Below there are slight spoilers – not major, but enough to piss you off if you haven’t seen the movie yet. Click away now, or don’t, whatever. I’ve warned you.
This isn’t so much a review, but more just me gushing about the things I enjoyed most about Star Trek Into Darkness.
This movie was a beautifully wrought Sci Fi epic; a glistening new addition to the ongoing re-boot of the original Star Trek. Given that my boyfriend is a major fan of Star Trek and has an eerily wide and deep knowledge of the show and all its variations, this has been on our list for years. We were stoked to see this, and I was just as hopeful for it to be a roaring success for Matt’s sake as I was for my own – after all, you can’t date a Trekkie without getting drawn in too. That’s impossible.
I could be superfluous, but I might as well just be frank: I loved this movie. I laughed, I cried, I was elbowing the bloke next to me as I clawed the arms of my seat in anticipation. I’m aware of those shrieking clichés, but what can I say? Into Darkness was fucking awesome.
So as it turns out, Benedict Cumberbatch plays a very terrifying Kahn, and delivers an excellent performance despite the fact that he has, and always will, remind me of Kif from Futurama.
I’m sorry, all right? But to me he just does. Him. Cumberbatch. Kif.
There is nothing I can do to erase that similarity from my mind; even the fact he resembles Otters can’t do that. Regardless, he surprised me in this movie; he was convincingly horrible, powerful and bone-chilling. He didn’t take the star spot for me, however – and how could he?
Only one man could do that:
God love him. I adore Zachary Quinto; his ability to embrace bold roles with a mellow, emotive -and sometimes eerie- stance always wins me over; even when he plays villains, or bitchy queers, or freaky doctors with mummy issues. He always delivers, and his portrayal of Spock is no exception.
There are several scenes throughout the movie where Spock must battle his natural tendency towards his Vulcan nature with a decidedly human conscience. When Uhura is hurt to find that Spock nearly sacrificed his life (good old Jim) to benefit the needs of many, he delivers a heart-squeezingly-romantic response comparing the shame and sadness of death with his ability to shut off the emotive parts of his brain, as Vulcans can: after all, why suffer the awful realities of life, if you could spare it? Spock is most definitely a complex, emotional being; the question is, when is it necessary, or even fair, for him to experience the same traumas repeatedly – or indeed, realise new ones?
Would you? Exactly. Spock’s a softy.
Throughout the film, actually, Spock constantly battles moral dilemmas. Vulcans do not lie, but do not is the key term there. Vulcans do what is necessary and right, and as his relationship with the crew grows, Spock begins to lower his shields and uses his instincts over the rules. (Like what I did there? With the shields?…Is this thing on?)
It turns out Spock has a lot to learn from our dear Jimbo, however reckless and illogical he may be. Our Spock is opening up.
Scotty has a much larger role, too, proving again that Simon Pegg wasn’t going to ruin the whole thing the way I’d feared. Don’t get me wrong; he was great in the first one, and he was excellent here. I’m just sceptical about comedy actors taking on roles like that, but hey – he does a superb job, and even does a little heart-squeezing.
Spock’s struggle to control or suppress his feelings particularly comes to light towards the end. A specific event on the time line of the original Star Trek is inverted, and Spock’s true, otherwise-quashed nature comes to light despite himself.
I don’t want to give away what that is (though anyone who has seen The Wrath of Kahn will know), because when you recognise it, that moment will be very special. I will tell you, however, that this scene between Spock and Jim is beyond beautiful. Zachary Quinto is going to break your heart, mark my words – you will need to bring tissues. Everything I’ve said above will come to the fore in this scene, and you will be sobbing.
That’s if you’re anything like me, anyway. I blubbed like a baby.
Over all, I thought that with the foundations and multiple layers of storytelling, this was vastly superior to the first movie, which looks like watery fan-fiction by comparison. The themes are built up subtly, with deep thought to the consequences of the characters’ journey as the story progresses; particularly the emotional trials and tribulations between the beloved crew members of the Enterprise.
