Tuesday 25 November 2014

Bright Labyrinth Launch at Central St Martins December 3

After almost a year waiting patiently for me to regain some strength following my recent treatment for cancer, Strange Attractor Press and Central Saint Martins School of Arts and Design are happy to announce that there will be a launch event to celebrate the publication of my latest book The Bright Labyrinth on December 3.

The event will be in two parts:

Between 4.30 and 6.00 I will be giving a lecture, ‘Extraterrestrial Being’ on the relationship between design and writing as exemplified in the new book. Then from 6.30 until 9.00 there will be a party, a book signing and a short reading from The Bright Labyrinth. The location of these two separate parts can be found on the invite reproduced above.

The whole celebration will be taking place at Central St Martins. If you wish to attend all or part of this, you must RSVP beforehand for security reasons. Please follow this link and either select either ‘Extra Terrestrial Being’ if you wish to attend both the lecture and the party, or ‘Fleshy Human’ if you can only make it along to the party. Or you can use the tiny url featured on the invite to make the same choice.

It has been a long hard road trip to get here, so I hope you will be able to come along and celebrate with me. 

Saturday 22 November 2014

Welcome to the Freak Zone - Enter the Freak Zone

I have recently been talking to Radio 6’s Stuart Maconie about how music is used in science-fiction movies and playing some of my personal favourites, including the OSTs for ‘Forbidden Planet’, ‘The Day The Earth Stood Still’ and ‘Akira’. The recording of our conversation is being broadcast as part of Stuart’s ‘Freak Zone’ show on the evening of Sunday November 23 between 20.00 and 22.00 hrs. 

My sequence should come on on around 20.45. 

‘Freak Zone’ is a BBC music programme dedicated to the weird, the wonderful and the unexpected in modern music, and this special edition is dedicated to music, outer space and the future. The show can be accessed through the Radio 6 website and will also be available for listening after the initial broadcast.

Wednesday 5 November 2014

Situation Normal: Breathing the Same Air

As my health is now starting to improve following the departure of the chemo gods in the autumn, it seems like the right time to start mentioning some of the other things going on in my life.

For example, I have a new essay, ‘Breathing the Same Air: Cold War Sci-Fi’, in the latest BFI compendium Days of Fear and Wonder, which has just been published to coincide with the British Film Institute’s extensive festival of Science Fiction movies taking place between late October and December this year. The essay was specially commissioned by the compendium’s editor, James Bell, and appears alongside pieces by Mark Fisher, Roger Luckhurst, Helen Lewis, Adam Roberts, Kim Newman and Marketa Uhlirova. It was written during the height of summer when the chemical activity inside my body was reaching some kind of critical peak, which might explain the essay’s fascination with toxic environments and incompatible life forms as metaphors for the ideological and cultural fissures that were opened up during the Cold War. As with the film festival itself, Days of Fear and Wonder offers a comprehensive overview of what has quite often been overlooked as a vital film genre and covers a wide range of its facets, including politics, science and technology, evolution and mutation, costume design, architecture, kitsch and alien cultures. It is consequently well worth the attention of anyone who visits or reads this blog.

PUBLICATION DETAILS: Days of Fear and Wonder, edited by James Bell, ISBN 978-1-844457-861-0, British Film Institute, £16.99.

More information and ordering details can be found here.

Pictured above Days of Fear and Wonder cover art.