How Sci Fi makes you doo-lally.

A chain, three double crochets, and a 6mm hook

It maybe that I’ve lost my mind; it maybe that I’m beginning the end; it may even be that Nathan Lowell’s Trader Tales space opera about the life and times of Ishmael Wang has me too captivated. I honestly don’t know, but whatever the cause I’ve taken up crochet.

When I was knee high to a grasshopper—admittedly a very large boy sized grasshopper—my dad had a bad back and was consequently laid up in bed, where he taught himself to knit (that the sweater he made was too heavy and too large to wear is for another blog). The point is: knitting captivated him for a while—or was that his bad back? No. He was a captive in his bed and started knitting. Yes, that’s the way it was. Anyway, that’s neither here nor there. The next point is: he wasn’t worried about people sniggering at him.

And neither am I. I’m inordinately proud of my chain, and those three double crochets. You have no idea (unless you crochet, too) how hard that achievement was to achieve: bloody hard, that’s how hard it was. There’s miles of discarded wool lying around in small heaps all over the house, as well as a lot of blue tinged language littering the ether and heading for Proxima Centauri.

So, if you’d like to listen to some excellent Sci Fi that might—or might not—get you drooling for a ball of wool and a crochet hook, then download Nathan Lowell’s stellar podcast HERE. The one that starts you crocheting is ‘Half Share’, but best to start at the beginning with ‘Quarter Share.’ I can almost guarantee you’ll listen to them all—and maybe even start crocheting, too. 🙂


Utterly in love

Want, want, want, want, want...!


It began a few days ago when I was wandering the highways and byways of St. Leonards. I stumbled into this second hand emporium on Kings Road and found a cheap Roland R8 and wanted it. It was pretty peachy back in the day. But the day was some fifteen or so years ago. Still, it would have been nice.

I walked away. Brave.

Let the fingers do the walking. I was miles away, yet suddenly I was on eBay’s Roland R8 auctions. Meh. I could just about ill afford one, but ‘honestly, grow up!’ I said to myself.

And then! Oh god, and then!

I thought I’d just check out new gear. Just have a look. You know. I didn’t really want anything, particularly. Except I have all these songs I want to record and the studio is a long way away, especially when you don’t have a car. So a little cheap recorder would be nice.

Notice cheap in the previous sentence.

Fuck me dead with a barge pole! How much?!

Want, want, want, want, want!!!!

Put it this way: If I were marketable I’d be strolling the red light district. No, really, I would.

A 24 track SDHD digital recorder for under £350. FUCK!

Underwood & Flinch

Underwood & Flinch

I’m now listening to Underwood & Flinch, another podcasted novel from the most worthy and excellent Mike Bennett. As I write it’s posted to episode 32. U&F is split into two parts, and I’ve just finished part one (21 episodes). Mmm.

It’s basically a vampire tale, though I won’t tell you what goes on except that it’s very well written, very well performed (Bennett’s accents are extremely good), entertaining, peachy, and deserves hearing. So do!

Download it at iTunes, or at

Mur Lafferty and ‘Marco and the Red Granny’

I like podcasts. Some are entertaining, some are interesting, and some are both. Considering I’m a musician, a writer, and have worked in media I came to podcasting very late – but that’s neither here nor there.

So, I offer up a hugely talented author and her latest podcast. I found Mur Laffety via last year when I stumbled upon ‘Heaven’, an ‘adventure in the afterlife’. I was gobsmacked (if you don’t know the word it equates to ‘amazed’).

A lot of podcasts later – and I’m not talking about the magazine programme format that a lot of them use, but real storytelling – and Mur has released a new one. I haven’t heard it yet, either. But I’m convinced, absolutely convinced it’ll be good. 🙂

Marco and the Red Granny

I’d offer the trailer, but sadly, unless I pay a load of wonga I don’t have, I can’t stream audio or video. C’est la vie. However, click HERE and listen to Marco and the Reg Granny at Or try Mur Lafferty’s own site: The Murverse.

And let me know what you think. Happy listening! 🙂