Speaking of tribulations? THERE IS A TRIBBLE IN THE MOVIE! YES!
When all’s said and done: a beautifully structured movie. Four years well spent, I say. Roll on!
I’ll begin by saying this about the film: it is mental. If you’ve ever watched any Japanese game shows, daytime TV, or even their beloved and highly acclaimed anime, then my response of ‘huh?’ followed by an unsettling sense of delight and intrigue won’t be that surprising to you.
If I could mix up a little tester-pot of ‘death tube’ for you, then it’d include one J-rock singer, three Pudsey-bears spliced with the paedo-bear, a variety of anime-esque over-dramatised expressions, and Heather from Silent Hill 3. Yes, I’m being serious. And what’s weirder is that you’re feeling intrigued now, aren’t you? You’re thinking: this is too odd to miss out on. Well you’re right; you really should see this for yourself.
Death Tube (aka: X Game) runs along the same vein as the Saw films, which, if I’m honest, do very little to impress me, barring the first one. Do they gross me out? Yes. Is that enough to truly horrify me? No. Good horror today demands that you get psychological, and I’m ashamed to say that most contemporaries fail to grasp this. They just don’t make psychological gems like Jacob’s Ladder any more.
To me, the Saw films are a case of the emperor’s new clothes. Time and time again we’re subdued to the same old blood-and-guts routine with a rather unsatisfying plot, and characters who serve no other purpose than to drive the plot forward. I won’t lie – Death Tube is hardly an exception. However, it did have a lot to offer in regards to cheesy entertainment.
Death Tube is about a group of people who find themselves doing horrid tasks and solving puzzles in separate rooms, whilst conferring with one another via webcam on the ‘Death Tube’ website. Yes, it is a play on YouTube. They must decide how best to clear each stage of the game without sacrificing members, which inevitably goes wrong. They must also reach certain moral aims by the end.
Instead of the clown-puppet announcing that he wants to play a game, we get the freaky Pudsey-paedo-bear who talks like a deranged Japanese game-show host. Think ‘Mr Sparkle!’ from The Simpsons. Next we have a series of silly challenges rather reminiscent of the show Banzai, and get to watch the contestants selfishly batting one another out the way so they can get across humorous obstacles such as “the slimy pond,” which is basically a wet tarpaulin sheet.
Viewers also get to watch a young girl who resembles Heather from Silent Hill 3 stumble about on her bandy legs in an adorable outfit, whilst the male lead repeatedly helps her up off the floor. She is basically a human version of Buttercup from The Power Puff Girls. There are plenty more features like this throughout the film, which submersed me in the fun side of Japanese culture if anything. I guess that’s what kept me interested. This film dares to be different from the norm, and let’s face it – is the norm even worth watching nowadays?
This movie is completely crazy. But you know what? It kept me watching, and better still, I was very entertained. True, the head-drilling scenes and buckets of pink corn syrup might not be up to today’s standards, and this is certainly no blockbuster. At best it could be a cult B-movie, which is unsurprising given how good the Japanese are at creating a sense of novelty about their productions. If this film was about a bunch of cockneys, two bimbos and Alan Sugar’s voice in place of the Pudsey-paedo-bear then it would’ve bored me to tears.
I’m surprised to say it, but I actually loved this movie. It kept me entertained, and if a film manages to keep the viewer’s interest, even if it isn’t in the way they intended – to scare them, in this case – then hasn’t that film succeeded in some way? I think so. Death Tube is a quirky, and fun addition to any horror film collection.
This was first published at Video Vista.
Second Coming follows photographer Lora as she searches for the murderer of her identical twin sister, who leaves clues about her death from beyond the grave. The movie is sold and presented as a horror flick, complete with freaky twins, messages from the dead and a murder most foul. However, I disagree that this movie is of the horror genre. Whilst there are elements present, they’re actually few and far between. Rather, I’d say this was more of a dramatic thriller with the odd scene of a ghost thrown in for kicks.
