Saturday, March 31, 2007

Todd Tjersland on Sin Cities:

Todd doing his 'Rising' impersonation.
There's a show here on Bravo (in the UK) called SIN CITIES. This is some wacky show about adult or non-mainstream experimental entertainment presented by amicable host Ashley Hames who goes about the world's most extreme cities trying out every possible vice. My sex-horror deviant writer/filmmaker friend Todd Tjersland is gonna be featured in an episode airing April 19, about his erotic zombie films. Warning, as he puts it, big knockers on display!

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

3D game concept - rock chick racer

Doesn't the world have enough bike riding games? Well, I think not - I put in a few hours of effort into compiling some illustrative (admittedly rough) 3D sketches of my design for this bike-morphing rock-chick-racing game, I had great plans for the corner-seeking camera, thought it would take on the likes of GT and motogp - it would be fun to make into a real game demo (it wasn't supposed to be like Kinetica before you ask). Any interested 3D programmers out there wanna help me put this together?

erm, why the update, a month later? well, Rock Chick Racer (I just discoverd by accident) is now a featured download on Yahoo > Movies. LOL. 1,600 views and growing!!! AND this little concept video's getting some really good feedback on CGTALK - a very well respected industry page for 3D rendered/interactive concerns.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Clifford Bailey Exhibition

Clifford Bailey is a figurative artist I was really taken by when I discovered an open air exhibition on my one trip to Los Angeles a few years ago. It was on some park opposite Rodeo Drive. I'd found my way there by taking the L.A. bus system from the Venice Beach area where we were staying to Hollywood Boulevard - you know, when in Rome. I didn't die. I wasn't gunned down. Los Angeleans were quite friendly. Anyway, Clifford Bailey's art caught my eye and I introduced myself, we exchanged email addresses. Well, he's got another exhibition of his fine stuff, coming up soon, so if you're in Half Moon Bay, CA, through April, give it a try.

You can also PREVIEW works at the show by visiting this link:

To view Clifford Bailey’s NEW 2007 limited editions visit this link:

Friday, March 23, 2007

more HONORABLE MENTIONS for Chimeraworld in YBFH

Dear readers of extreme literature,

I've just received confirmation that two more stories from the Chimeraworld anthology have been given Honorable Mentions by Ellen Datlow of YEAR'S BEST FANTASY AND HORROR.

Paul Pinn for Stench Man Killer Boy in Chimeraworld #3 (atheist, terrorist, misogynist) published in Jan 2006.
Christina Crooks for The Seat in Chimeraworld #4 (all cars must die) published in Dec 2006.

Congratulations guys, this is quite a recognition of your talent as writers and supporters of Chimeraworld. I'm very proud for both of you.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

300 - juicy!

300 (based on Frank Miller's graphic novels) was a wonderfully surreal and strangely alluring film - the Sin City graphical treatment actually worked this time round. I'm sure King Xerxes didn't look or act like that, but whatever... I'm sure there was more Spartan Pederasty going on behind the quaint wolf-boy narrative than was actually onscreen in the first half hour of the film, but whatever...

The intimate battle scenes were far more convincing than the cringe-worthy torsos of swarthy men bathed in 'Davidov - cool water, advert' rain, than that giggle-making Kamasutra of Leonidas' love-making scene, than the 'hands on the Leonides' shoulders' giggle-festival from old Xerxes. Yes, the audience were laughing at those painful scenes, and rightly so.

At times, it was embarrassing as a film; as a character structure, flawed and over-acted. Technically speaking it was about as historically inaccurate as any Hollywood interpretation has ever been such that I was eagerly expecting the American Cavalry to come rushing over the misty, backlit hills to save the day. The ending was very much like the ending of gay director Jarman's SEBASTIAN, but those arrows, right, sticking into Leonidas at the end were all parallel, i.e. they entered his body from the side, when clearly that final black mist of arrows soared into Spartan flesh FROM ALTITUDE. Maybe, as really happened, Leonidas was long dead even before the Persians used the traitor's path to surround the hardy Spartans - and this final shot was an allusion to that? Conspiracy theorists?

It's like with my dissatisfaction with Stallone's JUGDE DREDD ... if Leonidas commanded such respect from his 300 Spartan bodyguards would he necessarily have to shout so much to get their attention?

All that said, credit where credit's due, as an action film, edited with a wicked rapier, 300 rocked!

The real Spartan story should be a lesson to all creatives the world over battling against prejudice, jingoism and tyranny - write your story the way you want, so that, if you're lucky, centuries from now, yours will be the remembered tale. Write like you die tomorrow.

Long live written horrors.
Long live creative spirit.
Long live artistic freedom.

*punches the sky with the leather jock-strapped boys*


Wednesday, March 21, 2007 Joyce on acid:

I received a couple of lengthy editorial missives today about one of my novels. I'll not say who it was or share the contents of the emails, as they were private. But one phrase, " Joyce on acid." has stuck in my mind, then going on to mention other favourite writers Eliot, Faulkner and Fuentes. It was such a supportive and thoughtful brace of emails from a professional who has gone through a lot lately and (still) remembered to contact me and giev me their intimate reaction to one of my books. Sorta makes my non-mainstream, non-mediocre approach to the creative arts (writing included) all worthwhile.


