Turning pro in less than 362 days!

Hopefully turning pro in less than six thousand three hundred and eighty nine days!

Saturday, 3 November 2012

Why Aspiring Writers Must Follow The Rules

If there's one thing that really makes my ballbag shrivel up like a walnut with rage it's aspiring writers moaning about the restrictive conditions of a competition, or the supposed conventions they are supposed to follow to get their break in screenwriting.

If a production company launch a shout out for multi strand ethnic based TV dramas they're not discriminating against your fascinating radio monologue based on the memoirs of a Lincolnshire teabagger, they are just looking for a certain type of product. Similarly, if you're a vegan chef don't wander into a McDonalds and mouth off as to why they don't need your ingenious exploding quinoa volcano salad. They're not fucking interested, it's not their thing, get over it. Or, sweep up some shit you just saw creep out of a dog's arse, fashion it into the shape of a burger and see if they're interested in that. Not that they would be of course, McDonalds food is excellent.
Know your market, don't waste their time and yours.

I hear a lot of aspiring writers bitch about the ten page rule - if your script lands on the desk of a script reader and they don't know what it's all about within ten pages then it's in the bin.

"But what about my incredible drama - it's a real tearjerker, but the inciting event of the lesbian lover having her tit blown off doesn't happen until page fifteen, and I'm not bringing it forward, it would kill it."
"I've just watched my twenty favourite Hungarian movies and in none of them does the inciting event happen in the first ten minutes."

So fucking what. They are asking for a piece that does have an inciting event in the first ten pages, they are not asking for you to set fire to every script you've written that doesn't follow this convention, then collect the ashes into an urn, which you then stick up your arse and fuck off while you're at it.

They are saying woo me with a script which follows conventions, lubricate my script reading clitoris with your wordplay and dextrous rule following. Then, when I know what you're doing you can stick your engorged arthouse script into my welcoming pigeonhole.

Or, you can you just carry on being angry, ignoring the advice and getting nowhere. I don't give a shit - you're my competition, after all.

Friday, 13 July 2012

At What Point Is A Writer A Writer?

I was at a seminar the other day, you know, one of those bloody eugenics adverts where the viscous detritus you would normally find at the top of a cup of tea made with water that hasn't been allowed to fully boil suddenly appears in human form as aspiring writers, wherein the 'expert' gave us all a stunning piece of advice.

"You are all writers, you need to see yourselves as writers".

This made me think, are we? At what point do we make that transition? When we decide we want that career path?

An immediate cerebral response emanated from the area of my brain reserved for self doubt and self retribution.

"No, you cunt, you become a writer when that is your career. When that's what brings in the bacon. It's bullshit like this that wrecks people. New age horseshit - stand in front of the mirror and repeat this affirmation until your subconscious mind accepts the fact you're *insert desire*. The fact is, unless you're really fucked you don't spend your whole day stood in front of a mirror. The rest is spent doing all the other crap, whilst your subconscious re-inforces whatever it is you're trying to undo in front of the mirror. It ain't going to work.

It's also alienating you from the task at hand, which is to work really bloody hard. Don't see yourself as a writer, see that as your goal, that you have to strive towards.

Incidentally, what is all this Andy/ Andrew business?

At school, trying to make friends, 'who the fuck are you?'.

 'Don't be scared, I'm Andy'.

Hmm, after Andy Dufresne? You're OK mister.

Hang on, I'm 28, that's nearly bloody thirty, and I still haven't achieved anything of any worth, and it's all because people keep fucking calling me Andy. I'm sick of not being taken seriously. Fuck you all! I'm FUCKING ANDREW!!!!

Then that lasts for about ten years, maybe more, depending on the extent of their ambition. Ah, fuck it, I'm never going to make it, I want friends again, call me Andy.

Anyone over the age of forty who doesn't go by the name of Andy has a small penis, and that includes you, Prince Andrew.'

Maybe I shouldn't write down all that my brain says to me.

Sunday, 3 June 2012

Prometheus - A Fiery Review

WARNING: This review contains a shitload of spoilers, so if you haven't seen it and are not a goldfish you may want to read something else.

I was very excited about watching this, in fact I haven't been so excited about watching a movie since I went to see The Avengers the week before. I had an early look on imdb - 9.0 rating - shit, must be a masterpiece!

