Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The Next Big Thing Meme

You may have heard I have a new book out.  You haven't? Well, the ebook is already available, and the POD will be out sometime soon. To mark this historic event I though I'd have a go at 'The Next Big Thing Meme', ten questions about the book.

1. What is the name of your book? Apollo the Thirteenth. I was trying to think of a film title I could rip-off...errr...pay homage to and I remembered Friday the Thirteenth and Apollo 13.  The natural choice was to join them together, especially as Apollo 13 appears in the story.

2. Where did the idea for your book come from? The dark, deep recesses of my mind, the place where only heroes dare tread and few come out alive.

3. In what genre would you classify your book? Humour, SF adventure.

4. If you had to pick actors to play your characters in a movie rendition, who would you choose? I'd have to select myself as the character of Alan as you would need someone short, balding and chubby. Kenny Baker could take on the role of Igor, Jerry Ryan would make a good Anne, Jennifer Saunders could play Carla and Mae would be taken by Anne Hathaway.

5. Give us a one-sentence synopsis of your book. They've found the Apollo 13 Lander and though Alan and the colonies know it's a fake, a pompous archaeologist from Earth thinks otherwise.

6. Is your book already published/represented? The ebook is out already and the POD will be released soon. November 24th marks the 'official launch'.

7. How long did it take you to write your book? Seven months.

8. What other books within your genre would you compare it to? Or, readers of which books would enjoy yours? The last one was compared to The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy, and this one follows in a similar vein.  Other authors whose books can be compared to this one are Tom Holt, Robert Rankin and Harry Harrison.

9. Which authors inspired you to write this book? I refer the reader to the reply I gave above. I've also learned a lot from Stephen King, Robert Harris, JK Rowling, Stephen Hunt, Jim Butcher and Gail Carriger.

10. Tell us anything that might pique our interest in your book. It has a cute robot that would make mincemeat of R2D2, a villain with a cape and uncovers the truth behind those little stones that always manage to place themselves in the wrong place and trip you up. Oh yes, God likes her tea with milk and finds Galaxy Quest hilarious

So that's my book.  What about yours?

Finally, HAPPY HALLOWEEN.




 See you on Friday.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Confessions Of An Average Half-Writer (apologies to Lisa Shafer)

It was Saturday. I was browsing my Facebook news feed when my son shared a Youtube video featuring a mashup of Gangnam Style and Ghostbusters.

Four hours Youtube surfing later, my stomach ached after laughing at things I really shouldn't laugh at, and my mind was abuzz with some fascinating sights.

Here's a selection.





















And that was my Saturday. How was yours?


Friday, October 26, 2012

Friday Fun

Over here in the UK, Autumn has fallen rather spectacularly...and quickly. But who cares when you have such interesting and fun things to warm the heart.

First up are the videos from good old Aunty Beeb.

In Brazil, one artist has created an art-house out of an ordinary home with some rather extravagant decor, while in Poland, the world's thinnest house has been built for a writer.

One of the best stories of the week is about an Egyptian orchestra whose members are blind, and another tells us 3D printers could enable people to walk again.

More music comes a from a seven year old who's composed an opera, and other musicians are creating instruments using 3D printers.  Still on the subject of music, Gangnam style has now hit the UN with its General Secretary, Ban Ki-moon, joining Psy in the dance.

Some good news from Afghanistan now, with their first National Park opening, while in Pakistan they've set a new record for the largest human flag and a Canadian mother has struck a blow against messy kids by going on strike.

Next Wednesday it's Halloween and in New York they've got Zombie Pumpkins.

In other news, a lorry got stuck under a historic bridge in York, Glenelgs in Scotland has been twinned with its namesake on Mars, and the Dutch are planning to introduce heated cycle lanes for the winter to encourage people to cycle...and all the cats to lie down in the road.

There are many uses for a tablet computer, some of which are anatomically painful, but art is one that people are experimenting with and are producing some good results.

In the world of science, Flossie has been rebuilt. A 70's computer that starred in the Bond movie The Man With The Golden Gun, and out acted Roger Moore and Britt Ekland, it's been restored with the aim of being preserved as a working computer so part of computing history can be seen by generations of kids.

In other scientific research, they've recreated an early human in all his glory, and after that, you can read about the young graduate who made the voyager missions possible with some clever maths.

Remember Alien? Remember the tag line, 'In space no one can hear you scream'? Well, Cambridge University students are going to try and find out if this is true by recording people scream and then broadcasting it from a satellite. Alternatively they could send a few bankers up there, drop them towards Earth and see how loud they screamed.

And finally...remember last week's piece about aggressive Wi-Fi names? Well, the BBC web readership have shared some more, including FBI-Surveillance Team, and did you know that petrol can produced from thick air? That and nine other things I bet you didn't know last week.

Without further ado, it's picture time.




















































And three Hallloween pictures to put you in the mood.




On that note I bid you adieu and I'll see you on Monday.  Have a great weekend.