This is something I wrote in 2001, that’s nearly twenty-one years ago as I write this. It’s either genius or a piece of shit. I suppose it could even be both.
You decide! (or not, I don’t care)
What it is see, is that I’m a lazy writer. No, it’s true, I know that I could work much harder and craft every sentence, every paragraph, every chapter, every verse, every simile or metaphor into something that is entirely professional and rock solid. No, I could, I really could do it – every time.
Thing is, I don’t.
Why is that?
More importantly, does it matter?
And, in any case, lazy people deserve to have their voices heard too. After all, there are a lot of them about. Yeah, I know, there are a lot more people who don’t have the skills or experience to write well, whose voices are never heard, and it’s not their fault, so you could say, so what if your voice is unheard, for every one of you, lazy writers, there are a million others who will never have their voices heard and it’s not even their fault, it’s not their choice, they just don’t have the option. They may even be illiterate through no fault of their own.
But you do, you do have the choice, and the opportunities and still you produce sub-standard work simply because you’re lazy.. And don’t try and say that you have produced millions of words, published novels, short stories, poetry, articles, opinion pieces, musings and whatever else. They are lazy words. A million lazy words are less than equivalent to a thousand well-crafted.
You could say all that couldn’t you? But, what the hell, I still say that even lazy writers deserve their voices heard or at least out there in the ethers of life in the twenty-first century.
You don’t have to listen you know.
19:15-Chapter TABLE 9 It’s kinda tucked away at the side of the Café-Bar near the entrance to the Art Gallery Table 9 A place to look to assess to judge and comment There’s a woman with her daughter slurping on soup and munching on salad and drinking diet cola A family with two parental figures one presents as a man the other a woman They are at a long canteen-style table with 5 kids Aged from two to ten by the look of them (later you realise that there are three people who are presenting as parents and just 4 kids and you realise that whatever narrative you are imposing is full of your own perspective and is not a universal fact) Their table is laden with drinks, some alcoholic, and café-style plates of food They have screens with games “It’s not cheap cheese” says a young man delivering a plate to a solitary middle-aged woman who must have complained about the price I’m eating dirty vegan fries – a special order they said – and a pint of some German beer, that cost me thirteen pounds And thinking about the fish and chips I bought in 1964 for one shilling and three old pennies before decimalisation and before, long before, I became a vegan 30 years later but now it’s 2022 and things have changed as they do always And my friend, who works here and greeted me on my arrival 30 minutes ago told me about how he came to consciousness earlier today in the void and thought for a second that there had been a nuclear war These vegan dirty fries are difficult to eat because the melted vegan cheese sticks them together in clumps And when you spear one with your fork it brings half a dozen of its closest friends with it to your mouth So you have to separate them with your fingers and stuff them in or eat too many at once so you look around the café-bar to make sure no-one is watching you being a messy dick and then you realise, it doesn’t matter it’s not real because there probably has been a nuclear war and you probably are in the void dreaming of what might have been And your friend, the one who woke up in the original void has disappeared and you realise that you are a dot the size of a neutrino in a universe the size of . . . . . . the universe and it really doesn’t matter – even though it really does Message to mes This is a message to all the mes in all the parallel universes It’s me You are the light You are the love always and forever The Younger Generation I am a member of the younger generation and I always will be you are too I’ll never be old that’s what the 60’s did for me and for you Beware Beware of people who sit alone in the café-bars of arts centres drinking something like a pint, or a cup of tea and they’re writing in a notebook or a paper pad or on the touchscreen of an ipad (type thing), and they look up now and again and scan the room Beware of them They are writing about you
Anyway, here’s Petal.
I recently completed writing a new novel. The title of the book is ‘Skin and Bones’ . More news on that soon, but in the meantime here is an update on a major work-in-progress.
It’s a book with the working title of ‘The Flying Boy’. The title refers to a recurring dream I used to have when I as a boy, probably no more than eight or nine years old, possibly younger.
The dream involved me flying along the street where I lived at rooftop height. I think it influenced me a lot, in fact I am influenced a lot by the recurring dreams of my childhood. There were a lot of them.
I already wrote a book based on the one about The Three Bears and much of my other thoughts about what the universe is, how time works, reincarnation, spirituality, morality and so on, originate in my childhood dreams.
There will be more info about The Flying Boy in future I’m sure and one day the book will be published. Don’t expect a ‘normal’ novel-like thing, but it is a novel. In the meantime, here’s an extract from the work-in-progress. Continue reading “The Flying Boy”
This is a short video I made to help promote the upcoming play from Company of Sirens at Chapter Arts in Cardiff
It’s a collage, that’s what it is, it’s a coll-fucking-age
An extract from ‘To Me’
June 10th, 2006
I had one of those writerly moments earlier; you know, when you have a brilliant idea for a piece of writing; something clever and insightful, something entertaining and wise, something beautiful and exciting, and all encapsulated in the same simple concept.
