Tenses

I am trapped.

In space behind the second hand.

Every time I try to pass between, I either pass ahead

Or drift back behind.

 

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Time to Publish

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Fantastic news, although I have been incredibly quiet, it has been with good reason. Within the next ten days I will be putting the final touches to a fabulous short story collection. All the news and updates will be published on this appropriately linked blog above.

The book will be called Sense, and touches on what it is to be human and to live in the technologically advancing society that we do. The blog’s homepage shows off a  pre-released cover, with the University of Essex’s branding who are endorsing the collection.

OUT JULY 31ST

Rudyard Kipling’s ‘Just So Stories’

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4.5/5

Another great set of childhood stories, these were originally meant for Kipling’s children, and I’m very glad that he chose to share them. He gives answers to why animals are the way they are, and how they they came to be in such a way. My favourite is ‘How the Elephant got its trunk’, although it is not a controversial concept to claim that they all have their own equal charm.

I’m sure this is a book that I will be revisiting many times, and maybe when the time comes to read them to my own children, just as Rudyard did to his (and I’m sure it will be inspiration to write some of my own children’s stories too)!

My first short film: ‘Beer and Nuts’

This is my first attempt at a short film. I wanted to have a go at directing before I left university as it often is the best time to try your hand at new skills! I know it might not be to everyone’s tastes and there is room for improvement, but that’s what a first attempt is. Enjoy!

The Wonders of Roald Dahl

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5/5

I am a big Roald Dahl fan, he definitely made my childhood a lot more entertaining. His stories always have some dark punchline to keep you interested in the next one. While they are written for children, I feel that I couldn’t have truly grasped the dark humour at a young age. He has a very smooth style and a great clarity of expression when he gets at the flaws of the human condition.

This is a collection of short stories for everyone over the age of ten, and one that I feel is a valuable part of literature’s history and culture. It is a definite classic, and one I wholly recommend as a part of everyone’s education.

Be Charmed by ‘The Old Man And The Sea’

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4.5/5 

A very short novella that won the author the Nobel Prize for literature. It is simple and straightforward, and you can read it as a heart warming story, or you can choose to read into the many depths of meaning that are put in place.

The story revolves around an old fisherman who has had an extended dry spell in terms of the fish he has caught. The novella is set just off the coast off Havana, Cuba, and the story really stirs into action as the man snags a fish on his line that starts towing him further out to sea.

A great read however you wish to look at it and Hemingway has done a wonderful job , if you have a couple of hours free then this is perfect, and a very easy one to re-read!

The Animal Inside

Man is an animal

In a social suit.

His white toothed smile

Cloaks the creature beneath.

 

We were once monkeys

And primitive men,

And now we stand as a constant battleground

Falling somewhere between

Constantly pulled towards one

And the other

Leaving us stranded

In between.

 

If we try for our virtue we still bear our teeth,

And if we try for our blood thirst

Then we have our conscience.

Pushed and pulled,

We are neither.

 

 

‘Atonement’: A Great Achievement

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4.5/5 

A book of a tragic separation between a young couple that happens at the hands of a fanciful young girl during the period of WWII. Ian McEwan writes from the three different protagonists’ perspectives, one of whom is the fictional author of the novel (Briony).

This novel is moving in so many different ways, as the use of different perspectives means we can see the traps that people lead themselves into, and how out of innocence there can still be great hurt caused.

I have always found that McEwan’s writing has such a deep insight into the human condition, and its relation to the rest of the world. This is a novel that definitely doesn’t disappoint, and is one of those rare books that has a worthy film to accompany it. Whichever way you choose to visit the storyline, you will be well rewarded!

Is it a ‘Brave New World’?

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3/5 Very similar to Orwell’s style in being a prophetic view of the future. It is about an imagined world if we were to be determined by our animal desires addressing the flaws of ideology. The premise is that each and every child of the society is through IVF and conditioned to be a part of each social group.

As a philosophical novel this is great, Huxley paints a wonderfully doomed picture of mankind, as everyone has to conform. It is about the free minds in a fixed society, and does make you question your own surroundings.

Huxley however, is obviously a philosopher, and his writing can tend to be a little shallow. The most important thing about his style is that it does serve his purpose and explain his point, retaining the book’s meaning and prowess. A good book if you fancy a good ponder and a discussion afterwards, but not really for a bit of light entertainment.

What’s Bad for Us?

What’s bad for you

Is everywhere

And anywhere

That you wish to see it.

Even knowing that some thing can be good

Or bad

Is your mistake.

What’s a man to do?

If I was to smoke a cigarette

And shorten my life by ‘x’ days

Would I ever know that I was supposed

To be 90.3

Rather than just 90?

What would I do in those 72 hours

That means that I would have lived more

Seen more

And breathed more intensely.

Without living, how can we be alive?