Tag Archives: banned

Thank you Culture Northern Ireland

Thank you Culture Northern Ireland for giving me a £100 Amazon voucher (for winning a writing competition completing a survey). And thank you Gerry Anderson and politician Gregory Campbell for helping me spend it. Well, to be more precise – they had a row. But Continue reading

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Filed under art, media, Music, What I'm Reading

Banned adverts (Warning: May contain zombies)

Tom Ridgewell aka TomSka - Lincoln's Zombie Killer

With tuition fees rocketing, universities need to offer something special to attract prospective students.
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If you dig dinosaurs, pride yourself on pyromania or wish for close encounters with the walking dead – then the Zombie University of Lincoln is definitely for you. Just make sure you’re prepared.
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Pens? Check

Notebook? Check

Textbooks? Check

Sawn-off shotgun? Continue reading

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Filed under media

Still got it

Just back from the Rhythm Festival.

But how to describe it?

  • It’s where I go to feel young and clean shaven (compared to the rest of the crowd).
  • It’s where you look at the stage and say: “I thought he was dead ages ago.”
  • It’s where a blues band announces that the bass player has had a stroke, lost the power of speech except for swearing, but will sing the next number anyway. (Not good.)
  • It’s a lot better than I’m making it sound so far.
  • And it’s where you find out if past greats still have it… Or not. (And you meet the next wave too.)

S0 – Who has still got it? Continue reading

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The Banned / A New Name

Everyone’s getting banned. Aung San Suu Kyi is banned from leaving her house arrest in Burma. Ousted Honduran president Manuel Zelaya is banned from leaving the Brazilian embassy in Tegucigalpa. And now I’ve been banned from using the computer on Sundays. I proudly stand with my fellow bannees. But Sunday is past. So I can now mention a couple of things.

  1. Worrying/odd treatment of the British National Party (BNP) by BBC Radio 1’s Newsbeat show. See Guardian newspaper news story and Roy Greenslade comment.
  2. Something delightful I saw on the Cultural Snow blog.
  3. I’ve changed the name of the main character in my novel, Blackwatertown, to (ta dah) Macken. Or more fully. John Oliver Macken, aka Jack Macken, aka Jolly Macken. There now. Isn’t that a heroic moniker?

Macken’s previous name was too close to living people, who might themselves be displeased, or might themselves incur the displeasure of others incapable of differentiating fact from fiction. Bad for the health and all that.

Macken is a conflicted Catholic policeman serving in the RUC in the 1950s. After farcical encounters in the foothills of the Mourne Mountains of County Down, he is demoted from sergeant and banished to sleepy Blackwatertown near the Irish border. His arrival has far-reaching consequences: It wakes the place up; stirs up the murkiness round the mysterious death of the police officer he is replacing; sparks a new border war; and begins a sometimes dark, sometimes funny, wild ride through the politics of sexuality, sectarianism, loyalty and what it means to belong.

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Filed under media, Music, My Writing, politics