Wednesday, March 30, 2005

WHAT IF YOUR DICK IS TOO WEIRD?

Well, the Philip K Dick screenplay came back with its tail at an odd angle. It looked like it had been kicked around something evil by those nasty Hollywood execs. What do they do to faithful Dick adaptations over there?

"...the Hollywood studios are looking for big-budget, high-concept adaptations of Philip K. Dick stories ... rather than quirky, smaller adaptations that are truer to the spirit of his original novels. In the end, while it's close to PKD's original vision, it's just too weird for Hollywood."

Well, it should have come back butchered - hung, drawn and quartered. I mean it only had a big critical bruise in its tail. Nothing like the vicious treatment meeted out to such classic Dick tales as Impostor and Paycheck, which became terrible running around in future-scape abominations a million miles from Dick's personal (homey) horrors. Hell, even Total Recall and Minority Report suffered a bit from Hollywoodisation. And Blade Runner (though my favourite film for style and script reasons) still wasn't representative of a Philip K Dick world of religious mania and hopeless dreams - I only learned this later. Why do all Dick films have to become third-act chase sequences and fancy pyrotechnics? That's not what a Dick novel is about. That's why the latest series of Dick adaptations have sucked (excuse the pun).

I'm sure Phil' would be so proud that my attempted 'authentic' adaptation of his work (I'm still not gonna say which book it is) potentially weirded out Hollywood. True vindication. While I wait for the delayed A Scanner Darkly (Mar 2006), I'm gonna hunt down a foreign movie Dick adaptation:

Film Title: Confessions d'un Barjo (Confessions of a Crap Artist)
Based on: Confessions of a Crap Artist
Year Released: 1992
Director: Jérôme Boivin
Cast Includes: Richard Bohringer, Anne Brochet, Hippolyte Girardot

About the Film:
The narrator of the film is an odd character who records meaningless dialogs, trivia and bizarre musings regarding human behavior in a notebook. He is then forced to move in with his equally strange sister and her "reasonably normal" husband when his house burns. The husband is then forced to live with the bewildering antics of his brother-in-law and wife.

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

MOST VIEWED PAGE:

Well, nearly.... my story THE OXFORD LIBRARY MURDERS is currently in 2nd position on the London literary site Redbridge Review's most-viewed-page stats. A couple hundred thousand more readers should tip the scales in my balance and I'll have whatever small recompense the site is offering for the READ OF THE ISSUE. And above all, the cockle-warmed satisfaction of being #1.

Come on guys, let's all pull together and get clicking on that link.

I wanna send "The Oxford Library Murders" to the #1 spot.

SCIENCE: TURING TEST FINALLY CRACKED:

Well, I thought it would never happen. I thought they'd never come up with an A.I. that could cater to the great man's every whim and desire; somebody to finally pass the Turing Test, somebody to interact and flirt with, someone to be your girlfriend. Then a friend (who has a sillier sense of humour than me) showed me this and I wet myself laughing.

IMAGINARY GIRLFRIEND - ah yes, if only it was all code-driven, Alan would be turning in his grave. If only.

Conceptual Note: some clever marketeer should invent IMAGINARY STALKER - they could send you bits of your imaginary family in the post and stuff like that, video of you walking down the street, pictures of you on your toilet, taking a shower. They could send you spurned-lover style hate mail and spam your message boards from fake IPs. And because it's all a private service that you sign up for and pay for it's all legal and above board.

"Scare yourself shitless!" could be its melodramatic splashline.

Monday, March 28, 2005

ANOTHER LOVELY DAY IN OXFORD:

Yesterday's walk in Wimbledon Common was great. Wimbledon Common (home to the 'Wombles' of my childhood) was quite a surprise. I was expecting some plot of rolling grassland. But in fact, Wimbledon Common is set in a great woods. Stretching from Putney Heath to Putney Common in an clockwise direction, it's a great walk full of all sorts of animal and plant life bisected by a sprawling golf course. A white disused windmill (now a museum) sits at the centre of the woods. The sun was shining until the evening and a great family day out was had by all.

And today is another lovely day, so as it's too delightful to be mucking about finishing screenplays, I decided to hop onto my bike and go for a ride down by the canal, up through town, down again by the Summer Meadow and back up the hill to Botley. A lovely ride in the sun. The first time I've had my shorts on this year. Spring has indeed come early to our island.