9.0? Do me a fucking favour. I'm guessing that must be due to the fucking cast and crew going on there and spunking lies.

For me the first rule of sci-fi is that it must be plausible. If it ain't then I'm switching off straight away. And this ain't.

We open up with a black eyed human looking figure on a desolate, presumably primordial, Earth, committing suicide. He does this by drinking a tincture that makes his body crumble into dust, his DNA unraveling before our very cameras. If you thought there was a chance he might survive this he dismisses your futile hopes by throwing himself off a massive and beautiful waterfall just to make sure the job is done.

Shoot forward three billion years to 2089 and a pair of scientific cunts are in a cave in Scotland looking at a primitive cave painting, featuring a human figure and five stars. This arrangement of stars has been found in paintings all through the ancient world, which leads the biological ballbags to conclude that this must be the location of an alien race that spawned humans and planted them on Earth. OK, there is an arrangement of five stars, that must be a fucking nightmare to locate, what with the billions of stars in the galaxy. No, actually, it's unique. There's only one known place where five stars look like that. Phew! Let's go there.

And they're right - the aliens did spawn us - in fact our DNA is identical to theirs! Wow, that's incredible - drop some alien DNA on an old Earth, never mind that the tincture unraveled it, allow for three billion years of selective mutation and there you have it, in amongst millions of living creatures springs a genetically identical creature - well except for the black eyes, and the fact that humans are much smaller than their goth alien counterparts.What a load of cock.

Then it slowly meanders about being scary, and visually stunning, but without explaining anything.

It tries to insert some old crap about Catholicism that has as much gravitas as a fart in a black hole. Then there's the revelation that the mad billionaire is actually the father of the psycho bitch from hell who is running the show. Wow, didn't see that coming. Actually, I did. Not that anyone gave a shit anyway because the characters were undeveloped and cliched.

In an interview Ridley Scott says it leaves a lot of unanswered questions, leading to the possibility of a sequel. No, you cynical cunt, you made a half finished movie that required a sequel to explain all the fucking holes in the first one.

Which is an incredibly unsatisfying thing to watch - do you get that Ridley?

Monday, 21 May 2012

Why We Must Keep Grot in Our Woods

A little while ago I was working for a games company and I went to this convention type thing and there was  this little cunt playing Guitar Hero.

The screen was going ape shit crazy, psychedelic circles flying towards the screen on a fretboard conveyor belt, whilst some virtual prick ponced about in the background. I was having an acid flashback and his fingers were flying - he was breaking all records.

As he wandered past afterwards, expecting veneration, I said "you do realise that if you'd put all those hundreds of hours of practice into learning the actual guitar Kim Kardashian would be sucking you off right now". I didn't really, I just thought it and snarled at him. The point is, Activision have discontinued the game and those fingers are now good for nothing but a data entry job and the relief of anal itches. Who's the winner? I'd like to say me, but we know that's not true.

I thought, why the fuck are people so happy to spend so much of their lives gaining skills that in the real world are absolutely useless? Is it a niche thing? All the real positions are taken, so people console themselves with being the best in a virtual world, and if you're shit in that too then you can just create play offline and be the best in your own little universe?

Or is it because everything is now on tap? Am I thirsty? Yeah, better go to the shop and get some sugary orange flavoured piss down my gullet. Have I got a dick? Yeah, turn on the laptop, type in any two words and insert hand into pants.

Is it demotivating? When I was a kid we had the sugary pisswater, but the smut was a scarce resource - we had to work for it.

I'd go on these epic bike rides with my mates – our folks probably thought we were training for team GB, but we weren’t thinking of the Olympic velodrome, we were just looking for the nearest patch of wood. If we saw more than five trees within a foot of each other we were off those bikes and scratching around.

We did it because then there was a code of chivalry. As soon as you had a regular girlfriend, or got married, you'd get your stash of porn and you take it to the nearest wooded area, you put it in a carrier bag, along with a pair of soiled knickers, to prove that you are now fucking someone, and you'd leave them there for some hormone crazed teenagers to discover. Of course, if you were the teenagers discovering them you couldn't take them home, mum's radar was too powerful, but you wouldn't hide them in the woods either, fuck no. You'd hide them in ditches.

