for a second, you could forget you were in Hull and unemployed. Forget you were anywhere. It’s nice to see people relaxed, having fun. Getting on with each other. I guess you don't see it that much round here. It’s nice to know that in amongst all the troubles and complaints we are so quick to see with the city, there is some real innocence and purity in the place. 

And  in all of this, I think the setting if the final chapter of 'CQ' is coming together... I think November 30th is not going to happen seeing as it is in  two days time. Christmas at the latest. Watch this space. "

I'm going to try and write another 3000 words tonight, amending continuity flaws such as the season and the weather. The story starts in about October, midway through a term, and I don't think the time frame extends as far as midsummer like I seem to imply with some of my later scenes. So it is a winter story, completely opposing my original setting ideas. But I think Winter works, especially with the inspiration of snow all around me.

Before I go, I'd like to say a quick thank you to everyone who saw my letter in Writers' Forum and has come across to say hello. I really appreciate you taking the time, and I've looked through some very interesting blogs. I look forward to getting to know you all over the next few months.

Sunday, 28 November 2010

Proud, Geeky Moment

My day has been made :) I made it into Peter Brett's blog. Oh Yes. 
This was a rather geeky project, which I spent a fair amount of time on and stayed up til 4 finishing off. Well, I doubt it's anything against half of the contenders, but it was fun, and it was worth a try. Check it out:

Anyway, I'm still in my PJs and I'm going to be late for church.

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Role Models and Poetry

I've been writing more of a scene just after the fight scene (there's a fight scene) - Toby, Ryan and Lauren trying to derive meaning from Ryan's bloodstained shirt. I envisage a dialogue perhaps a bit later between Toby and Ryan that will give a bit of back story on Toby. In the past few months I have completely fallen in love with Toby, and he seems to be really fleshing out in my head. I hope it comes across on paper. 

And it's becoming clearer that in this story, Toby becomes a kind of mentor character for Ryan. I was speaking with Rob the other day, and he was putting me on the spot, asking delving questions as he does. It's a brilliant excercise, and as much as I snap at him for it, I love him for it. Because it makes me pull out the raw, unprotected and fleshy thoughts, ideals and themes that sew together what I write. He asked me what I thought the strongest theme was in my book. I stuttered, but as I spoke, I said something along the lines of, '...that age where you're working out who you are, not just in a cliched sense, but how you are defined...the way we relate to each other, the people we allow to have influence in our lives, the relationships that are good for us and the ones that aren't. The people we love anyway.' 

I've been thinking a lot about role models and whether we choose them or they choose us. You don't choose to be somebody's mentor, it just happens. At any given point, you could be influencing somebody's life. We very rarely know if we are a mentor to somebody, so don't you think we should think carefully about the way we relate to each other?
So these thoughts are what have been influencing my writing of these few scenes and the character developments within them. 

I've been writing some poetry too. It's good for me, I think. Words have started flowing from me like blood from the wounded, tears from the heartbroken. They'll stay hidden, of course. Because I am a person. I am not my suffering. For eyes to see them would be to forget that. 

And while I have had an incredibly tough year, I'd like to think I have still kept my sense of humour. So I will share a single one with you. 

Oh, Twinings, with your milk so fresh,
Your warmth seeps into tired flesh
My hands wrapped round the liquid pause
A porcelain shell
Of sweetened warmth
The sloshing tan gives way to white
An empty cup
It’s time to write.

Also worth mentioning is that I have added a link to the page for my short story 'Sugar Rush' on I have been reading through it again, and the reviews people have left, and I am itching to edit. Having left it a month or two, the initial hurt I always feel after constructive criticism has been replaced by motivation, as much of what was said I have seen is true. I'm very grateful for the help people have given me. I will be editing bits and pieces of it soon, though obviously, 'CQ' is my main priority. 

