Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Shop assistants

We have a tendency to treat people who work in shops as sub-human, not intelligent enough to get a 'proper' job. We are rude to them, expect them to give us freebees and to know absolutely everything about every product.
I've seen people talking on mobiles when being served, if the call is that important then step out of the queue! I've also seen people be positively rude to friendly cashiers because something has gone wrong, even when it's not the person behind the tills fault. Although the staff sometimes don't help themselves by being rude or grumpy, I think good customer service certainly starts with a smile, but we can help them as well.

Writer: buy now on Amazon
dragoncity publishing

Monday, 30 May 2011

We're allll dooomed

We're doomed. Let's face it, the green revolution is never going to come.
And why?
Because we are too dependant on things. Stuff. Stuff we don't really need, but we want. We buy stuff all the time, even if we don't think we do. Because our society has changed. A hundred years ago a man used to come around and deliver the milk from a large milk churn, and deliver it into a container the home owner used. Bread came in a thin sheet of paper that was probably re-used by the householder. Or it didn't come in anything at all.

Ok, so there were more cases of food poisoning, I'm not saying the system was perfect, but we used less. Now every part of our lives has to have an extra layer of protection to it, a wrapping, a flappy bit that does nothing but makes the product look pretty.

And it's not just packaging. Just think of how many things we have in our lives that no generation has had before, except perhaps the super-rich. We have electronics that expire after a few years of use, and we have consumable electronics that really do very little except act as status symbols, and are updated so often that we feel inadequate if we have the 'lesser' old version. Yet we still insist on buying them, and competing with that bloke from accounting.

We have more clothes than we can ever wear, and now even throw-away clothes that we can discard before even washing...as they wouldn't survive the machine. Just sit and think for a moment of all the things that we have to distract us now in those inconvenient slow times when our ancestors had work.

And aren't you grateful that you live now? In a generation perhaps we won't have these riches.
Writer: buy now on Amazon
dragoncity publishing

Friday, 27 May 2011


The whole wedding industry thing baffles me. Ok, so perhaps I'm not girlie enough or something, but it all seems a little overblown to me.

It seems that we all have expectations as to what we should get from a wedding, a huge party, big dress, lots of presents, and we actually forget about one thing, that we are there to get married.
Care and attention is taken with every step. People bankrupt themselves trying to make sure they have the perfect day, that every little detail down to the napkins not only co-ordinates, but works towards making the day special. And we forget about our guests.

I was invited to a friend's wedding recently that appalled me. Not only was she pressuring me to go, even thought at the time I couldn't afford it, but the invitation...seems that there was a wedding with a coffee reception. Then an inexplicable break of five hours, and an evening do with 'snacks'. Oh, and they wanted cash as they had everything they needed.

So let me get this straight, what are you doing during the five hour break? Having a reception perhaps for close family and friends? So what does that make me? Filling to make your wedding pictures look good? This isn't acceptable!

And asking for cash, tacky. That's assuming I am giving a gift, which should never be the point of an invitation. As it happened I had bought her a small gift of a glass bowl, but decided that I would rather keep it myself, and not attend.

I also attended another wedding where there was the ceremony and a meal, then an evening reception. Most people were invited to the evening reception only , which made me wince. Invite 'em all, or not. If you can't afford a large wedding, don't pretend you had one! The bride was also endlessly updating me on the gifts they got, which was embarrassing for me. I didn't want to hear that Uncle Bob gave a hundred quid.

Try to plan a wedding, and you soon find out just why they are expensive, say wedding, and the price triples. But it's all the little gewgaws we add, table decorations, flowers, favours, etc that don't make the day special, they make it expensive.

But hell, if you want to spend a healthy deposit for a house on your special day, go for it. My boyfriend and I have decided to go as tacky as we can for our wedding, a nice Elvis wedding in Vegas. Short and sweet. I just have to persuade him that asking for cash as presents is not a good idea...
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dragoncity publishing

Thursday, 26 May 2011

Kindle guilt

Ok, I feel guilty about owning a Kindle. Stupid, perhaps, but I somehow feel as though I'm contributing to our eventual demise. The printed (or written) word has been a part of our culture since we learnt how to smear mud on the walls of caves. And now it's all going electronic.

Good, huh? Well perhaps not. We can still see cave paintings millennia on from when they were painted, make out the stroked of the individual's fingers. But, and go with me on this one, what happens the zombie invasion/virus/nuclear war/disaster finally happens? There we are, lone survivors of some apocalypse looking to grow food. We have no idea what to do, so we Google it.

