Frivolous Monsters

Archive for the tag “Culture”

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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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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Archive TV

This may be of interest to no-one, but I was asked by Ben Ricketts, of the Curious British Telly blog, to contribute to his article on why people love Archive TV. He asked for a couple of hundred words from contributors…I ended up with a thousand. The interesting full blog can be read here with my contribution reprinted below. archive-tv Read more…

The Reading Room 08 – The Final End

I do not cope well with change. Of that I am sure. For my kamikaze writing career I’d come to rely upon my small table outside the toilet in Costa Coffee and the reading room in the library, as they were the only places in town where you could sit quietly and do some work1, and so I was therefore distraught when I was cast out of the reading room, beyond the reach of spiritually bereft librarians for ever, and it had nothing to do with hanging about with strange men in there like you might imagine. Library

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Toilet Tales 01

     The Daily Telegraph finally got with the programme and printed an article on “café conquerors”, and “coffee shop lingerers”; those hardy souls who consider the price of a coffee to be the rent for office space, which they then proceed to hog, so it’s nice to know that I’m clearly a trend-setter seeing as how I got in on the act before it became over-fashionable. A trend-setter and an all-round menace to society, it seems.

bury Read more…

Local Legends

I do love a local legend; the affectionate term for the group of characters who, combined, can be defined as the people who make our communities unique; whilst, individually, they can be summed up as that nutter who lives down the road. I once found a national website called Local Legends, compiled from local contributions, which chronicled some of these hardy heroes who clog up our high streets. Looking up the local area the most amusing feature seemed to be someone called Mad Denis who had a biography which lets the reader know that he’s mad, and that he’s ginger, and that he’s well known for “showing off his large belly and shouting “I am the Lord” at the top of his voice”. I like it how his biographer felt compelled to finish off this Who’s Who entry with: “Not to be approached”.

Board Read more…

My Bread Roulette Trilogy

I’ve been sifting, pulping, and editing my writing in the hope of better things and I’ve collected together my Bread Roulette trilogy.

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Me, Concert Pianist. Me, Magician.

Some things you don’t know about me include that I once fought a forest fire, at the age of eight I went on the stage, and that I have an incredible amount of trouble with people’s faces. I’m also like a magician when I’m tinkling the ivories, so, think of a number… Magician 500 Read more…

The Last Days of the Bath – Part 07 – The End

DAY 11: The big end of nearly three weeks of enforced culture through having to vacate the house whilst the bathroom was refitted: thus forcing myself to get out there and actually do stuff I’d otherwise just have put off until I wasn’t single, as where’s the fun if you’ve not got someone to share the adventure with, eh? I realised recently that I’ve been single for a solid decade. You can see, with that attitude, why I don’t get out much.  Salford The Crescent

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The Last Days of the Bath – Part 06

DAY 10: The journey nears its end. I’ve had my first shower in two weeks that didn’t involve the kitchen sink and having to wait for the neighbours to go to sleep first. We now even have a full-length mirror which will show you the horrific sight of yourself sitting on the toilet. I’ve had a similar shock with the carefully positioned mirror in the Costa toilets, before it fell off the wall – that place is falling apart – but I’ve never sat on the Costa Coffee toilet naked. Not even once. I was planning ahead with my visits now and today was going to be a day of museums and a day of religion.Manchester Cathedral

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