And now, role models and tea poetry aside, I have a train ticket to book. I'm going to Doncaster again tomorrow for a literacy and numeracy test at the YMCA, just in case they wish to employ me. Lets hope I can spell and add up. 

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

The Industry Game. (Kids, let's measure our words....)

Lyrics Booklet for LowCountry, EOTC

This piece of lyrical gold came through my door this morning, which made me smile. I know, I'm being out of date because this band stopped existing months ago. But I'll still be listening to the music they made, and I'll still be marvelling at the lyrical genius contained in this booklet. I thought they might have sold out, but was pleasantly surprised. 

I hesitated before writing here again. I wondered if I've posted too much. But then I thought, whatever, because this is a writing journal, and I'm speaking about writing. It just so happens that I have ridiculous amounts of time on my hands. 

Anyway. The point. My word count remains the same as yesterday, unfortunately. However, I wrote 2,300ish words the day before, which I thought was good. I've been working on the ending again, and it's coming together quite nicely. November 30th still looking possible.

But, I have a confession. That little niggling doubt is creeping in once again. Who on Earth would want to read this thing I'm referring to as a 'novel', when what I mean by that is the record of pretend lives of fictional people who live in my head? Or, more to the point, even if people want to read it (and a few do, apparently), I'm seriously doubting whether they'll a) get through the whole thing without getting bored or b) finish reading it and not think of a million other things that deserved their time above it. And I'm worried that it's all very silly. I never used to take myself seriously as a writer. Call it humility or whatever, but I just took for granted the fact that there was no real skill beneath the scenes I concocted on a bright white computer screen. 

However, since doing my course, I've kind of had to take my writing a little more seriously. And it's starting to scare the hell out of me, because I'm convinced that at the end of it all I'm going to end up looking like a pretentious git who can string some words together just like any literate graduate worth their salt. That's what I feel like right now. A pretentious git.

Because this all feels rather silly again. The thing I’m very aware of is that it’s easy to be optimistic before I’ve encountered The Industry, and while my only critic is my significant other who, to the point and ruthless as he is, loves me dearly and is invested in these characters because he’s invested in me. But I know, with absolutely no doubt in my mind, that if I am ever lucky enough to have an agent/publisher/editor read through my work, it’s going to be peeled back, stripped down, torn apart, rearranged, or even just laughed at.
And then what on Earth am I supposed to do with the knowledge that I’ve wasted four years of my life?

I suppose I've whined enough. I've been thinking about our use of words. And I speak for myself first and foremost; I think I have a habit of being over-enthusiastic in my use of adjectives. For example, using the word 'amazing', when I  really mean, 'quite good', or perhaps some string of words that is more in-depth but less glorifying. I say this, because I am very much of the belief that words are important. We should dish them out with care. 
If somebody says something I've done is 'amazing', and then in the same breath also comments that the price of milk has gone down, which is 'amazing', I'm unlikely to take their praise seriously. 

My Grandfather was someone who had high standards in life, and as an artist was honest, critical and analytical. Often he would look at my work and tell me it was 'Ok'. Sometimes I managed a 'Good', and on rare occasions he said my work was 'Very Good'. When Granfer told me my work was 'Very Good,' I felt a genuine sense of achievement, because he really meant it when he said it. He was not the sort to dish out compliments for the sake of it.
And I like that.  I would rather have got hundreds of 'Ok's with an explanation of why and how to improve, as he always did, than one 'amazing' that wasn't meant from the heart. 

And I don't mean we should never respect little things that may not be perfect. I'm all for appreciating little things in life that make us smile. But perhaps our standards for dishing out words like 'amazing' should be kept respectfully high, just so we can give to others that same sense of achievement that Granfer gave to me.  

Monday, 15 November 2010

Patrick Rothfuss - Heifer International

I've just taken the time to read through Patrick Rothfuss's most recent blog posts and thought I would share the sentiment of what he's doing because it looks ace.