Saturday, March 26, 2005

THIRD ACT AHOY:

That Octavia Butler screenplay adaptation I've been ploughing through (two acts in two weeks) just got really difficult. I'm only halfway through the book, there's a big bit missing that's told in 'flashback' (exactly where I don't wanna go with this screenplay) AND there's this seemingly tacked-on fourth part that I'd rather drop entirely.

No worries, though, I just had a two-day think about where I can go with it, how I can reintegrate the lost scene in a really delicious visual way and it's third act ahoy. This third act will take up about the last 40 minutes of the 110 minute screenplay by my estimation and will set up the forthcoming movies in a perfect way. By the end of next week then (with the wind in the right direction) this screenplay is gonna be a complete and, all being well, a stonkin' good film. Well, three films - eventually.

Friday, March 25, 2005

INDIA & JAPAN, WELCOME:

I've been looking at the hit counter figures for this blog; who reads what from where, how did they get here, who referred who etc... this blog gets about 400 unique readers per month - that's more than I'd expected.

And after the United States, United Kingdom and Canada (no surprises there), the next most popular reader locations are India & Japan. How odd. I wonder how relevant my structureless meanderings are to people so far east of the western mindset.

Anyway, India & Japan, thanks for tuning in.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

HAMMOND GALLERY RESURRECTED:

Among all the recently collapsing websites the demise of The Hammond Gallery (due for closure December 2004) was to be the biggest blow. In the world of online galleries, The Hammond Gallery is something of a unique entity in that it deals especially with bizarre, horror or surreal artworks - ideal for the sorta things I do.

The other night, I got some great news from Ian Eade, the guy who started and (continues to) run it. The great news was that he has been bankrolled by a new silent partner. This means all our galleries will remain and the usual features (like leaving Comments on each artwork) are still there for the viewer, while for the artist, the interface has been made far more efficient and it's a logical joy to upload works. They're talking about supporting the selling of artworks too - something I might just take advantage of.

I took the opportunity to update my contact details last night in just a few minutes and the five new psycho-realist portraits I uploaded are now available for viewing/comment. Have fun.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

SEPARATED AT BIRTH?

I'm talking separated at marketing poster design birth here:

First here's a link to SINCITY the new Robert Rodriguez film starring *sigh* Bruce Willis, and with a multi-million dollar budget and all the backing of a Hollywood megalith.

Okay, that movie poster there, you got that in your head? Man with a serious face pointing his gun down and to his right.

Now, here's a link to a link to one of my all-time-favourite films MAN BITES DOG, a Belgian film done by struggling film students on a shoe-string budget in black and white back in the early nineties.

Okay, man with serious face pointing his gun (well shooting a baby in a carriage) down and to the left. Anyone can take an iconic image like that and flip it horizontally, right? Left. Right? Cause for a spectacular copyright-theft case? You decide, reader, you decide.

THE LIFE AND DEATH OF HERTZAN CHIMERA - GALLEY APPROVED:



Last night I proof-read and made the necessary galley corrections and amendments to the (autobiographical) THE LIFE AND DEATH OF HERTZAN CHIMERA coming from Cyber Pulp Press of Houston in the next few weeks or so.

There's been a LOT of buzz about this title of late - I sense the haunting wave of interest looming. Let's just hope its gleaming crest doesn't just dash me into the gaping coral reef below.

Note: for those of you waiting to okay the final draft of your story in the galley of CHIMERAWORLD2, fear not, Cyber Pulp assures me it's on its way.

Monday, March 21, 2005

XENOPHOBIA, FIRST ACT NAILED:

It's been a surprising struggle screenwriting a decent first act out of this Octavia Butler novel but after some extensive rewriting and reflavouring over the weekend, I finally have a decent first act. Now the next two acts. Woohoo!

I'M AN ATOM, WHAT DO I SEE?

I've been mulling this over for the last few weeks.

"I'm an atom, what do I see?"

Well, if I'm that small 16^-16 meters or so, I certainly don't see light. You need a receptor that is much bigger than an atom to pick up light. Right?

So, what do I see?

