Far From The Maddening Crowd

I’ve loved football for decades. And, by football, I betray my Anglocentric roots. I’m not talking about soccer (or “association football”, to use the proper term) – no, I’m talking about my love of gridiron, which may well have been the gateway drug to my affection for Americana.   I remember the first flickering of […]

Sweet Release

THE MAN WHO NEVER WAS has been out for a few weeks now. Even though I’ve released plenty of books over the years, it never gets old to get the first few responses back from readers. There are lots of things that run through a writer’s mind at that point…   The main thing is […]

The Little Things

I’ve been pondering. We’re still in lockdown here, and life is still peculiar and worrying. My family and I are safe, thank goodness, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t things that we aren’t all missing. I don’t want to dwell on things to make us all maudlin, or to forget the necessity of why […]

Cutting Loose

As you might have noticed from my posts, I’ve been able to work through a bit more of my “to watch” list over the lockdown weeks. Not too much; home-schooling and maintaining key entertainment roles, all whilst trying to put Milton through the wringer, have left me pretty wiped. Even with much of the entertainment […]

Homeland And Art Reflecting Life

Shuffling through my lockdown library… One of the shows that I am watching for escapism has been HOMELAND, which is moving towards its conclusion after a very good innings. It struck me that it stands out as a great example of art being drawn from life, and has me wondering what the current global upheaval […]

Home Computing In The Pre-Cambrian Era

I’ve talked about many of my influences before, but another massive part of my formative years was having a childhood that corresponded with home computing becoming a reality, and not a far off pipe dream only talked about on dusty science programmes. Our childhood computers were the quirkily Anglocentric Sinclair ZX81 and 48k Spectrum, rubber-keys […]

Look For The Helpers

Something I’ve really found heartening lately is the explosion of community, care and innovation from people determined to make the best of this difficult situation we find ourselves in. I’ve titled this piece after a well-worn meme that circulates social media whenever something awful happens – it’s ascribed to Fred Rogers, who I know will […]

Silver Linings

I’m sure you have had quite enough of people talking about the thing which shall not be named but, in a roundabout way, I am going to talk about the current state of the world, or more particularly, the current state of my corner of the world. The forced upheaval to all of our lives has seen […]

The Deuce, And The Ripple Of Story

I am a massive fan of David Simon, like many, chiefly due to his work on THE WIRE, a contender for the best TV show of all time. I’ve followed his work ever since, from larger pieces like TREME, to smaller works like GENERATION KILL and SHOW ME A HERO. I’ve just finished THE DEUCE, another of […]

No Such Thing As A Bad Idea, Just Bad Timing

You’ve heard it. I’ve heard it. “Where do you get your ideas from?” is the all-time cliché question for anyone who has ever thought about writing at any kind of serious level. And understandably so. The question can sometimes mean “what’s the secret because I’d love to do it?” as I think nearly all of us enjoy the experience […]