Ooops, no Internet.

Which means no Kindle books available to buy. Now unless I buy (and can find) a load of books on agriculture etc now and upload them, what if we have no power to keep the Kindle going? What if I lose it/it breaks? At least a library is there and can be raided, if we go virtual will there be no physical books to read in 20-30 years?

So, if you want to keep our libraries open you have the perfect excuse. "In case of zombie attack." Sorted.

Writer: buy now on Amazon
dragoncity publishing

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Crippled Black Phoenix: in depth

There is nothing more satisfying than discovering a band you totally get.

Crippled Black Phoenix are certainly one of those bands for me.

They produce sublime music that is satisfying and meaty, but sophisticated and delicate at the same time. Really food for the soul.

As far as I am aware they have only released three albums, A Love of Shared Disasters (2007), The Resurrectionists (2009) and I, Vigilante (2010). Each album is satifyingly different from each other without losing the CBP 'sound'.

The music is gorgeously textured and layered, yet can be amazingly simple. Take Burnt Reynolds from The Resurrectionists. It sounds deceptivly simple, a lone voice lamenting his life, and strangly a football chant style chorus (which is easy to sing as it's just whooo-ing). But there is a basic underlying complexity to the vocals and the music as the builds from a gentle start right up to a rip-roaring conclusion.

And then there is Fantastic Justice from I, Vigilante, with stunning piano work, and rough vocals that waver in and out.

In all, The Resurrectionists is my stand-out album, with a good percentage of the songs absolute favourites of mine. I, Vigilante is a close second, and A Love of Shared Disasters comes last, but as it has the stunning Really, How'd it Get This Way? and Yo Take the Devil Out of Me, it's hardly the worst album, like anything they have done, it's worth putting your hand into your pocket for.


Writer: buy now on Amazon
dragoncity publishing

Guilty pleasures

There are some bands which you feel you shouldn't listen to after you get to a certain age, and Pichshifter is one of them.  I love their music, it's lively and complex, but I somehow feel it's for a much younger audience than me, I can't work out if it's the singer, the subject of the songs...or because they aren't serious? There are other bands I could certainly put under that category, including bands like Monster Magnet, even the name suggests a childish band. But they are quite the opposite, the music isn't really designed for children (or da yoof), but is good, hard, satisfying rock.
I suppose part of the problem is that you reach an age when you feel as though you should be mature, and 'setting a good example for da yooth', and enjoying culture. Except that these bands are part of our culture, and are just as valid an art form as classical music.
But ask any 'adult', in adult company what they listen to, and they will inevitably go towards the 'classier' end of their musical tastes, perhaps even mentioning the odd Bach record or two, even though the closest they get to listening to classical music is watching a BBC drama.

Yet ask that same adult in the company of children, and see what they tell you then...


Writer: buy now on Amazon
dragoncity publishing

Tuesday, 24 May 2011


It's a strange relationship you have with your co-workers, you are with them a lot, and if you're really lucky you get to know everything about them.

Yet you move on to a new job, and leave them behind, often without a second thought.

You get to know their children's faces, but never meet the children.

You meet their spouses, celebrate their birthdays, and are expected to do with  enthusiasm, even if you really don't care about them.

They bring you cakes, tell you about every aspect of their lives, and you only see them during working hours.

I'm working in a job where I'm not in one office a lot, and it brings it home to you how false the relationship is, an 'outsider' like me is welcomed, but never quite 'in'.
Writer: buy now on Amazon
dragoncity publishing

Monday, 23 May 2011


Went to an earthtone9 gig on Friday night at the Manchester Club Academy.

They are an amazing band, the singer, Karl Middleton, had a bad throat, but still managed to roar out a nearly full set. earthtone9 are one of the stranger bands, as they are excitingly melodic and thoughtful, as well have having rousing shouty bits*.

The atmosphere was brilliant, despite being the smaller of the Manchester Academy locations as the sound is amazingly clear, and you can get close to the band.  They managed to sound just like they do on the CD, but with the excitement of a live event. By that I mean that they do complex and beautiful music that didn't lose a note, despite the odd lyric lost by the singer!

At the end of the night as they played the last song, the singer at the end left the stage, then the other members kept playing, then one by one they stopped, leaving the other members to play, until there was only the drummer left. A very excellent end to a great night out.

If you can go see them, I would really recommend it.

If you fancy a sample of their work, a compilation album is available FREE! Just give them publicity...or just enjoy and spread the word!