The words blossomed in my head, metaphors leapt about like lemurs and stunning similes smiled at me.
Right, I thought, I’m going to blog this. This’ll have ‘em dancing on their keyboards – now how do I begin? Ah yes – fantastic, that opening sentence will slay them, and then I’ll say that, and then I’ll bring that in and then I’ll end it like that – wow.
So, I hopped out of the armchair and skipped jauntily over to the laptop.
I’ll put the kettle on, I thought. Now where’s that box of cheating chai, and I’m sure there are some of those melt-in-the-mouth chocolate coated ginger biscuits left in the cupboard.
Damn ants, you only need a grain of sugar to escape from the spoon and they’re all over the place like an army of Eng-er-land supporters on speed. Better clean up a bit.
Right here we go . . . .
Um, er, what was I going to say?
Just found this in an old word doc from February 2000
Don’t ask . . . . . .
Here’s some sort-of abstract works instead
Music is like the wind – it’s just there.
Remember that I’m not saying that making music is easy, far from it – making music is very difficult – I know that there are tens of thousands of very talented musicians in the UK and at least thousands in Wales – and I know a few of them so I know how hard they work to make those sounds.
But I am saying that making music is a cop-out – compared to writing it’s a doddle. I mean once you’ve learned an instrument and the tunes to a bunch of songs all you have to do is play and sing. Unless you’re a composer of course, but even then it’s still easier than writing. It’s still following a bunch of rules and usually that means repetitions of things like beats and lyrics.
I know a point of view like this might upset a lot of people, especially those who have spent decades learning their craft and those who profess their love for certain musical artists or genres, but it doesn’t matter, because my opinion of music doesn’t matter. I’m just an ordinary bloke, that’s all – one ordinary bloke out of tens of millions of blokes in the UK alone.
Besides, I’ve got no influence, no respect, no kudos, so just chill the fuck out – I’m only writing about how I feel – and even then I’ll probably change my mind next week or have an epiphany or something. Yeah, so just chill the fuck out. And there’s no reason or need to dislike me either, just for my opinion. I am not disrespecting you, in fact, I admire you a lot, it’s just that I don’t think music is such a big deal.
Recently I told someone whose life is music that I regarded music as just like the wind – it’s just there that’s all. They and others they spoke to in the music business were horrified. I’m a little puzzled by that reaction to be honest because I think it’s a complimentary thing to say – I mean, the wind is one of the most amazing, wonderful, varied, profound, powerful and beautiful things there is. It is an actual force of nature.
Writing on the other hand is like taking the whole of history, the whole of human evolution and experience, the whole of the universe even, in your brain all at once and issuing words that encapsulate the magic and the majesty in a conscious way. It’s not like just standing on a beach and feeling the wind in your face and the sea air in your lungs, it is the very act of creation itself. Writing is divine in the true sense, not in the namby-pamby repetitive sense.
But yes I still admire and envy you – I wish I could sing and play an instrument like a guitar or a key board.
Maybe I’ll try to learn. Is it too late for me to do this at 67 years old do you think?
From the book “To Me”
The Hidden Manifesto.
Most of what everyone does is unnecessary and harmful.
Stop doing what is unnecessary
Grow or forage for your own food
Cook your own food
Make your own clothes
Build your own shelters
Help each other to do this
Use or abuse no other sentient being
Do what you want but harm no one
What are the secrets
you’ve discovered today?
Did you find out
where the wizards play?
Are they as wise as they claim?
Or is it just a clever game?
No one can win.
No one can lose
No one can challenge
the life that you choose.
Me and a mate chatting – some people think it’s a bit funny – it’s a lot more than that . . . . .
(This is a personal note to myself – please ignore.)
I’m a writer. There’s no doubt about that, as you would see if you bothered to explore my website. It’s mostly about writing and most of it has been written – by me of course. Problem is ‘writer’ is too wide a term to be meaningful to anyone who doesn’t identify as a ‘writer’. I mean, what am I? I write blog posts like this, and . . . well . . . here’s a list of the other things I write:
Plays for the theatre
But if I was forced to define more finely what it is that makes me a writer then I would say: “Call me a novelist”. I would say this even though I have not published a new novel for three years because there is something divine about writing a novel, something that takes a direct line to the absolute essence of my being – it is an experience, or a conglomeration of experiences, that means everything, forever.