The plot is pretty linear and predictable, whilst its mystery elements do little but humour the viewer who has already got it all figured out. The footage itself is crudely cut at times, and the low-budget makes its horror components appear amateurish and cheap in certain areas, whilst getting away with it in others. The story, being a beloved cliché of the bond between twins, doesn’t give the viewer much to contemplate.
Having said that, Second Coming is appealing in parts: the acting is uninspiring yet competent, and Greg Thompson in particular stood out for me, purely for the fact that he looks remarkably like Hugo Weaving! The resemblance meant that I could marvel at his Weavingness and distract myself from the banal story; an opportunity not to be scoffed at.
For a film with a budget of just $400,000 I am impressed. Whilst it is crude on the whole, it still makes for a decent background film on a rainy day. The settings and scenery are mixed and varied, making it quite tangible and pretty true to real life. However, it lacks a lot of cinematic presence as a result, and when scenes of supposed terror occur they are out of place and lacklustre.
The plot is interesting enough to hold my notice for the most part, but little splashes of horror do little more than stir me from my nonchalance every now and then. The characters are three-dimensional and believable, which does the film a lot of credit even if it is your run-of-the-mill drama/ thriller. If you’re looking for pure horror you’ll be disappointed, but a plain old drama with a few hints of horror isn’t as terrible as it sounds. In fact, you might just prefer to see some old faithful as opposed to the monstrous dress-up-shop efforts some directors make with just 400K to spend.
Whilst I wasn’t blown away, I was impressed by the product as a result of such a low budget. Not only that, but it did introduce me to some indie actors and passed an hour or so quite comfortably on a rainy day. This might not be groundbreaking stuff, but honestly, you could do a lot worse.
This was originally published at Video Vista.
When I saw the word ‘cannibals’ in the description for this movie, I was pretty darn stoked. I am a fan of delightfully crappy horror movies, so the thought of getting a nice little film about flesh eaters to add to my collection of indie horror films was pretty cool. Unfortunately, We Are What We Are didn’t cut it. My shameless puns aside, I did have high hopes for this piece. It’s had some good feedback from what I consider to be good sources, and the movie’s overall appearance seemed quite promising.
However, if I was to tell you that this was a film about cannibals who do not actually prepare, cook, or eat any human flesh at all, you’d feel let down right? Well, so did I… The film depicts three teenagers and their mother living in present-day Mexico, who are forced to make ends meet by themselves when the patriarch of the family dies. Throughout the story, two brothers – typically polar opposites in nature – fight against one another for the gruesome job of ‘hunting’ down the family chow.
Meanwhile, a couple of cops are hot on their trail, Jules and Vincent style, trying to catch the cannibals before they butcher any more prostitutes. All’s well and good at the beginning. The opening had an interesting death scene, silent, prolonged and tragic, which really captured my attention. And old man stumbles through a shopping mall and collapses, all alone, before literally being swept away and wiped up by the cleaning team. The musical score throughout was dramatic and stayed true to its culture, and the acting was of a very good standard throughout.
Sadly, that’s where the appeal ends. The movie seems to have been more focused on the family drama, which is excellent, but it only ever skimmed the surface. We never truly see the insides of them, and it felt like the audience is merely witnessing a moment in time as opposed to the unfolding of a story. The characters constantly talk of ‘the rite’, some sort of ritual involving the cannibalism, but never actually reveal what this is – neither through images or dialogue. We’re kept in the dark. It appears the writer was so deeply informed he’d forgotten to deliver the key information to the audience, which is a darn fatal mistake in cinema. So what kept me watching, you ask? Well, there was some pretty cool brutality, if gore’s your thing. Too much gore, in fact. The mother slammed her garden spade into so many heads I began to wonder if she was preparing some sort of human Kentucky-bucket.
