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Interview: Bristol Science Fiction Writer, Tim Maughan

I arrive at the Watershed, armed with a notepad full of questions for local science fiction writer, Tim Maughan. His work – principally the short story collection, Paintwork, but also Limited Edition, written for New Scientist’s Arc magazine and shortlisted for a British Science Fiction Association award – is a glimpse into a possible future, mixing the concerns of today with the technology of tomorrow.

Tim Maughan

His writing is inspired by some of the sci-fi greats, including Neuromancer’s William Gibson, Fahrenheit-451 writer, Ray Bradbury, and J. G. Ballard, most famous for Crash. A copy of Ballard’s High-Rise waits for me at home.

I’ve prepared some less-probing questions, ready to ease Tim into the interview; everyday trivia that’s never going to make it into the final article, but nonetheless breaks the ice and allows us both to get to know each other. Standard stuff. But when we sit down on the balcony overlooking Bristol Harbour, I realise I don’t need that notepad. Tim’s enthusiasm is there from the get-go, and we’re discussing the merits of those classic science fiction authors straight away.

I quickly put the Dictaphone on and, an hour-and-a-half or so later, realise that this interview is something special: certainly the most extensive I’ve ever had the pleasure of conducting.
I touch upon Paintwork’s main character, 3Cube, whose art – graffiti utilising QR Codes – pulls Bristolians of tomorrow back to a more innocent time. I tell Tim I felt somewhat nostalgic at this prospect – but was this his intention?

“I guess nostalgia’s applicable,” he replies, mulling it over. “I think the idea there was that 3Cube’s artwork is maybe too optimistic or naive. He’s told that by one of the other characters in the story. I was really trying to write about authenticity in that story and about wanting to define what authenticity was. There was a review – it was on Good Reads, I think – of someone who really hated that story; they accused me of being a hipster, that I was saying it was only authentic if it wasn’t digital and it was analogue… and that wasn’t it at all. I was suggesting some people feel like that but I wasn’t trying to say that that’s how I felt at all.”

Paintwork 1

This brings me onto an idea that fascinates me: that once your writing is read by other people, it’s no longer yours. Everybody puts their own stamp on it; everyone brings something to it. No text is created in a vacuum – and no text is read in one either.

“It’s something that, as writer, you have zero control over,” Tim concedes. “You don’t. And I’ve seen really positive reviews of my stuff where people have come away with things that I didn’t think were in the story, as well as negative reviews. There was a really good review of Limited Edition a few months ago… I was kind of pleased actually because [the reviewer] came away thinking at times he was rooting for the characters and then he had to shake himself and realise that he shouldn’t be! And I like that. I like that he felt like that. You should be rooting for the characters, but at the same time, you shouldn’t. But it’s not their fault that they’re like that – and that’s the situation they’re in… So you have no control over that and I also like to deliberately be very ambiguous, especially about moral issues and issues like authenticity.”

Limited Edition tells the story of the Bristol riots from a looter’s viewpoint. It also raises an important question about if main characters have to be likeable – and even about whether the reader can be won over. I’m reading Neil Cross’ Burial at the moment, which examines an accidental murder. You disagree with what Nathan, the central protagonist, has done, but due to Cross’ sterling narrative, you root for him regardless. It’s an odd situation to be in. Similarly, I was disgusted at the riots a few years ago, believing that peaceful protest is the way forward. But listening to Tim talk so passionately about consumerism and expectations, and reading his short story, I can now sympathise with Limited Edition’s main character.

Art by Robert Carter

Art by Robert Carter

“I think if readers aren’t coming up with their own takes on my stuff, then I’m probably not being ambiguous enough. And it’s tough in science fiction, because I found a lot of readers and some critics don’t like ambiguity. They’re not interested in it. They want everything to be framed ‘good’ and ‘bad.’ They want heroes,” he explains. “There was a review a few months ago of Paintwork and one of the reviewers wasn’t happy with how I portrayed Paul in Havana Augmented as a hero. And I didn’t know that I had. I hadn’t set out to portray him as a hero. They were unhappy with the ending; he goes into this re-education camp, he’s treated well… But what about all the other people in the camp? It was a fair point, but I didn’t think that I was saying he should’ve been treated well. He was treated well in the camp because he was seen as this national hero – was that right? Have his actions damaged Cuba? But I don’t want to ram points home to people; I want people to come away with their own opinions. That’s fine.”