*and I'm not being rude, I always think of the roar produced by metal bands as being shouty since reading Sandman, A Season of Mists and having Princess Jemmy (Chaos) call Thor Mr. Shouty...

Writer: buy now on Amazon
dragoncity publishing

Friday, 20 May 2011


Paedos are everywhere. You can't walk down the stree without having one staring and lusting after your child. Let that child out of your sight for one moment and they are gone to a horrible fate.

Or at least that's what the newspapers would have us all beileve, and it seems they we do believe it. Our children are more frightened by life than ever before, because we are frightened for them.

But where do you draw the line? The Maccans left their children, and disaster struck, but they were unlucky. If I advised you to let your children run free like I did in the 1980's, and something happened, well I'd never forgive myself, and you'd probably sue.

What we need to do is try to find a balance so children can run free and learn independance without putting themselves in danger. Try to teach them to be smart, although I suspect that no matter what you teach them, there is always an element of risk.

Writer: buy now on Amazon
dragoncity publishing

Thursday, 19 May 2011

Degrees of usefulness

I did an art degree when I left school. Yeah, I know, it has immediate and strong applications in the real world. After I did it, and I did it because I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life, I drifted, because I still had no idea what to do with my life. I had originally thought I would run my own business, making clay items to sell at craft fairs, but I soon realised that I had no money no idea what I wanted to do, and really didn't want to do that anyway. 

I eventually found a career I could live with, but it's left me with a deep contempt for art degrees. I had no real ambitions to be an artist, yet I still did the degree. So what about kids of today? I came out of the degree with no real skills, nor any practical idea of how to set up my own art business/become an artist. And these kids are now being asked to pay out up to nine grand a year for tuition. Christ. I can't imagine coming out of my four year course with nearly forty grands worth of debt (assuming I didn't need loans to live off!) and then having no clear career path.

It's actually horrifying, to be honest. But it's also good, because it might mean that less people will take the soft option and do an art degree, they might actually take a good, hard look at what they could do with it. Perhaps only the truly determined will do art. It means though that the people who are richer are more likely to do such a self-indulgent degree, and poorer, and perhaps more talented people won't. And just another thought, perhaps it was just my degree, but we weren't 'taught' how to be artists. We were given a limited amount of materials, and expected to get on with it. So perhaps what these course need is more structure, perhaps a module on running a business, on surviving in the real world?

Come on people, less 'creative', more practical!
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dragoncity publishing

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Running to keep up

Yoof. It's everywhere. It's invading our lives to a degree that is impossible to miss. It's in the shops, it's in our music, the way we dress, speak, and even the way we live our lives.

We all want to be da yoof, it seems. We all want to impress da yoof, and show them that although we are old and wrinkly, we still 'have it'. We speak differently, and listen to their music.

Why? Do  want to be young again?  Do we want to prove to ourselves that we're not a fuddy-duddy? There have been plenty of studies of where yooth culture is today, and I remember the shock when some kid declared that Twitter was no longer 'kool'. Gash! Suddenly we must change our lives to fit in because some spotty-yoof has declared that we shouldn't be seen dead using this tool!

Japan is an age-obsessed culture that encourages women to stay as young as possible for as long as possible. Forget dignity, these women are little more than toys to dress up in school uniforms.

So we spend a lot of time trying to impress an age-group that to be honest don't deserve it.
It should be said that not all yoof culture is terrible, some of it is good, and most is created by adults. Leave children in control, and you get rubbish.

They should be trying to impress us, as all they have is the age advantage. And they're headed right where we are, given time. We have the experience, the money, the culture, and yes, the wrinkles. But if we want to listen to Slayer or Barry Manilow at full volume in the car, we should. And we should relish the cringes of the children, because it builds character. 

Just don't embarrass yourself. Which, let's face it, is easier to do if you try to 'get down wit da kids'.

Writer: buy now on Amazon
dragoncity publishing

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Being made redundant

I was made redundant twice last year.

The first time was from a job I had been in nearly three years, just as I had started to move in with my boyfriend. I was devastated, I now had to rely on my boyfriend in a very tough time, and I felt bad about it.

Then I got another job. Great! The pay and commute was worse, but it was a job. Six weeks later, they got rid of me too. Just before my first holiday with my boyfriend, my birthday and his fortieth. And Christmas coming up.

I found another job fairly quickly, and fingers crossed it appears to be working out...but being made redundant is horrible. Having previously seen it from the survivor's side only, this was the first time I had had it happen to me.

