Monthly Archives: August 2016

There’s A Hole In My Bucket List

Eek

You know those books, ‘101 things you should do before you die’? I never get through them. I get bored halfway. That’s the equivalent of taking a gap year and getting stuck doing bar-work in Australia in Month 4 (so I’m told; I left school on a Friday and started work on the Monday, as we […]

Forum: Should Writers Write For The Market?

Trotter did it

  In film industry terms the summer’s over, and it was another year of disappointments in Hollywood. Only one studio did well; Disney had four of the five biggest hits. What’s noticeable is how super-safe everything became this year. The top five films were ‘The Jungle Book’ (remake of cartoon), ‘Finding Dory’ (kiddie sequel), ‘Zootopia’ […]

The Man With The Wilder Style

Unknown

It was one of my favourite film trivia questions. After ‘The producers’ Gene Wilder made another movie with Zero Mostel. What was it? The answer was ‘Rhinoceros’ by Ionesco, the filmed version of the surrealist play in which people turn into animals. I saw it and it was terrible. But it was the fact that […]

Writers: Still Holding Out Against Electronic Books?

kindle

I’m surprised by how many writers I meet who dismiss e-readers without a second thought. I’ve now owned them for several years, and thought I should run a quick evaluation. Sales of e-readers are plateauing, paper book sales are up. I can see why; the publishing industry didn’t want to suffer the same fate as […]

One Place I May Never Get To Visit

Russian police

As a European, I’ve learned much;  France loves bureaucracy (the omission of a comma in a document once caused me a delay of years), Spain loves children (always a shock after kid-free London), Italy never shuts up for a second and there’s no Cheddar anywhere (British Cheese Marketing Board, sort it!) but at least history […]

My Rarest Books

Lantern Jack

My backlist is now in the middle of appearing as low-priced e-books, with volumes grouped under different headings. Already available are ‘Classics’ (Roofworld; Spanky) and ‘Dark Urban Novels’ (Rune; Red Bride; Disturbia; Psychoville; Soho Black) They’re being followed by ‘Fantasy’ (The Curse of Snakes; Calabash), ‘Early Collections’ (City Jitters; The Bureau of Lost Souls; Sharper […]

A New Take On Capital Crime

Drone-with-bag

After the revelation that gangsta rap videos were helping to reduce gun crime in London by teaching morons to hold guns the wrong way comes this latest twist in fighting crime. It’s been talked about for a long time but has now reached us locally. Officers from Islington, North London, recovered two drones carrying mobile […]

Could Brexit Win Over This Sceptic?

Herne Bay

Facts first. Every economist agrees that Brexit is starting to cost millions, possibly billions. The economy is slowing, house prices are falling, the pound is weaker, there’s no extra money for the NHS, no more EU grants for deprived areas, and we are inches from recession even prior to the triggering of Article 50. How does […]

We Need A Collective Noun For Film Critics

Victoria

‘An exit of film critics’? ‘A pretence of film critics’? ‘A sneer of film critics’? Judging by the latest poll of the best 100 films of the 21st century according to 177 film critics it should probably be ‘a wankfest of film critics’. Film polls are notoriously subjective, of course, but dear God in Heaven, […]

When London Went To The Dogs

steptoefilm2

It looks like London’s last greyhound stadium will be going soon. Dog racing, which proved hugely popular from the late 1920s to the 1940s, is in terminal decline, especial after a scandal in 2006 revealing that old greyhounds were being put down after becoming too old to race. Tracks in Catford, Wembley, West Ham, Clapton and […]