That moment where you wake & remember that, in high spirits having handed in a manuscript, you bought 1.2kg of monkfish livers the night before and ur fridge is now groaning with marine offal
This is apparently how I celebrate now. By bulk-buying anglerfish guts. I've become a broken parody of my own work.
In fairness there are some Japanese recipes that turn this stuff into the food of the gods, but right now it's pretty heavy going to behold. And if you know me at all, you know that's not something I say lightly. It's devilish stuff.
Damn, I am really looking forward to announcing my current project. I've been working on it since the start of the year, through some pretty intense times, and it's almost, _almost_ done. It's an entirely fabricated non-fiction book, and it's... quite in-depth. You'll like it.
(For clarity: (1) this isn't the Schneider Wrack sequel, but I'm still well keen to work on that when the day comes (2) it's not a followup to 100 Games (3) it is with a new publisher and an announcement shouldn't be too far away)
Wider update on my work, for those who want to know - alongside the aforementioned new book, I've been doing some REALLY fun work with Rebellion on the games side of things this year, which I can't say much about yet, and making my debut with Black Library in the new INFERNO!
I've been quiet for a few days because I have been having a really difficult time, and I think I need to vent about it before I can move on. If you've had conversations with me go cold in recent days, apologies - I'm finding it quite hard in general to talk.
I'll not beat around the bush: I've spent far too much time watching people die over the last couple of years. We've had a _lot_ of losses in our family, and we've spent the last three weeks making tense daily visits to the ICU as @Glitter_brawl's dad's life hangs by a thread.
It's fucking relentless. Since Tallie was born, we've spent a huge amount of our time in hospital, and it's begun to feel like that's normal. I'm still not really over burying mum or dad, and there's been a string of other deaths that we have and haven't talked about on here.
This is astute. There's a weird embarrassment with grief, like you're super aware of how repetitive & boring your feelings would be to others if you were honest about them. It can make you so impatient that you fool yourself into thinking you're done before you've really started.
It's also proper maddening because you *know* the orthodox position is that bereavement takes time to process, but it's not like you've got a fucking loading bar - so much chat about grief is based on wishful thinking about our capacity for self-diagnosis
October arrives, like a pack of rain-matted apes dragging a tarp full of spoiled ham through an abandoned funfair, urged on by a trudging dunce swinging a length of chain. Walk on, boys, walk on
October arrives, like a crumpled cigarette packet pushed through your letterbox by a clammy, shaking hand, containing a single ailing wasp
October arrives, like a businessman crawling over the threshold of a travelodge room with lapels reeking of lager. He looks up with watery eyes to behold Bungle from Rainbow, sitting in funereal silence on the bed
Turns out the only thing that chills Tallie out when she's super hungry is rapid motion, so I've basically been doing the bleep test in a room full of grieving families, while my increasingly cyborg dad in law grapples the reaper in the next room; this week has been *lit*
Out of curiosity, I just sat down and watched the full music video for 'Party Rock Anthem', and I don't know whether it's accidental but it's a genuinely brilliant bit of horror storytelling.
For those who've not seen it, the video for 'Party Rock Anthem' begins with a parody sequence based on 28 Days Later, where the song's architects wake from a coma caused by excessive party rocking around the single's release, to find an abandoned world.
Wandering out of the hospital, they see someone in the distance dancing mindlessly on the spot, to the muted sounds of 'Party Rock Anthem'. Before the artists can engage the man, they're bundled to the ground by an anxious figure in office attire.
OK, so this question from @braxifen actually touches on some of the stuff I discussed with @TimClarePoet, and it's a problem that's really familiar to me - how to go from a cool setting idea to a story people might want to read. Here's a hamfisted guide to solving it:
For years I was convinced I had no hope of writing a compelling story, because my primary interest was in describing settings I had in my head. I thought of characters as a necessary evil - an excuse to describe places - and felt worried that I had things that way round.
I suspect this is an anxiety particularly common to genre writers; I at least had a fear that 'proper' literature should involve endless, nuanced description of dysfunctional families, interspersed with extended contemplation of the theory of colour or the history of flutes etc
My threads where I got really needlessly angry about burgers are doing the rounds again today, so it's probably time to ascend the burger pulpit one last time, to slap a bun on this whole thing and round out the trilogy.
