The hub is online

Just a brief one to say that I’ve finally got round to reorganising the site, following a few months prevarication. In future this place will function as more of a hub, with links out to the various aspects of my virtual presence. Any actual blogging (not that I ever do a lot of it) will come via deviantART (as it’s nice to invest in the community) or Twitter (for those of you not on DA).

New stuff (including updates on Harlem’s Deck) will always turn up on Twitter, so that’s probably the easiest place to keep track of what’s going on, though I know not everybody uses it.

That’s all for now (folks). Hope you’re all enjoying the unexpected (but very much appreciated – cheers Ra) bank holiday sun.

Kudos peeps x

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Art vomit and wet dreams of the Sleeping god

So, it’s been a while.

For anyone whose been paying attention I’ve been doing more tweeting recently – not something I’d necessarily planned, but it seems to be a good way of sharing stuff, such as my artwork. I’ve been suffering a bit from art vomit recently (anyone seen Mean Girls? You can own up, this is a safe space) and tweeting the results is a good way for me to pass them about as they end up not only on the twitter tape here (lower down the side bar) but also get ported across to my FB page as well by the social media demons.

There’s been a few new developments over the last couple of weeks though, so I thought it was high time I did a proper post.

First off, after a great deal of hassle with the formatting (page numbers just would not play on Open Office) the physical edition of His Staying Hand has finally made it into the light of day. You can find it here on Amazon, or just click on the cover image to the left and then follow Amazon’s own link on the kindle edition page to its paperback format.

This volume includes Ikari and Timo’s Journey to the Dragon’s Graveyard (yes, that is a cartoon reference – prize for anyone who has spotted the other one? Post in the comments section below).

A word on the boy’s jaunt, as I’ve had a few people asking about it: this story falls in between the closing action of book two and the opening of book three. It’s a part of the story that needs telling before we sit down for the closing night of the show (volume three), and is important for the light it sheds on the nature of the Garden, and the Nym’s back story.

The other bit of news to share concerns one of my side projects; I can’t remember if I’ve mentioned Filthy Gore on here before or not.

Basically, after finishing Orphans and making it out of the self publishing mire in one piece I felt the (quite understandable, I feel) need for a break. To do something fun, light hearted, and all importantly unconnected with the Journals as a whole and Hand in particular.

Two short stories were the result.

Tom of Faerie started life as a bit of smut and a couple of sketches in my journal, on the train ride home from work one evening.

Fulcrum I *think grew out of a hangover, though I couldn’t swear to it. Some of the imagery I’ve been carrying around for a while, waiting for a home that fit. Other thoughts and ideas came fresh once I started writing.

Both are an attempt to write something honest and upfront, where I could be myself without any need to elide (as I have done in Orphans and Hand. Ask my husband how many sex scenes were cut from the first book).

The idea with the Filthy Gore ‘imprint’ (if you will) is that I might produce more as and when, without the pressures of them being an actual ‘series’ in the classical sense. The link here is one of tone and theme-of-content more than anything else. I might continue to pursue the paranormal (I’ve a few ideas along those lines), but then I might end up producing something completely different.

Time will tell.

For the time being please do enjoy/raise an eyebrow at these initial offerings.

Tom is available here.

Fulcrum can be found here.

That’s it for now. Keep an eye out on GladeFaun for the continuing art deluge and I’ll catch you next time.

x

Which side of the mirror?

Me again (yes, I know, two in one day! Promise this will be it for bit).

I don’t like doing self-indulgent on here. Tried once or twice when I first started blogging and you just come across as poser-ish (at least that’s how it read to me). Wrote the following to a friend on deviantART just now, however, and felt I wanted to share it further.

To give you some context, we’ve been chatting about a recent journal on depthRADIUS concerning an artist who recently died. You can find the article in question here and the artist in question’s profile here. Vicky’s question (‘what did the article say to you?’) made me think, and after writing the below I found I wanted to share it further.

What, after all, is the point of having a blog if not for expressing your thoughts and feelings? (Yes I know I’m contradicting myself!)

Anyway, here’s what I wrote. Ta for listening.

‘Hey…

Sorry for the tardiness of my reply.

Spotted your response this morning, actually came up with a nice eloquent reply this afternoon on my way to Asda.
Obviously, that has now disappeared.

Let me try and piece something together in its place. I reckon that for me, reading the article and looking at her art – ooh! inspiration (sorry). Idea has returned, here goes:

Reading the article and looking at her art, I was reminded of the Buffy episode set in the mental asylum? Where you’re left wondering whether it is all, in fact a delusion, and she’s imagining it all. At the end of the episode, if memory serves, she chooses to go back into the delusion (which you’re questioningly left to believe is in fact reality?). What this woman went through made me think of that: that she chose to place herself within her own fantasy environment. An act some may disagree with, but a decision that was valid for her. And the resultant art is so beautiful and haunting, I think, because of that decision, that sacrifice (? – not sure if that’s the right word).
She (I get the impression) was very aware of the fact that her choice, and her road, were not ‘normal’, but it was right for her. This is the thing that spoke to me, as indeed the works of Neil Gaiman and Tori Amos (amongst others) speak to me. Because they are produced by people who have taken a different road.

