Friday, 21 July 2017

Pic of the Week . . . Brandon McConnell

Today, highlighting the spray paint artist Brandon McConnell with his phenomenal talent with SpaceArt. I first saw a guy painting with spray paints about 15 - 20 years ago on a visit to Camden in London. He blew me away, so much so that I even went home and tried it myself. I created a few pieces, experimenting, but the cost of the equipment meant I didn't continue.  But still to this day, I could watch them spray all day long.

So, introducing Brandon McConnell. Be sure to check out his website - and, if you're interested, watch how he creates this specific piece in his video tutorial on YouTube.

Enjoy and have a grand weekend...

Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Getting Back In The Swing . . .

I faded.

I disappeared from the whole blogger community. I used to post twice a week, every week, religiously. I loved it. And not only did I fade from you wonderful people, I faded from my own creative self, too. I've been clinging on to that creativity for a good few years now, struggling and desperate not to let go - but then not doing much to help myself rescue it either.

I've suffered a whole identity crisis in the meantime, too. I've always been writing, as a little kid, all through my teen years and up into my adult life. It's the one thing I've always wanted to do, and the one thing that has always been a constant for me, and after publishing a few works online as well and my inclusions in anthologies, as well as personal projects that I've been working on, I was proud to call myself an actual writer. But then I wasn't writing. And if I wasn't writing, who was I? This left me confused and added to the struggles. In the end, I've just been meandering through life, not doing much at all to be honest.

I'm not sure why my creativity dried up. I could put it down to changes in work which have left me unsettled and therefore unable to get into it; a break which got me out of the habit of writing regularly, and a habit that I haven't been able to get back into...who knows. But one thing still remained, and that was the passion for my ideas. Even though I wasn't actually writing, the ideas still kept flowing, ideas that I love and would one day want to put down on paper - or a word document.

So, a little while back I decided to get my posterior back in gear and get back in the flow, and I've finally finished my novella, Tunnel. Can't actually remember if I mentioned it all those years ago in one of my last posts, but I originally started Tunnel (a zombie flick) for Nano way back when and then had a car accident which ruined that November flow. I still worked on it though at my own snail pace and eventually finished it. And now it's edited and polished and soon ready to go up on Amazon. I'm actually proud of myself and I will keep you all posted with that one.

Then also, out of the blue a few days back, I received a friend request on facebook from the wonderful Nick Wilford who inadvertently reminded me of the whole writer community sitting here that I had once been a part of and who offered support and inspiration (thank you), and so decided that I needed to get back here too. If you believe in fate, I think the signs are all there, finally aligning and telling me it's time to rekindle that creative spark. It may be hard and a struggle but I'm ready to give it a go...

So, deep breath and fingers crossed. Let's get this show back on the road...

Friday, 4 December 2015

Pic of the Week . . . DareDevil

So, what does a writer do when they're not writing - or blogging? Well, watching a lot more TV, that's for sure. I've taken a very keen liking to the Netflix series Daredevil and Jessica Jones, and since finding out that the second series of Daredevil AND The Defenders, which bring them all together, are all on the cards, plus more, I'm am so excited. More time to spend not writing. Yay!

So what makes them different to the usual Marvel stuff that's out or in progress - which I also absolutely love? For starters, the writing. I don't know how they do it, but at some point they make you start routing for the bad guy - and you don't even realise it until you find yourself wishing they could have their happy ending (and question what the hell you're doing!). But in the words of Wilson Fisk, "Not everyone deserves a happy ending."

This week's Pic of the Week goes to NLMDA for his mind-blowing depiction of Charlie Cox as Daredevil. So go check out his other awesome pieces on his Tumblr website or like him on Facebook (which he deserves). He also does commissions too if his work can sway you.


Daredevil by NLMDA

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

A Front Cover Of Inspiration . . .

Where has 2015 gone! One month left and I can probably count on one hand the amount of times I've blogged.

A lot has happened since I last visited - some good, some bad. The worse? My feline friend, Daisy, passed away. To say I was heart broken is an understatement. I was ridiculously attached to that cat so it's no surprise I took it hard. BUT, I now have not four, but eight little paws pattering around here now.

Meet Doyle and Bodie, two of the most handsome brothers I know. They're 5 months old now and such joys to have. And I'm now lucky enough to be working full time form home so I'm thoroughly enjoying their kittenhood - even if I do have to battle for rights over the laptop.

The flow of creativity is still strangely slow. I really need to buck my ideas up to get over this lull. I'm not sure what it is - a mixture of laziness coupled with anxiety maybe. Who knows. But it has to come to an end sometime. So here's a short piece I wrote the other night for a small exercise in hope that it would get those juices flowing again.

A Front Cover of Inspiration

Writing Exercise: We took a random book cover and let the inspiration flow, to see what it spoke to us. The Book? Under the Dome by Stephen King.

Out of everything, the one thing I wish for most is for the heat to go. The sun bears down on me continuously. I see clouds but they provide no shade, and the more I look at the them, the more I'm convinced they're not moving. 

I don't know where I am. I know I've been here for a long time though. The straight road runs for miles ahead of me, and as I turn, it runs for equal miles behind, splitting though the mountain range on the horizon. The hills in front aren't as severe in sight as the mountains, but they're still menacing. 

