Monday, 22 August 2011

Northern Lights

Can't say no to things. Never been able to. It's why I have to apologise so often for my conduct, why I ended up spending nine months in a country where the temperature ranged between 'this would never happen in Ireland' and 'blowtorch,' and why I occasionally speaking to large groups of people about things that didn't really happen.

It does lead to adventure though. That is a definite plus.

Unfortunately this week has become one of those horrible patches of busy where I've actively had to spend time working out how I'm going to be in two places at once. We're getting close to the big Sweet Smoke & Cruelty storytelling gig (upstairs in the Twisted Pepper, Sept. 7th at 8, free in, come one come all) which is going to be pretty damn awesome. The stories are hilarious, twisted, sad and weird (usually all at once) and this is our first standalone gig, so all the stops are being pulled out. As a side point, if you are an event-organising person, put the Loft Bookshop in your Rolodex, as they're an incredibly helpful bunch of people, and the venue itself is cosy, well-equipped and very central. Tell them Dave sent you. 

(you will get nothing)

Before that happens however, I will have the joy of MCing a night of Burlesque Bingo in the Turk's Head, Templebar on Thursday. It's going to be... interesting. I've never actually MCed a bingo night before, it seems like one of those things where I should be wearing a spotted dickie bow and a truly dreadful suit. The acts are going to be excellent, there will be plenty of gorgeous people there, and I definitely think you should go, if only to see me try not to giggle when I say 'legs eleven.' Yes, I am learning the bingo lingo, I take my MC duties very seriously, thank you. (click the link above for full details)

After that (and I'm in tears at this point) there is a storytelling fundraiser for Love Songs for Losers in the Fringe. It's on Monday, is on upstairs in the Twisted Pepper at 8. There are some fantastic performers involved, and it's for what's going to be an excellent show, so I suggest you attend. More demand than suggest. I don't want to say threaten but... I am literally threatening you.

So that's the things that involve other people. Lovely people, one and all. I'm also attempting to write my very first novella, Mother Meat, for the Galaxy Sci-Fi project. Thing is, it's due very soon, and so in order to get it done I need to be getting roughly two thousand words done a day between now and the first of September. I've gotten my two in today, but I will be slightly surprised if I actually manage to get it in before the deadline. Oh well, here's to horrific optimism at my own abilities.

So... yeah. That's what I'm chewing on this week. Hopefully finding time to get fairly drunk with comrades at some point as well. Maybe fit in a Nicholas Cage marathon. 

Priorities, you know?

 Enough self-publication, however. I am very late to the bandwagon here, and I do apologise, but I have recently started watching Twin Peaks. It's just.... weird. You know when you hear someone humming a song you love, and it's only after a few moments you realise they are just the tiniest bit out-of-key? It's like that. The dialogue, the characters' reactions, everything is just half a beat off. And it's utterly brilliant. I'm a couple of episodes into the second season, and I'm trying not to skive off and watch more of it, but it isn't easy. I thoroughly recommend you acquire it by completely legal means and have a watch.

Right, okay. No more procrastination. I have a horrible story to write.

Thursday, 4 August 2011

Gin-Soaked Boy

My body is rebelling.

It has been a long week of random partying, and every cell of me is screaming that I've had enough and think the debauchery train should be derailed, if you please. This is possibly because of post-festival fatigue that I haven't recovered from, or because I've been running around planning minor projects, or my body planning its eventual revolution (where I'm dragged against my will to some kind of draconian detox clinic where the gruel is plentiful and wiry Chinese men beat me with sticks) but I do not feel quite kosher.

Still going out tonight though. I can rest when I'm dead. Which is looking more and more likely to be quite soon.

On the upside, I have spent the day delving into the mind of one Graham Tugwell. He writes vicious little stories about broken hearts and lack of God, and then we go and perform them at various venues. There are plenty of links on his site to stories he's written, all appearing in various places, and you should definitely investigate. Or if you happen to be in Dublin, we will be telling a horror story entitled 'Soundless Walk The Fallow Men' at the Milk and Cookies storytelling initiative on Tuesday in the Exchange in Templebar. It will be several types of worrying. You will probably never drink milk again afterwards.

I'll also be performing a story by my lonesome, although I'm not entirely sure which one to do. There's a weird little Neil Gaiman story about a troll that I may tell (giving credit where credit's due, obv) or I may get a chance to sit down and write something original before then, which would obviously be preferable. Come anyway, if you're Dublin-based. Free cookies! 

I'm still processing the events of the festival. It was quite the amazing, and I've got my ticket for Electric Picnic, which is presumably going to be precisely 400 times the fun. I'm seriously considering going on a massive clean-living streak before then, because otherwise my body will collapse in on itself. Maybe an extended sojourn in Cavan, where I get the story I'm planning down on paper, and start looking at a one-act play that a comrade in arms wishes me to pen. 


Currently obsessed with this song. I can't help it. Put me down.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Resume Interference

There has been a slight hiatus, mainly because I've been off working and getting drunk and meeting fun people and doing fun things, but that is ALL ENDED NOW, and I am a real person again.

How have you been?

I spent my two weeks teaching gifted children and my good God they are brilliant. Maybe it's just because they choose the subjects and they want to be there, but I get pertinent questions and bright eyes, and a lack of 'why the fuck are we here.' And teaching feeds into my innate love of theatricality, so I had great fun making random arm gestures, and alternating my snarls with calm admonishments and all the other fun things that teaching entails. I also got 'thank yous' and trust me there is nothing cuter than an 8 year old walking up to shake your hand because he enjoyed you explaining the literal translations of Harry Potter curses. 

Teaching is just one of those weird things. I always get wonderfully mixed reactions when I tell people that I teach. Most people go... 

'Oh. But it's difficult, right?'

Some people go...

'Oh... prick.'

And have a story about a teacher who was particularly cruel, immediately followed by a funny story about a teacher who was imaginatively cruel and was therefore a legend. Curse of being a teacher; you must be interesting all the time. Even if you're a terrible person, even if you run your class like a death march with the Leaving Cert at the end, give it a bit of panache and people adore you. Screw it though, I like it like that. I've never met an imaginatively strict teacher who didn't put the same level of thought into what they were actually trying to teach. 

But anyway, I ramble. (and interestingly, I love the people who are so surprised I'm a teacher because I'm a ginger. 'Surely the jokes are too much,' they say. Yes, but I've been getting them for twenty-three years and had that long to form more-than-adequate responses. Nothing spins a class faster than a teacher being funny back, it's fun to watch. Yes, we're real people too. )

I experienced my first festival this weekend. It was... amazing. I've drank lots before, and that's always fun, and I've performed in places before, and that's even better, but I may be addicted to the sense of camaraderie, however fleeting, that festivals promote.

(Naysayers may point out that it was a very small festival, only two hundred people, and it couldn't be that intense. They may be right. I've bought my Electric Picnic ticket though, let's see how thousands of peeps treat me)

I like this open walking-around-saying-hello malarkey. I like sitting outside tents in the dark drunkenly trying to roll cigarettes. I definitely like waltzing in fields. I think I may indulge in more of it.
This is a late-night-I-am-tired blog. At some point over the next few days I will rant about more things. Look forward to it.