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Showing posts from July, 2013

Really don't watch this movie

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I watched Skyline today. Yes, I know I'm three years too late, but time runs different in the alternate reality that is my brain, because it seems like only yesterday that I remember the movie coming out.

Like Monsters, another movie I discussed not so long ago (five minutes, wasn't it?), it's a low budget affair, set almost entirely in one luxury apartment, with unknown actors and a lot of CGI, and it's divided audiences, who can't agree on whether it's good or bad.

But wait. It wasn't actually a low budget movie at all - it just feels like one. Monsters cost half a million dollars to make, and is testament to what can be achieved with modern techniques and technology. Skyline, on the other hand, cost a mindblowing $20 million to make.

What did they spend the rest of the money on? Drugs? Call girls, alcohol and wild orgies? I sincerely hope so, otherwise they've been robbed. And the bit where I said that audiences are divided on this? Well, actually t…

Supercharged vision thing

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I mentioned in this post, and this post, how the X-Troop series got started: essentially on the back of disillusionment with my previous attempt at a series, and possibly the writing process itself. I got all hung up on being a proper writer, doing things the proper way and a whole bunch of neurotic hangups that really just sabotaged whatever I was doing. A common newbie writer trap, I'm sure. Or maybe not. All I know is that when I finally said, 'fuck that' and just did my own thing, it started to come together a little more harmoniously.

Influences, you see. That was my main stumbling block - and I just couldn't see it.

I was writing science fiction, and science fiction authors that I researched kept going on about their biggest influences - 60's, 70's or 80's written science fiction - and how it shaped their reading lives and, ultimately, writing lives. Writers like the late Iain Banks kept mentioning the importance of knowing the SF 'canon' (wi…

New book, new direction

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The new book is out! The second story in the X-Troop series, called, as you can see, er, X-Troop. That's going to look odd on Amazon as it will be listed as X-Troop (X-Troop). No matter. It's a 40,000 word novella, compared to the teaser Amped which was 17,000, and it sets the tone for the rest of the series as Alex and his boys go into action against the alien threat. Lots of action, squaddie humour and aliens being sent back home in body bags.
And as we say hello to a new story, we say goodbye to an old one, for Even The Dead Dance To Live, my first self-published novel, has now been taken off the market. Why? Because it wasn't really the book I wanted to write.
Let me explain. When I first wrote Even The Dead, I'd never heard of self-publishing, and I was geared to selling it to agents and publishers in the traditional manner. This was a problem because, as I'm sure you're aware, it's not easy to get your book accepted by a publisher. The general advice…