Short Story Day 2012

So, just to share my favourites with you. Do find them, have a look.

The Coventry Boy, by Graham Joyce. Set during the blitz of November 14th, 1940, a dark, brooding character study, and part of a later novel. Very haunting.

The House on Maple Street, by Stephen King. I love the feel of this story, the wonder, awe, and fear of the children as they realise something is not quite right with their house, and it may not be a bad thing.

Snow, Glass, Apples, by Neil Gaiman. This is a dark reworking of the Snow White fairy tale, with a gloriously wicked twist.

The Clock Strikes, by Tanith Lee. Another fairy tale reworking, this time Cinderella, including a cameo by a certain hooded, skeletal figure who often carries a scythe.

What are your favourite short stories? Let me know in the comments below.

Ooh what a picture

I’ve been taking a few more photos recently. Having an iPhone with a decent camera helps. It’s always with you, handy to snap quickly with the new screen shortcuts. And with the various ways of posting photos to t’internets, easy to share, right?

Well, not quite.

You see, I have photos on Flickr. I can upload them direct from my Mac using Aperture. Used to be able to upload them using Echofon, my Twitter app, from my iPhone and iPad. But that feature has now stopped being supported.

I also have photos on FaceBook. Again, can upload them from my Mac and iOS devices.

Oh yeah, I have some on Lockerz. Echofon stopped supporting Flickr, so Lockerz was the next best thing. Remembers your full history, the in-app support lets you view people’s back catalogue. Very handy.

Except… I know also use Twitter pictures. Because, when you use the native Twitter app on iOS, or the native built-in share to Twitter options in iOS 5, it ignores your settings to use either Lockerz, Yfrog or Twitpic, and always defaults to Twitter. Annoying.

Oh yeah, nearly forgot one. Tumblr. Don’t get me started, that’s a serious procrastination tool right there. Lots of interesting stuff on Tumblr.

And of course, if you want you can upload directly inline on blogs such as this, using WordPress.

So, what was that about being easy? Yeah, very easy. But how about organisation? Nope. Not good at all.

What I’d like is to be able to take my picture, and upload it to one place, one time, and for it to be available everywhere. No work around found yet. Anyone, any ideas? What do you use for your photo blogging ?

Hit the ground running

Blimey, what a way to start the year! Sorry I’ve not been blogging, been really busy.

New Year’s Eve, me and the parents went to Marsden Liberal Club to see JB Goode play live for the evening. It’s always a brilliant gig, and, as I’d been hoping, Ben Carter from Evile was there. (If you haven’t gathered that Evile and HIM are my two favourite bands by now, you haven’t been paying attention, have you?)

I am ludicrously lucky to be able to say that I am on first-name terms with the drummer of my favourite band. I am deeply honoured to be able to talk to him, Ben if you read this: sorry if I bend your ear off too much! To spend New Year drinking and talking with him for most of the evening was just totally awesome.

Asking him about the upcoming Third Album was met with a response along the lines of “I could tell you, but then I’d have to kill you!” Given that Ben is built like a brick outhouse and kicks ten bells of shit out of a drum kit the size of the New York city skyline for a living, you’d be forgiven for wondering if he is actually joking.

He did, however, give a few little hints about the coming year for Evile, and his excitement quietly palpable. I wish him and Evile every success this year. For it to go without a hitch would be extremely wishful thinking, but they have good scope for strong achievements in 2011.

This pic pretty much sums up the evening for me:

That’s Steffy-Lou, Ben’s elder sister and the bassist/co-vocalist of JB Goode. This was close on midnight, everyone was well gone, so she hoiked herself, and the double bass, up on the bench. Yes, it is scraping the ceiling. Yes, it is bigger than she is. Yes, this picture is awesome.

As for achievements, what am I intending to get under my belt this year? Honestly, I have no idea. I’ve hit the ground running, though, enrolling on Jeremy C Shipp’s Yard Gnome Army Writing Bootcamp for the first 8 weeks of the year. I have the first big assignment, a 3000 word short story in first draft due in tomorrow, and am already getting good (more importantly, useful!) feedback from him on the smaller assignments. This is turning into a fresh, invigorating way to start the year.

My resolution of blogging at least once a week has already failed, but at least for good reason this time. Hopefully, as I learn to time-manage better over the next few weeks, I’ll blog a lot more often.

For now, know that I am writing, enjoying myself, and looking forward to another really good year. 2010 had way more ups than downs, I’m glad to say, I hope this year will be the same.

Also, if you haven’t yet bought the soundtrack album from Series 5 of Doctor Who, composed by Murray Gold, why not? It is amazing, gives a good feel for the overall series. You don’t always appreciate the music in a TV series, this album might open your ears a little.