Bad Movies, Sex Cults, a Bit of Home Town Murder & a Horny Goat Man…

WebsiteMVNot quite how I spent the last month personally, but some things I’ve enjoyed on TV, YouTube, and via podcast.

In a previous post I shared a couple of YouTube videos I had enjoyed about Christopher Lee and his iconic role of Dracula in the Hammer Horror movies in the 60s and 70s.  ‘Dark Corners Reviews’ produced them and have also reviewed LOTS of really not so classic bad movies. And I mean really bad. Like,  REALLY, REALLY bad. Like how the f*** did these movies get made–get past a studio–and get picked up for distribution. Meanwhile… my downloads are pretty much flatlined… Not that I’m bitter. Okay. I’m bitter. Thankfully the presenter of the channel does his best to milk every bit of humour out of his reviews, showing the worst best bits so we don’t have to actually watch the films. ‘Roar’ is just one of them, and it has crazy terrifying production background which needs to be seen to be believed. Check it out, and check it all the videos waiting there for you–I’m hooked.

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Sneak Peek at New Horror Covers for 2020…

WebsiteWUWith a holiday and some decorating I didn’t have as much time for the next editing project of ‘The Dakrwood Mysteries’, so I decided to focus on the new covers for my four horror novels.

I couldn’t do much better than the image for ‘Ivory’, and was happy with the composition for ‘Harvest’; so just used new sources. ‘The Room’ and ‘The Pack’ are whole new covers.

I’m not sure about the font for my name at the moment, and the cover of ‘Harvest’ needs some more work, but this is where I am so far… some feedback would be great!

 

The Meta World of ‘The Darkwood Mysteries’…

WebsiteMVMy love of classic ‘Doctor Who’–especially the 70s Gothic horror styled stories–were a big influence on my series ‘The Darkwood Mysteries’. I have been reminded of this recently through reading ‘The Doctor Who Handbook’ by David J Howe, Stephen James Walker and Mark Stammers, which delves deep into the background of the production of the classic series of ‘Doctor Who’ with a fascinating amount of detail–collected interviews, production notes and even quotes from memos I’m amazed are still about. Reading all the mixed messages and confusion and opposed departments it’s crazy how the series ever got made. For me, my interest in ‘Doctor Who’ has always been the stories and characters, but also the production and the history around it, and I had always intended to reflect this in ‘The Darkwood Mysteries’ by the conceit of rooting it in the real world…

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Darkwood Editing & Cover Redesign…

WebsiteWUEditing

I have revisited seven first drafts of ‘The Darkwood Mysteries’ for a re-read and edit and having the distance between writing them and reading them has certainly helped spot silly errors and areas for improvement. I also found a whole section of dialogue with no framing text around it… so I have no idea what happened there *sassy double thumbs up*. I have also had some different ideas about one tale to broaden the threat within it, so I will be adding some content to it to up the stakes. I have four more to read through, and then I’ll be having others do a read through, and then I will be paying for an editor.

Cover Redesign

I shared a sneak peek of the new cover design for ‘The Darkwood Mysteries’ and I have now revisited it and made some improvements… they are only minor, but made a difference. I have added shadows the Darkwood to better match her with Hobbs, and given her added some definition to make her arm and hand stand out, and added some decoration to her hat. I think I have the cover design I like…

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Highs, Lows & Some January Moans…

WebsiteMVI don’t like writing about my dislike of things. I try to avoid negative posts, but wow, I have had a slew of disappointing entertainment recently. So, it’s January, everyone is miserable, so f*** it…

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

I loved The Force Awakens. Great chemistry among the new characters, respectful inclusion of the old characters, and seemingly a nice new arc no longer constrained by the past as the prequels had been and any of the stories which filled gaps before or within the original trilogy. The we had The Last Jedi, which was just a bad movie–jarring childish flippant humour at the expense of drama and character, Finn and Rose wasted on a dull side-plot, spaceships ignoring their own momentum in space when they ran out of fuel, the set-up of Kylo offering an alternative to the Jedi and the Sith only to seemingly dismiss it all scenes later, the rebel admiral holding back a plan and creating a mutiny–a plan which should be possible to use again and again against any terrifying First Order Armada, and also ending its own new chosen one plot. And this is nothing to do with the accusations of SJW and sexism. I was more than happy for female leads in Star Wars, and I am proud to be a SJW. It was just a bad film IMO.

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Writing in 2020…

WebsiteWUHappy New Year! I don’t do new year’s resolutions but I am a planner. 2019 was finishing up the next run of ‘The Darkwood Mysteries’. Of course, in writing, ‘finishing’ is never quite as final as the word implies. I have 11 first drafts finished, and this plan to revisit them now that there is some distance between my writing them, and editing them. Editing. *shudder*. I hate editing.

I think it was a good idea to just write all the Darkwood Msyteries in the next run, and go back to them after some time, as it should make editing I hate editing easier to see past the word blindness I get for recent work so I can spot silly mistakes–wrong words, missing words, repetition–but there is also that anxiety about reopening a file for editing I hate editing that hasn’t been worked on for nine or ten months. Will it be shit? There’s a bit of that ‘what’s in the box?’ Seven moment in opening a file. Please let there be a visceral severed head of Gwyneth Paltrow and not some awful prose…


Aside from getting a second run of ‘The Darkwood Mysteries’ out there, I will be relaunching the first run, with a new story slotted in to round the count up to 10 tales. A number I’m going to aim at for each run of stories. There will be new covers, and I’m going to try and go as broad as I can with availability, and I’m hoping to get the omnibus into print format.

I’m planning new covers for my four contemporary horror novels, and print versions of those too.

Most exciting of all for me, is that I am going to start planning and start a new contemporary horror. The next novel was intended to be ‘Sigils’, a story about people marked by mysterious symbols which imbue them with a supernatural ability unique to them–but, I want to be careful not to make it too fantasy, magicky, superhero feeling, as I want to make sure it stays firmly rooted in horror. I really want my next novel to be horror, so I’m skipping over that and into writing ‘X’, that’s a working title. I like the title at the moment, as the novel is about a guy with a scary ex, and how on a cabin retreat they are one by one marked with an ‘x’ for… well, I better not say. But, I think I will probably go with another title. We’ll see. It will be a ‘don’t go in the woods’ folk lore type tale, which I pretty much have sketched out from beginning to end in my head.

But first… Editing. Have I mentioned I hate editing… Oh, yes… I believe I have.

Editing & Formatting