He argues that this definite line between hero and villain is linked to comic book culture, but says that he’s got used to dealing with what readers bring to his own writing. “It’s always interesting to me to hear what people think about your own stuff [but] I had to come to terms with it a bit,” Tim says, and recalls his main concern initially: “Does this mean I’m not getting my point across or does it mean that I can’t get my point across without ramming it home to people? And I don’t ever want to ram anything home to anyone. I sometimes joke about it with a friend of mine; sometimes, it feels like you can only be ambiguous if you spell out that you’re being ambiguous! I write the stuff, chuck it out there, people like it, don’t like it, have their own opinions on it – I have to learn to live with that. And that’s fine; I’m quite happy with that.”

Paintwork 2

Still, this ambiguity can be an issue when it comes to offending others.

“I got some probably fair criticism for not including female characters enough in my stories, but part of what I was trying to write about was male pride, and the role of young men in urban society; how they struggle with having significance and standing out and making their mark on things,” he says. “It goes back to this idea of showing who you are in a society where consumerism is more important than self-expression.”

The fact is, readers will always bring themselves to a text – and that’s not really a bad thing. “If people are talking about it, then it’s worked,” he concludes.

You can read my full three-part interview with Tim over at Guide2Bristol. In Part One, we discuss his sci-fi influences, most notably Ballard, while in Part Two, we talk about what it means to be Cyberpunk and how celebrity culture has affected his work. And, in Part Three, we conclude by mulling over the relevance of 1980s ideals, if the landscape of Paintwork is the future he wants to live in, and what’s next for Tim.

And you can read Limited Edition here and watch the short film based on Paintwork here.

(Thanks to Tim Maughan and Guide2Bristol’s Rudy Millard.)

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Posted by on August 2, 2013 in Books, Interview, Published work

 

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100th Post: Reflecting on Nearly 3 Years

It’s really surprising to see that I started this blog nearly three years ago. And to find that this is my 100th post. Have I really had that many interesting things to say?! Excuse the self-indulgence here, then, as I look back at what’s changed since my very first blog post on 30th April 2010. (In no particular order…)

1. I’m now a freelance writer.
2. I’ve interviewed Matt Smith. (I know; I haven’t said anything about this massive event on this blog yet. But stay tuned!)

Matt and Moffat

3. I launched the Make Mine A Marvel Omnibus site in October 2010.
4. I had my first article printed in Real Travel magazine.
5. I work for the Doctor Who site, Kasterborous.
6. Amy and Rory left the TARDIS last year. (Don’t press me on the matter; I’m still a bit teary.)
7. I have an FdA in Professional Writing. (You can read more about that course here.)
8. Spooks has finished. (Thank God for DVDs!)
9. I’ve started my first novel.
10. I’ve written for the Weston College Higher Education Prospectus.
11. I did the web copy for Lovarzi’s Fourth Doctor Scarf for both their own website and Amazon.

doctor-who-scarf-4

12. As well as doing the official press release!
13. I’ve started my first children’s book.
14. The Amazing Spider-Man reached #700.
15. I’ve worked for Kasterborous’ sister site, CultBritannia (and you can read my first article here.)
16. I’ve learnt how to add videos to my blog!
17. I wrote The British Comedy Guide’s 10th anniversary celebratory article of The Office.
18. I’ve started a few scripts…
19. … And am searching for an agent.

Armstrong and Miller Guide2Bristol review

Armstrong and Miller Guide2Bristol review

20. I reviewed the Armstrong and Miller Tour for Bristol247
21. … And for Guide2Bristol.
22. The latter of which has been quoted on the official A&M website!
23. I copy-edit regularly for Kasterborous.
24. I reviewed the Day of the Daleks: Special Edition DVD for Kasterborous in two parts (here and here).
25. Then reviewed it for ItchyBristol here.
26. I’ve ran two blog advents across December 2011 and 2012.
27. I’ve worked on four Doctor Who ReKapped articles (learn more about that here), with another one in the works.