But really, it was the subtitles which grasped my attention. The dialogue was so poorly translated they had me in hysterics! Never have I witnessed such a terrible series of subtitles in my life, and I’m not even sure who’s to blame. It could be that the film benefits far more from being viewed by a Mexican audience, but I’m afraid this flat-liner of a movie didn’t impress this chica. Subtitles aside, the text lacked substance and depth. There was no sense of urgency, my emotions weren’t invested and it was consistently lacklustre over all.
This was originally published at Shroud magazine.
Throughout this modern day gore-fest, Bryan Smith invites readers to examine the build up to one of the bloodiest massacres ever to hit the USA from multiple points of view, projecting fear, loathing, delight, and pure dread through the eyes of both victims and assailants.
Robert really digs Goth chicks; the kinds with raven black hair and PVC corsets that make up his immense friend-list on Myspace. But just imagine his surprise when, whilst filling up his car, a classic Goth chick comes sauntering right up to him – and sticks a 38mm revolver in his gut. Roxie is undeniably gorgeous, but this rose has thorns; so when she orders Rob at gun point to follow a van full of preppy rich kids, then, well – who is he to argue?
After setting off, Rob gets to know Roxie pretty intimately, and develops a kind of twisted, lustful case of Stockholm syndrome. Beaten, confused, and scared out of his mind, he soon finds himself battling with a dilemma – does he really want to go back to his boring, drama-free life, or should he keep up with his psycho girl’s plans?
Unfortunately, it’s too late – he’s been ensnared by Roxie, and she just isn’t a girl you refuse. Whilst their journey towards the bloody beach bash continues, readers get to don a variety of new skins, and meet some crazy characters whilst inside them.
Turns out, Roxie isn’t the only one lusting for blood – because Julie Cosgrove, an unsuspecting teenage girl, is even sicker than she is. Leaving her babysitting days behind her for a wild trip of gruesome self-discovery, Julie teams up with hill-billy corpse-raping Zeb, who “shows her the ropes”. Unsurprisingly for Julie, this killing stuff is contagious – and soon, she just keeps hankering for more.
But what happens when these couples’ journeys cross paths? And what abominable havoc do they wreak at the (allegedly) unsuspecting rich kids’ party?
Written with an “in-your-face” confidence, this novel is not for the faint at heart. The omniscient 3rd viewpoint creates a refreshing insight into the lives and minds of these deliciously brutal characters, and the horrific bloodshed they cause. The novel as a whole speaks with a merciless voice that knocks all other horror novels clear out of the water; an eye-opening `must read’ for horror fans.
This was first published at Video Vista.
Blood River really puts me in mind of a Flannery O’Connor story entitled, A Good Man Is Hard To Find, a short fiction piece which entails a ruthless criminal called ‘The Misfit’, who ambushes a family embarking on a road-trip, and serves them up some slack-jawed trial and retribution in the name of “Jayzus-Chrast, Amen!” If you’re familiar with the Flannery O’Connor story, or any other American road-trip stories, then you might just enjoy this film.
The text runs in a linear fashion, with one singular topic; much like a piece of short fiction. For its aim and subject matter, I thought this was a great idea. The movie doesn’t bombard its audience with too many cliches, although cliches are present and necessary as ever, and the character performances – particularly that of Joseph, played by Andrew Howard – are very good.
The theme of the film is an examination of an evangelical prophecy, which comes from the unlikely and seemingly unworthy societal dropout named Joseph, who trawls the long sandy roads of rural America to stumble upon his next disciple. When a young couple abandon the hitchhiker by the roadside and then breakdown several miles later, they find themselves in need of this misfit-character to find their way out of the desert.
Of course, their paths do not cross with Joseph by chance, and they find that the only way out of the desolate wasteland they’re trapped in is the road to salvation – a road which, quite satisfyingly, is a path both are undeserving of. I found that this film wrapped up nicely, Joseph’s narrations giving the audience the impression they’ve witnessed a great secret, ending this lonesome, wandering character’s part in the movie by introduction of another victim – or patient, I guess. I enjoyed the way this film wrapped up at the end with a sly wink, just like one of Roald Dahl’s stories, and it doesn’t give or take more than it needs to.