Hope that makes sense? Nice to let my inner Goth out for a change.

Putting my Troy wig away now.

Chat soon, Paul.’

Antici…pation

I’m absolutely useless at the self-promotion thing (probably why I’m not currently sat typing this in my west wing library, whilst the tiger quietly mauls the Gautier rug) let’s have a bash.

…Drum roll… fanfare (fireworks)…

As mentioned in previous posts (I think?) I’ve been tied up of late in furious edit mode. His Staying Hand, the second instalment of The Star Plague Journals nears completion. It was actually quite exciting putting the final touches to the last chapter (I know, how sad am I?) before I began the onerous task of compiling and formatting that is necessarily part of publishing your own Kindle book.

Whilst I go through the final ‘i’ dotting and ‘t’ crossing I wanted to share the cover with you (below) and also offer a short sample from the book itself here. I hope you enjoy both!

I’m anticipating the book will be officially available on Amazon in Kindle format by this time next week, with the physical edition to follow. This will include an aside that I’m publishing separately in the e-format, hence the delay on the doorstop version. So apologies to those of you who like your literature old school, I beg just a little more of your patience. For the rest of you: not long to wait.

Watch (as they say) this space…

Stay Cover Mk2 red text

It never rains but it pours

Just a quick one, as I’m currently sat in the local library, surfing their wifi, thanks to the uselessness that is my home broadband.

I’ve not been on for aaaaages, and wanted to apologise. Unfortunately, around the start of June, redundancy reared its ugly head, and everything came crashing to a halt whilst I feverishly began job hunting. Thankfully, my current employer were able to offer me something, and I remain gainfully employed, but then my broadband fell apart, and so to whit I’ve been somewhat absent form the virtual realm.

Hopefully normal service will resume shortly.

In the meantime, I have been continuing work on book two of the Star Plague, which is shaping up nicely, and also looking through some of my older fiction efforts, with a view to publishing them online sometime in the autumn. Watch this space.

Thanks again for being patient, speak to y’all again soon.

x

Waiting in antici- pation!

Just a quickie.

Finished work this evening and not back until Monday now. This will be my first ‘holiday’ since Christmas. (The parenthesis are because this isn’t technically a holiday. I’ve worked six days on the trot so I can tie three day’s off together. Still, a break’s a break.) Very much looking forward to a bit of time off, which yes, will include some much deserved time with my mac. Not sure if it’s because I’ve been at work, but had some brilliant ideas for book two, as well as a couple of the short story concepts currently bubbling away in my head.

My librarian’s been a busy girl. Kudos to the girl in black.

Quite aside from the above, however, the primary highlight of the coming weekend for me will be my very own Rocky Horror (sorry JC, no offence meant). Promise to post some pics if there are any I deem suitable for public consumption.

Happy ‘dawning of spring’ to y’all x

Musical cue

I was at work on Saturday, doing my thing, when the following thought train came through my station:

‘Music provides an auditory cue, in instances where a group of strangers find themselves sharing space, as to how you should feel. It allows such a group to be comfortable together in such a communal space, without the need to look to each other for emotional cues.’

I feel like I should elucidate a little.

While I was at University I did some work on looking at the role music plays in our lives. It, unlike any other art form, speaks directly to your emotions. There is a long and complicated bit here that I ought to go in to regards musical language, and what that language has come to mean to use, within western society, that affects the way we interpret the sounds we hear. I’m not going to do that, largely as I don’t currently have access to the relevant resources to back up said information (my dissertation lurks on a floppy disk as we speak, along with – I hope – the later part of my second attempt at novel writing, from way back in the noughties).

For those of you experiencing skepticism, I direct you to the reaction (most) people have to film music. It being the most obvious, and culturally pandemic instance of what I’m talking about.

I was thinking in terms of shop music here, obviously, given I work in one. But music in any such ‘public’ situation would function the same. Think of that old cliche, elevator music. What’s it there for, if not to stop everyone in that confined space from feeling uncomfortable? It gives you all something to focus on that isn’t the proximity of so many strangers, even if that focus could be roughly summed up as ‘what is this awful racket?!?’ (A sentiment I hear repeated often where I work – it’s a surprisingly effective ice breaker).

To sum up, the point I’m making here is that the suggestion of how you ‘should feel’ mentioned above is not a personal one. That would be brain washing, and unless I’m missing a trick we’ve not come that far yet. This is not Doll House, or The Happiness Patrol. No, the cue is more of an atmospheric one, intended to suggest an overall mood for the room, discreet from your own state of mind, and (more importantly) buffering it from everybody else’s.

Think of it like an emotional entourage. They keep the riff-raff off, and give you space to do as you please. But you can still engage if you choose to, with a nod to your head of security.

Handy stuff.