A Town Called Mercy 3

28. Clara Oswin Oswald has joined the TARDIS (sort of).
29. Neil Armstrong has passed away.
30. And so has Sir Patrick Moore.
31. The Killers have released a new album, Battle Born (and you can read a review of their single, Runaways here).
32. Avengers Assemble! has been released.
33. My review of the Doctor Who graphic novel, The Dalek Project went online here.
34. I’ve contributed two features to the upcoming Kasterborous Magazine (stay tuned for that).
35. Ray Bradbury has died.

The Illustrated Man

36. I’ve joined Twitter!
37. I’ve reviewed the last episode of Sherlock, The Reichenbach Fall, for Cult Britannia.
38. I have worked in a shop, Giggs, during the Christmas 2011 period – a shop which has since gone bust! (Nothing to do with me, I might add.)
39. I’ve read countless books – and you can see my top 10 reads of 2012 here.
40. Two episodes of 1960s Doctor Who have been found!
41. I reviewed Mission to the Unknown for Kasterborous’ Doctor Who@50.
42. The Gunfighters too! (And that’s certainly not the last of my involvement in the project.)
43. I created the Introducing: Doctor Who series for Kasterborous.

The Gunfighters 4

44. Doctor Who Confidential has been axed. (And was voted the best show ever on BBC3. Typical.)
45. I previewed Forbidden Planet’s Doctor Who Fun Day for ItchyBristol.
46. And in a short piece for The Mercury.
47. And finally for Bristol 247.
48. … For whom I also reviewed it.
49. The price of a 1st class stamp has increased to 60p.
50. I reviewed Lovarzi’s Fourth Doctor Scarf.
51. I write a regular column, Bristol Comics Corner, for Guide2Bristol.
52. Death in Paradise debuted on BBCOne.
53. Tuition fees increased, with a cap at £9,000.
54. … Something which I argued against in this Bristol247 article.
55. Brandon Flowers released his first solo album, Flamingo, and I reviewed it here.
56. I was thanked for my article about Jack Vettriano’s Bristol exhibition.

Vettriano on the Bristol247 homepage

Vettriano on the Bristol247 homepage

57. I previewed the Slapstick Festival in 2011.
58. I created my own website, using Moonfruit…
59. Then deleted it, as I wasn’t happy with the inability to update.
60. The Dandy ceased publication. (Read my article on that here.)
61. I’ve submitted an article to the Doctor Who book, Celebrate, Regenerate.
62. The Doctor Who Experience opened in London –
63. – Then moved to Cardiff.

JLC dress and Dalek

64. I reviewed Mack the Life, Lee Mack’s autobiography, for The British Comedy Guide.
65. I interviewed comic writer and artist, Jerry Holliday.
66. The Ice Warriors have been confirmed to return in the second half of Doctor Who, Series 7.
67. The world didn’t end on 21st December 2012. (Always a good thing, I find.)
68. The Bristol Comic Expo returned to Brunel’s Old Station.
69. I previewed the 2012 Expo here.
70. And reviewed it here.
71. The James Bond film franchise hit the big 5-0.
72. My former tutor, Marc Leverton, who’s a freelance writer, has written a guest blog post about his experience of publishers.

How To - Journalism

73. A review of his book, How to work as a Freelance Journalist, can be read here.
74. Steven Moffat has left Twitter. (Again, nothing to do with me!)
75. I’ve seen Steven Moffat at the Doctor Who Experience!
76. Sherlock burst onto television in July 2010.
77. I’ve helped Kasterborous begin their 50th anniversary celebrations with monthly Introduction articles.
78. January’s was Frontier in Space.
79. And this month’s is Vengeance on Varos.