I certainly see my neighbour's electrostatic charge - as it reacts with me.
This electromagnetic charge is a weird one because it's something we share. We both spill electromagnetic charge at certain times. We could even look to make a water-drip clock and try to regulate our electromagnetic charges over time, like a heart beat. The funny thing here is that we perform the equivalent of blood transfusions whenever we 'share' our electrostatic charge.

I certainly see my neighbour's momentum - as it crashes into me.
I don't know if I'm moving or not. As far as I'm concerved, I am static in the universe while these beings from the 'outside' crash into me. Maybe I try to decipher a code from the strength and direction of the collisions. I would certainly be able to work out a state change - if I were in a gas, the collisions would be much less frequent than if I were in a solid. But I wouldn't know about these states, I'd just attribute is to phases of 'weather'; remember, if I'm an atom (at least if I am one of its components, say a proton) I live for millions of years and experience many different changes of weather.

I certainly notice an internal change when a photon is emitted, in contemporary physics (not HC physics which i'm avoiding for the minute) an electron in the outer electron shell experiences a state shift. After this is resolved, a photon is emitted. I don't see the photon but I register the change as a sudden relaxing of excess tension in my system.

I have no idea of macroscopic effects such as em_radiation, gravity or macroscopic structure.

So, where am I going with this?

Well, up, of course, this is a study of scale and how there's a physical barrier to perception. Ready? Here we go, let's take a quick scale up and stop to look at cells and other structures of life. What do I see? If I were a receptor, say a rod in an eye, I could see light but do I see the universe. Unlikely. As a receptor, I am still a blind transmitter of a state change, this time to the brain. Well, I don't know about the brain, I just know I have a reaction to em_radiation and I pass it out my ass to some place else.

What about if I'm a free-floating cell, say, in blood. I don't know about gravity, in fact, such is the resistance of the fluid in which I live, the only reference to 'gravity' I have is the mono-direction pulse of the blood around the cardio-vascular system but I don't know what a heart is. That is my 'gravity', I don't know how it's formed or what its function is. I can't discern that I'm part of a body. I only know that I can affect neighbour cells and maybe change my shape, get affected by viruses, feed myself when I need replenishing. I have an electrostatic structure that can be powered up or syphoned off, depending on my shape and the conformity of my neighbours.

Now, let's quickly scale up to us (the cleverest thing ever to have lived). We can see light and we think we are the highest observational scale. Hell, we have microscopes and telescopes. We can alter matter to our own design. We are surely the master of the known universe, right?

Well, not really. The law of blindness still applies to us. We can see light (and other em_radiation) but that's because we have macroscopic structures that will pick up those movements of the universe. We have found that there is a whole spectrum of em beyond visible 'light' (once hidden from us). What we don't see if the structure that forms universes, and by this I mean we don't see the galactic structure that exists down which gravity flows. We have no detector for gravity, no machine that shows us teh why of the gravity universe, only a detector for the difference between two macroscopic things.

We may need a dimensional leap of understanding to see gravity and how it forms matter in its concentrated wells. But one thing is sure, as light isn't perceivable at the atomic level, as gravity isn't perceivable at the cellular level, so structure isn't perceivable at the em_radiation level. We only see that which we can detect, that which we have physical structures big enough to detect.

What I'm saying is, "I'm an atom, what do I see?"

This applies to me at whatever scale or dimension I find myself. For scientific centuries man has considered himself the centre of the universe, all known forces orbit his planet of knowledge. Well, it seems more likely that human perception is, and always has been, somewhere in the MID RANGE and has its own limitations and shouldn't be used to interpolate or extrapolate on the higher dimensions or universal structures with such bigoted (and sneering) confidence. This does not depress me, it makes me search even harder for that which exists beyond the atomic and universal ends of the phenomenal spectrum.

Saturday, March 19, 2005

LET THE REVOLUTION BEGIN:

What's on your mind this time?

Silicon.

You know there are viruses that eat away at your data? What about viruses that eat away at the silicon surface of your computer. I was wondering what would happen (in fact this is a topic I examined in my 2001 book Szmonhfu - but here it's an alien race who nullify the silicon infestation of planet earth from afar before their invasion).

I was thinking, what if it actually happened though. What if a virus destroyed all silicon computers? I know we could say "Well, we'd use light and glass computers" but there have been efforts made for the last ten years to perfect the light-gate computer to no avail. Maybe we could resussitate the old mechanical Babbage machines or something.