Essentially, he's running a fundraiser with Heifer International, including a lottery to win all sorts of incredibly rare and signed books from loads of different Authors. It's very exciting. The charity works alongside families and communities living in poverty in Third World Countries, offering things like training and donations of livestock to dramatically improve living conditions. I think instead of trying to regurgitate information, I'll refer you onto Partick Rothfuss's blog and to the team fundraising page

This is a little aside from me. In his blog, Rothfuss comments that he's a big fan of Peter Brett's work, which I just found lovely. The two author's books are nestled next to each other on my bookshelf. Gotta love artists supporting each other. 

Anyway, that was all for today. I'm definitely one to support anything that works to lift poverty and this looks like a really good forum for it, as I'm sure there are plenty of charitable geeks out there like me :). Definitely a good way to be.

Sunday, 14 November 2010

I Remember...

Cenotaph: a monument or empty tomb honouring a person or persons whose remains are elsewhere.

I have just come back from a very powerful and moving service. 
It is remembrance Sunday, where we remember those who gave their lives fighting for peace all those years ago. Wesley (the preacher) spoke powerfully about loss and letting go. 
I thought that instead of voicing my own reflections, I would share a letter written to me by my late Grandfather last year. It includes an article he wrote on remembrance Sunday. I hope it can mean as much to you as it does to me. 

15 November 2009

Dear Elizabeth,

Your Mother suggested I should send you a copy of an article I have just sent  to my old school website. It may or may not be published there and I think the format of the site is far too complicated so things get missed.
The article was prompted by the recent memorial services, as I am probably one of the last people to have known those mentioned in it.
The site is the 'Royal High School Club in London' ( and there is a site map, which looks useful. If you should go to 'committee' from the home page, you will eventually find a picture of me with a glass in my hand.
I hope the term is going well, and please give my best wishes to Rob. Grandma also sends her love to both.

By James Henry Randell

I remember, in the two minute silence, I remember fresh-faced boys in my class. In my memory they are still young and not as when I look in the mirror, or occasionally see other boys from those years.

A generation before mine, the conversation of aunts and uncles was studded with trench slang and what the Sergeant said. I can remember ten years after the first Armistice sitting with my mother and an aunt in front of the wireless. We were listening to the ceremony from the cenotaph. I knew about it because I knew I had listened to it the year before, although that has gone beyond my present recall. There was the bang of a gun and everything went silent except for the rustle of the late autumn leaves until the next bang and then they sang ‘Oh God our help’. My mother, remembering in the silence, said, ‘Harold was such a nice boy...’.

It wasn’t just the servicemen who died from my class. There were two boys who shared the same name but were not related. One was heavily built, and fair haired, and had a particular way of standing – slightly to one side, easy going and with a curiosity about things. The other was a bit shorter and was more intense. His over-riding passion was ‘guiders’, the boxes on wheels that were steered with your feet, and could reach incredible speeds down a hill, with no brakes. He made models of them, streamlining the box, modifying the steering. He also had a curiosity about things and the way they went together. Fairly early in ‘our’ war, there had been air raids in Glasgow. The anti-aircraft guns round Edinburgh had joined in, firing at enemy bombers both ways. One shell arcing through the summer holiday air had landed somewhere in the Pentland Hills having failed to explode, until one of the boys called to the others in curiosity, when it did. I remember going to the funeral, myself barely in long trousers, seeing the white coffins carried to the graves.

