Star Wars : The Rise of Skywalker was a dire end to Disney’s reboot. Would the new movies have been better they respected the tradition of spiritual storytelling that inspired them? A week out from the premiere of a new Star Wars and there is barely a word to describe the public excitement preceding the event.Continue reading “The 3000 year old sacred story that inspired Star Wars”
Apple are making Isaac Asimov’s FOUNDATION for tv with David Goyer at the helm. All the signs are it’s going to be a disaster. Come and chat with me on Instagram. TRANSCRIPTION So I’ve just watched the new trailer for Isaac Asimov’s foundation series brought to us by none less than Apple themselves as oneContinue reading “The problem with Isaac Asimov’s Foundation”
“Learn the form, master the form, break the form.” Study a martial art of any kind and you’ll likely learn this lesson. First you learn a form – a kick, block or grapple. Then you master the form form – you practice it thousands of times, in different variations, and put it into practice againstContinue reading “Learn the form, master the form, break the form.”
A Scanner Darkly is one of Philip K Dick’s most famous but also most divisive novels. Written in 1973 but not published until 1977, it marks the boundary between PKD’s mid-career novels that were clearly works of science fiction, including The Man in the High Castle and Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, and hisContinue reading “Transrealism: the first major literary movement of the 21st century”
The iconic 90s novelist interviewed in 2004 talks about the challenges of teaching creative writing.
I read a LOT of SF/F this decade for The Guardian, SFX, BBC etc. These were the books that made the decade for me. 2010 – The Lifecycle of Software Objects by Ted Chiang. This is how AI will really happen, and it’s terribly sad https://amzn.to/2QfmOgC 2011 – Embassytown by China Mieville. Like all ofContinue reading “My best Scifi & Fantasy novels of 2010 to 2019”
I’m journalling my 30 day Attention Recovery program. You can follow my progress here. This week my Facebook account was hacked. I can’t re-activate it without a code sent to a mobile phone number I haven’t owned for a decade. Two days ago I de-activated my Twitter account. I’m using this as an opportunity toContinue reading “Day One”
The mental shift that separates young writers from old writers. “I wish I had more time for my writing.” “I quit my job to work on my writing.” “My writing is very important to me.” What do all these sentences have in common? It’s that little word, MY. MY words. MY stories. MY WRITING. ButContinue reading “It’s not your writing”
We put a lot of effort into getting things done. Could we be more creative by simply doing less? In my 20s I was a To-Do list fiend. I had to-do lists for my to-do lists, a fact my girlfriend at the time was happy to mock me for. To get back to being creative,Continue reading “How to make your Kill List (and ditch your ToDo list)”
We’ve made up meditation out of thin air and desperate need. But that only makes it more important.
I’ve gone from writing a regular column of scifi books for The Guardian, to a year without reading novels. What happened?
Why do readers love some novels, but not others? Often we do hand wavy gestures at this kind of question, while intoning the magic word “subjective subjective subjective”. Yes, different people like different things. But there are a few qualities which many, many popular stories have in common. There are six core qualities for aContinue reading “6 signs your novel may be pretty damn good”