But what if none of that worked, let's see. What would a world without technology be like? I am thinking along these lines now because there were reports that there are more and more millionaires now than there ever was, especially now that China is becoming a big global player. And common sense dictates that this cannot continue.

At some point the structures that support the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer will collapse. A proper worldwide revolution will be in full flow. And BIG QUESTIONS like "What is man's role on this rock?" will become more important than they've ever been. I'm not talking about 'faith' and other esoteric nonsense like that. I'm talking about community. I'm talking about the good of everyone helped by the skills of the many. Am I talking about Neo Communism? Dunno....

Friday, March 18, 2005

DREAMS & NIGHTMARES, THANK YOU:

I guess it's time to pay homage to a very great editor and mineral scientist David C Kopaska Merkel, the guy who really gave my my first American break by including some of my poems and illustrations in his excellent New York print mag DREAMS & NIGHTMARES. Wayne Allen Sallee and t. Winter-Damon were my two favourite writers in the mag at the time.

I recently found this link listing all the issues of D&N and their contents. For the Mike Philbin completist there's mention of 3 prose-poems by Michael Paul Peter (my RED HEDZ novel pseudonym), 2 prose-poems by Jane Louxis (my female pseudonym) and an illustration of a Des Lewis prose-poem by Mike Philbin (I always illustrated under my own name for some reason).

Here's the full list of appearances in the Dreams & Nightmares in the late eighties, early nineties:

Dreams and Nightmares 23
March, 1988
Michael Paul Peter, Abattoir Girl

Dreams and Nightmares 26
January, 1989
Michael Paul Peter, 132

Dreams and Nightmares 27
May, 1989
Jane LouXis, Bigatte the High Priestess
Michael Paul Peter, Dream Disease

Dreams and Nightmares 30/31
April, 1990
Jane LouXis, Angelflight
Mike Philbin, illustration of the D. F. Lewis story The Metal Ghost

XENOPHOBIA, NEW SCREENPLAY:

A new month, a new screenplay.

While I'm waiting on a decision from the producer of Nicholas Cage's forthcoming Phil K Dick movie adaptation about my own own PKD screenplay, I'm adapting one of Octavia E Butler's novels to the screen. I'm 24 pages into it for this week and it's real interesting how each new book has its own adaptation challenge. The challenge this time round is most of the first reel action takes place in one soft grey room.

Great fun though.

JAPANESE FOR BUSY PEOPLE:

Well, just recently, I rejoined the Oxford Fureai Network and have been getting into my Japanese studies again (something I had sorely neglected since working myself in to a three-year studying frenzy to prepare for my 2002 Japanese family holiday in Kyoto).

I still have my two old "Japanese for Busy People", book1 is in Romaji (roman script), book2 is the Kana (Japanese symbols) version and I have the book2 workbook. Hopefully, soon, the Fureai network will cough up a Japanese Speaking Partner (this is a great idea where a Japanese and an English person practise their second language with each other, in teh comfort of bars or cafés or where ever).

Nihon go no benkyoo wa honto ni tanoshii desu.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

MICHAEL PHILBIN'S "OUT":

As 67,000 unique visitors per month horror/thriller website FEO AMANTE puts it, Mike Philbin returns with the first book review of the new year - NATSUO KIRINO'S "OUT". This book (her first in English translation) is a thriller not a horror or sci-fi book. A thriller and it holds together really well with some lovely kinky elements as the gut-wrenching narrative crashes to a gory climax. I really liked the book and look forward to reading more of Natsuo's work in translation.

Thanks again to Feo Amante for their continued support of my writing efforts. You'll see that the review is attributed to one Michael Philbin. It's so long since I've heard the name Michael, it's just like being back at home with my feet under the kitchen table and my dirty laundry in the family machine. Thanks Feo.

:)

Monday, March 14, 2005

NOT FOR PUBLIC DISPLAY:

Finally, that series of mini-exhibitions I've been promising for yonks is on display at the Lolapoloza Gallery in Oxford town centre for the next four weeks.

THIRD EYE BUTTERFLY - three paintings, each depicting an eye in various states of psychological undress.

WHISPERING STONES - a series of six paintings depicting the Castlerigg standing stone circle, the whispering part of the title is shown in gold prose inscribed onto the grey Cumbrian sky.

