Friday, 28 August 2015

Through a glass darkly

Image courtesy of John Boyer

Cobham West had the look of a weasel about him, albeit a well fed and self satisfied weasel.   His naturally thin features had filled out as a result of the high life he’d been living for the last few years and it made him look slightly wrong, like a bad photoshop of himself.   He took the towel from the stage hand and mopped the back of his neck as he left the stage, the applause of the credulous still ringing out.   Always leave them wanting more he had been  told, and he always did.   Not a dry eye in the house by the time he’d finished his show.   The living consoled with messages from their departed loved ones, words of wisdom passed on from the great beyond, a few cryptic messages of uplifting import to inspire the world toward blah blah blah.   It had been a good show.

Thursday, 27 August 2015

The Shepherd's Crown

I've been a fan of Sir Terry Pratchett's writing since his first Discworld book came out.   I've read every one and enjoyed the way his world and his characters grew and matured over the series.   The early books were pastiches and parodies of fantasy tropes, but good as they were he developed past that stage and his novels became far far more than collections of jokes.


Today I was tempted to switch my blog provider to Sitebuilder.Com

I wasn't actually unhappy with blogger, but I was looking around for something unconnected and saw the rave reviews that sitebuilder got.  I mean *really* rave reviews and such great features for a free site.

First Draft done - now the work begins!

Image courtesy of Kerem Yucel

I've just completed the first draft of my first ever novel and I'm feeling rather elated about it.  So far all my writing has been short form - short stories or poetry - tales that I can keep in my head all at once and shape mentally before ever putting pen to paper, at which point out they come fully formed and manageable.

This piece, working title A Step Beyond Context, is the first time I've ever completed a novel length piece, it's turning in at about 85,000 words.   I'm pretty happy with it and what I've done with it, and now comes the re-read and re-drafting.  Now that I know the exact end point I can go back and make sure everything leads tidily toward it and trim off the excess fat that no doubt clings to it here and there.  I fully expect to start disliking it and seeing all the warts and problems but right at this moment, right now, at this time and in this place, I am feeling good.

Friday, 21 August 2015

Under the Microscope - Building new worlds and histories

Something a little different today.   I’d like to recommend a game for you all.   A game that may well be the most useful tool I’ve ever come across for world building and for designing a setting for speculative fiction.

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

The Finishing Line is in Sight!

Image by Dark Power of FreeImages.Com
The extended silence from the rickety edifice known as Marlowe Manor has had a few causes.  One such is that I have been focussing most of my writing efforts on my novel.   It suddenly dawned on me a week or two ago that I was unexpectedly within a couple of chapters of finishing it.