Blog

Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Media
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If You Enter The Ring, It'll Get Mucky Over the years I've told some true stories about journalists here and elsewhere, but I've always kept myself patient with them because I began my career (like most authors) connected to the press. Just as the fearless wade into the Facebook cesspool to pass on un-news, it's also possible to use social networks with decorum. Twitter (at the moment, at any rate…
24 comments
Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Bryant & May
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How Do I Write Now? On one side - a head full of ideas. On the other - permanent pain and exhaustion. How on earth am I meant to balance them? This is hardly a new problem for writers, but once I could have written my way through difficult patches, and I now have to fight for every every joule of energy. Nothing can be planned or taken for granted anymore. Two days ago I felt virtually normal…
62 comments
Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Media
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Witty writers fall into three groups; first there are those who set their stories within a recognisable world and pass comment upon its flaws. The most instantly graspable of these in my chemo-raddled brain is Tom Wolfe's super-zeitgeisty 'Bonfire of the Vanities', his brilliant satire on American society in the 1980s. Like other great social comedies it hinges around a single event that pulls at…
28 comments
Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Film
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Following on obliquely from comments about the last post, back in prelapsarian days of 1982 a Hollywood movie was made called 'Making Love'. It was touted as the first gay film from a major studio and starred Kate Jackson and Harry Hamlin, and was meant to be a huge hit, because love is universal, right? The film was a timid tip-toe through don't-frighten-the-horses scenes that reminded me of…
15 comments
Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Film
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When I was young there used to be (and for all I know may still be) a peculiar little chapbook held together with rusted staples that listed the calendar of England, predicting what your sheep would do, what your birth sign would reveal, lighting up times, tide-tables and so on. I recall that Old Moore's Almanack was also peppered with obscure events, rituals that included the Bubble Sermon, the…
31 comments
Christopher Fowler
Posted in
London
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A huge subject with porous borders, there have been assemblies of writing on the fantastic for a century now. But if you're starting out and bewildered by where it all leads, this might help. I've separated off long-form fantasy, much of which can already be found on this site. Instead let's concentrate on readable chunks. Fantasy is everything that explores a possibility not covered by the…
15 comments
Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Books
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It wasn't until the vivacious Philippa Pullar (b.1935) married a chicken farmer that she came to realise her perceived notions of rural life were overly romantic. In the seventies a number of authors began to take up their pens against the cruelties of factory farming. Pullar’s belief in the sanctity of animal life informed her first and greatest book, the uncatagorisable ‘Consuming Passions: A…
33 comments
Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Observatory
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It never occurred to me that friends could be graded like grapes. My friends are simply people I've come to grow perversely fond of. In England, making friends is tricky because for many class is a factor. I have several rough-edged friends whom my other friends avoid. They can be embarrassing on occasion (the English are permanently on the lookout for new ways in which to be embarrassed) and I…
27 comments
Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Reading & Writing
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'I say, sir, a missive from the Royal Mail has arrived for you from a Ms Maggie Armitage. It appears to have been up a dead bear's bum. Perhaps the sender has been incarcerated for many years and managed to smuggle it out to you. It smells of chewing gum and Toilet Duck.' 'Pray read it to me, Walter, then draw me a bath, the better to exude last night's intake of champagne.' 'Very well, sir. I'm…
19 comments
Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Bryant & May
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I suspect we try to tidy up our lives as we go along, and prove our mettle when that fails. One could call it 'rolling with the punches', but by God there have been a few too many punches of late. An Eeyorish friend of mine said, 'life becomes easier if you remember that everyone is lying to you', and on bad days I suspect he may be right. Hilary Mantel wrote on through her illness and I've tried…
33 comments

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