At the Hop

As a career aspiration, fiction writing is right up there with getting paid to eat sweets and go “Weeee!” as you test the vomit resistance factor of amusement park rides. For this reason, I do not get along well with fiction writers who take themselves too seriously. Sure, the business, like any other, needs to be taken seriously, but you need to be able to look at yourself and chuckle. You’re hoping to tell stories for a living for goodness sake! When you factor in the statistical likelihood of actually finding a publisher that doesn’t laugh in your face, it starts to make sense that “norms” regard us as a weird breed of social shut-ins, whose appearance under any light source more powerful than a 40 watt incandescent bulb would cause them to violently combust; splitting their infinitives all over the place, and leaving only shredded, unfashionable clothes and the faintest odour of anti-dandruff shampoo.

Writing is something I will continue to do because I quite enjoy it, and I’m not too bad at it. Filmmaking on the other hand, is something I will continue to do because I enjoy it immensely, in spite of the fact that I’m very bad at it. Filmmaking rather than writing then, is my first love; and ironically, probably the only thing in the world I am even less likely to succeed at. Well… I’m beginning to suspect that the historic designation of “First lesbian on the moon” may be slipping through my fingers, but I can’t help feeling that my parents ought to accept a portion of the blame for that…

*STOP IT! I can feel you staring through the words on this page and saying to yourself “When is he ever going to get to the point?” Listen; if you’re looking for someone who gets quickly to the point, you have come to the wrong blog, and indeed the wrong person, as any number of people who know me
could have told you before you got here. Next time, do your research! My sister is a poet; a specialist in selecting only those words which really matter. Can you begin to imagine how much a conversation with me must drive her insane? She has dealt with it (though not often politely) for over 30 years. You can deal with it for the next few minutes.

So… although I love being around other filmmakers, I do not often enjoy the company of other writers (with one or two exceptions), but earlier this week, as some of you may have seen, I entered a
blog-hop fiction writing competition. Ever heard of one of those? No, neither had I, and for the person that answered “Yes, I have heard of one of those!”; Your mother should have told you that nobody likes a smart-arse. Mine did. Surprisingly often now that I think about it. Anyway, the blog-hop was an opportunity to connect with other bloggers who want to be published novelists, and I’m very pleased to say that I found a few people whose blogs I not only enjoyed, but would very much like to share with you.

First up: the wuc – An Australian woman with the personality of a miserable old man, and an incredible witty blogging style which, though sometimes difficult to make sense of, is always extremely funny. She has often experienced the same blank stares I get when referencing movies, and is a fan of Cusack, Downey Jr, Rudd, Bateman… Throw in her ego-crippling sarcasm and it’s a marriage made in heaven, at least until her high regard for Owen Wilson (who richly deserves all the punishment his nose has received) drove us into the arms of our divorce lawyers. Still it was good while it lasted. NEXT!!

The next one is Andrew Hubbard – I have absolutely no desire to marry Andrew, but his writing appeals to me because he is one of those authors who clearly does NOT take himself seriously; he blogs with a self-deprecating voice that is somehow vaguely familiar, and parenthesizes almost as often as I use… this… irritating… little… device…  So often does he do this in fact, that I find myself picturing a split Author/Editor personality. I can relate to this guy. Also he lives in Japan. Is that relevant? Who cares.

I must give a shout-out to Lissa Writes, because she is a talented blogger, without whom I would never have discovered the blog-hop comp in the first place. Besides… It’s about time I recommended someone who actually lives in the same country as I do.

Allie Brosh’s blog – Hyperbole and a Half – was recommended to me by another blogger, and is without doubt, the funniest blog I have ever read. In fact, Allie probably ranks as one of the funniest people I have ever encountered on the internet… or anywhere else. If you have never read this lady’s blog (although it’s almost a web-comic), go there as soon as you’ve finished here. If you do not find Allie’s blog funny, it’s unlikely that you and I would get along. GO THERE!

Lastly, because she introduced me to “Hyperbole and a Half”; because she was the first blogger I “met”, and because her English is better than that of most English people I know: My lovely little friend, The Swedish Flower Pot, who is somehow able to climb inside my brain. Poor girl. She is just like me (only prettier, more Swedish, more flowery, and probably a lot less potty) in many, many scary ways. Thankfully, her blog is NOT. For a start, her posts frequently make sense.

As for the picture this week… My friend, Thomas, often dreams of bobbing through Lincoln on a Spacehopper, dressed as Genghis Khan. Since Tom is well over 6 feet tall, with dreadlocks and a beard, I will save that treat for a future Sleepless Knight video, but since this weeks blog title reminded me of him, this picture goes out to Tom.

You're gonna dream about this tonight... I guarantee it!

*I can only apologise for the picture; I normally assemble my images in photoshop, from royalty free clipart. But, for some weird reason, nobody has ever drawn a picture of Genghis Khan riding a Spacehopper… nor could I find the necessary components with which to make one. In the end, I had to draw it myself…

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