Later into the war the men teachers started to disappear, being replaced by lady teachers. In an all male environment where a Miss C, the beak’s secretary, had been the only lady to about 600 males, this could be a revolutionary experience. Most of them had been teachers, whose husbands were away in the services. G in my class had that tall, gaunt, dark, highland look of a future seeing, seventh son of a seventh son, although he only had an older sister. His father was in the regular army and was serving in India and from whom G had no doubt learned to call ladies a respectful ‘ma’am’, thus solving what was for us the problem of saying ‘Miss’ to a known ‘Mrs’. This teacher of English set us an essay, which I think must have had a fairly broad subject. Going over them in class the next day, she said of G’s, ‘It’s not the way it is written, but i have never known so young a person with such an attitude to, and expectation of death.’ What she read had visibly disturbed her. On our last day in school after we had gone through the memorial door, and gathered in our old form room; G came up to me, more formal than the others and slightly unexpectedly shook my hand. ‘So long,’ we said, because we never said ‘Goodbye’ in those days. He went out of the room, crunched across the gravel to the main gate and strode down Regent Road to the Post Office. Some time later in North-west France, I think he must have been in the so-called birdcage – the Bocage, a country criss-crossed by hedges. Here by repute the German mortar teams could drop a bomb on your back collar stud and everyone went with their heads permanently down into their shoulders. Anyway, his essay prediction came true.

From time to time the societies or organisations of the school, the Literary and Debating Society, The Cadet Corps, the Scouts, would organise a dance in the gym of the prep schoolat Northfield Broadway. If you were on leave or could wangle a pass it was a good place to be as everyone tried to go and you could meet friendsand hear what was happening. I tended to get out of uniform as as quickly as possible and put on the lurid sports jacket and tie of what I though was a girl puller. On this evening, Ali, who was disabled and to his chagrin was not wanted in the forces, as I arrived told me that D was there and what’s more had brought a girlfriend with him. Not specially known for chasing after girls like some of us this was a surprise. And there he was, immaculate, smartly pressed, gleaming in his uniform, immensely pleased and proud of the young lady by his side. He introduced us. She was charming, delightful, his pride well placed. On D-day with his rifle weighing 9lbs, his ammunition pouches full of four fully loaded bren magazines, a tin hat weighing lord knows what, so called ammunition boots on his feet, a full water bottle, the small pack of his battle order webbing , with some food boxed in mess tins, what else he had hoped to ease the next couple of days, a cotton sling with pockets of clips full of .303 rounds, an entrenching tool and probably a carrier full of mortar bombs, he came off the landing craft. There is a bump you can feel, as the bottom of the craft hits the sand and the sailors lift the ramp and everyone moves forward. If it was a sand bank and not a real beach, there would have been deep water at the end of the ramp, well over a man’s head. Had it been the real beach there would have been invisible rocks or hazards below the water to trip a man and once down keep him down by the weight of what was fixed to him. D didn’t make it onto the beach.

There may have been others, as there were for older years.

In the two minutes silence, ‘They were such nice boys............’.

Wednesday, 10 November 2010

I've had a good run.

And thus my journey comes to an end. I set off with only hope and a dream, but I struggled on. Alas, my efforts were in vain, and my gallant quest here now ends.

I have a cold.

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Realism vs Idealism

Fireworks at Beverley Westwood Display, November 5th 2010

I've wanted to write something about this for a while, but not really known how to shape it. I worry sometimes that this blog strays too whimsically into the dusty realms of my mind, but then I guess that's what a blog is for. This is a writing blog and writing, as we well know, is not just about putting pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard...). Writing is about perception, about the way you see the world, and observing the little things that make depictions of characters more believable and give them depth. It's about thinking. It's about daydreaming, and capturing the little fluttering imaginings that wander through the mind, either about real life and real people, or about imagined worlds and characters. 

For a long time, when I first thought I might try my hand at a novel, I had this idea that the point of writing was to present idealism. Reading is escapism, as is watching a film. We don't sit down with a book so we can read about people screwing up their lives and getting bored at school, college, work or whatever. We sit down to read about characters that 'carry us away'. This is possibly because of my poetry-rooted start in writing life - my first attempts at prose writing were overly descriptive and long-winded with little dialogue, only characters' inner monologues. 