Sunday, March 11, 2007

Octavia Butler - interview:

It was actor/screenwriter Maurice Fleming who reminded me about my Octavia Butler screenplay fiasco of 2005 (the one where the rights to her DAWN book were snapped up just as I submitted a screenplay to her agent Merilee Heifetz at Writers House - I know I should have checked that the rights were available before writing it but writing's a passionate thing, not a lawyer's job). Maurice tracked me down wanting to know about the Octavia Butler Movie Adapatation Process. Well, Maurice, it goes something like this:

(1) contact the writer's agent first to see if the screen rights are available
(2) try not to piss off the writer's agent early in the relationship
(3) write something that's mainstream enough for them to sell to Hollywood

That screenplay would have been a great non-mainstream commentary on the slave trade and genetic bartering and would have set up the other two books (movies) superbly. I called this first screenplay DESTINATION EARTH. Actually, this reminds me of the great (never made) screen version of PKD's A Scanner Darkly that Charlie Kaufman had on his website (might be funny to upload my screen version of DESTINATION EARTH somewhere near the release of the film version that's supposedly being written right now, and I wasn't invited into the rewrite circle jerk).


Man, I'm such a bitter, twisted whiner. Anyway, the real reason for this rambling bag of bile is mention of Octavia Butler had me trawling through interviews with her and here's one of the best, over at Jelani Cobb's site.

Interview with Octavia Butler
J.C. - Like I said, the first set of questions is kinda loosely based on writing and how you got the impulse to write and developed, and the last part deals with your work itself.
O.B. - If you could talk a little louder it would help too.

UPDATE ON THAT JELANI COBB INTERVIEW: it would appear that it's now a dead link, due to the content being eviscerated from the Free Net by its incorporation into the publication "Conversations with Octavia Butler
edited by Conseula Francis" published 2010 by University Press of Mississippi in Jackson. Go figure.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

International Women's Day

I admit I may not always have been the ideal son or the ideal husband but today hail all women (especially our mums and wives) for putting up with us men.


Wednesday, March 07, 2007

new short story - Song of the Samaritan: mentioned in the last post - I actually had the notes for a new (science fiction) short story hanging about in a notepad having been written over a series of lunchtimes last year. It's a great surprise to find something you'd forgotten you'd put a lot of conceptual work into. As far as typing it in goes, that's done. As far as whatever the hell it is goes? Well, it's really taken the last few evenings to come to some creative solution as to what "Song Of The Samaritan" is actually about, rearrange some sections of the multi-persona testimony and solifidy the denouement(I've become a real fan of tedious-seeming fiction with a Tales of the Unexpected ending). In truth the notes were just that - sketches of scenes without a cogent linking thread or presentational flavour, the whole meal needed serious seasoning.

I now have a good idea of how the story should end and this will help me go back in (in classic mystery-fiction fashion) and do a etirwer, adding in the dark relevancies so far only hinted at as oblique asides. It's all typed in but it's still a bit messy (and I think I'm missing some vital scene from the end of the story - maybe squirreled away in some other notepad I'm yet to find in the house). I need to go back in, maybe in a few weeks' time, and really look at what I was trying to do with this story.

I could always send "Song Of The Samaritan" to Clarkesworld Magazine where editor Nick Mamatas is generally brutally honest with his editorial responses and (in the case of my THE GIRL WHO DATED SUICIDE BOMBERS, sold recently to Red Scream's obituary issue) gave me some really solid tips on what the core of the story actually was and how to make it MUCH better. He wrote, "I think the story starts right here: 'The thrill of public sex – that was Melissa's kink.' The story would be far more effective, in general, I think, if 1000 words were cut, and if the ending wasn't a punchline." He was right, of course. Maybe I should heed his advice about 'ending punchlines' for this story, too.

All that said, I DO have an ending for "Song of the Samaritan" but I wanna leave it to stew in my sleeping mind and see if I can't come up with something even more sinister after a few good nights' sleep. That generally works better than I'd like to admit, sleeping on it. God bless the sleeping brain.

post-sleeping notes: Unified the action to one iconic character, The Samaritan. Dropped hints at what's really going on through the story, but only confirmed it in the last entry. Actually, I really fucking hate how this story came out. Feels so unspontaneous, so scripted, so 'etirwer'ed - not at all my usual stream of conscious narrative. But as William Burroughs once said, the shit we hate may one day turn out to be our best work. Came out at just under 4,000 words.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

new short story - A Private Viewing:

...according to this blog, I haven't announced a new short story since the 14th of September, 2007 - in fact that story "The Thermonuclear Man" is still stewing in its own juices reluctant to be finished, something about a human-shaped universe or some such tosh.

This latest short story "A Private Viewing" was thirty years in the writing and two days in the presentation of the ideas to the page. A thousand words into the story, I suspected it would be about 3,000 words long - I've just finished the final draft and, yeah, it came in a just over 3,000 words. It's another one in my recently invented GENRECLECTIC style - and it's as far from genre as I've been able to get for a very long time.

Now that I think about it, I have another story (in a notebook, written over a period of a few weeks' lunchtimes) that needs typing in - this one is a bit more science-fiction-ish, called "Song of the Samaritan" it's the same event seen from about six perspectives - about 4,000 words, I'd hazard a guess.

One day all novels will be listed in the shops and e-venues as A-Z by Author, only. Writers write from the heart, they don't belong to writer's clubs or skulk about in snarky cliques.