Three Hoodies Save the World

Constant moaning and whinging about everything

Archive for the month “November, 2013”

I’m too stupid to be a real author

About eighteen months ago I decided to write a horror novel. The only reason for this was because I’d never done it before. It’s called Kongomato and is to the right of this blog. The reason it has such an odd/boring name is because the monster is supposedly real and the names with which it’s known all over Africa vary greatly. The one I chose the only one which possessed even the slightest mystery.

I enjoyed it. Lots of blood and profanity which was a real departure from everything I’d thus far written. And when it finally came to the end in a very enjoyable (for me) splatter-fest, I was happy.

That was where the experiment ended. The monsters were dead, although I did leave a little snippet of a cliffhanger, but only because that was the norm in a lot of old B movies. Right, back to my one true love: SF.

The problem was – not that I’m complaining – that it sold moderately well and that’s when I began receiving requests for the sequel.

Except there couldn’t be a sequel because everyone was dead – probably, because I’d never even considered a sequel.

Regardless, I forged on and it wasn’t until I got half way through the second, using a minor character from the first as the main hero, when I realised that it couldn’t be done. First, it would be pointless, and second, it would cheat the reader.

So how could I resurrect the old character – who was dead?

Now it’s finished and I’m on the third edit but it’s driving me bonkers trying to undo what I did in the first book without cheating. And the reason I can’t stop now is because number three, an obvious extension of the second, is half done.

Thus the lesson for today, if only to me, as most other writers would actually stop and take this into account before they began is: don’t burn your bridges. Or in my case, destroy your monsters and actually kill off your hero.

I think I’ve managed it, though I suspect that my usual 10/12 edits are not going to be nearly enough this time.

And if nothing else, my prospective cover will have to go; it’s about as frightening as a slightly miffed hamster.



Apparently I wasn’t in pain – until I went to the dentist

“There’s a lot of holes in here. “What happened?”
And there was me thinking I’d gone to the dentist. I looked hurriedly around in case I’d wandered into the newsagent by mistake.”

“You took them out.” His face fell as if the very concept was one he’d never come across before. “But feel free to put them back if you like.”
Ignoring my attempts at humour he asked, “So what seems to be the problem?

“Duuurrr, pain, real hurty pain, in my teeth.” He frowned, unimpressed by my scathing wit and examined the xrays he’d just taken. I pointed to the offending gnasher to no avail. He poked and prodded every tooth in my mouth and then in desperation at my absolute refusal to scream, reverted to plan B by cramming my mouth full of ice and set about smashing my teeth with an iron bar – or so it felt.

“Any pain now?” he enquired hopefully, staring up towards the tastefully lowered ceiling where I was hanging by my fingernails.

“*** you” I almost screamed but contented myself with “Of course there’s pain. I’ve got toothache!!! ”

“Well it’s your own fault, you haven’t been here for two years.” I wonder why.

“The only thing wrong with your teeth is that they’re filthy, he shuddered in revulsion as he recovered from the sight of my ghastly maw. “They’ll need to be scaled. Are you using that Hollywood Gleem?” He often speaks in italics, perhaps as a result of listening to gibberish or the screams of his victims all day.

“Because if you are you’d better stop as what’s left of your pearly whites will be history in six months. Get some Repair and Protect.”

“Ah,” I said, quite cleverly I thought, ” but you can’t repair, or renew enamel according to you.”

“This stuff can.” I decided not to enquire if he was on some kind of retainer from Colgate as he turned with a flourish. “That’ll be…..pounds.”

“What about the National Health?” He smiled indulgently as if enduring the questions of a small child or particularly dense simpleton.

“Not for teeth. Come back next month and we’ll clean them. That’ll be the end of your problems.” He’d cleverly cleared anything with which I might have slaughtered him so I left with a snarl.

And if all that were not bad enough, on the way back from the alleged dentist I stopped off to get my hair cut. Now I’m fully aware that the flushes of my youth are gone but afterwards the cheeky little sod asked if I wanted a pensioner’s discount. I nearly stabbed him with his own scissors

I’m a worm but I don’t care.