Frontier 3

80. Tying into this, my editor called a second Frontier in Space piece I wrote one of the best articles the site has ever published. A massive compliment. You can read The World Behind: Frontier in Space here.
81. I reviewed Lee Mack’s Going Out live tour for Guide2Bristol
82. … And Bristol247!
83. I’ve visited the National History Museum for the first time.
84. Colin Baker appeared on I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!
85. My article, Room with a View?, was the most-viewed article on Kasterborous in 2012!
86. I’ve begun work on a number of non-fiction books – but researching is a long task!
87. I reminisced on the anniversary of Matt Smith’s debut as the Doctor, Karen Gillan as Amy and Arthur Darvill as Rory here.
88. And celebrated Matt’s Doctor here.

The 11th Doctor

89. I’ve started a short story collection.
90. My jewellery article, With This (Time) Ring…, was surprisingly popular, making the Kasterborous top 10 list of the most-viewed articles of 2012.
91. I looked at the top 10 guest stars in the Tenth Doctor era here and here.
92. I’ve started reading the Sherlock Holmes novels by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
93. T4 On The Beach (held in my hometown) has been cancelled.

David Tennant

94. I’m working on a particularly-exciting documentary idea – though it’s only in development in my head at the minute!
95. I’ve seen Peter Kay live at Manchester’s M.E.N. Arena.
96. Parts of Doctor Who: The Snowmen were filmed in Bristol, as were bits of Night Terrors.
97. I previewed tours by Micky Flanagan, Ed Byrne and Stewart Francis for my local newspaper, The Weston and Worle Mercury.

Micky Flanagan Mercury preview

Micky Flanagan Mercury preview

98. I’ve seen the asteroid, 2012 DA14!
99. I’ve added a new section to my blog: Testimonials.
100. I’ve written 100 posts!

But don’t go anywhere. This is just the start.

Thanks for sticking with me this long.

 
 

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Why Write A Blog Advent?

ADVENT DAY TWENTY-FOUR: Christmas. It’s not long away. And to celebrate advent, new content will be added to this blog every day in the countdown to the big day. You’ll see reviews, opinion pieces, links to some of my other work, videos – maybe even a short story! Remember to check back every day (in between the mad rush of packing presents, getting the freezer stocked up and watching Home Alone on repeat).

This is the second year running that I’ve done a blog advent, updating the blog every day. But why? It’s certainly a big commitment. But there are good reasons…

Rockefeller 2012

Writing

The biggest task of all for a writer is to write. It sounds stupid, but to actually sit down and write… takes a lot of effort. Personally, I always think to myself, ‘if I do it now, I won’t do it right.’ It’s not me being lazy – it’s a genuine concern. And I know I’m not alone.

But once you start, it’s fine. Enjoyable. And this blog advent is a strict regime: you have to do it once it’s started! Sure, it’s tough, but when you’re on a roll…

I’ve clocked up nearly 8,000 words in this blog advent alone. That’s nearly 8,000 words more than I had at the start of December. It looks much better than a blank page, believe me.

Improvisation

A blog advent stretches your skills. I don’t get up and know what I’m writing. It’s improvisation. It’s reacting to what’s going on around you; what you feel like writing; and what you want to say.

Sure, there’s some planning involved – but plans change. I knew, for instance, that I wanted to do a Doctor Who quiz again this year, with a separate post for answers. But I certainly didn’t know when I was going to do it. They went up merely when the time was right.

It’s a skill that comes in handy if you’re trying to write daily; if you’re trying to get into journalism, or continue your career or even just hone your trade.

Learning new things

On the search for new content, I learnt a few things. Not necessarily things that I’ve even turned into a post – but things that I researched just because they interested me. The idea of perceptual adaptation really grabbed me… and who knows? Maybe I’ll write a post about it once day.

A bigger audience

Google loves a regularly updated blog: one with links, and a range of topics; quotes and pictures and videos. The more content – no, the more good content you have, the bigger an audience you’ll reach. Maybe someone will find your blog by searching for Looney Tunes cartoons, but then visit again and again (even subscribe) because they’re also a fan of The Killers or Doctor Who.

