Monthly Archives: June 2016

What Will Happen In Ye Olde Post-Brexit Englande?

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The return of Bob Danvers Walker announcing things. ‘Great British Bake Off’ to feature at least one jam roly-poly every week. The words of Cliff Richard’s song revised to ‘We’re all going on a summer holiday until July 2016, after which we’ll be going to Bognor.’ Nigel Farridge plays own puppet on all-new Spitting Image. You […]

The Joy Of Unjoined-Up Thinking

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‘I’d love to see what happens in the threshing machine of your mind,’ Tony Hancock says to Bill Kerr in his 65 year-old radio show, still relevant. ‘The whole ideas go in there and come out here in tiny bits.’ ‘Why should shampoo mend split ends?’ Victoria Wood asks Julie Walters. ‘It’s the herbs,’ comes […]

Invisible Ink: Alexander Baron

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It’s hard for frontline war writers to show an objective sensitivity to their subject matter while fighting for their country, but Alexander Baron certainly managed it. He’s one of the most consistently underrated British novelists of WWII. A left-wing author and soldier who read Jane Austen in the bomb-craters of Normandy, he was interested in […]

Apparently I Have A New Book Out

Reconciliation Day

Otto Penzler is a legend in the US book world. His store, The Mysterious Bookshop in NYC is a counterpart to the late, lamented Murder One in London. He has his own imprint, the Mysterious Press, and has edited a great many fine award-winning anthologies. To help his store along, he periodically asks authors to […]

Killing The Black Dog

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  Writers are required to have a somewhat raised level of sensitivity. It’s in the job description. The upside is that it can massively improve the quality of your work. The downside is the Black Dog. It’s hard to explain depressive bouts to others. I once believed there was no such thing, and was on […]

O brave new world, That has such people in ’t.

Drunk in public

  Nothing funny today, I’m too depressed. As a trio of egotistical monsters kicks out the PM who undid 50 years of European protection and now prepare for power, the appalling realisation of what they’ve done is already starting to sink in. Gove looking after your kids’ education, Farridge kicking out anyone he doesn’t like […]

Final Thoughts On The EU Referendum

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It’s not a legally binding decision but a matter of public debate. MPs can choose not to act. I might consider the Leave option more seriously if it didn’t feel as if a row about EU tariffs got hijacked by a coterie of careerists. I’m more swayed by direct evidence of damage caused by the […]

The Red Gloves Are Back On…

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As part of my initiative with Penguin Random House to get 20 back-volumes of work into print once more (well, e-print for now but you know what I mean) ‘Red Gloves’, which originally looked like this, is coming back. The little-seen (and hefty) collection was broken into two volumes and gathered together 25 new stories set […]

Game, Box-Set & Match

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As  ‘Game of Thrones’ shifted from a smutty sub-‘Lord Of The Rings’ knock-off into a nuanced and sweeping epic with moments that outdid anything you can see on film right now, the cry of ‘Just one more!’ could be heard across the land. How did this immensely complicated niche-market show become the most watched series […]