Tuesday, 29 May 2012

One Goal Reached, Many More to Conquer

I got excellent news this last week; my offer on a flat was accepted and the process of owning property has begun. But that isn't what this post is about (though it could be - I've been bouncing around in excitement about that for days). No, this post is about another bit of great news. For you are now reading the words of a published writer. That's right, my short story, that I talked about ages ago, has finally been released in an anthology and it's available from a number of sources.

**Shameless self-promotion ALERT**

The book is titled, "Twisted Realities: Of Myth and Monstrosity". It is a collection of short stories that explore what would happen if the old tales and legends were true - but with dark truths we never imagined. My story is called "A Fair Price", and is about a young woman discovering the holiday home her and her husband are staying in might not be so idyllic after all. You can find your very own copy here:


and here:


I particularly like the bit on Amazon, where it says "Author" after my name. Squeel!

Now of course I would love it if everyone reading this would go buy their very own copy to keep and treasure forever, and then get all their friends to buy their own copies too, but I'm realistic - and with the property buying, on a tight budget myself now.* But I would be super grateful for the word of mouth, so if you know anyone who likes twisted tales and short stories - or reading in general - pass it on. I will ask Karma to send you something nice. Like cake. Everyone likes cake.

* Really? Is that why you just spent loads of money on your birthday party? And bought yourself that watercolour set? - Internal Editor.** 

**Shut up.

Thursday, 24 May 2012

Feeling Thankful

I'm writing this because I realise I don't say thank you often enough for the good things in my life. Maybe it's the hangover (there was much dancing and drinking last night - and on a school night no less), or maybe it's the exhaustion talking, but I wanted to take a post to be grateful for the good things in my life. The Internet is full to bursting with joy-consuming negativity, like a big dark seeping slug on the interweb, so this is me fighting it back, if only a little.

Seeing the positive in things is something I do a lot more now than I ever have before, probably due to seeing first hand how fragile human life is and that it doesn't last forever. Rather than upset me the realisation invigorated me to try new things, to feed my passions and to push myself to achieve the things I want out of life. But it was easy to make that mental transition because of the wonderful people in my life. I owe a huge thanks to all my friends for being so jolly brilliant, encouraging and just generally fabulous. Then there's the wonderful man in my life, who puts up with me tumbling home at silly o'clock and only teasing me a little about it... or a lot, depending how funny it is. And I am immensely fortunate to have not just my parents in my life, but to know them as human beings, rather than simply as entities of authority.

I am very fortunate, and I hope I don't ever take that for granted, especially as not everyone can say the same. But finding the good, in amongst the bad, is definitely the best thing I ever learnt. So thank you guys, one and all, for being my rocks, my co-conspirators, my devil's advocates and the source of a lot of my hangovers...

*Shameless 90s reference alert*

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

It Never Rains; Instead It Shitstorms you

Howdy wordseekers. I have been a bit quiet on the ol' bloggery for a bit, and even my tweeting has taken a dive. All because I go and get "grown-up" and find myself with far more responsibilities and things to do then is wise for someone with as short an attention span as me. Ooh, look something shiny outside... Sorry. Where was I? Oh yeah, being a "grown-up" and doing everything at once.

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Maurice Sendak: Gone Where The Wild Things Are

Maurice Sendak, the author and illustrator, died yesterday and though it's sad to know another great mind has left this mortal realm, it's been wonderful to see his works spoken about in print and on screen. I adored "Where the Wild Things Are" as a child, and only came to appreciate Sendak's works all the more the older I became.

Sendak did something that few children's writers seem to do; he told the painful truth. Being a child is not, in my experience, a purely innocent, tra-la-la through the flowers good time. Bits of childhood suck. Other parts can be terrifying and incredibly distressing; whether it's fearing that spelling test the next morning, with the teacher who shouts at you when you get it wrong, or blaming yourself for other people's problems, or feeling pure fury at your own powerlessness. Sendak understood this and communicated it in the dark fantasy worlds he created.

My imagination has been heavily influenced by Sendak's works, leading me to love the darker side of a "nice" story, which can also be seen in films like The Dark Crystal, Willow, Return to Oz or Labyrinth. They have the same mix of childlike wonder with a terrible darkness lurking on the edges, which occasionally confronts you head on. If you've never sat and read one of his books then I can't recommend them enough. No matter how old you are.

Saturday, 5 May 2012

Film Review: Avengers Assemble

Or, as it should be written, "Avengers! Assemble!", in a big booming voice. In America it's just been titled "The Avengers", but someone, somewhere, thought us Brits would get confused between this and the truly dire 1998 film of the same name. Regardless of the name change, the film itself was great fun, and packed to the gills with action, humour and explosions. In other words; prime blockbuster stuff.