Poetic reaction to US election

Leave a comment

Donald J Trump

Gives me the hump.

What does Jeremy Corbyn think about the EU?

1 Comment

Well, I’d like to know. We hear (or are allowed to hear) so little from him. On this issue, on which JC actually agrees with most of his MP’s apparently, and where both sides of the debate have so little of use to say to us, wouldn’t it be good if the only political leader with a working brain grabbed the opportunity to tell us where he stands?

So far, all I know is that one bunch of Tories wants to stay in and another bunch wants to leave. Given that the standard of their arguments doesn’t reach above “Yah! Up yours! So there!”, there is surely room for an intelligent voice, or one which is capable of rising above a whisper.

Number 2’s out of my system

1 Comment

Yup. Eventually finished my second full length novel after several re-drafts AND I’ve also squeezed out a synopsis (a version of which appears on my Major Works page).

Sparrows Nest is the story of a young man in the 1970’s whose thirst for political education is matched only by his hunger for women. He chooses the Labour Party as the focus for both.

One more novel to go and I will feel that I have completed my apprenticeship.

The worst thing to write?

Leave a comment

What swine invented synopses? I’m having the devil of a time writing a synopsis for my latest novel, Sparrows Nest. Why is it so difficult writing 1,000 words or so summarising the merits and attractions of a 100,000 word novel? Well, of course I know the answer’s obvious, but that doesn’t stop the exercise being such a pain. Still, mustn’t moan, eh? At least the novel’s finished now.

Magnificent Lady in the Van

Leave a comment

Just got around to seeing this splendid film at the cinema. Terrifically written by Alan Bennett, as could be expected, but also bravely written with such honesty about his own life and thoughts which gave the film real truth. Maggie Smith was staggeringly brilliant as Miss Shepherd, inhabiting her character and investing her with an exceptionally broad range of traits, tics and genuine emotion. Alex Jennings did an excellent job of portraying Bennett rather than simply giving us a superficial impersonation. The supporting cast of top-notch British character actors were all just right, with Jim Broadbent especially good in a small role – an even slimier version of the policeman he played so memorably in Only Fools & Horses. Overall, the film successfully gives us drama, tragedy, tension, satire and humour at all the right times.

History is a thing of the past

Leave a comment

When are historians – in print or on radio or TV – going to understand that describing historical events in the present tense does not make them seem more immediate? It just makes the historians sound idiotic, and manages to alienate a goodly number of their audience. The way to bring history to life is to underline the need to learn its lessons and apply them to the present – something which the majority of our current politicians are unable to do.

History is not an entertainment. It is far more important than that.

The Magna Carta Plays at Salisbury Playhouse

Leave a comment

An interesting and thought-provoking quartet of specially commissioned plays put on by the Playhouse to mark the 800th anniversary of the signing of Magna Carta. They were generally making the points, missed by many in the anniversary celebrations, that Magna Carta made little difference to the lives of the vast majority, and that we still have a long way to go to achieve fully protected human rights. The most intriguing of the plays was the bleak future imagined by the fourth: We Sell Right by Timberlake Wertenbaker. Overall, the writing was good but the choreography and acting were outstanding. Worthy of being singled out was the performance by Trevor Michael Georges in Pink Gin by Sally Woodcock. Four stars for the Playhouse.

Older Entries