Over the years, however, my opinions have changed, as has my writing style. I think it may have been Film Studies that showed me the importance of dialogue, and now I'm a nerd for it. But, more importantly, I no longer shun realism. I think there's no "Versus" about it. Idealism isn't necessarily unreachable abstract concepts that we daydream about, idealism is the truth, depth and beauty we see in the world around us. It's about seeing something pure and thinking, I want more of that. 
Of course, often this goes wrong when people reach for things that aren't pure at all, but shroud themselves in false beauty or false happiness. 
Realism is about recognising the truth of how the world really is, observing the things that we experience. Idealism is taking that and saying, "What is pure about this?"

One of the things I've been editing recently is the scene where Ryan first meets Toby. I think I ought to put up an at-a-glance Character Reference box or something, because I talk about them so much and it's tedious having to explain who's who all the time. Ryan and Lauren are best friends. Toby is Lauren's eldest, 26 year-old brother. I've been writing some dialogue between the two of them where they are both trying to get to know each other. Toby, to some extent, is checking out this lad that spends so much time with his little sister, and Ryan is trying to impress him. Well, no. Knowing Ryan, that's too strong. He's trying not to screw up and make Toby think he's an idiot. 
It's an intense scene, and what I'm trying to get across is that gritty awkwardness of first meeting someone when it's important to you not to screw up. Maybe my experiences show me up as a socially awkward freak, but I think I'm not alone.

I think back to September 2008, so two years ago, when I met Ryan Hunter*. Inevitably, we idealise meeting the people we admire, and I honestly didn't know what to expect. He approached, and I became ridiculously British. Here I am in front of a 22 year-old Rock star from New York, and I offer my hand to shake. Do you know what, I don't care, because I can say that I have shaken the hand of a genius. I remember that as I shook his hand, his sleeve had fallen down over it. Strange the little things you notice. Anyway, I blurted some generic rubbish about how it was a great show, and that I loved his music, and he seemed genuinely grateful. I was with my sister, and she is a far better conversationalist than I, perhaps because she has had a far more interesting life than I have. The two of them were talking about New York and Vermont, and it was about then that I convinced myself that he was going to be my brother in law because they were going to get married. I still maintain that he was taken with her. Heather is a very pretty lady. 
His eyes were darting all about the place (when they weren't on Heather), and it looked like his mind was going a million miles a minute. Ryan Hunter is someone I love to listen to when he speaks, whether it was then, in the flesh, on interviews, videos he posts or on his blog, he seems to have a lot of profound insights, and this is where his intense, subtle and emotive writing comes from - his observation and reflection on the world. 

My point, I think, somewhere in all of that, was that real experiences made me realise the subtleties of observation. Presenting realism isn't about writing about ordinary events in an ordinary way. Realism is about reflecting on the small things we observe about human nature and social customs and drawing meaning about the way we relate to each other. 

* Disclaimer: Ok, so I'm gonna get this in here before anyone can throw accusations. Yes, my main character is called Ryan and has dreadlocks. Yes, one of  my favourite songwriters is called Ryan and has dreadlocks. That, my friends, is where the similarities end. This is the absolute truth. This character had been with me for at least three years before I even knew who Ryan Hunter was. When I first saw him onstage and he said that his name was Ryan I full on freaked out. In actuality, the name was taken from someone on a forum I was friends with absolutely years ago. 

Poetry and Cynicism

Editor's note: I couldn't sleep last night, and wrote this. It sprung from the fact that I had mentioned I don't like to show my poetry, and figured I probably owed an explanation. It was originally all in caps, because my phone editor is weird like that, but I guess people don't like being shouted at. So. This is what my brain looks like at one in the morning.

It's midnight, and my eyes won’t shut.  I somehow ended up at a Tupperware party at the church, where I had glorious cake and a cup of tea. I then came home, had a Lemsip and tried to go to bed at half ten. Its freezing, the rain is hammering against the window, so I plugged myself into Envy on the Coast. A further mistake. You’d think I’d never met me before.