Three months ago I began a new, full time job. I like it a lot and as it’s my first non-agency job for almost four years, I didn’t want to blow it. So for the last six weeks I’ve been suffering (quietly) from what feels like terminal toothache. I still have three months left on my probation so I didn’t want to take time off for frivolities.

Luckily this week my boss is away so tomorrow I’m going to the dentist. I think he’s going to yank two teeth and I absolutely cannot wait. I know, sad and pathetic, but it’s been a great way of losing weight. Fear of agony does that kind of thing – for me anyway. Those instant temporary fillings – rubbish. Pain killers – I’m immune to local anaesthetic so imagine my amusement when I woke up half way through the operation to extract my burst appendix.

Bring on the needle. The last time I went to the dentist and told her of my strange affliction vis a vis painkillers, she smiled grimly “Really?” she grunted as if her street cred was being impugned, “We’ll see about that.” Ten minutes later, happily zoned out, my entire body frozen and be-numbed, she informed me that she’d injected me with about a pint of ketamine. I didn’t know at the time what it was really used for. Do horses get toothache? The wisdom tooth slipped out in a flash and I dragged myself back home hanging onto every shop on the way with legs trying to stagger in every direction at the same time. I was nearly arrested for being drunk and disorderly.

My kindly dentist isn’t there tomorrow so I hope she keeps good records, because if I ask the new dentist for ketamine he’s probably going to throw me out, and presumably into the arms of the local feds. I don’t care provided the offending tooth stays inside.

Apparently I’m trending

Someone just pointed out that my Three Hoodies (1) book is trending on Koobug.

Anyone who hasn’t stumbled across Koobug yet should definitely have a look. Not because I’m trending but because its a good site with many bloggers. They’re a good bunch. It hasn’t resulted in any sales yet but trending is a first for me. The first, in fact, since some girl told me I was cute once. For about ten minutes in July of 1974. That doesn’t matter, because being cute even for a moment is better than never being cute at all.

I’ve finally re-re-re edited The book of Pain and now I’m going to leave it alone for a few weeks while I begin re-re-re editing the second of my Kongomato books. I’ve already finished the third Hoodies novel but aren’t sure if I’m ever going to publish it. I think it’s the best yet but I haven’t actually found a niche for Y/A SF comedy yet, so I’m going to reawaken my Old Geezers from their slumbering flatulent doze.

Here’s a piece from Kongomato two: a small section of light heartedness preceding blood, mayhem and terror. I’m worried that I’m beginning to like the sound of those words.

Steve Garner was not a villain in the real sense of the word. He was a chancer; a peculiar colloquial expression which described him perfectly. Below average in height and build and despite a clear need, financial circumstances and pride had, and never would allow him to seek an optician. Thus his life and world were an indistinct blur amid which he plotted his many but always hapless strategies towards untold wealth; none of which ever included an honest day’s work. Paid labour was the reserve of weaklings born to sloth and anonymity. This was not for him. Only one good strike stood between him and a yacht in the warm climes of the tropics. That he had no idea exactly what or even where the tropics were made little difference.

This lack of worldly knowledge was due in part by his premature departure from official education or, more precisely, his forceful eviction from his fourth and final senior school by the police at the age of fifteen. Thus his nine subsequent years had been a monotonous procession of failed robberies or burglaries and on one unfortunate occasion a mistaken attempt to rob a bank, only discovering at the last moment that it had been abandoned three weeks earlier, to the amusement of the guards whose sole job was to protect the lead atop the ancient Victorian roof.

Steve never planned his jobs, as he called them. If something caught his eye, he did it, or took it. As in his first real crime: car theft. If some old biddy was stupid enough to leave her motor burbling away at the curb outside Tesco then whose fault was it if it got nicked? Certainly not his, a bored sixteen year old with wealth on his mind. So he had, driving jerkily away as learning the workings of a manual gearbox was just another job he’d failed to master. Pursued firstly by a screaming, hobbling pensioner and finally by a bored police driver guided by a thick cloud of burning smoke from a quickly roasting clutch. That the engine had irretrievably seized twenty minutes later allowing the smiling copper to arrest him and a harried magistrate to imprison him for six months, was simply a downside of the “profession.”

