Friday, August 31, 2007


Found this site last night and I have to say the resemblance is remarkable!

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Insight into Small Press Publishing

Steve Upham of ScreamingDreams Publishing has done a great PDF ezine regarding the trials and tribulations of adding a print publishing side to his Ezine Estronomicon. It's a free PDF and well worth a read here is the link: Free PDF You'll need Acrobat or something to read it.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Two books worth reading!

I don't usually review or recommend books on my blog, but I do have Library Thing down the side to show what I'm reading or have read etc. However, I've just finished two books which I'd like to endorse to anyone who enjoys a fast paced fantasy and they are:

Although I normally read SF, Neal Asher, Gibson, Reynolds, Richard Morgan, etc etc, now and then I enjoy reading something in the fantasy genre, could be because in my younger days I played D&D turn based board games with a gang of drunken friends and had some great times, could be because I like MMORPGs too and they are mostly fantasy-based. Anyway, it was a joy reading these two books and I have a feeling that Joe might have delved into the D&D & MMORPG worlds now and then too. Both books are of the non-stop page turning variety and should be read in sequential order, the third, and I think final book is due out March 2007 ( a long time to bloody wait!)

His characters have a flair to them that has you rooting even for the nastier of the bunch, take Glokta the torturer for example. A character that was once the best swordsman in the land but now crippled through being tortured himself. Glokta has embraced the only skill left to him, inflicting pain, seeking out confessions (whether or not the person has done it!) with an expertise born from an intimate knowledge of suffering, you can't help but like him!

Logen, the barbarian who seems to have death sitting on his shoulder, wherever he goes bodies are usually left in his wake, broken, torn and always bereft of life (and that's not only his enemies, his friends can also end up the same way)

There are loads more of well-drawn characters within Joe's novels and even if you are not a fantasy genre reader I'd still say give these stories a try, you may become converted!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Some more stuff published

Had some more of my work published lately, firstly had a poem of mine - 'The Grapes Of Wrath' published in the summer issue #15 of Whispers of Wickedness Magazine (also have a short story on their website)

And the other good news is I had a set of four SF/SFF haiku printed in Hahaku a collection of senryu-scifaiku with a smile, edited by Teri Santitoro and published by Sam's Dot Publishing, and best of all I got paid for them! A free copy of the little book and $5.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Big Ben

The recent news that Big Ben will be silent for four to six weeks brought to mind a poem of mine which features the old clock and as I haven't posted a poem or short story here in a while I thought I'd put this one up for perusal.

Big Ben tolls the sombre voice of midnight

Big Ben tolls the sombre voice of midnight,
Awakens pigeons from their slumber.
Invites dank fog which follows roiling tide,
Up the River Thames, creeping, seeking.

Tendrils of misty vapour climb embankments,
Explore abutments of silent bridges,
Reach into gas-lamp illumed alleyways.
Which concede to its grasp and darken.

As the last knell fades into oblivion
So too does the sparkle of life in her eyes.
The mist reaches her now, inquisitive, pervading.
But to her, the dewy blanket comes as a friend.

Gently it covers the once warm, now still form,
Whose last movement is but the slowing,
Dripping, coagulating pool of blood, whose steam
Joins it fellow vapour, and explores onwards.

It writhes now, as he stands, wipes the tool of his handiwork,
And returns the blade to the leather doctor’s bag.
He surveys his great masterpiece.
A pique of displeasure crosses his face,

As London’s smog, in its shame, tries to hide his art.
Far off a shrill whistle sounds; a shutter closes.
Her whimpered cry, even though stifled, had found ears.
With a last, longing look, he turns; black cloak swirls, churns,

Her wispy blanket, parts, saddened to show what he called art,
What she called terror and unbearable pain,
The police, in their ignorance, shall call it ‘A Mystery’
History writes… ‘Jack the Ripper’s first victim’.

He leaves now, trailed by the mist too frail to hold him.
It condenses on the gaunt metal railings,
On the shimmering gas-lamp; it turns to tears that fall on her face
Only the fog knows him; but it can do nothing, but weep.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

The Swallow Flies!

Six years later and the Doretti is ready for the road. The hood was made by a local chap in Swansea. He had some mohair material which was left over from a Mercedes soft top and that did very nicely, thank you. His recovering of the seats was pretty good too. Managed to source a brand new windscreen and after searching high and low I even managed to find a supplier for the unique rubber sealing needed to hold it in place. Things were looking up!

With the help of my late father-in-law, Tony Rinaldi, we jury-rigged a tripod hoist in my garage and with a great deal of effort and luck managed to get the engine into the car. It wasn’t long before the straight four TR2 power unit was rumbling away sweetly, a great note and throaty roar burbled its way out of the straight-through exhaust system and woke all the neighbours up.

The first test drive was around the little estate I live on and within days the car was ready for its first M.O.T. in decades. It passed first time. We had a lot of fun with the Doretti even though we never did any long distance driving in her. It’s strange, but after spending all that time and money on the car it worried me each time I took her out! I hated each stone chip, each damned fly that spattered against the paintwork, heaven forbid if someone scratched or bumped her! Even when I cleared most of the rubbish out of my single garage it was a struggle getting her in and out and I wondered how the hell I had ever managed to restore her in such a confined space, needs must, I suppose.

When the time came to the parting of our ways it was a sad but also happy moment (although to look at the photo of me with the money you’d be hard pressed to see the happy part!), sad because the car had been such a big part of my life for quite a few years, but happy because I knew it was going to a good home, Jill Royle, the daughter of one of the owners of an original Doretti dealership. In 2000 Jill sold STT 24 to Eddy de Heus of Loosdrecht in Holland to make room for an extremely rare Doretti Mk2 (HRF 60). As far as I know, Eddy, who is a passionate Doretti collector still has STT 24 and I was extremely pleased to see that he’d even taken the car on a jaunt through the Dordogne. Although I never got to drive her to exotic places like that I feel that a part of me is still with her, bonne chance STT 24…