Because listening to Ryan Hunter’s lyrics makes me want to write poetry, and then I remember how long it has been. So I lie here, staring at the ceiling, remembering all the things I don’t want to write about.

There was a time where all I would write was poetry. Most of it was shocking, as in, shockingly bad. I won a young writers competition locally and got published in an anthology, but people are a lot more forgiving when you’re young. Because supposedly all you have to write about is your dog, or the bullies at school. I remember a classic moment that made me hate sharing poetry and spawned my cynicism of adult understanding; I wrote a poem about my old Graphics teacher, who had been imprisoned a year or two earlier for the manslaughter of his wife. He had always been someone who had encouraged me and made me feel like it was worth retrying and improving. I hated the things people said about him. I was trying, through it all, to demonstrate that he was loved, even in his brokenness. I read out the poem at the prize giving in our local Ottakars (now Waterstones), though it was the last thing on earth I wanted to do. Someone approached me afterwards.
'That was a great poem.'
Heart thudding. Is this the real thing?
'What’s it about?'
Are you serious? I just said what it’s about by reading the damn poem.
'A pet?'
A pet? I could have punched her. Did you even listen? I wanted to say.
Now I know that in my youth, my strings of words may not have been wholly subtle or literary, but it was my feelings poured out on a page, and the fact that I won meant there was something in that. But it frustrated me so much what that woman said.

A more recent example was something I sent into Writer’s Forum, which was a mistake.  I ticked the box for a critique, because that’s what a keen writer does. Well, I didn’t like it. Not because it was bad, but the whole concept of somebody else telling me that what I’m feeling doesn’t quite scan...

I’m not whining at WF, at all. I guess I just didn’t know myself well enough. Thing is, poetry is like painting. It delves and it strips away the mask to what’s beneath, and right now I don’t think I want to see what’s beneath.

Listening to EOTC’s LowCountry also makes me want to get my paws about those sticks again and attack my trusty Mapex. Except it’s sat in stacks because I live in a terraced house. So close I can touch the shiny red of its beautiful shells... And yet so far.

Maybe I will write some poetry. But without digging too deep, it would mostly be about tea. Anyway, it’s got to that point in the night where I’m dropping the phone on my face so I think I’d better try the sleep thing.
Goodnight, world.

Friday, 5 November 2010

NaNoWriMo....No. and Single Father finale

I realise that it is now NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month), and I should probably explain why I am not taking part. Trust me, I did consider it. See, the thing is that NaNo requires writers to start a novel from scratch on the 1st November, and being half way through a novel already with a Christmas deadline, starting a new effort that would most certainly not get my full attention at this vital stage seemed pointless.

It is a shame, though, as now seems like the perfect time in my life to do it. I'm unemployed, I'm not a student anymore, and I'm not yet married, so time and attention would not be envied. NaNo seems like a really fun, challenging but rewarding excercise in not over-thinking. I can imagine that the pure heart put into a NaNo novel would be raw and genuine.
Someone in Writers Forum said to prospective NaNoers that it is not advisable to use an idea or character that you really care about, as the fast-paced 'just write' nature of the game can destroy any attachment or disappoint your own view of what they should be like.

I've realised that I've set myself up for failure from the offset even by the way I set myself a deadline. It has been a very ambiguous 'Christmas' deadline. Now that could mean anything. It could mean the 25th December, it could mean 1st December, or when term at Uni finishes, it could mean the end of December, or if I want to be particularly technical and pedantic, it could be sometime in the spring. You see the shepherds wouldn't have been out in the winter. (I'm such a nerd.)
So, my proposal is this. I enter into the spirit of NaNoWriMo and set my deadline for the 31st November. That way, I've still got time before the year's up to faff and flap with perfectionism before I let my team of readers loose.
Gosh, that's terrifying. At the back of my mind I've got this voice going 'Don't be silly, this is all just rubbish. It's not a real novel.'