However, on the subject of giving and taking, there are a few times that this movie doesn’t quite quench my thirst. Ambiguity becomes an essential part of the appeal towards the end, and although I admired this humble, yet charmingly profound technique, I felt like I wasn’t quite getting enough out of the 100 minutes I’d just invested in this story.
Although we only really follow three characters throughout the film, this doesn’t bode well in terms of pacing; I found myself demanding answers by the finish, a reward for all the hinting and suggesting I’d lapped up, but the film fell short – there were no answers. The story doesn’t require them. Now, I understand that this was probably the writer and director’s intention; ambiguity is vital for the biblical, trial and retribution theme to really have an impact. But without parallel storylines to distract the audience with once in a while, the river does tend to run dry – and I’m afraid this film is no exception.
There was also a slight issue in regards to genre, given that initially I was expecting some gory slasher film with whooping hillbillies and pick-up trucks. There are times when the story becomes quite violent, and I almost thought the film was taking me in that direction – only to swerve me on to another path. On one hand, I realise this is a clever trick – nobody would assume the ‘angel’ of this story would be the retreatist trailer trash – but, on the other, I’m wondering if the genre became confused in parts.
Overall, the sound and picture quality is pretty top notch, barring some clumsy special effects makeup towards the film’s climax, but that’s forgivable – I’m a Cronenberg fan, after all. I’d recommend this movie for a lazy night in, just don’t go expecting too much – this is no racy Hollywood blockbuster, just a film with a little difference.
This was originally published at Video Vista.
Tears For Sale (aka: Carlston za Ognjenku) is an all singing, all dancing cultural minefield for Serbia; a movie filled with the beauty of Serbian women, landscapes, witchcraft and superstition. This is an exciting, humorous piece from start to finish, following the same vein as foreign masterpieces such as Amelie and Pan’s Labyrinth , with just a pinch of Stardust, making it a pretty great film all round.
I thoroughly enjoyed the fun and engaging atmosphere of the film, including the delicate metaphors and creative portrayal of old country beliefs. This film was a subtle, light-hearted social comment on the creedal differences of the countryside in Serbia compared to its capital, Belgrade, and the slow exposure women had to the full-swing of the 20th century.
Two sisters of opposite nature live in a small village that has lost every one of their capable men to war and blood oaths, and fear that at just 21 and 22 years old, they’ll be old maidens left on the shelf. So when the superstitious pair agree to be ‘caressed’ by some bed-ridden grandpa, it’s no surprise that the village of women are infuriated by his sudden death, caused by their screams of pure horror.
However, Ognjenka, the bolshy sister who fears no evil, isn’t about to give in and allow themselves to be burned as witches, all for the sake of an old man. So the pair of them travel to the capital of Serbia, in search of a man to bring back to the village and please its rowdy, love-deprived inhabitants. Here, they’re dazzled by the tall buildings, beautiful clothes; and most importantly, the men. But once they’ve taken their fellows back home, neither are keen on sharing; the 20th century buzz has made them wiser, and they each must choose whether to seize the moment, or seize the future.
There are two prominent factors among many that made this film so enjoyable, and that was humour, and beautiful visuals. Reminiscent of foreign favourites such as Amelie, this piece took a rather humorous view of the Serbian culture, expressing how their extreme ways had led them to treat spiritual things more like business opportunities than occasions of grief. The girls, who have worked as ‘wailers’ (dramatic criers who mourn the dead), and the village witch who’d see anyone else burn as long as it isn’t her on the bonfire, are just a couple examples of this.
The gorgeous European towns and visuals added magical touches to what is, in essence, a fantasy film; with dancing ghosts, flying objects, and lakes forged by tears, this film really did put me in mind of Pan’s Labyrinth and Stardust, just minus the supernatural beasts. But what really intrigued me was the way they used magic and fantastic elements as a way of really immersing the viewer in this culture’s way of thinking, which works very well when juxtaposed with the women’s lust for the modern world. For a comedy romance, this film has a lot going on.