I honestly don't know how long I've been standing on this road. Definitely not days or weeks. Years? I can't tell how many. It feels like an eternity. I feel I should be old now, but I'm still the same twenty-four year old I was when it happened. I'm talking about the accident. Memories of it are few and far between but I do know that it happened quick. One minute I was reaching for a bottle of water sitting on the passenger seat of my car, the next I'm peering into the piercing eyes of a wild dog, followed by the sound of shattering glass, crunching metal and a blinding white light. That was it. Now I'm standing in the middle of this road, in the middle of nowhere - alone.

Everyday I walk. I walk for miles. I look at the hills ahead of me and walk towards them. Maybe civilisation lies beyond those peaks, people who can help me, hot food I can eat and cold drinks - not that I feel hungry or thirsty any more. I long to see what lies over the horizon and I walk all day but it never gets any closer. And as if in mockery, the mountain range behind follows me, stalking me and matching my every step. They never shrink in size, never grow any further away, yet I walk from them every day.

I have even ventured off the road. I look to the flat horizons either side, littered with half dead bushes and dry, cracked dirt, but no matter how long or how far I stray, the tarmac road follows. It's never further than twenty feet behind me. 

I don't know where I am. I don't know how long I've been here, and I don't know why I can't leave. In frustration, I yell at the sun above me, always glowing and never giving in to night. The days are one, the stars extinct. I hate it. Did I die in that accident? Is this purgatory or hell? Will I ever be able to leave?

But then as I walk the same tarmac I've trodden for what feels like an eternity, a strange feeling comes over me. Something feels different. As I turn back towards the imprisoning mountains, I see it, a ghost emerging from the heat waves off the road. A car, speeding along towards me, ever closer. After spending so long on my own, with not one living thing scampering my path, I begin to feel something I haven't felt for a long time. Fear... 

Sunday, 26 April 2015

Quick Check In . . .

Wow!  Has it really been over a month since I last posted?  I guess it has.  Sorry people...

I'm also shocked to see the A-Z challenge now on V.  When did that happen?  And where did that time go?  How's that working out for you participants?

Only a quick post to check in and to say that my cruise ship didn't sink out in the Caribbean, and that we didn't get hauled up by pirates (although it would have been cool to meet Captain Jack Sparrow).  The holiday was lovely and the Caribbean is a beautiful place - and hot :)  Slightly disappointed that I didn't see any dolphins or whales - or other such sights - but I DID see flying fish.  They were interesting.

And after two weeks of relaxation and a relative calm crossing across the Atlantic, I enjoyed a short Easter break before delving straight into a new job, so my mind has been on over-load recently.  Been three weeks now since I started and I'm settling in nicely.  And the best part?  Working from home.  But the huge upside to this new job is I'll have more time to concentrate on writing.  Yeah, the whole 'working from home' thing appealed due to health reasons, but the opportunity to give more time to writing was what won me over.  I'll go into it in more detail in a later post.

In the meantime I'm striving to finish the piece I started for Nano, the same Nano piece I failed due to a car accident two weeks in.  Writing's been slow for the last few months which has been killing me, but it's picking up and I'm now right at the end of Tunnel.  It's only a Novella that I'm planning to launch on Amazon and so far it stands at 41k.  It's going to be around the 45-50k mark once done.  I don't think that's too bad for a novella.

But more on all this later.  I'm now off to kill a few characters in a story climax :)     

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

And We're Off To Barbados . . .

Woohoo!!! As from Friday, I'll officially be on holiday (and officially unemployed until Monday 6th).  What a way to leave a job?!  My last day is on Thursday, and then to celebrate, I'll be jetting off to Barbados and then lounging around on this!

For two whole weeks I'll be sunning myself in Barbados, St Lucia, St Maarten (seeing the planes hopefullies) Antigua and the Azores, and doing my Titanic impression yelling "I'm the King of the World!!" - or Queen, but that doesn't have the same ring to it, somehow...  Bliss.

So if I don't post between now and then, I'll be seeing you all after Easter.  Have a good one and may the Easter Bunny bring chocolate pressies :)

Friday, 13 March 2015

Pic of the Week . . . 'At Last, Sir Terry, We Must Walk Together...'

The Literary World suffered a major blow yesterday following the death of the great Terry Pratchett.

I've only ever read one of his books (shocking, I know) but I know people who absolutely adore him, and rightfully so.  He was brilliant at what he did.

I remember my first run-in with Pratchett - well, not him in person, but his work.  I was still at school and we were celebrating some kind of book week (I can't remember what) but they had a poster of Soul Music by Terry Pratchett on their wall.  I fell in love with this poster and asked if I could have it after, which they let me, and it sat on my bedroom wall for years.  It depicts Death on his bike.

If there's one thing you can say about Pratchett, it's that you could tell one of his books a mile away.  Their covers and illustrations by Paul Kidby are so unique.  They're busy, colourful, and manages to capture the style of his work to a T.  Even those who don't read Pratchett can recognise his work by the style of the covers.  They're so imaginative.

With the sad news of Pratchett's recent departure, I thought I'd dedicate this week's Pic of the Week to him, and I've chosen piece by Kidby himself.

So, in memory of Sir Terry Pratchett.  Rest in Piece.

'Check Mort' by Paul Kidby