NOT FOR PUBLIC DISPLAY - this part of the exhibition is a mini-display of the final remaining ten copies of my Hertzan Chimera R.I.P. American-import novel SZMONHFU (as published by Eraserhead Press in 2000). A book which, when donated to the Oxford Library (local author interest?), was rejected on the grounds of being a) an import and b) "not for public display". This from a library that has a large number of American-import novels on its shelves and has such "disgusting" books as Crash, Naked Lunch and Exquisite Corpse. Szmonhfu was promptly entered into the For Sale part of the Library and instantly snatched up (I did see it on the shelf, next day it'd been sold).

Lolapoloza is situated off St Aldates, next to the Oxford Museum; fittingly, down a side street called Blue Boar Street.

Sunday, March 13, 2005

NEXT BFS OPEN NIGHT - MAY 4th:

The BRITISH FANTASY SOCIETY holds (semi)-regular open nights where members and non-members can meet, mingle and rub shoulders with authors, artists and publishers.

Previous attendees at BFS Open Nights include Tom Arden, Pat Cadigan, Ramsey Campbell, Basil Copper, Les Edwards, Christopher Fowler, Simon Green, Kate Jacoby, Stephen Jones, Graham Joyce, Brian Lumley, Paul J. McAuley, Kim Newman, Nicholas Royle, Geoff Ryman, Michael Marshall Smith, Lisa Tuttle, Philip G Williamson... and many others.

Entry is free, you just need some beer money. The Friday March 4th Open Night at the Devereux has been moved (in tiem and space) to Wednesday May 4th at the Walkers of Holborn pub. The nearest Tube is Chancery Lane on the Central Line - from the Tube walk along High Holborn, and turn into Fetter Lane - Norwich street is then the first road on the right. It's about a five minute walk.

I've been to one or two of these and, as it's been a while since I was down in London quaffing ale with my writing brethren, I'll certainly be aiming to make this rescheduled May meet - looking forward to seeing all my old buddies down there and meeting some new friends.

Friday, March 11, 2005

HOUSE OF PAIN R.I.P.:

In yet another victory for mediocrity, it is with great sadness that I have to report the death of yet another subversive online portal whose remit was "only the nastiest fiction, guaranteed". House of Pain have, over the years published a few of my sex-horror stories and did a wicked threesome-interview with myself and Alex Severin (when we were promoting BFGS from Massacre Publishing).

Wraith, editor of House OF Pain, last night decided to close the website. Here's a short excerpt from her mail-out explaining the situation and her decision.

"...tonight, I made a decision. It was not an easy one to make but for me, it's the only one. It's weighed heavy on my mind. I have about 70 stories that have been sent in over the past few months sitting here and authors that need a place to go. I have loyal readers who I'm letting down but I've come to one conclusion. I can't do this any more. At least not right now.

I want to thank everyone that has contributed over the years. I want to thank all those people who cheered me on when I needed it the most and talked me out of giving it up in the past. It's been very fulfilling to know that many of the authors that I gave a first start to are now being published and I'd like to think that I helped give them the boost they needed to get out there and try by accepting their work here."


another sad loss and the death of another extreme venue where only the writer's creativity was the paramount incentive.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

NEW T.L.A.D.O.H.C. BLURB:

And they continue to pour in: here's a brand new back cover blurb for the forthcoming THE LIFE AND DEATH OF HERTZAN CHIMERA (autobiography) due any time this year from Cyber Pulp of Houston. This time it's from my good buddy John Edward Lawson a very extreme writer from Baltimore, MD. John's work has always been a favourite of mine and that's one of the reasons why he was one of the seven invited CHIM+HIM collection collaborators - and we also interviewed each other in a surreal stylee for our respective projects (that was great fun, too).

"Hertzan Chimera and I raided the panty patch together from 2002-2004. During that time he screamed, bounded, lacked, compensated, and innovated. He kept things interesting, which is more than you can say for any hundreds of authors combined." --John Edward Lawson, author of Last Burn in Hell

Nice one, John. Keep up the good work with RawDogScreaming press and TheDreamPeople website.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

EGG:

Yeah, that's all good and well, but what is that disgusting Dinosaur Porn story the right-wing preacher in your last post was getting his frilly knickers all in a twist about? A few people have mailed me and asked me about it since that CENSORSHIP post went up. Here it is then:

EGG by Chimera & Severin, for those with a nostalgic nature (originally published in the book B.F.G.S. from Massacre Publishing).