We had a network going that was more comprehensive than the fucking ley lines. I could be anywhere in the county of Essex and know that I was never more than half a mile from a hedgerow wank, and when you’re fifteen that’s an important thing to know.

It was a motivating force for an entire generation. Because of its scarcity it encouraged competition and creativity. At weekends you could see different groups of kids applying different tactics. Some adopted sedative type strategies, paralyzing their parents because they suspected there might well be a stash lurking in the house somewhere. I wanted to be one of those, but my dad was too straight. I found a mag in my mum's drawer though, but that only had Italian men with massive wangers in it and, frankly, that was scarring for me and my transitional cock. So I had to tag along with the fucking bikers.

 I didn’t want to but it was my only avenue. My ninja climbing claws hadn't arrived from America yet and I sure as fuck wasn’t going to be one of the cunts that just walked into shops and ordered it. That was the approach of another mate of mine. He couldn’t come on the bike rides because his parents never taught him to ride, so it was his only option. But it fucked him. He didn't have to graft - like him it came too easily. In order to avoid wanking himself into dust he had to up the stakes. By the time he was eighteen he couldn't get off unless it involved a gran having a piss over someone.  But we went miles for ours – we earned every wank, and so a pair of tits and a bum were always enough for us. Except one.

As soon as we found our first stash that was it – he was hooked. He’d take off every evening and weekend on his chopper, then go home and thrash about with his other chopper. Before long he was touring the whole country.

Whilst I can't tell you his name I can say that it’s served him well -he's now a Tour de France legend. One of the greatest cyclists of his generation started out scratching around Essex with us lot looking for smut. And I wonder - is it still the motivating force? Is it the prospect of what might lay around the next corner the thought that carries him up all those mountains? Every time I switch on the telly to watch him compete I’m terrified he’s going to catch an errant carrier bag out of the corner of his eye and that will be it – he’ll be off his saddle with his conscience in his hand, pumping away, and his tour will be over for another year.

Sunday, 6 May 2012

What the Fuck is up With the Super Rich?

Whilst I was doing some research for my radio play I came across the news story that an Australian billionaire is making a Titanic 2 - not the movie, the ship - and I thought, 'quite fucking right, why the hell aren't the rest of them doing the same?'

For example, Roman Abramovich, the Russian oligarch is worth 9 billion pounds. What's he doing with it? Buying massive yachts and football clubs. What is this - you can either have money or an imagination, but you can't have both?

Fucking hell, if I was him I would have twenty big dicks surgically attached to my torso so I could fuck ten women at once. I would have my anus removed and replaced with a solid gold one. I would set up a laboratory to explore space travel and I would build a life sized Millennium Falcon in my garden, complete with gun turrets, so at least I could blow away any troublesome pigeons that dine out on the ostentatious discards I would litter my garden with from the night before. I wouldn't buy a football team, I would buy the league. I would decorate my team with useless old fucks and make sure they won every game.

Bill Gates is worth 50 billion. Why hasn't he bought Alaska? He could employ 500 million Indians to walk there and build a 50 mile high pyramid, made from obsidian and marble, complete with a 2 mile wide plasma TV, offering split screen viewing, so he could watch the baseball and keep an eye on his share prices at the same time. If I had 50 billion dollars I wouldn't rest until I was the first human being to physically fly. With that kind of cash I could get scientists to attach actual workable eagle wings to my back. Whilst they're working on that I'd get them to insert miniature hovercrafts into the soles of my feet so at least I could embarrass Dave Blaine in the meantime.

Hmm, maybe that's why they've got billions and I haven't.


Saturday, 21 April 2012

Bad Religion

Have you noticed how hard it is to maintain a life in which nothing happens?

I've tried very hard lately to make that happen, but every time something comes along to kick me out of my snug little blanket. Usually, it's been my mum "Garth, get out of your flat and do something, before you go blind". Most of the times she says this I'm not actually masturbating (I hear her coming up the stairs), but I appreciate her sentiment.

