Archive for October, 2012

The Next Big Thing…

The Next Big Thing

What is the working title of your book?
“Edge of a Lens”.

Where did the idea come from for the book?
I’ve spent a few years (okay, a decade) dabbling with the idea. It’s the equivalent of re-imagining yourself, post-age sixteen and taking that character on an entirely different route in life, with different people, different relationships, different situations.

What genre does your book fall under?
I’m not too keen on becoming an LGBT writer, but hey, there’s no getting around the fact that the lead character is a gay male. I feel drawn to characters that are somewhat broken, and then trying to break them down even further! I’m not really certain how to apply genres to what I pen, and that wasn’t a ‘My writing is indefinable’ moment, it is that I genuinely don’t know where ’emotionally fucked up characters/lives’ usually gets filed under! Emotional-Horror?! 😉

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?
Who knows?! When I write this particular piece I can see the visuals, I can hear the soundtrack. I even jot artists/songs in the sidelines next to scenes. I like the idea of applying the characters to new, British acting talent, preferably unknown faces. I could certainly see it becoming a multi-part LGBT drama screened on Channel 4 in the UK at 2am!

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
Sometimes you have to go face-to-face with the demons in your closet.
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
Published? Aye right!

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
The piece is still very much a works-in-progress and will probably be so for many years to come. Whilst I work on learning the craft, usually through flash, short stories, lengthy blogs, this story remains my baby, constantly changing and growing just like its owner, and one day, it may finally grow into its skin.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
Good question. Like I said this idea has kicked around for years and a while back when searching to see just how much ‘serious’ and ‘non-erotic’ LGBT fiction existed, I stumbled upon the blurb of a book called “Now and Then”. It was written by the late William Corlett. Now, I’m not a huge reader, a cardinal sin for a writer, I know, but I had to order this book. I read the entire thing and thought “Shit, he’s done it.” It’s the closest relative I’ve found to what I have been penning. Except mine will be grittier, gloomier, very much anchored in the reality of just how fucked up human beings are! With moments of niceness, once in a while… 😉

Who or What inspired you to write this book?
Honestly? There’s always been a certain desire to rewrite my teenage years, at the time, they just seemed so boring! This is definitely an exercise is revisionist history! The inspiration that lies in any piece of writing I start is that I don’t like to overly plan, I want the writing process to be akin to a reader picking up a novel they know nothing about and being taken on a journey. I want to get to go on that journey as well!

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
The fucked up nature of the characters and those around them causes wonderful moments of cynical humour, and I thoroughly love watching those unfurl! I’m looking for a good mix of characters so there should be someone for all types of reader to identify with, eventually!

This was sent to me by Matt Potter, owner and editor over at the wonderful Pure Slush
His answers can be read here:

I passed this on like a bad disease to:

Iain Paton –
Tom Keenan –
Geoff Small –


“The Short Wave”

The Short Wave

Bloody nag, nag, nag.
Nag, nag, nag.
That’s all she ever does.

“John, I want to be taken to House of Fraser! I just must see these curtains. We must have new curtains before June and William come around for dinner. You know how critical she is, she’ll tell everyone we’ve had the same curtains for over a year.”

There’s something calming in the static. In hearing a faint voice fade in and out of your ears, disappearing and never to be found again. Something so different to her voice screaming my head all bloody day long.

“John! John, I told you, you have to jet wash the drive. What will the neighbours think of us? I can see moss!”

The attic conversion is the location of my escape. Somehow she let me have a corner to set up my gear. I treated myself to a wonderful pair of headphones last Christmas. She needn’t know about them. The cups close over your ears, plush covered against your skin. Not a sound outside gets in.

“Do you want a cup of tea love?”
“Tea, we don’t have time for tea! They’ll be here in, oh six hours and you still have to give the windows a once over, there’s a spot you missed!”

Each night, I’m granted some time alone, me and ‘that bloody waste of space and money’. “Think of things we could do with the money.” She said, “It could go towards a new three piece suite.” We’d already purchased three new sets of those in the last ten years. And I don’t remember ever getting the chance to sink down and disappear into any of them. No, I preferred my little wooden chair, striped summer cushion tied to the seat.

“John, John! Where are the napkin rings? I’m sure they were here. Have you moved them John? Where are you when I need you John?!”

I come back in, dirty chamois in hand once more. Put on the kettle. Maybe now I can have my cuppa. I’ll make her a cup too. Strong and sugary, with a large dash of that thing I know she likes so much.

“Another cup of tea? Oh for goodness sakes John.”
“I’ve made you one, drink it before you run yourself dry.”
She snatches it from my hands. I take my first sip, a much deserved sip.

At the kitchen table I watch her slumped there, face against the oak. Breathing in and breathing out with a snort. That pair of ex-pats from Cyprus will be here soon. I wonder why she always invites them over to dinner when she quite obviously hates, no, despises them. I can’t stand them either. I close all the curtains, turn the roast off and ascend to the attic.