2012 Bauble

Showcasing your work

Also, the more content you have, the more work you have online to show off your skills. Editors, fellow journalists, friends: they all need to know what you can do.

Show them.

Deadlines

To be able to show editors you can be responsible and stick to strict deadlines is invaluable. This is what editors need to know.

Yes, they also need to know you’re good at what you do – but proving yourself reliable is half the battle.

And if you don’t think that updating your blog every day isn’t a challenge… try it. And if you still don’t… I’m impressed. Also, a little concerned.

Develop

Writing style is important, as is understanding language, syntax, grammar, spelling, rhetoric… I could go on. To develop these, you have to write. Something which forces you to write is surely a brilliant thing to help your writing grow.

Naturally, your writing shouldn’t ever stop evolving – or else, why be a writer at all? – but a little annual kick along the way must help.

Who I Am

Your blog is a reflection of you. Remember that. Everything on it says something about you. So tell people who you are.

Oh, and by the way… Thanks for reading.

Have a very Merry Christmas.

 
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Posted by on December 24, 2012 in Blog Advent - 2012

 

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My experience with publishers

Guest post by Marc Leverton.

Personally, I have found the experience of dealing with publishers to be fairly straight-forward.

I think one of the keys to this is that both of my books have been published by independent publishers. Things tend to be easier with them. They are smaller, easier to get through to and hopefully get fewer approaches from hopeful writers than the big publishing houses. My first book [How to work as a Freelance Journalist] was published by How To Books after I got chatting to them at the London Book Fair. I sent them a synopsis afterwards and was given the green light.

There are other advantages too: a small independent publisher is often hungrier and needs your book to do well. I have read countless authors complaining that their books have become ‘lost’ and have barely been promoted. ‘Indies’ have fewer overheads, so can spend more time focusing on you and your book. That is not to say that it is down to the publisher to promote your book; I think the author has to take more of the onus on now for promoting their books. Some authors are better at this than others.

There are similar rules for approaching any sized publisher: have a good synopsis and show them that you have researched the potential market for your book. One thing that I will say is not to rely on your advance for making a living; the six figure sums you see in The Bookseller are only for the lucky few. I heard recently that most authors make around £5,000 per year from their books. So it is probably wise to keep that other job on for a little while yet until the writing career really takes off.

The Naked Guide to Bristol

Having sung the praises of independents, I am now in the lucky situation of having an agent who is doing all the donkey work of finding a publisher for my third book. I am hoping they will find me a bigger deal, with a bigger advance and find me a Publisher with more marketing clout. The theory is that they get you a better deal than you would get for yourself, which pays for their 10%. Plus they have more contacts in publishing, increasing the chances of success. Having done the work for myself in the past, I appreciate someone else’s faith in my work. I just hope that it pays off.

Marc Leverton is a freelance writer, who lives and works in and around Bristol. Aside from lecturing for Bath Spa University, he has written for The Guardian, Venue, Bristol Review of Books, and many more as a freelance journalist. He also worked as Publisher on The Big Issue for six years.

Since going freelance in 2006, Marc has written two books, and is currently working on his third (after a stint as a ghostwriter). How to work as a freelance journalist is an essential, comprehensive guide to the industry, while Banksy: Myths and Legends looks at the mysteries surrounding the influential graffiti artist, packed with fun facts and fantastic photos. He was also a contributor and co-editor of the 2011 update of The Naked Guide to Bristol. You can follow him on Twitter, or visit his blog.

 
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Posted by on April 13, 2012 in Guest Posts

 

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Steven Moffat on writing for TV

Steven Moffat, showrunner of Doctor Who and Sherlock (the latter with Mark Gatiss), has discussed his career and television in general with The University Observer’s Emer Sugrue.

I make no secret that The Moff is my main inspiration for writing, especially screenwriting.

Even though he wasn’t the sole writer of Spielberg’s The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn (he was initially involved until he was offered the top job on Doctor Who), his influence is certainly felt throughout the brilliant film. It’s very simple to say things like, ‘get rid of exposition; make it more visual;’ it’s quite another to pull it off masterfully. But he’s an expert. Tintin is a must watch – because it comes from an ingenious creative team.