For any of you out there who are not too clever about the natural history of such a fantastic tale, dinosaurs and humans never met - in fact they missed each other by millions of years. It's meant as a bit of a pastiche in the vein of "A Million Years BC" (starring Raquel Welsh) but with a macho-freak flip on it for good measure. Enjoy!

TLADOFHC BLURBS:

Cyber Pulp books of Houston now has a fabulous list of blurbs to plaster all over the back of THE LIFE AND DEATH OF HERTZAN CHIMERA book - as a mock-obituary for the passing of one the the craziest moments of my life...

"Hertzan Chimera is destined for great fame -- solid gold planes and caviar squeezed from endangered fish. Know him! Embrace him! And ultimately -- worship him!" -- Mark McLaughlin, author of GOSSAMER EYE and MOTIVATIONAL SKRIEKER.

"Hertzan Chimera is both monster rant and taboo heat. His primal work clutches me in both G-spot and brain--and everywhere else in between." --Charlee Jacob, author of THIS SYMBIOTIC FASCINATION and HAUNTER.

"When I say that Hertzan Chimera's writings make me want to throw up, I mean that only in a good way. He's a major contender in the gross-out arena; his work is a hallmark of creative outrage." --Edward Lee, author of CITY INFERNAL and MONSTROSITY.

"Hertzan Chimera is the Henry Miller of Our Time. He has remortgaged the Horror/SF ghetto, replacing it with a Garrethouse of the Psycho-Erotic on the Left Bank of the Seine." --MF Korn, author of RACHMANINOFF'S GHOST and CONFESSIONS OF A GHOUL.

"As a longtime fan of the outre and fiction of the abject, I can say that very little of what I read anymore shocks, revolts, scares, or disturbs me. But Hertzan Chimera manages to do it every time. " --Michael A. Arnzen, Bram Stoker Award winning author of GRAVE MARKINGS and FREAKCIDENTS.

"Chimera's conflagrations raze cities of the human mind while his sickly dogs twitch in the burning bones of entropy." --James Havoc, author of RAISM and SATANSKIN.

...and more are pouring in as we speak.

Personally, I would have allowed a rather negative critique from another horror writer into the obituary pit (since Hertzan did ruffle a few feathers in his 15 year reign) but a petty threat of legal action from said writer and a wish from my publisher not to get drawn into a worthless court case means it'll be a positive back cover appraisal that will great the publication of the book.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

THE RESURRECTION OF HERTZAN CHIMERA:

We all know that a few days after his death, Christ rose from the grave. Well, seven months ago, I assassinated Hertzan Chimera in a piss-stinking back alley in the north'rn part of my mind. Gone lost forever.

Well, apparently not...

AuthorsDen, where my Hertzan Chimera account used to provide daily broadscasts of the spammy filth of said alter-ego seems to have been RE-ACTIVATED for nine days or so. It's nothing important to those of you who don't give a shit about AuthorsDen and their demands for money (even to those writers, like myself, who supported them from day one with my overkeen patronage) but to those who think AuthorsDen is the best thing since sliced bread and a real asset to their writing career, you might notice a certain GHOST or RESSURECTION of the old HC in various categories of books, fiction and poetry available for purchase and reading.

Well, the truth is, when I found the account was still active (three years after it was SUPPOSEDLY de-activated) I couldn't resist Editing EVERY ITEM I had up there, yes that's all the stories and poetry and books for sale and even some articles and news items. It'll officially only be a nine-day reprieve THIS TIME, or so they promise me, but nine days of mischief is better than none, eh?

Are you saying I have too much time on my hands, AuthorsDenners?

Saturday, March 05, 2005

MIDNIGHTERS CLUB R.I.P.:

Another victory for mediocrity.

There have been a load of internet casualties from what I call the sweeping tsunami of mediocrity. There was a site called "The Midnighters Club" run by an off-the-wall and legendarily abrasive internet character I like to refer to as ROCKET Ron Horsely. In closing down the site, here's what the great man had to say about the sour state of the horror franchise:

"As of right now, the forum, all articles, functions, etc., have been suspended indefinitely. I've taken down every file, every scrap and image and electronic keepsake related to this site, save for this message. My personal belief is that you should never let something get so connected to you that it becomes your owner and not the other way 'round. This goes for cars, kitchen appliances, and websites. The writing is what's important. The art. Not the bickering and pointing of fingers, not the pointing out of shortcomings in people who can't handle having such things pointed out at all. Thanks for your patronage, I'll be sure to let you all know when I come back."