The first notice came when I was working from home, and my boyfriend just happened to be there. I felt gutted, I mean seriously gutted. I hated the job, but I knew this was a bad time to swap, so I'd hung on. And now I had no choice. Of course 'no decision has been made', but we still proceeded along for a month. I didn't admit to anyone I was 'at risk' because I was so upset I knew I couldn't without crying, but I admitted it later. No-one knows what to say to you, and you don't know what to say back.

I managed to keep my cool until the very last day when it was confirmed, and I left in tears.

The second time was worse, when we were told the day before I knew I would be going. I went to my boss and said that I was on holiday the next day would they please let me know as soon as possible? A hour later I had a letter, with a meeting the next day. By one the next day I was gone. Six weeks into the job. I cried a lot, I admit, because I had no time to adjust.

So I'm now in a new job, and I can't settle. They just had a bout of redundancies, and I wasn't involved, but I keep waiting for it to happen. Unless you've been made redundant you can't understand how it dents your confidence, not only in yourself, but in the whole company thing. Just remember, they can get rid of you in a heartbeat. Your job is not secure, and never will be, not any more. 

Writer: buy now on Amazon
dragoncity publishing

Monday, 16 May 2011

Eurovision song contest

So the Eurovision song contest has just ended. Apparently. I really don't get why this contest still goes on, or why it took over the BBC for a night. What I really don't get is the conversation I've just been listening to between colleagues, discussing the finer, nay, geek-level details of the event. I honestly thought that this was only for the slightly bonkier countries in Europe, the ones who haven't managed to get out of the 70's musically. Or for old folks who have given up on life. But no, 20 and 30 something's in the office watch it. Astonishing.  I watched a couple of minutes of some song and was not astonished to see that it was chirpy, with a smiley young man and in English, but with intelligible lyrics. I'm all for kitsch, but the Eurovision song contest takes it to a level of seriousness that astounds me. And I don't' think it was any better in the past either. Can someone please tell me the attraction?

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dragoncity publishing

Friday, 13 May 2011


I have to admit when 3D came out I was anxious to see it. How exciting! Genuine three-dimensions! What a thrill that would be!

First came the horrific cost of the tickets, to wear second-hand glasses. Urgh. But I enjoyed the film (which as I recall badly was an animated movie). But I started to realise several things about 3d.

First, it makes me motion sick. Especially when things swoop.

Second, it doesn’t actually add much to a movie. I went to see Up with a friend who can't tolerate 3D, then saw it again with my mother in 3D. I can honestly say that it made no difference to my enjoyment of the movie.

Third, I forget about it. Apart from the terrible Avatar, where burning bits fell 'near' my face, I honestly didn't notice the 3D, and in Tron 2, I failed to see the difference between the 2D and 3D parts after a while.

Fourth, I tend to get headaches from the slightly distorted effect 3D gives.

So I don't understand this fad for getting 3D TVs. Gaming I can understand, as you could immerse yourself further into a game, and as you are in control it would give it more reality (holodeck here we come?). But even then as I'd have to keep a bucket close for occasional vomiting, I'm not sure I'd enjoy it too much!

So when my boyfriend and I wanted to see Thor recently, we picked 2D. And enjoyed it. So is 3D just a fad?

Writer: buy now on Amazon
dragoncity publishing

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Not-so social networking

What is it with social networking? Why has it become so popular?

Is it because we have such busy lives we can no longer take the time to meet with our pals? Or is it that the lure of celebrity makes us assume that everyone is interested in what we do.

I admit, I use social networking, but I use it as a promotional tool only. I don't use it to tell the world that I'm feeling miserable, or just had a fight, or had amazing sex, or whatever. If I have something to tell people I would rather do it face-to-face or via email than announce it to all.

Then again, I guess I'm not one for the phone either. Give me a coffee shop and a friend and I'm happy.

Ben Elton has written a great book about the perils of being too open, Blind Faith. He usually takes an idea to the extreme, and in this case it is, but has a tang of reality. Here nothing is private, especially not sex, and life becomes a series of Jerry Springer.

I prefer privacy myself, but also I find social networking overwhelming. With all messages from your 'friends', how can you find the important things? And when you meet up, what do you talk about? I have literally had conversations with friends about posts they have read. Dull. But then again, what else do we talk about, as they spend their free time surviving? For me the Internet is a great tool, but to spend hours reading the statuses of others...'friends' who wouldn't be there for you if you lost a lover, 'friends' who don't really know you, just the facade you present to the virtual world.