If you really want to catch up on all my thoughts about burgers, you can find the first thread here, which links to the second one at its conclusion:
I'm going to start this with a bit of contrition. Because although I'm known for getting cross before about teetering, fifteen quid slush piles masquerading as burgers, today I want to stress how pointless it is telling people they're wrong about food.
So as announced last week, I'm about to have my first work published by Games Workshop, and I'm really happy about it. Warhammer 40k began as part of the same wave of subversive, black SF humour exemplified by @2000AD, and it's something I want to keep strong in my contributions.
If you've got even a passing familiarity with 40k, you might be interested to hear my personal theory about the setting, which I kind of allude to in my story about a sadsack, narcissist general who makes an alliance of desperation with a (supposedly) foolish ork brute.
In my head, the tabletop miniature wargame 'Warhammer 40k' is actually a mass-produced game in-setting. It's designed to be played by cadets in the gigantic academies where they churn out new officers to go off and get slaughtered in the space wars, & it's not entirely accurate.
Aaaaaah just three days until the new season of Snake School drops on Netflix, and I couldn't be more pumped on the basis of that final trailer. Is it me or did they look like they were teasing the return of Big Hiss??? That was his logo right?
My top 10 predictions for S7 of Snake School: A Thread
(*caution - contains major spoilers for season 6)
(*NB: I am considering the Peter Python movie to be canon for the purposes of some of my fan theories; fuck you if you didn't like it)
1) Big Hiss is definitely back. They've teased it before but this time it's legit - April's ARG clearly displayed BH's portrait when you followed that link hidden in that pizza menu that got posted on reddit, and we know for a fact the snake that plays BH was on set for the shoot
I already think it's silly that superheroes are all ludicrously ripped by default, but you know where I draw the line? Aquaman. Come on: the guy's an aquatic mammal, for pete's sake. He should be a fucking cylinder and loving it. If it's good enough for dolphins, why not Aquaman?
Like, I'm cool with Aquaman being sturdy as shit because he's got a lot of work to do. But the sea's cold man. A 28 inch waist or whatever is gonna give him a shite surface area/volume ratio. If I was designing Aquaman, he would be one plush motherfucker and he would *own* it.
I quit smoking 13 days ago, the morning my daughter was born, and while I really miss it in the early mornings when I'm trying to concentrate, the sheer *relief* of not smoking any more is incredible - it's like I've been in debt to a terrifying gangster who's suddenly died.
I gave up last year, but when mum died - and I had to lose a shitload of weight at the same time - I decided to start again, with the agreement that I'd pack it in the day the baby came. And once you've made a deal like that with yourself, it's hard to go back on it.
I'm never *ever* going to be pious towards smokers, largely because smoking is, unfortunately, _fucking lovely_ for many of us. I'll also probably be that one arsehole who begs a smoke after five pints. Nevertheless, if you wish you could give up, I am absolutely there for you.
So @Glitter_brawl and I didn't want to become parenting bores or get savaged for talking about having a kid, so we made a dedicated account for cute baby photos & stuff at @glitter_frog. I did manage to get it slammed straight into Twitter Jail yesterday, but now it's back!
For the most part, I will be keeping baby-related chat to that account (unless something legit hilarious happens), and keeping this account for interesting chats and doing bits and all that good old stuff you know me for xx
(For those wondering, the account got suspended because when it asked for a birthday, I put in Tallie's, and therefore got binned since it thought a one week old baby was trying to go on Twitter)
Thalassa has decided she is a person, not a number, and is repeatedly wrenching off her hospital security tag, triggering an alarm. Since it's heat-activated, I'm storing it in my armpit while we work out a way to keep it in place without incurring her charming wrath.
I'm really hoping we get to go home tonight - been living in hospital nearly a week now! Apart from anything else, I fully need to video the epoch-defining moment when Turkey Boy encounters Tallie for the first time and has his mind obliterated.
