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Thursday, 30 July 2015

Long Live Fan Fiction!

So, the other week, I finally started work on my latest book, Dead Heroes. The crowds cheered, the trumpeters blared, the streamers fell and everyone stared with bated breath as my fingers moved over the keyboard and typed the immortal words...

Chapter One

The screams were deafening. It was as if VE day had been announced all over again.

No sooner had the awestruck legions trudged off home, exhausted but happy, did I find I had a problem. Despite months of planning, plotting and character building, the first chapter was just not very good.

Now, that's quite normal. Generally, first drafts aren't very good and you have to push through and get some scaffolding down that you can tart up later. However, sometimes, you realise there's a problem at a fundamental level that needs sorting out - but, annoyingly, you have no idea what it is.

So, faced with roadblocks on my Literary Work of Earth-Shattering Magnitude, I decided to do the only sensible thing.

I stopped and wrote some fan-fiction!

I've loved writing fan fiction from before it was even called fan fiction. When I was a kid, my very first stories were all Star Wars ones (well, my very first stories were actually about a man who walked to the shop and met a dragon who asked if the man wanted to come back to his cave and play Pitfall on the Atari 2600 and the man said yes but before they could go back to the dragon's cave, they were attacked by a woolly mammoth with bad breath and they beat the woolly mammoth up with a rolled up newspaper and the mammoth said sorry and could he also come back to the cave to play on the Atari 2600?). But Star Wars stories soon followed.

A Plague of Long SummerDon't get me wrong - the 'day job'* of writing my own stuff is ultra-enjoyable. But it's just not the same kind of enjoyment you get from ditching the Millennium Falcon into the Atlantic... or sending the Ghostbusters into a house haunted by their own future ghosts... or sending William Shakespeare to foil a Dutch terrorist plot.

(* actually, the 'day job' is 'Computer Programmer' - we're currently writing a little AI app called SkyNet).

So, every once in a while, when I need to take a break from my Literary Works of Earth-Shattering Magnitude, I might team Doctor Who and James Bond together to save the world from a weaponised internet.

Or, in this case, have a Game of Thrones adventure in modern-day Westeros with ancient-artifact smugglers, bank robbers and corrupt politicians.

When you indulge in a little healthy fanfic, not only do you get to have all kinds of fun, there's also an added, welcome side-effect - you get your creative juices flowing again. So I know, when I go back to Dead Heroes, I'll be full of energy and raring to go.

Which is good since Literary Works of Earth-Shattering Magnitude don't just write themselves.


Thursday, 2 April 2015

Tweets from Famous Fictional Characters

Macbeth @Mac_daddy    2hr
Just won major battle against traitor’s army then got accosted by 3 mad old women making crazy predictions #AllKindsOfWeird

Lady Macbeth @Mac_mamma    2hr
@Mac_daddy Really? Do tell.

Macbeth @Mac_daddy    2hr
Mac_mamma I' DM you

King Duncan @KingDunc    5m
@Mac_daddy Sounds like you've had an eventful day.

Macbeth @Mac_daddy    5m
@KingDunc Hey, u free tonight? Why not come round mine? We can chill, play some XBox, nothing violent.

King Duncan @KingDunc    5m
@Mac_daddy Sounds gr8! Your good lady wife ok with me and the boys descending on yr place?

Macbeth @Mac_daddy    5m
Sure @KingDunc It was her idea, actually.

King Duncan @KingDunc    1hr
Fantastic! We'll be over after we've finished off the last of the traitor's forces. Thanks m8!
@Mac_daddy @Mac_mamma 

Darth Vader @vader_sith    5m
Just had a reunion with my long lost son. Told him I was his real dad. #CouldHaveGoneBetter

Emperor Palpatine @TheEmperor    2m
@vader_sith lol

Harry Potter @harrypotter    10m
My teacher just levitated a feather with 'Wyngardium Leviosar'. #HogwartsRocks

Luke Skywalker @skywalker_jedi    9m
Mine just lifted my X-Wing out of a swamp. Suck it @harrypotter. #force-1/magic-0

Harry Potter @harrypotter    9m
@skywalker_jedi Aaaaand how did it get in the swamp in the first place?

Luke Skywalker @skywalker_jedi    8m
@harrypotter Totally not the point.

Doctor Henry Jekyll @DoctorJ    1h
There's too much evil in the world. Spread some love, people! #peace #love 

Doctor Henry Jeckyll @DoctorJ    30m

Doctor Henry Jeckyll @DoctorJ    5m
OMG! My account has been hacked! Someone is posting hateful tweets! #ItIsntMe

Emperor Palpatine @TheEmperor    2m
@DoctorJ lol

Winston Smith @WinstonSmith    3 days
[tweet deleted by system]

Winston Smith @WinstonSmith    2 days
[tweet deleted by system]

Winston Smith @WinstonSmith    1 day
[tweet deleted by system]

Big Brother @BigBro    5m
[tweet deleted by system]

Winston Smith @DoctorJ    5m
I love EastAsia. Such a fantastic nation. I'm glad we're allies. #AlwaysHaveBeenAlwaysWillBe

Vincent Vega @vincentvega    5m
Just went over a pothole and my gun went off and totally shot Marvin in the face. rofl

Jules Winfield @juleswinfield    5m

Vincent Vega @vincentvega    5m
sorry, my bad *chuckle*

Emperor Palpatine @TheEmperor    5m
@vader_sith just threw me down a REALLY deep hole. Enough time to tweet and still falling :-(

Luke Skywalker @skywalker_jedi    5m
@TheEmperor lol

Malcom @PrinceMalcolm    5m
Hey @Mac_daddy you seen @KingDunc? He's not answering his phone.

Macbeth @Mac_daddy    4m
@PrinceMalcolm BTW, did you hear I'm King now? :-)