Ah, summer bugs. I still they’re the closest we’ll ever get to seeing the true start of the ever-impending zombie apocalypse. If only because germs make sense in winter. They belong there, where the clocks have changed and afternoon becomes night before we can even finish work. It’s cold, it’s dark. We all get a streetlight tan and ice scraper’s wrist. We’re all rushing to some end of the year, family tradition that has to be as perfect as it can be. Especially when it stands no chance of living up to the greetings cards around here. We can’t afford to be ill.Read More
Things are getting hectic, they always do at this time of year. It’s like being trapped on a merry go round that refuses to slow down. Every time we ask someone to apply the brakes, it only accelerates. Sure, there are festive lights and catchy tunes circling around us, but this close to the event horizon of Christmas Day it all starts to get out of hand. The music deafens us. The motion makes us feel ill. The horses under us start to leer and grin as it all lurches past our control.
There are cards to write, presents to deliver. There’s food to hunt and gather, sometimes against shoppers who are racing against the exact same clock as us to the exact same shelf for the exact same final box of stuffing. The season of goodwill can get pretty nasty down a supermarket aisle.
Hey, Internet, it’s good to be back amongst you. After a couple of chaotic weeks and some incredibly painful days without any sort of signal that belongs in the 21st century, The Blank Page is up and running again. I’d call it 2.0, but let’s not fool ourselves. We’re in for more of the same here. The overly long posts and occasional reveries that don’t quite add up to a bigger pay cheque. Still, that’s hardly the attitude to start on. The Longs have moved finally moved house. Let’s begin there.Read More
My apologies, it’s going to be a fast big of blogging this week. Which is annoying, as there’s a really a lot I should be talking about. I could talk about going to my first night of live readings on Monday and the wonderfully odd index of authors I met there. Let alone something strange I picked up about the mechanics of live storytelling and recital. I could talk about the fact I’ve been off work all week and I’ve spent a lot of that time wrestling with final rewrite of my second novel. Which, for the record, can either be going really well or really badly depending on which way the wind’s blowing.Read More
From past experience, I know that elements of the past few days are going to creep into my writing over time. It’s happened before. The section in Something Needs Bleeding called The Blind Walls came from a trip to Austria, where I ended up getting out the lift on the wrong floor and not realising until I turned a corner that wasn’t on my own floor. A trip to Bury St Edmunds became The Wooden Walls and a Monday night spent in a chain hotel in Bristol became the inspiration for the first section of The Righteous Judges.Read More
Whenever I see a little, brightly coloured egg hidden almost out of sight in a park or garden so a kid can find it, I begin to wonder what sort of bird lays an egg like that. Or what comes out of it. Never mind picturing the bewitching cuckoo beast that leaves trails of unborn young out in the world, for children to follow. Possibly into the woods. Nothing good ever comes from going into The Woods. It’s the same as The Moors, The Cave or That Old Hospital.Read More
I should warn you before we go any further that I’m about to share something that’s really going to annoy my wife.Read More