Does this sound like a movie that was produced (very well, in fact) on just four million Euros? Now that sounds like a whopping sum, I know, but when you consider the budget of most blockbusters now days, this was a pretty tight frame to work in for a story that demands so much. I’m pleased to say that, despite its modest budget, every penny was spent beautifully.
The actors, both male and female, all portrayed their various characters with great clarity, amusing one moment, intriguing the next; the cast was so well crafted, that the appeal of foreign films, for me, has grown because of it. The title, Tears For Sale, and simple summary, do not do this film justice at all, but I implore any fantasy or foreign film lovers to watch this delectable little piece, because I guarantee you’ll enjoy every moment.
Seal Girl is one of a trilogy of mythological YA stories by Magda Knight of Mookychick, brought to you by Buzz Books.
Ondine is the new girl at school, and with her flaming red hair, Irish accent and deformed hands, she’s used to being the odd girl out. She tells herself that she simply doesn’t care. But like the mythical selkies who swim in the cold Atlantic, Ondine swims to championships in high school pools, where she feels free. She chooses to be a free spirit, but when someone close starts to play dirty, it seems she runs out of choices …
Seal Girl is another contemporary take on a classical myth. Meet more brave teens tackling real-life issues in the entire Mythology High series. Knight’s next stories, “Geek Girl,” and “Glee Girl,” will be released in June and July.
I loved Seal Girl; it was a cute, fun, jovially written short story with an Americana YA feel. If you’re a fan of traditional YA with a twist, then you’ll love Seal Girl too: high school drama, jocks and bitches and nasty teachers, all from the eyes of an Irish immigrant who just wants to swim in peace without dealing with all the peer-pressure and name-calling that comes with having deformed hands. Ondine wants someone to get to appreciate the real her; not the swimming-obsessed outcast they cruelly name Flipper.
When football Quaterback Mitch takes an interest in Ondine, she can’t help but notice he isn’t like the others. Not only is he Irish-American, but he loves to write short stories and isn’t afraid to admit that he’s just a little afraid of water after watching JAWS as a kid. Ondine isn’t so sure, though; she needs to focus on her swimming career, using the gifts passed down by her mother before she died in child birth.
Is Ondine just an ordinary girl with extraordinary skills, or is there a touch of Selkie magic somewhere down the line? Either way, this girl has her priorities straight: she knows who she is. It’s Mitch she’s worried about – can she really trust a Jock, after all?
Seal Girl is an endearing tale of the importance of being true to one’s self, no matter what. I loved the quirky Americanisms and the originality of Ondine’s character, warts – or flippers! – ‘n’ all.
If you would like to read it, you can purchase it here for just $1.19 or 77p! Go on, try something new: SEAL GIRL
P.s How cool is that name? “Ondine”. I just can’t stop saying it.
So, like Derek Branning (or just about anyone in Eastenders) I’m going to come waltzing in here (Bianca’s house) and start alluding to a few chaaaanges around here…Namely my theme. Yes, the colours have changed and I’m now using a more column-like format instead of the big tabloid-style puke-in-the-face look. Anyway, I like it, and that’s just how it is – “Wevva you loike it or not!”.
So I’ve written a good few novels during/since University; 4 in total, two of which are ready for representation, and a fifth that I’m working on now.
Novel the first: ALL GIRLS CRY is a YA dystopia about a transgender male named Prudence Hall, who is forced into a government-run surrogacy scheme and goes on the run with her psychopath friend Jenny and her deranged mother. It’s a story which weaves together tales of oppression, friendship and identity from women from all walks of life; even those who started out as boys, like Pru’s friends Jane and Jimbo. I like to think of ALL GIRLS CRY as Juno meets The Handmaid’s Tale, with a good pinch of Boys Don’t Cry for good measure. It is approximately 92,000 words long.