And so, I've got a month to make it a real novel. Because there's real people who actually want to read it. How weird is that?

Anyway, Single Father. I realise I have not yet given my opinion on the finale. I thought it was excellent. I wasn't entirely sure about Sarah having intended to get pregnant all along, though. The kids were so cute with their 'Can we say "Hi" yet?'. I can imagine there are some viewers out there who didn't like the ending. I read one blog on the short series that said 'One thing I don't want this to turn into is a love story,' and, well, I guess it did. But I didn't mind that. I think it worked quite naturally, though it seemingly didn't take Dave long to get over Rita.
But, that said, having found out what he did about Lucy's Dad, it was obvious he was incredibly angry with her. And how is he supposed to deal with that? He'll never hear her side of the story, and he'll never know what she was thinking. And so, what he is doing is moving on. Letting the past lie.

The hand flew to the mouth at the scene in the studio with Tanya and Matt. That was good, I liked that little twist. I also liked the fact that given the choice, Dave made it clear that the kids were more important than anything, even if that meant sacrificing his feelings for Sarah.

Definately a success in my eyes. I look forward to the next BBC drama input, not to mention the continuation of Sherlock next year.

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

On Ross Noble and Vampirism

I'm currently sat watching Ross Noble whilst waiting for my dinner to cook. I've set myself an impossible task - keeping up with Ross whilst attempting to make insightful, interesting comments about life, the universe and everything (42) and also not burning peppers. We'll see how it goes.

I went to see Ross Noble at Hull City hall the other day with a bunch of lovely friends, and he was on top form. I love the way he makes jokes about whatever city or town he's in, usually at the expense of the locals. Its a valuable thing to be able to laugh at oneself, and as the British people, I think we are very good at it. Dunno what that says about us really... What was even better was being at a show in Hull as a Southerner. Oh yes. Beautiful. The audience participation was priceless. Hullites are weird. Best joke of the night was about Lady Gaga. He built it up, like he does, straying then coming back, then straying again. He said 'There she was at the MTV music awards covered in meat! Has she been stalking me for ideas?' in reference to his tangent of meat on the face on the Sonic Waffle DVD. Absolutely brilliant.
No, the BEST joke of the night was about sexy vampires. He gave a summary of Twilight, flicking his hair and saying 'I'm a sexy vampire' and then went off on one about how a vampire should not have any hair cut that isn't the V-shape. 

I think the appeal of Ross Noble is that he's so inclusive - he makes everybody feel like they're in on something, like its all one big in-joke. Or a collection of many. There's something good in that, I think, whatever form it takes. And at the moment, we need comedy to make us all smile more. With the recession, unempoyment, redundancies, everything going up in price, we need some kind of togetherness as a country, and I think, as I said before, laughing at ourselves is a good way to do that. Yes, there are problems. Yes, they need sorting. But sometimes its good to get some laugh lines, and cheer the hell up.

Rebuke the sneezes!! 

Sorry, so far this winter I have not been ill for a single day, and I'm trying to keep it that way. You see, I'm trying to prove a point to my future father-in-law that I am not always ill. I've been eating my B12, Vitamin C, Iron and Beta-carotene thank you very much!

I've been doing some more painting, which has been fun. I'm painting Ryan at the moment (the main character of my novel), and its really good, as I've said before, for character development. I've been working on the eyes again, wondering at what stage of the book this particular representation is. I've made a start on the bloodshot effect, but for a time his eyes were just red. He looked like a vampire. 

Ok, secret's out. Ryan Dorsey is a vampire. I was writing a scene at two in the morning last year that revealed Lauren as a vampire. It's becoming a frequent occurrence. Bad day? Everyone's a vampire. Well, to be honest, it would sell. What's the big twist I was on about?
He's a vampire. A sexy one at that.

I'm joking. Nobody is a vampire. 
Or are they?

Ok. time to go.
But are they?
But they're not.
But are they?