Nature, the universe, the interaction of simple systems to make a dynamic matrix of unimaginable complexity is something beyond all our control. Unless your middle name is Yahweh, of course. But then, if you were God, and you understood all this,and you were aware of the hydrogen atoms fusing into helium on a star a billion billion light years away from the Milky Way galaxy, and gold shooting out of a supernova at 30,000m/s somewhere near Andromeda, would you really give a shit when some little twerp on an insignificant planet, called Earth by a fraction of its inhabitants, asked you if you could make sure his mum always wore clogs?

I can understand an elite athlete like Lionel Messi or Vinny Testeverde making the sign of the cross and looking up into the heavens, "Thanks oh Lord, for your blessing again this day." If you've just scored your thirteenth consecutive hattrick, or thrown a 56 yard Hail Mary for the superbowl then you're going to feel special, like the lord has reserved a place for you. You're not going to feel like a statistic, a probability, the acme of the process of natural selection, the fittest to survive that challenge, the culmination of the genotypic and phenotypic expression required for that particular discipline.

Lionel, if you're reading this, which you probably won't want to after losing in El Clasico, you need to give yourself and your trainers a pat on the back. You did it! You had a head start. Genetically you are predisposed towards success, but you still had to earn it. Lots of twats fell by the wayside, maybe a couple of which could've been better than you. Maybe I was one of these, I suspect it every time I recall that through ball against St Leonard's under nines. Bernie Cooper, the little prick, was too busy arguing with their left back to get on the end of it, and my destiny was changed forever. 

When Fabrice Muamba collapsed on the pitch a while back I remember the girlfriend at the time saying 'keep your prayers coming, they're keeping him alive', I couldn't help but think, 'actually, it's a state of the art hospital and some unbelievably dedicated people, working from the moment he collapsed, that have been keeping him alive, and that whilst faith is an admirable trait that can keep people going, it detracts from the real heroes and denies them the credit they deserve.'

I really don't know what we're going to do on a planet inhabited by seven billion when people start to realise that the solace they gain from religion is a lie designed to placate them, that they have been fobbed off with the promise of paradise in the afterlife to appease the fact that they are an inconsequential workhorse in this one.

Two options. Internet and ipods in every house as a like for like replacement, or we conquer complexity and make causality predictive. Maybe we will take that aspect of godhood and give it a human face.

That last sentence didn't really mean anything, but it did sound profound so I left it in.

Monday, 16 April 2012

Movie Review - Limitless

I realise this is a bit late, but I was thinking about this movie the other day, so thought I'd write about it.

For those who haven't seen it, the basic premise is that Bradley Cooper is a scruffy haired writer who is such a lazy, meandering prick, a semi-on if you like, that he's fucking up this book deal he's got. Oh, and his girlfriend's had enough of him and his shitness so she's walked. Then he runs into this drug dealer, played by Dr Octopus's son - oh no, it's not him, it's someone else, bloody hell, he looks a lot like him. Anyway, this dealer asks him if he wants to try this new nootropic drug which will allow him to access all 100% of his brain's potential power. 

I know what you're thinking - 100%? wow, but don't we all do that anyway, right? Yes we do, this particular myth was busted before the last castrato lost his knackers, but, hey, go along with it.

Bradley says yes, he'll take it.What a transformation. Suddenly his unkempt ponytail is neat and precise and his eyes become a piercing blue. I'm really not sure about the scientific viability of eye hue changing, and as for the hair -anyone heard of Einstein? That guy was about as close to the fully actualized human as we've yet achieved and did he brush his hair meticulously? Course he fucking didn't - he had much more important shit  to do, like work out how the universe works.

So, to what does our Brad direct his newly found powers? To solve the most fiendish conundrums of the scientific world? To write the most incredible poetry, books and music? To advance human consciousness through the development of a new social system?


He figures out patterns on the stock market and makes a shit load of cash, which makes him some powerful enemies, a cat and mouse chase ensues etc, yawn.

Now, am I the only cunt around who thinks this a little sad? When this plot point came around I took a look around the cinema and thought, why is everyone buying this? That if you suddenly possess the greatest brain in history, then naturally your priority will be to make as much doe as possible. It's a fucking sad indictment on humanity that people watching weren't standing up and shouting at the screen "give us something that doesn't revolve around the worship of cash you movie making wankers!"

Hey ho.