My Writing Career

The following list gives you an idea of some of the stuff I've written in the real (i.e. non-internet) world - as if you'd be interested!

Stuff in my pipeline

No more work for Shivers - due in part to the fact that it is now bi-monthly and thus has to concentrate on its established writers rather than encouraging ropey new ones like me.

The fifth installment of that well-remembered journal SAD Magazine is indefinitely on hold. It was fnished three years ago, but Rob and I couldn't agree on whether or not it was any good, so it languishes in cyberspace. This version, for better or for worse, contains 'Acting the Lucas way', a discussion of Uncle George's treatment of actors with particular regard to the casting of the new Anakin Skywalker, and 'Continuity Street', a discussion of the differing approaches to continuity of Who and Corrie. (What can I say, that's just what I felt like writing.)

My ideal would still be to produce around three issues of SAD Magazine every couple of years - or more, or less, depending on whether we can be arsed.

Stuff I've already bequeathed the world

Dreamwatch #8 (13 May 1995) was kind enough to print one of my letters in their "first newsstand issue". In it I blathered on about how badly written the character of Ace had become in the New Adventures.

Sheffield's Alternative Magazine (1995). I spent most of 1995 helping Debbie Delahay with her reviews for S.A.M. - acting as a script editor/doctor/advisor, call it what you will. As a reward she persuaded the editor to let me write a review of my own. Over a weekend in May, we went to see The Charlatans, The Bluetones and Puressence on the Sunday, which Debbie reviewed, and The Kays, Elfin and Reef on the Saturday, which I did (good thing too, as Debbie was too pissed to know what was going on).

I'll happily admit that music journalism does not come naturally to me, but here's a snippet of the rubbish I concocted:

"The Kays(?) open tonight with a deceptively Pink Floydy wash of guitar 'atmospherics' for a few minutes, before launching into the first of their loud and lusty anthems. The Leadmill is instantly filled with sound - which is a good job, as it's sadly uncluttered by people, and remains so for most of their set. The punters present enjoy it, though, and then they're off back to London to potter about on the A303 (their favourite road, apparently)."

I mention this here mainly because The Kays did, of course, later find fame as the cheery retro-rockers Kula Shaker. Ever on-the-ball, I didn't even make the connection until I bought their album a year and a half later, and heard again the song "303" alluded to above.

Daleks Invasion Ramsgate 1996 AD. Rob edited this pamphlet in aid of a charity screening, and I provided a personal appraisal of the two films. The main thrust was attempting to show how different they are from each other, while making some asinine jokes.

Fired by the success of this pamphlet we persuded the East Kent Local Group to let us revive their magazine. When it eventually emerged it was designed by Rob, edited by myself, and called...

SAD Magazine #1 (June 1997). This features some badly written stuff, including a review of the 1996 Who's 7 convention which I believe is on the website.
SAD Magazine #2 (March 1998) was better. I was quite pleased with 'Nacogdoches' - an article not just about the things fans do, but also about the things fans are. I also reviewed several events, some in an interesting way (Gillingham film fair, Return of Fenric) and some not (Longleat). Had quite a lot to say about the TV movie - by then, unfortunately, rather late.
SAD Magazine #3 (March 1999) wasn't bad. I was very pleased with my article 'Six of Nine?', on George Lucas' ever-changing plans for the Star Wars saga. Mr Guerrier also liked it, which is nice. I wasn't so pleased with "No, not the anal probe!". A heavily rewritten version of a piece I originally wrote for Simon Barnard's horror fanzine Cold Print, it was, I suppose, a perfectly reasonable article in its own right, but I have since felt rather embarrassed about selling it to the Taverners, who have all almost certainly read the same thing a thousand times before, and better. Never mind. Also quite shamelessly reprinted the Ramsgate Dalek piece (in an extended form).
Cold Print #2 (1999). I later found out that Barney's collaborator in Cold Print did, eventually, produce the long-delayed second issue which we had both assumed was dead. This featured the original version of "No, not the anal probe!" of which all I have to say is that it's even worse. I have a feeling it may have been called 'Get a Life'. I must get a copy.
SAD Magazine #4 (September 1999) featured an article explaining why Destiny of the Daleks is better than Genesis of the Daleks. This is a thankless task, as even most of New Fandom is yet to come round to my way of thinking. Luckily Tat Wood agrees with me ("just"), so I stand by it. Also co-wrote an article on No. 73 with Rob and some parodies of other people's fanzines, one of which coined the phrase "syntagmatic metatextuality" (which Tat thought was funny! Yes!).

Shivers #77 (May 2000). Aha! A turning point in no uncertain terms. Not only the first time I've been commissioned by a genuine paid-up editor, but the first time I've had a solicited article on the shelves of our fine nation's newsagents. I'm even, apparently, going to get paid for it! The world's gone mad.

And what caused this kerfuffle? A 450-word review of The League of Gentlemen series 2. Into this short piece I managed to cram several unforgiveable expressions such as "uniquely skewed vision" and "a bizarre maelstrom of Gothic melodrama". (If you want to read the rest I'm sure it's still available.) Almost certainly the longest it's ever taken me to write so little.

Shivers #78 (June 2000) boasted my review of Scream 3. Contained thoughts such as: "The shift from parody to pastiche could be seeen as a deliberate nod to the ineluctable dumding-down that Horror series tend to suffer."
Shivers #83 (October 2000) contained my third and final journalistic opus (so far) - a review of Scary Movie, suggested by myself if I remember rightly. "If you like the idea of a slasher fiom where the blood is replaced with a variety of other bodily fluids, this is your movie. ... If the film has any satirical edge, it is in its treatment of the whole genre of sassy teen-introspection that takes in Clueless and Dawson's Creek as well as Scream."
SAD Magazine #5 (December 2003). Just thought I'd mention it again so that I have an imperative to get it done.
SAD Magazine #6 (2004). I've already written my major opus: a piece on C3P0, Jar Jar Binks and the whole issue of Humour in the Star Wars films. Perhaps I'll offer that to someone else - it's about time I made a guest appearance in another fanzine. Should also feature the first installment of my views on Red Dwarf.