Demoncon XI

Today I went to my first convention. A local one called Demoncon in Maidstone in Kent at the Royal Star Arcade. A friend in my local NaNoWriMo group told me about it and as soon as she told me about it I knew I was going to go. One because I wanted to go but also because she said that Dan Abnett was going to be there. Dan Abnett is one of my writing idols. His Gaunts Ghosts series is a series I started reading in my late teens, early twenties when I first started reading and it really blew my mind away. I’d read Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan books, and the Gaunts Ghosts books were so far removed from Clancy’s work and they showed me a whole new world of fiction and how brutal a setting could be. I always liked the Jack Ryan books, but with Gaunts Ghosts I fell in love with all of the characters as well as the setting and the bigger universe that was hinted at. 

So meeting Dan Abnett was a serious life highlight for me (and I didn’t geek out too much). It did help that he is such a nice dude. I was fortunate to spend a good ten minutes talking to him, which was really awesome. I also met his wife Nik Vincent, who is also a writer and they have collaborated together. She is as well, an absoulutly wonderful person and it was a real pleasure talking to her as well.

I also met three other writers, Kit Cox, Miles Allen and Lance Manley (LR Manley). All three of these gentlemen are writers who I hadn’t come across yet and I spent a few minutes talking to each of them about books, writing and other writing related/con related topics.

All three were really welcoming and really easy to talk to. I purchased books from all three and I’m really looking forward to diving into them. I will just mention that Lance Manley does a lot of work againts bullying and that is some that needs to be praised.

I did also buy a fantastic piece of Joker artwork by Phil Buckenham.

I also spoke to Vic Iddstar Hill. She made a short movie called Sincerely, Soldier Bear (search it, or Hat Day Films on YouTube) and I just wanted to praise her for such a fantastic film. It’s such a deep piece of filmaking with a huge message that is very subtle in how she has presented it. It also come across as very innocent in its presentation as well.

I’m very happy this was my first convention. It’s not a huge convention but I found that really welcoming. It had a great atmosphere and those people I spoke to were all fun and engaging to speak to. I often find new things like this quite intimidating but this I didn’t. I felt a little overwhelmed, but the warmth of those I spoke to helped hugely and in the couple of hours I was there I didn’t get any bad vibes. It seemed like a lot of people doing what they like and having fun.

I’m sure I missed a lot but I am so glad I went. I’m itching to go again (the next ones in September) and that next time I’ll know what to expect. I wasn’t sure what to expect but I’m so happy Demoncon was as much fun as I’d been told.

Slow Progress

Words have come slowly this week, but they have come. The story is now at a point where it starts to get fun, but I’ll probably not get to it till the other side of the weekend.

I was thinking about extending the story out a little from its original draft but I think that’s why my first attempt at the rewrite wasn’t working. I was trying to fill in too much detail and that meant the momentum of the story was destroyed. The flow that was in the original version was something I loved about it and I hope that’s getting recreated in this newer draft. I am liking how it is going, it feels a little more realistic I think.

After finishing Bitch Planet I’ve moved onto Judge Dredd vs. Predator vs. Alien. I’m only a few pages in but it’s pretty good so far.

I’m also nearing the end of my Jessica Jones re-watch.It really is a beautiful and engaging program, I’m well chuffed they’ve got a second series.

Start It Again

Just a quick little post this evening.

I got a decent start with this story but it quickly lost steam and momentum. So instead of getting a mood on and moping for a couple of days I just started it again. Well not fully, I’ve pretty much kept the first scene of the story but started fresh from there on. So far I’m happy with it and I think it’s going in the right direction.

I’m glad I wasn’t further along than I was because the thought of throwing away a lot more is always a little sickening, but it’s needed at times. Sometimes we need to look at what we’re doing and if it’s going wrong then we’ve got to put an end to it before we get in too deep.

Reading wise, I finished book one of Bitch Planet. Overall I really enjoyed it and will be buying book two in the near future. I haven’t read much more of The Man In The High Castle, and haven’t listened to any more of Song Of Susannah.

What I’m Reading

I haven’t spoken much about what I’ve been reading much in the last few months so I thought I’d write a quick post about what I am reading or listening to at the moment.

At any one time I’m reading a novel, a comic book, and listening to an audio book. The novel I’m reading at the moment is The Man In The High Castle by Phillip K. Dick. This book has been on my bookshelf for a couple of years now but I’ve only just now gotten round to reading it. One of those reasons is that It’s been adapted for a TV show that I really want to watch, but in these cases I always try to read the book that’s been adapted first. So far I’m liking what I’m reading. It’s the first Phillip K. Dick book I’ve read and I can see why people like his work so much. His story telling, in this book at least, is really quite discreet and it doesn’t feel like he’s telling a larger story. At the moment it’s more individual storylines but with a bigger storyline being teased in the background.

The comic I’m reading is Bitch Planet: Book One by Kelly Sue DeConnick and Valentine De Landro. This is a really interesting comic book. I’m liking how the world is set up and how the story is being built up. The artwork is pretty cool as well. I’m about halfway through this and I’m looking forward to seeing how this first one wraps up.

And finally, the audiobook I’m listening  to is Song Of Susannah: The Dark Tower Book Six by Stephen King and read by George Guidall. This is a series which is taking some fascinating turns and I’m trying to power through quickly so I can get to the end and see how it all wraps up.



Despite the late start I managed to get just over 1400 words down on this short story, this afternoon. Then I had dinner and I was going to start typing up some more details into the universe bible for the Apollo universe but I come over not feeling too good so I’ve been taking it easy. I’m feeling back to normal now, though and re-watching Jessica Jones. I’ve just finished a Daredevil re-watch. Anyway, I’m side tracking.

I’ve spent a bit of time this afternoon chatting to Chrystalyn and brainstorming for how to work out an ending for last years NaNoWriMo story. It’s given me a few ideas but I’m still not a hundred per cent sure on which direction to go, but I’ll deal with that once I’ve wrapped this short story up.

A Late Start

I was going to say good morning, but I’ll have to go with Good Afternoon instead.

I overlaid and didn’t get outta bed till about 11am and then I cleaned out the henhouse and now, I am about to start writing.

Owen has given me the green light to start on the next Apollo universe short story/novelette. He’s happy with the outline and it means I can knock it out a month earlier than we’d planned and then that’ll free me up for getting NaNoWriMo 2015 finished up.

This month is going to down as one of my lowest word counts in quite some time, but I’ve done a lot of red-penning this month so I’ve not been slacking off much.

I will also get my mermaid story done and edited this coming week. My Beta notes have been helpful and most of them have been related to Grammar and structure. So that’s clearly something I need to work on.

Right, I’ll catch you all later and let you know how I got on today.