So interviews with Steven Moffat are a great help with getting your head around the TV industry, and in this particular one, he talks about some of the things that really concern me.

Firstly, I’m constantly worried about the state of children’s TV; CBBC has really dumbed down, and doesn’t feel as comfortable as it always was – with a few exceptions, naturally – while ITV has junked CITV completely! I think we forget how important kids are, and Moffat has previously written about how we shouldn’t alienate them, because clever storytelling should appeal to all ages. He elaborates on this:

“[Coupling’s] ‘The Man with Two Legs’ was a very funny show – my son would love it, I’m sure – but it’s just a bit too naughty. But with just a little bit more inventiveness and a little bit of cover phrasing you could make that show for a mainstream audience as opposed to a niche audience. What is the point of addressing a smaller section of the audience? And God knows kids love telly, so actually stopping them watching is stupid.”

A further point of interest is the difference between drama and comedy:

 “I don’t think there’s any excuse really unless you’re making people cry when you should be making them laugh. I wrote comedy before I officially wrote comedy because Press Gang was always funny. I honestly don’t change the approach very much at all; the difference is when you’re doing a sitcom, you’re actually thinking ‘they’ve got to be laughing on this page and this page and this page’.”

I recently workshopped a drama, and got quite a few laughs, just from the banter between a couple. It was a lovely surprise: the scene was low-key, but relatable. Comedy and drama shouldn’t be mutually exclusive, as Moffat says here:

“I think comedy sits better in a drama – the way its sits in life, really – but then successful comedies come often from dramatic elements. The line can be blurred because comedy is an artificial distinction unless you’re actually talking about a comedian: if you’re talking about narrative comedy then it is just story telling.”

Moffat, on the set of Couplings, with his wife, Sue Vertue.

A big worry when writing a script is length and timing. Steven, here, offers insight behind the length of Sherlock, compared to Doctor Who:

“I think the longer length in some ways is a blessing because, I mean, I think I spend most of my life trying to get Doctor Who episodes down to 45 minutes and that can be really, really tough. Whereas, you know, when I was doing [A Scandal in Belgravia] this year, it was deliberately set over a year so you got a big chunk of their lives. Things like the Christmas Day scene would never make it into a normal length episode because it’s just a bit of indulgence – no doubt could be called self-indulgent! But the 90 minutes allows you that degree of character, in effect. And character is very important in that show.”

When a show is shorter, it can occasionally lack depth; however, a great writer should be able to seep character into every line of dialogue. It’s tough, but you shouldn’t be a writer if you don’t love what you’re doing enough to put some serious man-hours into it.

Finally, a foray into Doctor Who territory, as he remembers first writing for Doctor Whoin 2004:

 “It felt impossible that we were actually doing it and could go to the set and see the police box. It hadn’t been on for 15 years, it was so incredibly exciting! And I remember sitting down for the first time and thinking ‘bloody hell, I’m actually writing Doctor Who.’ That never completely wears off to be honest; I’m always very excited about writing Doctor Who but it’s now harder for me to recapture the feeling of it being entirely a novelty.”

I’m using a clip from Doctor Who: The Lazarus Experiment in my script, and – even though it’s somebody else’s words – it was so, so incredibly exciting to write ‘THE DOCTOR.’ I hope I get to write it a vast amount of times!

Tone is always important, and Moffat shares his thoughts (and those of Gareth Roberts’) on the subject in Doctor Who:

“Gareth Roberts [The Shakespeare Code; The Lodger], one of my fellow writers on Doctor Who, had a theory that you write the Doctor Who you remember; he tended to remember the funny ones, so he writes funny Doctor Who and I remember just being terrified of it so I tend to write the scary Doctor Who. Neither memory is more accurate, it’s all kind of nonsense but I do like the fact – the sort of weird sense of transgression of it being slightly wrong to have a television show whose mission statement is to petrify kids. Try and pitch that and get it made today!”