The trouble is that with the advent of phones designed to give you access to social networking at all times, it gets worse. One of my friends is endlessly attached to her phone, even when we meet she has it on the table next to her, prods it occasionally, and reads emails if they come in. Now if she was a doctor, I could understand it. But she's not, and I find it unbearably rude that she does this, it's as though I'm not entertaining enough for her, so to stave off boredom she uses the phone.

Writer: buy now on Amazon
dragoncity publishing

Monday, 9 May 2011

Selling yourself

I find it very difficult to sell myself, and also very strange to have to try to think of myself as a 'product' to help sell my novel.

But that is what we all are, ultimately, products. We sell ourselves from the moment we are born to our parents, and other relatives.

We sell ourselves when we meet potential friends, making sure they know we are better than smelly Amanda as we have better qualities.

We then sell ourselves to universities, or to employees, or even to the bank and customers if we go it alone.

And we also market ourselves for partners. Some of us only need to get up on a morning to be surrounded by adoring buyers, others, like me have to work hard to find someone willing to take us on.

I find it so difficult, perhaps that's why I'm usually alone.

Writer: buy now on Amazon
dragoncity publishing

Friday, 6 May 2011


Been listening to Weh recently. It's a very strange band, even by my definitions.

The album I'm listening to is called Origins, a retrospective. It starts with a folk style guitar, and a pleasant-sounding voice. The lyrics are dark...but then from nowhere a heavy-metal grating voice springs from the gentle song.

I have to admit I wasn't so keen on it at first, the voice is so jarring! But I've got used to it now, and I find it both intriguing and original.

Later songs omit the voice, and  are all very good. One of my favorites being World of Pain, which is such a gentle song in contrast to the words.


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dragoncity publishing

Thursday, 5 May 2011


I've decided I don't want to live forever. Ok, I know, it's not exactly one of the options open to me right at the moment, but with all the research being done into the Human Genome, there is always the possibility that they could stumble across the right gene.

So why don't I want it? Well let's assume this is a vampire type-immortality. You don't get sick, you don't age, you don't get flabby bits, eternity in a bikini! If you don't eat you don't die. If you get fat, you can lose weight without being ugly afterwards, and if you do die (say in a meat-grinder associated accident), you don't come back disfigured, you either die, or you return whole. So you don't have to worry about all that crap. Hey, your legs even shave themselves. And everyone has it. Oh, and the earth is endlessly expanding so population isn't an issue...

So what then? You pay off the mortgage, and then go on a trek to discover your inner self. You don’t discover it, but hell, who cares? You settle down for retirement after a lifetime of work...

And realise that money is gone at 89. Ooops, back to work then. But by this time, keyboards are out of date, all the young, hip things have chips imbedded in their brains and wave their arms around. You have to learn a new skill, you haven’t had a chip because you were trying to make your money last. Assuming people are still having kids, you're an old doddering fool. So what then? No longer can you go back to the highly paid job you have, so you get shop work. You can't afford to retire, or you daren’t, so where does that leave you?

Perhaps all we'd do is work a few years, then take time off and do what we want. How long before you've done everything? And forget about being famous, we'll just recycle all the old faces. And even if you are famous and make a pile, what then? Will the money last forever? Will you end up becoming another recycled face, getting more and more desperate as younger people appear...

And just think of the marriages! You and your love get bored, and go for a younger model. But they want kids...something you had left behind half-a-century before. With the prospect of this happening again and again...

But I think the worst thing, apart from everlasting employment is that as we get older, most of us tend to get thin in the brains department. Ideas no longer flow like they should, we slow down. I recently had a terrible bout of insomnia, it lasted for years as my life got amazingly screwed up. I've just started to realise how much that all affected me now I'm coming out of it as my brain is alive with ideas. But could that be like getting old? That eventually the ideas die in you.

And we get tired. I saw my grandmother die in tiny stages, each time I saw her she was less and less. Perhaps if we stay strong that wouldn't matter, but what if it's not a physical thing? What if it's the soul? I can think of few people who could watch the world change unrecognisably without starting to get jaded. We are nostalgic now for the past, can you imagine if that melancholy took over your life if you lived forever?

And there is another side to this. If we could recover from most things and not die, imagine what we could end up doing to each other as a result. Sex would be a minefield as constantly jaded souls tried to find some way of exciting themselves, if just for a moment. A good example of what we may be like can be seen in Dead Girl. But please, watch with caution, it's a horrible movie!

So I'm happy to live my 4 score and 10, just so long as my love is by my side.

