Donald Trump Wrote a Space Opera

Of course, the best hangars for creating atmosphere are my hangars, which I wouldn’t say myself, but many people—many people say that.

He didn’t, but I took a bet on Twitter and lost, so I had to rewrite the first chapter of my book in the style of Donald Trump, who is of course off his rocker. It was fun and extremely difficult and gave me permanent brain damage, as well as massively inflating the word count. Read it below.

Pledge to support the non-Trump version on Unbound (it’s 51% funded!) and get some sweet bonuses.

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How to Destroy the Press: Tabloid Reaction to the High Court Article 50 ruling

Quiet Quiet Bang


Reading some of the front pages today I felt physically sick. Aside from the general incoherence about the objective truth of the situation (which does not allow for the government to push Brexit through without consulting parliament, see here), I saw extraordinary levels of contempt for the independence of the judiciary. Not to mention the Daily Mail’s quickly retracted mention of the “openly gay” judge and the Sun’s lambasting of “foreign-born” Gina Miller. These remarks might be presented as facts in the case but we all know the institutional vitriol that lurks beneath.

The worst moments of 20th century history, the dictatorships, the fascism, the dark euphoria, always felt far away when I read about them at school. Suddenly it’s a little easier to envision a world where the establishment is hell bent on division and fear. Where popular anger is brought forth by…

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Rogues’ Gallery – Tess.exe

The first Rogues’ Gallery entry is complete! A huge THANK YOU to Tessa Nordgren for her generous pledge, which has earned her a place as a canonical character in the Daedalus Mole universe.

See below for the full leaked dossier. You can secure your own place in galactic history by pledging to support The Second Death of Daedalus Mole on Unbound.

Tess.exe is highly malicious… Continue reading

Six Word Sci-Fi

Damon L. Wakes

In order to spread the word about Ten Little Astronauts a little farther afield, I’m running an event on Twitter. Retweet the following to get your very own six word work of science fiction:

You can find the stories so far at #SixWordSciFi.

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The 5 best books I read this summer

Just Another Magic Monday

I’ve done a lot this summer. I went on holiday to Menorca, I saw the overgrown ruins of an old cottage back home in Solihull, and, most excitingly of all, I read a lot of books.

Some of them were distinctly average – Cary Elwes’ memoir of The Princess Bride, As You Wish, was wonderful for learning bits and pieces about one of my favourite films, but the writing was dodgy. And some books I read were kind of bad – I only got three pages into Anne Rice’s Queen of the Damned before I cringed so hard that the cringe ran all the way down my arm and flung the book back onto the shelf.

Overall, though, it’s been a very good season for reading for me. Here are some absolute gems I gobbled up.

Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell

cloud-atlasThere’s a reason Cloud Atlas got a Man Booker…

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Blueprinting Stories

If you’ve ever read a blog post about story structure then you’ll be familiar with the whole Hero’s Journey… thing. You know he’s got a thousand faces, and there’s this thing that’s like the big rock from 2001 only it represents myths? The guy who does the soup also does literary criticism? It’s confusing, I know.

If we’re going by the blogological output alone, there are three schools of thought: Continue reading

In-Between Days

or, I decided to start writing regular blog posts and this happened

I used to be much faster.

The Second Death of Daedalus Mole took years to finish, but I knocked out the first draft in a matter of months. I spent many late nights huddled over an (inexplicably dusty) laptop, tapping out shaky dialogue and abortive plotlines, often not going to bed until four or five in the morning, if at all. It clocked in at about 88,000 words. Continue reading

Strangling the Gardener – Things I Learned

When you finish the first draft of a novel, your natural instinct is to tell someone. The predictable response amongst writers is for the listener’s head to detach and start rolling through the air, drawing breath through unknown means and screeching the word ‘rewrite’ until the walls begin to close in. Dark circles blossom beneath the wallpaper. Is it blood? It might be. Continue reading