26 January 2011

The Last Laugh...

... is on us...

I read that Irish writers would be better off taking a job in manufacturing (if one exists) rather than plow a solitary furrow through the Groves of Academe and the literary world.

The tax concessions for artists have been cut back to "let's leave them in the garret" levels and many supplement meagre earnings by teaching or doing freelance work in magazines and newspapers.

Society need interpretors. And since, if one writes exactly, factually, how things are, one is liable to get sued by those whose nose has been put out of joint, fiction seems to be the best genre for today. The Internet is booming with new voices, all quick to find metaphor, simile and characters who express the current state of affairs.

Having tried, and failed... since I had to resort to writing in code... to make a living as a hack, I read the current writers with enthusiasm. The official media is still relatively hide-bound and directed by advertising, but when a good piece of writing is found, it glows. We used joke that sentences should be no longer than 8 words, if the average reader is to keep up. This was a reference to attention span while rushing to work and trying to keep up with the latest news. Not, it must be insisted, a mocking reflection on the intelligence of our readership.

Who reads Henry James or Joseph Conrad for pleasure these days. Time is short and pulp fiction is the favourite genre on public transport round the world.
In fact, having found Twitter, 140 characters seems prolix in comparison to the constraints I experienced as a paid writer. 200 words was often the brief, to get in as much colour and excitement as would keep the busy reader happy.

As ever, the last laugh is on the writer...

25 January 2011

Making a Hash of Things

Having discovered the function of the hash key in Twitter... it leads to real-time searches for whatever word you have chosen... I set out to put my tweets in order.

Surprise was extreme when I found the "#IrishWriter" had no takers and that I was the first to use it.

Shure, we're all writers here...

24 January 2011

I Hate...

"tough", "brooding" and "dogged"... Which leaves me begging the question as to why I persist in gathering facts about thrillers and the Noir Genre on the Internet. It may be linked to the fact that the current national psyche is so afflicted that writers refuse to write happy happy books. In reality I remain a contented soul living an ordinary life indoors... La Stupenda


Keeping Your Pecker Up...

... in times of trouble.

Looking at the script of "Withnail and I" it seems that any language student who is trying to learn English would have their work cut out for them to make sense of what is being said. I had to look up phrases on the Internet as they, literally, said nothing to me.

London slang is not for the faint of heart. Throw in the fact that it is delivered through a haze of narcotics and there is definitely a sense of making a raid on the inarticulate. I have to thank the good humoured coves who decided to run the film again on TV. Having lived with students who were living exemplars of the characters in "Withnail", I now find myself laughing out loud quite a bit.

I daren't turn on the news, as the outrage and sense of national betrayal, officially orchestrated from every direction, has become thoroughly boring.
Back to the graphic drawing board and more photo sharing, it is then.

If it were not illegal puffing on a Camberwell Carrot might help block out the sorry sounds that all world leaders seem to insist on making.

Bluebells and Forget Me Nots in the May Garden

23 January 2011

The Arena of the Unwell...

Repetition is the soul of comedy.

One dramatic event can be tragic ... if it keeps happening, amusement sets in. The hacks and politicians have had a heady week of naming, shaming and getting off the stage. So many retirements from the government, here... so little sense of purpose.

The script of "Withnail and I" is in the title bar. br>
It reflects these times.

Rock and Water

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