Novel the second: HONEST is the psychological, ghostly tale of an abused girl caught in the limbo between child and womanhood. Told from the unreliable viewpoint of seventeen year old Ellen Woodley, this story follows her emotional journey as she revisits the town where her boyfriend died three years previously in a boat accident, leaving her almost entirely wheelchair bound. Living with her father, who has been sexually abusing her since her mother left when she was ten, Ellen escapes into magazines like Cosmopolitan and Marie Claire, where she learns all the tricks of the trade necessary to bloom into a sexy, go-get-’um woman; or so she believes. But Ellen is hiding a terrible secret about Peter’s death, and when she is visited by his ghost in Mevagissey where it all happened, she can’t hide from the past any more.
HONEST is a no-frills account of Ellen’s extraordinary life, where she must use her cunning to survive alongside her deranged father in a world that isn’t ready for a teen as twisted as she is.I like to think of HONEST as Hard Candy meets Wuthering Heights, with a good pinch of Girl Interrupted thrown into the mix. It is approximately 72,000 words long.
The novel I’m currently working on is very much still in the planning stages, and could very well take a dramatic overhaul (my work usually does) but I’ll give you a little hint of where I’m headed. I’m using the working title LIMBO, just because that best describes the situation of the characters:
LIMBO is about a 16 year old boy called Terry with psychopathic tendancies, who escapes from his foster home and squats in the house of a mad old woman. When he finds a job as a cleaner in a hospital, he is free to reek havoc amongst a group of embittered Cancer patients who use Terry to get revenge against any patients and staff they deem deserving. Institutionalised, marginalised and sick to death of it all, Terry finds a home amongst the dying and realises he isn’t the only weirdo around there. Left to his own devices in a carnival of horrible delights, Terry roams the hospital in search of pleasures only he could thrive in, blissfully unaware that within the hospital hides a secret that even he isn’t prepared to discover.
Currently, the full manuscripts of both HONEST and ALL GIRLS CRY have been requested, and are being reviewed by several agents and an independent publisher. I continue to promote both novels to gain representation; please contact me if you would like to see more. I’d love to hear from you.
Meanwhile, I am jobless. I’ve moved to reading with my beloved of four-and-a-bit years, and we’re currently living in non-marital bliss in our very own trendy little flat.
Being out of work is a scary place; even worse when you can’t for the life of you sell yourself to an employer. My degree is creative, because I’m creative; as a novelist, that works perfectly. I do intend to be a paid author, after all!
But as for employment, what does a writer actually do for a day job? I’m not that interested in computer-based work, given that I spend all my free time doing just that, and I’ve lost interest in working in publishing. After all, do I really want to be polishing up someone else’s work, knowing full well that I wished it was mine?
Manual work generates life experiences and fantastic material to work from, but it pays very little. On the plus side, it does enable me to continue writing without feeling too stressed to carry on. My work is incredibly important to me; without it, life is not worth living.
And yet, and yet, I have this loathsome voice in my head telling me to get out there and join the drones on the train to London because, after all, that is a sign of success. Isn’t it?
So, I’ve been packing up my room because – ba ba da baaa! – my boyfriend and I are finally moving in together. It’s actually happening. Blimey-o-Riley. Crikey. As of Wednesday, we get the keys to our flat.
I’ve been through some major lows over the last few weeks, because it’s finally sunk in that flying the nest is never, ever easy. After all the fights, the arguments, the nasty words and bad feelings, it turns out I actually love my family very, very much. We’ve all done a lot of crying so far and I expect there’ll be a lot more. All I can do is wait and hope that this feeling of absolute dread (months ago I was ecstatic at the thought of getting a flat with my boyf!) passes so I can start to enjoy my own space.
I don’t think I’ll ever understand my own feelings.
Anyway, time goes on and so must I. Something which reminded me of this difficult fact was a piece of paper I found whilst packing: a sheet from first year English at Uni, which seems like a decade ago now. I seriously cannot believe that whole part of my life even happened, because it was over so quickly.
As you can see, I took the course materials very seriously.