Thursday, 30 August 2012

SUPERHUMANS UNITED


There's another Olympics thing going on, only this time it looks a lot more worthwhile (if you click on the link here you can watch a really moving video promoting the Paralympics that the pic is lifted from).  Our Man watched the explosions and thought about the limbs being blown off and wondered: do disfigured Afghani civilians get to compete against maimed NATO troops? Because that would sure as hell be some powerful healing-the-differences-that-divide-us-through-sport shit.

Or is this just another chance to tot up how many medals our nation gets against others? Our Man hopes that all the struggles the Paralympians have gone through cement a sense of unity rather than national division. Not being in Blighty he has no reliable way of reading the local mood, but he hopes it won't become another exercise in flag waving, as the bunting on the athletes' shirts implies.

Carry on.

Friday, 24 August 2012

ROUTINE CREATIVITY


“When you're a kid, if you watch 'The Jeffersons' with your family at seven o'clock, it seems like a natural phenomenon, like the sun setting. The universe is a strange, strange place when all of a sudden you can't use your glass with the Bionic Woman on it any more.” 

Our Man said to himself he would take August off, and he has. And it's been Hell -- he hasn't written a thing worth keeping. He's coming round to the view that far from being constraining, routine is vital to creativity. Or put it this way, if he doesn't force himself to sit down in front of the computer for at least an hour or two every day, he just doesn't write. Without that discipline to stick to the routine, the routine distractions of life take over.

So be it. 

From September, Our Man is gonna grab that work ethic like a Puritan in heat, and dust off a few projects that have been tugging at his heart, including:
  • An essay on Tokyo Disneyland. He can barely bring himself to write it as his feelings toward the place are as, how you say, conflicted as those he has toward the Olympics, Japanese school sports days and North Korea. But write it he must as the research involved will provide background fodder for...
  • The sequel to Hana Walker's Half-Life 2:46... codenamed Escape. Our Man has already written the bare bones of Chapter 1 -- as a 500-word short story for Kimie Cat's fiction contest; he knows how the book's gonna end and he's got the hang of using italics, so the rest is just about routine, aka putting-backside-in-chair-and-getting-off-twitter.
  • Inputting corrections to Half-Life and How to Write About Japan (notably confusion between a moose and a mousse) and exploring non-Amazon ways to get the books out, including...
  • Publishing a print version of Half-Life.
  • Start work on a long-term literary-ish project, so dastardly, so unlikely, so half-baked that it doesn't even have a code name yet.
BTW, Our Man took this pic late last night on the meander home in the tunnel under the tracks that Hana Walker ran barefoot through in her book, as Our Man is sure you all remember, ahem.

Carry on.

Thursday, 16 August 2012

TOKYO QUAKE STORY



Our Man is back in the bunker and first item in the overflowing in-box is this rather good documentary from last year that Our Man was lucky enough to be featured in. Matt Schley did a lovely job of pulling this all together a month or so after the quake and just released it for public consumption last week.

Things have changed of course since the movie was shot and Herr Schley was good enough to do a postscript interview in which Our Man was given free rein to say what he thought now that a decent chunk of time has passed. Our Man would only add to THAT INTERVIEW that he is not nearly as critical of the foreign media as the documentary might make him appear.

Our Man would rather err on the side of sensationalism than suck up a bucket of government propaganda any day.

Anyway, make of it all what you will. Carry on.

Saturday, 4 August 2012

NO DEBRIEFING FOR A WHILE


Our Man is going deep undercover for a week or so. If he can post an update or two without compromising himself, he'll happily debrief you, as and when.

Carry on.