Blog

The Husband
Posted in
Books & Reading & Writing
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I forgot to add this to the blog in December. So here it is now... @Peculiar was a huge admirer of Ballard and his dystopian work. He and I discussed how prophetic Ballard was with the Drowned World and the Burning World which were published in the 60s. Chris met his literary idol Ballard some years ago and unbelievably Chris said he was tongue tied for once in his life - quite a rare occurance I…
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Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Books
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The steps between thoughts must be cut shallow to travel. Several years ago I ran a free writing course, some of it I posted here. Although I have taught before I have no formal qualifications to teach, so I should probably shut up. Still, I thought I might periodically add writing thoughts and notes on the blog for those who've developed an interest during the pandemic. Having done my fair share…
18 comments
Christopher Fowler
Posted in
London
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We tend to ignore the things we don't like. Whenever London is depicted in a tourism brochure, there are photographs of churches and palaces, guards and statues with nary a modern building in sight. A city is defined by its uniqueness, not by another anonymous glass box from Richard Rogers. The Hilton Hotel at Heathrow's Terminal 4 (1990) is meant to look like an aircraft hangar, and could only…
12 comments
Christopher Fowler
Posted in
The Arts
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Some more answers to your questions, starting with one from yesterday's comments (and another cheesy shot of me at some thing). Where is the best place to steal ideas from and get away with it? Film, book, TV, radio or a particular source/place/author. The answer may infuriate you. When I'm working on the main drafts I go into reading/ watching/ visiting places/ talking to people overdrive. Many…
6 comments
Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Media
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The science fiction author JG Ballard predicted that writers would soon become obsolete. They would be like Victorian stock characters, with no discernible purpose in the world. He suggested that given external reality is now a fiction, you don't need to invent it anymore. It's an idea echoed by Adam Curtis, a Ballardian documentary-maker, here; More and more I find…
4 comments
Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Observatory
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I start at the top of the blank page and work my way down to the bottom. 1. Grumping about the Last Night of the Proms is the tip of the iceberg; humanity as a whole is irredeemably, incorrigibly misguided. We are unreliable, chaotic, annoying and deeply, deeply stupid. 2. The idea that a civilisation slowly and consistently ameliorates itself until we arrive at a single caring society that is…
4 comments
Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Books
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We know that people in the work force don't have enough time to read as much as they did. Through school and after retirement reading is in fine shape, but the biggest loss is male readership between 20 and 50. Crime reading is now largely driven by women, SF has lost ground, being traditionally male, and men are using their briefly available time to go on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, WhatsApp…
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Christopher Fowler
Posted in
Film
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The problem with J. G. Ballard, from a filmmaker's perspective, is that he does not tell stories. He suggests futures and new psychologies. His characters are ciphers, his plots are liminal and his prose is exquisite, none of which makes him easy to adapt. Spielberg made a fine job of 'Empire Of The Sun', although it was always going to be the easiest to film, being a personal memoir. Cronenberg…
5 comments
Christopher Fowler
Posted in
The Arts
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When you think of London books, a familiar list at first appears; Dickens for 'Our Mutual Friend', 'Oliver Twist' and 'Bleak House', Virginia Woolf for 'Mrs Dalloway', George Gissing for 'New Grub Street', George Orwell for 'Keep The Aspidistra Flying', Monica Ali's 'Brick Lane', Colin MacInnes for 'Absolute Beginners', Patrick Hamilton's 'Hangover Square', to which I'd add Alexander Baron for…
4 comments
Christopher Fowler
Posted in
London
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Here's the pitch: In Dubai there's a new world of high-end, high-luxury resorts emerging for the super-rich — but at what price to everyone else? Lea, Roy and their 15 year-old daughter Cara live in a gated community reserved for foreign workers. Roy has been hired to deal with teething problems at Dream World, a futuristic beach complex. In the oppressive heat the wives appear happy to follow…
6 comments

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