22 August 2012

Graphic Scotland

One of the pleasing spin-offs of the Story Shop day came about whilst waiting in the queue for the Grant Morrison event later that evening. There I got chatting to Ariadne Cass-Maran. This was a Good Thing because it meant I got to tell her in person how great the story was that she read at the wonderful Illicit Ink show at Unbound the other night and also because she asked me to write a blog entry for her website, Graphic Scotland.

Graphic Scotland is a fantastic venture that aims to bring comic book writers into contact with comic book artists so it feels a real privilige to be asked to contribute. So here is is, a wee piece on the madness of working on a novel about Scottish superheroes. Thanks Ariadne!

21 August 2012

Story Shop!

Well, Story Shop ended up being a fantastic day. Helen, who had Story Shopped last year, advised me to make as much use as possible of my free pass to the author's yurt and so I did. You'd think it would be an intimidating place with all those famous authors floating about, but it was actually pretty relaxed (the free coffee/juice/wine/pastries/bowls of food may have had something to do with that). I gawped at Sarah Smith from Channel 4 News looking laid-back in her Converse, admired (and stayed out of the way of) a regal Joan Bakewell and had a nice wee chat with the lovely Kevin Barry.

Then, half an hour prior to the reading itself, my subconcious revealed it had devised a cunning way of preventing me from getting too panicked about the reading itself. This it did by making me suddenly realise I'd managed to leave a small carrier-bag loaded with paperbacks lent to me by Gav, next to a chair in Waterstone's (serves me right for browsing books somewhere other than the Book Fest book tent). So after recreating the opening scene of 'Trainspotting', I returned somewhat flustered but suitably distracted. The reading went well mainly due to a small but perfectly formed audience featuring a number of friendly faces and then it was back to the yurt to make full use of the 'Guest' yurt pass and keep old friends entertained.

So thanks to the magnificent folks at the City of Lit for letting me read and if any of you are thinking of applying for Story Shop next year, do it!

And now it's all over, there's just novel editing to focus on. Which is of course completely unrelated to this new blog post appearing...(ahem).

15 August 2012

Hello and welcome

Well hello there, thanks for dropping by! At the moment this website is pretty much a work-in-progress (bear with me as I actually get used to the idea of actually having a website), but if you've perhaps come across my writing elsewhere and would like to read or hear some more, it should hopefully point you in the right direction. I'm also going to use it as a means of charting the progress of my current novel, 'The Pocket-book Guide to Scottish Superheroes', which is currently at the painful enjoyable stage of redrafting. First draft done, now going back through it to make it readable. Six pages done on Monday, yay! Only about 327 to go...

But in fairness, I have been distracted by my impending appearance at Story Shop, this Friday, 17th August in the Edinburgh Book Festival Spiegletent. I'm very grateful to those lovely people at Edinburgh City of Lit for picking my story and have been along to some great readings so far. I'm hoping that the tips passed on by the formidable Alex Gillon at the Reading Masterclass boot camp kick in once I get behind that mic...we shall see.