Sunday, 30 October 2016

Ken Macleod ScI if Talk - 27 October 2016

Hi guys

Last week I attended the above Sci Fi talk from acclaimed Scottish Sci Fi author Ken Macleod with fellow CWG writer Karen.  This was part of Scifest Yorkshire and was a collaboration between Kirklees council and Huddersfield University.

Ken has written numerous Science Fiction including  The Fall Revolution series and Engines of Light trilogy.
His new novel The Corporation Wars: Dissidence is out now and copies were available to buy.

Ken gave us an insight into his writing,  his love of Sci Fi and asked the audience if they wanted to be Sci Fi authors as you had to read a lot and love it.

Sadly on this event I didn't write any notes down as was (supposedly) recording it on phone as I did with the Alastair Reynolds and Peter F Hamilton Event I went to a few weeks ago - just to write notes on that night!

So it was a tech vs traditional competition in which traditional note taking won as luckily Karen noted it down in a note book and I sadly only recorded five minutes.   Gutted as was over an hour.

Anyway here's a few bits -

  • Ken feels a beginning of a story is very important. 
  • He used to be an IT programmer
  • Ken suggests starting a small plot then expanding it making more complicated as you go along and adding to it.
  • Ken advises to always keep a notebook so you can jot ideas down.  He shared one from his notebook. 
  • HG Wells was the daddy and from him after War of the World's and The Time Machine there were loads more alien invasion and time travel stories written by other authors who do different things to them.
  • When submitting get it right first time and Writers and Artists Yearbook is a valuable source of Publishers and Agents. 
Sadly because of recording not recording can't give as much info as I want.

Luckily Karen wrote some great notes and has a blog so you can read a fuller account of the event here:


I will return! 

Sunday, 23 October 2016

Book Review - Enchanters' End Game by David Eddings

Read the final part of David Eddings excellent and expansive epic The Belgariad and what a book it is.
For me it was my favourite of the series as the action is non stop and huge involving the movement of vast armies and the conclusion of Garion fighting and defeating the evil God Torak.

It has been a long journey for Garion and his friends as he left his farm as a skullery boy going onto becoming a sorcerer and King and guardian of the East.

The characters have been engaging and real even the secondary ones and the set pieces magnificent.   The book as well as being a suitable end leaves threads open for the sequel series The Malleron.

Overall -  a fitting end to an epic JRR Tolkien would be proud of and dare I say it I found it more fun to read than The Lord Of The Rings.  David Eddings did a fantastic job of keeping a huge story in place and consistent. 

Score  -  10/10

The Belgariad Series overall -  The series is a true epic which has a wide range of creatures, a believable magic system and multiple religion's and David Eddings obviously spent a lot of time and love creating a vast working world including the lands, religions, history and characters. 
I look forward to eventually reading the sequel series The Malleron eventually once I've saved up for another five books.
I'm just annoyed I had the books twenty years and only just read them.

Belgariad series score    9/10

Sunday, 16 October 2016

Trolls - Film Review

Took Bel to the Rex cinema at Elland to see the new Trolls movie which is based on the eighties and nineties toys.

It is a colourful, fun and musical film following Poppy (played by Anna Kendrick) the new leader of the Trolls who let's the Trolls do what they good at including hugging and singing.  One Troll who isn't like them is Branch (voiced by Justin Timberlake) who doesn't like hugs and is gray.

He warns them not to party as it could give the Bergens their wearabouts.  The Bergens are like Orcs who are sad creatures and only happy when they eat a Troll.

After one huge party the Bergens find the Trolls and it's up to Poppy and Branch and a few others to save the day and learn the Bergens how to have fun.

Overall  -  a fun yet sometimes predictable film brightly coloured with lots of fun songs and characters including sparkle arse - see film.
Also some good voices from the leads and others including Gwen Stefani, James Corden and others.

Score  -  8/10  -  fun for the kiddies.

Bels score  -  10/10

Sunday, 9 October 2016


Hi guys

Sorry not blogged for a while but my tablet in which I blog is on its last legs and keeps cutting off both network and turning itself off - boo.

Got a few posts to come too including review of Sci fi night with Peter F Hamilton and Alastair Reynolds!

Plus a book review and more writing posts.

Hope problem sorted soon !