You can tell that it’s going to end badly for someone this stupid; especially when there’s monsters about.

It’s been a long, hard week so I’m going to whine, just a little.

I drive the most expensive cars in the world on a daily basis.

Ooooh, hark at him, I hear you say.

I’m not boasting, it’s just my job. As with every other job, there are complete plonkers about and just as with every other job they always seem to get away with the most extraordinarily stupid things. So here is a short list of the stuff that winds me up on a daily basis. This is not the lot but Google’s servers couldn’t cope, and as these are only my opinion hopefully nobody will sue me to death, or send the boys round.

Ferrari Who’s stupid idea was it to put indicator switches on the steering wheel? Sounds okay if you don’t think about it too much. You try indicating the other way when you’re half way round a corner. And don’t get me started on that gearbox…Stupido

Porsche The guy who came up with a foot operated parking break for a manual Cayenne should have been slapped. The guy who okayed it should have been publicly flogged…Dummkopfs.

Lexus Inserting a hybrid engine as well as a petrol motor might sound like a good idea, until you leave so little room that I have to keep filling up the tank every fifteen minutes…馬鹿

BMW After driving automatics for years, imagine my chagrin when after slamming the gear leaver into park and getting out, I then had to chase the car down the road because the 7 series has reverse where the park should be…Trottels

Mercedes Why must merc boots open out as well as up. After you’ve been biffed on the chin by a marauding boot lid a few times it really loses it’s amusement value…Schwachsinnige.

Mercedes SLS What utter simpleton decided to put gull wings on a car meant for the city? Did the designers ever try to open or close the damned doors in the city?…

Give me a Nissan anytime.

Right, I’m fine now. Back to some writing.

forty hours on my brain is melting

After stopping for a few hours sleep I finally finished the third edit of The Book Of Pain.

I’ve cut it to ribbons and all the irrelevant nonsense is gone, but it’s still over five hundred pages long. I sometimes think authors are like those people you see on the documentaries about hoarders. We’ve thought it up, nurtured and cherished it and are loathe to let it go. Well now I have. Every remaining scene is essential to the plot and I hope it will be the best thing I’ve ever written – so far. I’ll leave that for my wonderful beta readers to decide. I believe I can finish it in another 2/3 edits but for the time being, I’ll carry one with Kongomato 2 – the third edit.

That’s if I don’t commit Cat-ricide first – is that a word? The little bleeder is driving me bonkers. She’s like Tigr on speed, and as for Sassy, my daughter’s other cat, I grieve for her. Her world has been turned upside down – literally. Behind those wide eyes is a little demon in disguise.


Who needs two hands?

Okay, so Halloween didn’t go quite without a hitch but then I didn’t expect it to and my other hand should be fine pretty soon.

In the vaguest chance that I’m the only person in the world who ever tried, don’t try to lift a two hundred pound motorbike off your foot, when it a: raining, and B: when it’s really, really hot, and C: when you’re on the side of a road upon which five hundred cars per minute are passing at near supersonic speed.

In a week when I couldn’t write, I decided that Old Geezers 2 was in fact going to be Old Geezers 3, then after I’d begun to arrange it and done an amazing load of work given my digital impairment, suddenly realised that I couldn’t without trashing the thread of the whole series. Also, the paradox (you know how I love paradoxes) would have been completely snaffued, and I’ve been working on that for over two years so it’s back to plan A. Thank goodness for quantum time-lines.

I should be finished with the latest edit of Book of Pain tomorrow so then it’s back to edit four of Kongomato 2. Back to gore and blood and guts – lovely. Just like my own life, really but without the pleasure.

Been doing more painting again on my tablet. That’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it. I spent months learning all about perspective but seem to have forgotten all of it in this one. So tomorrow I’ll give the art world a break and get back to writing. I’ll also have a photo of my offspring’s new kitten tomorrow. It weighs all of five ounces but has the attitude of a rabid fox.

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