Frivolous Monsters

Archive for the category “A Personal Life”

A Star of Essex Radio

As I hibernated through the recession the effects of this were more acutely visible elsewhere when, as part of a never-ending series of cutbacks, the Council did away with their Arts Development Officer post and therefore putting the kybosh on the local writing group.

Essex

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Finally, a Success

At this time BBC Radio Drama launched their biennial competition – the Alfred Bradley Bursary Award (ABBA), the self-styled most prestigious radio drama prize in the country – to encourage new radio writing in the North of England. The winner was to be awarded a cash bursary, mentorship, and to get their script produced as an afternoon play on Radio 4.

Radio 4 and 2

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Ballroom Dancing

Having attended the local Council writing group since its inception I’d clearly got in with the Arts Development Officer, Farrell, because whilst I offered to help her out generally I did also manage to pick up small amounts of paid work from her.

HM Revenue and Customs form

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Invasion of the Costa Coffees

Having given up the University refectory I set out to find a local café I could call my own, which was within walking distance because I could no longer fork out the extortionate amounts the buses were charging, and this luckily coincided with the local invasion of the many Costa Coffees.14 Settling on the original, right by the market, I therefore set out my stall to reside in there for as much as I could, surrounded by the inspirational panoramic view through their goldfish bowl windows, and I dreamed of becoming the J.K. Rowling of Bury.

Costa Invasion

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Becoming A Professional Writer

To gain writing experience this time around I tried to avoid this sort of long-distance nonsense and enrolled on a history of short film course at the Cornerhouse; travelled to a workshop for writing radio drama in London; paid fifty pounds to get the inside track on an upcoming BBC sitcom from its producer; travelled to hear professional playwrights and TV writers; enrolled on writing, scriptwriting, and acting courses at the Oldham Coliseum; and on the back of a local Council-run course I got my first short theatre piece performed at the Bury Met.7 The greatest thing you can say about that was how the Mayor of Bury walked out on it: and he was there officially, chain and all.

Texas

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Horror Film Writer

It took me a long time to realise that I write because it is within me. That it needs to out. And looking back throughout my life it’s emerged from me in some form or another from unfinished childish jotting to a couple of short stories sent to magazines; and from a student website built from scratch to programmes for parties after I’d told people that parties required such a thing; and all of this despite being a slow reader where English was my weakest subject.

hammer-title-card

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Good Fortune

I used to work for a living. That, I can say. And it was after commuting for an hour into the centre of Manchester every morning on public transport, then hightailing it another thirty minutes out the other side, that I eventually got into the routine of stopping off at the university canteen just before journey’s end, full of eager students and hard-hatted building site workmen, for a hot cup of coffee and a couple of toasted teacakes.

cards

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…in an Exciting Adventure with the Police – Part 02

In phoning 999 I’d teamed up with the Police to battle against the forces of darkness, those which emerge beyond the witching hour, but from our hero’s arrival at the scene of the crime time was already running out to solve the mystery of the woman in the sunken garden before the sun came up.

police-banner-2

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…in an Exciting Adventure with the Police – Part 01

I am like a one-man Neighbourhood Watch. It didn’t pass our attention when someone mysteriously spray-painted one of our hedgehogs with a big cross on its back and I eventually became aware of the patterns of a certain twenty-something blonde neighbour whose hours seemed to be so in keeping with mine that I naturally deduced that she could hardly be a normal functioning member of society; although this was before I started to really pay attention to her activities and I got a right eyeful, because it turns out that she isn’t shy, and what with all the costume changes and the hours spent in front of her full-length mirror in various states of undress that I began to wonder if she was a right Belle de Jour. And I don’t mean in the blogging way.

Police banner.jpg

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A Christmas Eve Horror Story

I seem to keep my neighbours under close observation and scrutiny; from the man who looks like a beetroot Roy Kinnear over the back, to his neighbour whose wandering hands creep into our garden over the fence to very visibly snip through all our creepers which climb up his patchy conifer that overhangs our garden, but this Christmas Eve tale of English horror revolves around the house next door to us which, at the beginning of 2016, was still for sale after being briefly haunted by a previous owner who still had unfinished business in this realm.

horror

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