A sad day for proper critical analysis of the field of creative writing. :(

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

MIKE PHILBIN - NEW SUBMISSION RECORD:

My first record for writing, editing, submitting and having accepted was back in 2002 for my story SHE GIVES ME THE FEAR (published in URBANITE magazine). That all took place in the time it took for a Marilyn Manson CD to play twice. That's fast, but it then took a couple months to be pubished in the paperback journal of surreal horror.

The newest of my stories THE OXFORD LIBRARY MURDERS was written only two days ago and (as of 11am this morning) has already found an online home in the very excellent Redbridge Review. It'll appear on the front page tomorrow. Thanks Timi!

THIRD EYE BUTTERFLY:

Here's a 5-page comic that James Havoc and myself put together back in the early 90's called THIRD EYE BUTTERFLY. One thing I remember about it was my old boss in the 3D games industry, Gregg Barnett, who was one day delighted to report that he had found this tart little ditty in Borders. It became a running joke of his, the kinky bugger.

SUNPAT PEANUT SURFACE:

It's true, it was this morning's breakfast that made me realise. I made this stupid joke that "it would hurt, that - Sunpat". I put my hand on an imaginary sun and pulled my pretend-scorched hand back, blowing on the not-really-charred fledh of my palm. Then I got to thinking, is there a surface to the sun? There's no surface to Jupiter, only the reflections from the turbulent cloud layer. There's no surface to the Sun, only the bright nuclear light-and-heat show.

Then I took the next logical step. Is there a surface to anything?

Probably not. I'm getting more and more convinced that matter does not exist at all. I know it only takes a swift baseball bat whack across the nose to remind me otherwise but this is an illusion, surely. Ask any physicist. They've never seen an actual atom or its components, only the reflection in a scanning electron microscope of the surface of a sheet of gold, only the bubble trails through a chamber of energized electrons. These thing may not even exist (yet so much of government grant money is pumped into the religion every year). I'm not necessarily fancying the Ancient Greek idea of matter that it's all one 'liquid' (those with technical knowledge can remind me of the details if you so desire) but it's certainly looking far more likely that such extreme forces as only the Universe can exhibit would be responsible for matter as we know it.

No matter what atom type or material type you're talking about, it all emanates from the one source, the Universe and the particular force structures that react at the speed of light (the Universe's exchange limit)... It really is so obivous.

HOORAY 4 HOLLYWOOD:

I know I mentioned this in passing in the Comments of the IN YOUR BOX post, but I can't keep it in. As I type, my adapted screenplay of a secret Philip K Dick novel is winging its way to Hollywood. I got word back from the producer in L.A. after the transAtlantic pitch:

"I look forward to reading [the PKD] screenplay - I have a feeling I'll like it quite a bit."

You're going, yeah Mike's sending his screenplay on spec to a 'Hollywood producer' (could be anybody) but you forget, I do my homework and once my agent in London who organised the pitch told me the producer's name, lo and behold I find past and future PKD movies he's produced, executive produced etc. This is no spec submission to 'some bloke in LaLaLand'.

I chose a PKD novel that wouldn't give your standard PKD-adaptation action/adventure; I'm so sick of those third-act-chase-sequence movies (like Total Recall and Paycheck) and am more looking forward to Linklater's rambling A SCANNER DARKLY. But, fear not, this screenplay is more radical than even Linklater's treatment of PKD's vision in that it's a Period Piece - think contemporary Merchant Ivory and you'l be within earshot of the sort of treatment I'm going for.

To say I'm excited about all this would be the understatement of the decade. I'd love to do more movie adaptations of books I love, and I have a few plans already of other works I'd want to screenwrite.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

BLOGSNOB:

I've just signed this blog up on the Blogsnob ad server to let more people in the Arts & Literature blogging community know that Mike Philbin is out there and still contributing to the cause - blogsnob's a great idea as you can let the whole blogging world know all about your blog FOR FREE.