And to end… we all know Amy and Rory leave the TARDIS later this year, and Steven has stated it ill be ‘heartbreaking.’ I’m 100% sure he’s right. But he has elaborated with this lovely sentiment:

“Heartbreaking doesn’t mean unhappy.”

 
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Posted by on March 18, 2012 in Unpublished work

 

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I work for Kasterborous now. Kasterborous is cool.

The Doctor, The Pandorica Opens: “Hello, Stonehenge! Who takes the Pandorica, takes the universe! But, bad news, everyone, ’cause guess who! Ha! Listen, you lot! You’re all whizzing about. It’s really very distracting. Could you all just stay still a minute, because I. Am. Talking!

Now the question of the hour is, “Who’s got the Pandorica?” Answer: I do. Next question: Who’s coming to take it from me? Come on! Look at me! No plan, no back-up, no weapons worth a damn! Oh, and something else I don’t have: Anything. To. Lose! So, if you’re sitting up there in your silly little spaceships, with all your silly little guns, and you’ve got any plans on taking the Pandorica tonight, just remember who’s standing in your way! Remember every black day I ever stopped you! And then, and then…! Do the smart thing: Let somebody else try first.”

Thanks to this blog (and my reviews of The Doctor Who Fun Day), I’m now a regular contributor to Kasterborous, a Doctor Who fansite which I’ve visited every day since I found it – hey, I love my Doctor Who!

It’s quite exciting for me, actually; I’ve wanted to write for Who since I first saw it, and this feels one step closer. Just to prove I know what I’m on about and to entertain and inform like-minded people is brilliant, and I’ve produced quite a body of work for them, though I’ve only been a contributor since July.

It’s also great to talk to and work with my editor, Christian, so thanks to him for being supportive, understanding and generally just a great guy.

My ongoing articles are listed here:

http://www.kasterborous.com/author/prbates/

Scroll through; I hope you like them all, and if anyone has any advice or feedback, please feel free to leave a comment.

Here’s a link to my first article, Fiver for Six, which was a fairly standard affair, but it’s set me on the right track:

http://www.kasterborous.com/2011/07/fiver-for-six/

Okay, so which article – so far! – am I most proud of? Well, this is a bit of a surprise to me, but it’s probably Eleventh Heaven, which got a fantastic response from readers:

http://www.kasterborous.com/2011/10/eleventh-heaven/

I’ve never done anything like it before, but as long as the readers – and Christian – are happy, then I’m happy too. And it was so hard. Why? I don’t know. Maybe because it’s impossible to narrow down exactly why Matt Smith is my Doctor. Maybe not. I dunno.

Either way, I hope you like what I’m doing. ‘Cause I do.

 
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Posted by on October 22, 2011 in Published work

 

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Doctor Who Fun Day Round-up (2011)

Doctor Who is back.

I’m a big fan of the Time Lord, and so, as part of the build-up to the new series, I headed over to Forbidden Planet in Bristol on their Doctor Who Fun Day.

http://www.thewestonmercury.co.uk/what-s-on/exterminate_1_855825

http://www.bristol247.com/2011/04/06/bristol-fans-expected-to-converge-on-doctor-who-fun-day/

Like anything with the TARDIS stamp of approval, the day was great… but then, I always enjoy a trip to Forbidden Planet!

Exterminate!

It was the perfect subject for a review.

http://www.bristol247.com/2011/04/11/doctor-who-fun-day-packs-out-bristol-forbidden-planet/

… Or two…

http://www.itchybristol.co.uk/article.cfm/4/9059/Bristol-City-Guide/article/Doctor-Who-Fun-Day–Forbidden-Planet

Oh, and it’s great to be quoted by a site I visit frequently:

http://www.kasterborous.com/2011/04/events-galore-2/

Thank you, Kasterborous!

So far, the series has been excellent; Steven Moffat didn’t need to prove himself to anyone, and yet he has, again and again. His wibbly-wobbly plots, tiny-but-important character pieces and incredible epic scale show how much he loves the show.

Stay tuned for more Who-goodness!

 
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Posted by on May 1, 2011 in Published work

 

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