(Also, damn, @Glitter_brawl and I are absolutely *mungled* by the sheer goodwill we've had off everyone. We're only managing to chat with people in little bits here and there, but we are grateful for every single message we've had. Feel very loved x)
After a 72hr induction which at times had the character of a siege, @Glitter_brawl today gave birth to our daughter Thalassa. Named after the primordial titaness of the ocean, mother of all sea creatures, she seems calm, undaunted, and hungry. I love her and her mother very much.
(Interestingly, it seems my whale tweets are doing the rounds again. We found out about Tallie just after those were posted, and so a little too late for mum to have known about her, but there's a lovely symettry to it all)
(Fun fact: 'Thalassa' was also the cry of elation from the 10,000 Greeks as they finally caught sight of the sea in Xenophon's Anabasis. An Anabasis is the opposite of a Katabasis, which is what I was chatting about with the whale stuff. Man I am too tired for this)
So, @Glitter_brawl & I are experiencing a LONG hospital wait (but let's pls not talk about that until there is actual news), and we've been entertaining ourselves by making a tarot deck, without knowing *anything* about tarot. Instructions follow on how to get your fortune told!
1) Explain in detail the situation you want insight into; if you're lucky, @Glitter_brawl will draw your cards & I'll read them 2) We'll be choosing at random, and WILL NOT get round to most people 3) We know piss all about tarot 4) We might suddenly piss off for obvious reasons
(Final disclaimers before we start: we're in hospital as Ashleigh is being induced, but we *really* can't handle a congrats/good luck dogpile, and fear not we are not taking this seriously: it is a game with silly cards and not actual magic)
Hey @IKEAUK, big fan but what were you thinking with the ALEX draw set? The draws are *precisely* 1mm narrower than the length of an A4 sheet, so paper has to go in lengthways leaving loads of dead space. It's like something a sinister carpenter would design to drive someone mad.
So @IKEAUK, I offer you this dilemma: either sort out my fiendishly inefficient cabinet, or delegate someone to discuss the movie KRULL with me, and I will be placated. Choose wisely: I'm about to start watching KRULL.
KRULL begins with a sort of bladed frisbee whirling through space, heralded by a triumphant fanfare. Then, merry bucolic strings accompany the arrival of what appears to be a vast tree trunk around a twin-sunned world. Off to a good start.
I'm currently writing something that involves a fair quantity of barbarians, and so last night I decided to watch the original Conan with a notebook at hand as part of my research. I'd not actually seen it before, and let me tell you: Conan is a fucking *weird* movie.
So let's get this on the table first of all: Conan is riven through with indefensible sexual politics, which I won't celebrate. It was bloody uncomfortable viewing. But the intensely unpleasant moral landscape they contribute to is part of what makes Conan so fascinatingly odd.
To explain what I found so weird about Conan, I'm gonna take a big swerve and talk about Thylacines for a minute (stick with me). So here's a Thylacine. It was an Australian apex predator also called a marsupial wolf, and it's in black and white because they all died ages ago.
Every time my cat sits in my office chair I mercilessly roast him about how he's running a failed, late 90s e-commerce venture from my laptop. And yet still he sits there doing his e-commerce. Mate, you missed the dot com boom; you're making a fool of yourself.
If you've met my cat you'll know he looks like just the kind of guy who'd set up a failed e-commerce venture. He's this giant plush beast who you'd think would have a tiger's effortless dignity - but he has none. He shits in a tray & screams at moths, and is terrified of the sky.
When I used to work at a public aquarium, I was supervising the big shallow ray tank when a teenager made a brazen attempt to wrestle a dogfish out of the water and confidently walk away with it. He seemed so aggrieved that I objected to this, I almost let him.
Alright lads, just my periodic reminder that I've not binned twitter or anything, just still hammering away at a keyboard round the clock and not really got much brain left around the edges. Hope you all have a good week xx
When I return I am going to have a flowing white beard and Gimli is going to totally lose his shit
Also if anyone has suggestions for how to maintain concentration that don't involve military grade amphetamines I'm here for it. Bloody love what I'm working on, but I've been burning hard for a couple of months and the fuselage is starting to rattle