Office Hours

I’ve been toying with the idea of “Vlogging” recently seeing how well some people do it but with limited access to a computer and the internet, my videos are generally utter shite and I’m so horrifically self-conscious I couldn’t bare to have me talking on video for that long so ditched the idea. I’m still planning to do some poetry videos but later, when I have my computer back and can edit them. In the meantime you’ll just have to put up with these long and rambling data blasts. Sorry.

Despite living in a house that has broadcast television, radio and current papers for the first time in 2 years, I still refrain from any consumption of this type of media because frankly, it depresses the hell out of me. Living with a parent at an age that is approaching a third decade is difficult so I am doing my best to stay well out of the way. This basically means spending a lot of time in my Mother’s spare room reading and writing which is NO BAD THING as I may remind everyone I’m trying to “do” the writing thing at the moment and this is only a productive arrangement. I’ve been getting plenty of reading done and lots of writing too. So far I’ve written a 5000 word essay, a long form poem, 2/3rds of (yet another) album, and 25,000 words of the new novel. Unfortunately this all I’ve done. I haven’t got an interview or any jobs or money or, well, anything yet and seeing as I am merely subsisting on ‘Literature’ at the moment and absorbing absolutely no popular culture I figured the only thing I could write about was Writing.

Have been asked about the poem by more than one person, (no honestly!) so I shall elucidate slightly. It is called The Painter and is me trying to write a multi-tiered poem in sections in different styles and voices which is as easy as it sounds and it sounds like this. It is basically an attempt to see how far I can stretch my limited abilities within one ‘piece’. That’s was meant to sound less pretentious than it did. Second draft has been typed up and given to not-that-interested confidants to assess and fiddle with. Assuming that is done this year I have plans for a unique method of self-publishing it but this could all be a bloody long time in the works so I suggest for the time being you keep ’em peeled for information about the sonnet sequence I wrote at christmas which is far nearer ‘release’. I also have a poem featured in the forthcoming anthology from Puppywolf Press’ ‘Best of Manchester Poets’. So there.

The novel is mainly what is occupying my mind at the moment. Most of what I am reading for my #50in2013 challenge (that’s right I made a hashtag bitches) is revolving around the book I am writing. The working title is ‘To Broken Stone’ which is a quote from TS Eliot’s ‘The Hollow Men’. I am reticent to explain the plot but if I were to say I have been reading The Hunger Games, The Chaos Walking Trilogy, Lord of The Flies, Byron’s Darkness, The Road, Hard Times, The Waste Land and Hollow Men you can probably tie this all together to make a theory it could possibly be about an apocalypse. I won’t explain anymore but should point out there are no zombies in this book at all.

A lot of my plots I have in mind for books revolve around society disintegrating, the reason for this is manyfold. First, since I have been subjected to the seething mass of media outlets recently, my contempt for human civilisation (if it can be called that, eh Ghandi?) has grown somewhat. Being able to go home and funnel my cultural intake through a self-imposed filter so I can selectively absorb current affairs and trends is the only thing that keeps me sane whereas listening to the news and dreadful radio presenters and awful awful music etc just makes me despair and want to drown puppies. Our post-Modern society seems to have turned into Skynet from the Terminator films and become so self aware its is trying to destroy the human race but instead of nuclear weapons its more insidious plan is to make us destroy ourselves. Whilst that may sound hysterical I want you to remember this when we’re all fighting over the last loaf in the bread bin. Add to this the fact I was a kid who was bullied a lot and was (and still is to some degree) ostrocised by social groups, the idea of getting even with a society that adheres to the “biggest prick wins” rule is too good an opportunity. Nerds like me who got bullied a lot now run the major businesses and enterprises of today which is probably why there is such a prevalence of post-apocalyptic fiction and why it does so well. It is also an interesting commentary on a society that is now so bloated and practically crippled by its own over-development it cannot move for everything it has done before. ‘Everything has been done’ is the catch phrase of today and yet we still develop and create new things everyday but we still steep ourselves in our own history and ‘vintage’ accoutrements. Therefore the idea of having a tabula rasa is an enchanting one and a fantasy in which I relish.

I’m giving away major themes of the book now but put it this way; a world in which the despicable rapist and his accesories to his crime (there were many) in Steubenville can be portrayed by a major TV network as the ‘victims’ is not a society that is as developed and liberal and as intelligent as it thinks it is. It is certainly not as ‘aware of its past’ as it claims to be. Looking back on Django Unchained and its ugly portrayal of racism that has dissipated but not gone away, with its post-modern take on the topic, I wonder if we have circled ourselves so much we are reaching a singularity of some sorts: a cultural black hole. I don’t know but it certainly depresses me and makes me want to just stay in this room and let the world tear itself apart without my help.

On which cheery note you should totally be excited about reading my book!

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For those that care about the technicalities of my writing… : I tend to write in the evening and small hours as my mother uses the laptop for her own writing during the daytime which means I have to nab it to write what I can before I fall asleep. It is putting me in a very de ja vu situation as about 3 years ago (almost exactly) I did this when I was staying in this same room in a similar situation at which time I wrote the whole of ‘Welcome the Pigz’. I am hoping more will be done with this one however. My office is a peculiar one i.e. a bed with flowery covers but it does mean there is little to distract me. I am eating a lot of chocolate at the moment too, which, despite not making me any fatter whatsoever I do fear for my teeth. As Easter is looming though I don’t care, the festival of chocolate shall continue unabated!

In other news, due to Disney’s current promotion of 2for1 on DVDs Mum has been buying them all and we’ve been watching them. I’ve rewatched some old favourites like Lady&The Tramp but a few I have not seen before like Enchanted and 101 Dalmatians. If you’re very good I may do a collective review of these at some point soon.

Well I hope that slakes your thirst for knowledge, you rabid dogs of wisdom. See you soon!

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