Writer: buy now on Amazon
dragoncity publishing

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Being 'creative'

I'm an ex-artist, as a child I used to create all the cards to my family, I have always made things, and I make jewellery. Oh yeah, and I write.

But I hate being called 'creative'.

Perhaps I'm being unfair, but 'being creative' now appears to be a label that people use for themselves when they actually can't be arsed to do anything. Usually these people dress 'creatively' and float around demanding special attention because they are 'creative'.

But ask them what they actually do, and it's vague. Ask them what they 'create', and it's always an item in progress. But you can't ask for too much, because they are 'creative' and therefore it seems, incapable of actually doing *gasp* work. It's all airy-fairy nothing. They do the 'thinking', and then leave the 'doing' to the actual brains, the real creative folk who can take an idea and make it work.

This seems to extend to people who aren't actually doing 'creative' things, they aren't producing art, or anything remotely along those lines, they just like to dress eccentrically, or behave like spoiled brats, or put stickers on their car...something that takes no thought or energy on their part, but proclaims to the world that this driver is 'creative', and the car is powered by fairy-dust. Seriously, if putting flowers in your hair and dressing in clashing layers is all it takes to be 'creative' why the hell did I bother going to get an art degree? Most artists aren't eccentric dressers, they are scruffy beggers covered in paint and sweat as they starve in the gutter, begging for a commission.

It also goes the other way, I have known corporate souls be 'creative', usually where they come in and suggest the unsuggestable, like adding coloured text in a manual for software because the page is looking a 'bit dull'. This is the worst form of 'creatives', because they assume they know better than you, an experienced worker. I deal with this in two ways. Either a 'take your idea and shove it', or I agree whole-heartedly, forget about it. Most times it makes no difference, as these creative souls never check...their work is done.

I have nothing against people being artistic. Artistic suggests art, culture, work. Creative...well.

I work hard, and I create a great deal. Just don't call me 'creative'. Please.

Writer: buy now on Amazon
dragoncity publishing

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Feelin' Thor

Went to see Thor on Monday, in 2D. I thought it was pretty good, although it had a measure of silly and excellent. Loki was well cast as was Thor, But there was the usual mix of massively over CGI'd backgrounds (understandable for Asgard, I guess!) and CGI fights.

We also stayed in the cinema for the end of the credits, where there was a teaser for the Avengers movie. Apparently this has been a thread running through a few Marvel movies in recent years, and they will bring them all together for a big movie.

Which will either be great, or a disaster!

I'm not sure why so many super-hero movies fail. Is it because they have to explain so much to setup the characters, and a lot of them have so much backstory now that it's impossible to cram it into a movie? Or just that they fail to get the excitement of the character over with the various love interest type threads? In Thor there was the usual 'oh no I've lost my power' thread, but it wasn't too out of the way, and the lovey bit not too cloying. There were also some brilliant one-liners.

But my boyfriend, who is a Thor fan, when asked if he would buy the movie on DVD didn't have an answer for me. Perhaps that says it all?

Writer: buy now on Amazon
dragoncity publishing

Monday, 2 May 2011

Maniac Cop 2

On a day of such solemn celebrating, I thought I'd write about Maniac Cop 2. Yes, the classic sequel to the perennial favorite, Maniac Cop.

I was persuaded by my boyfriend to watch this, and I have to admit I was pretty dubious, especially as he assured me that the first one 'wasn't as good.'

Hmm, ok.

It was actually a little better than I expected, and having been a big watcher of 80's horror, I was expecting it to be pretty dire. The 'lead' was a disfigured cop basically doing a Jason and killing random people on a 'mission' of revenge.

Dear me, I can't stop the 'quote marks'...

I think the best scene was with Officer Riley (the token gutsy lady) who got handcuffed to the steering wheel of a runaway car. Points have been removed for the fact that she didn't try immediately to get into the car, and instead hung on screaming. Although she did try to steer, apparently American cars don't have steering looks like we do in the UK!

An extra mention has to be given to the hair. Officer Teresa Mallory's hair could have had a starring role in it's own right, although serial killer Steven Turkell's beard almost took the limelight.

All in all it was your average slasher movie with a twist. And Bruce Campbell dying a great cut-scene death (up goes the paper...

Now available at Amazon:

*Hangman: An unflinching look at what happens when suicide invades people's lives, and the damage it does.
*Loser's Club: A novel about cats, murder, love and not love, envy, hate, and above all, losers.
*Tube Life: Join Angel as she tries to navigate life, love and the London Underground.
*Writer: Explore the dark recesses of a writer's mind, where horror is never far from reality.

dragoncity publishing