Friday, 18 October 2013

Friday Feature: Jamie Baywood's Getting Rooted in New Zealand

As you may have realised I'm still stuck in blogging limbo whilst I look after my mother (another two weeks to go) however travel writer Jamie Baywood has graciously offered to write a guest post for you all!

Jamie is a Californian now living in wedded bliss in Scotland. Getting Rooted in New Zealand is her account of the start of her journey to find happiness: fleeing California and her ex-boyfriend for New Zealand, a country with 100,000 fewer men than women...but things never go as planned and it is going to take new weird world filled with curious characters and slapstick situations in unbelievably bizarre jobs before she even gets close to finding what she is looking for.

Jamie has put together a soundtrack for her journey through New Zealand so that you can feel like you are living the adventure with her:

  1. Bitter:Sweet - The Mating Game
  2. Goldfrapp - Ooh La La
  3. Santigold - L.E.S. Artistes (Brummer Remix)
  4. Kids of 88 - Just a Little Bit
  5. Naked and Famous - Young Blood
  6. Kavinsky - Nightcall
  7. College & Electric Youth - A Real Hero
  8. Metronomy - The Look
Here are some of Jamie's reasons for choosing the tracks she did:
These songs I listened to a lot in California before New Zealand:
BiitterSweet – The Mating Game
Goldfrapp – Ooh La La
I listened to these songs a lot when I was about twenty-five and single in California. I was young and getting chased by a lot of guys – most I was completely uninterested in.
These songs I listened to while I was in New Zealand:
Santigold – L.E.S. Artistes
There are some lines in this song that really apply to how I felt when I first arrived in New Zealand:
What I’m searching for I can say I hope it will be worth what I give up 
What am I here for 
I left my home to disappear is all I’m here for myself
Kids of 88 – Just a little Bit
Naked and Famous – Young Blood
Kids of 88 and Naked and Famous were New Zealand bands I discovered during my time in there. I had the chance to go to a concert where they both performed. It was a great night.
I listened to while living in the UK after New Zealand:
Kavinsky - Nightcall
College & Electric Youth - A Real Hero
Metronomy - The Look
I can get obsessed with listening to movie soundtracks. Last year when I first moved to the UK and was living in Scotland I was obsessed with the Drive soundtrack. I listen to Nightcall and A Real Hero over and over. My husband also introduced me to Metronomy in Scotland.

Getting Rooted in New Zealand is available in paperback and ebook on Amazon:
Jamie Baywood can be followed on:
If you are a writer, musician, band, artist or movie maker and are curious about being a Feature Friday or if you know someone who you think would make a good Feature Friday please get in contact!

Saturday, 28 September 2013

Support / Pre-order your copy of The Strumpet volume 3 featuring me!

If you do and you are able to attend the London launch party in November I'll sign your copy and give you a big thank you hug! If you come dressed as Edward Nygma I'll even give you a thank you kiss ;) ;)

Here is a sneaky preview of my featured short comic Pest!

Friday, 27 September 2013

Friday Feature - Six downloadable remixes and a cover from Phoenix's Bankrupt!

Hi guys, sorry for the disappearance. Mum fell down a hole and broke her leg in two places so I've been looking after her. I'll probably be barely blogging for another eight weeks however I'll try my best to post when I can.

So anyway...back in April French electro indie rock band Phoenix released their latest album Bankrupt! To accompany Bankrupt! Phoenix allowed other indie and pop types to remix their singles. Some amazing music has come out of these remixes and the best thing is that the majority of the remixes are available for download for free via their soundcloud.

Phoenix have a massive following by those in the know however they're the kind of band whose singles rarely make it into the top 40 (even in France) so it's most likely that you either know everything about them or nothing at all. If you have encountered them it is probably via their single Too Young which appeared in the party scene in Lost in Translation.

Here are my favourite of the Bankrupt! remixes plus a cover:

You can do much worse than start your exploration of the noise pop genre than with the bouncing girlish glee of Sleigh Bells. They very much make this remix their own by replacing Thomas Mars' vocals with that of the instantly recognisable Alexis Krauss, returning him in the chorus to create a duet effect. It is sugary, pounding and menacing all at the same time.

You're in for a real treat with the Trying To Be Cool remixes as they feature four cracking versions, my favourites being Canadian DJ A-Trak's indie trance epic and French DJ Breakbot's super funky disco groove. All of the remixes are available to download apart from the one featuring R. Kelly and all the components are also available to download so that you can mix your own!

My favourite of the Entertainment remixes is by Blood Orange (aka producer Dev Hynes / Lightspeed Champion) featuring vocals by MKS (the three original Sugababes). It is a twinkling, dreamy, forlorn R&B indie mashup with MKS singing a soulful version of the song's chorus against distorted guitar riffs and Thomas Mars' echoing main vocals.

Saving the best till last is alternative rock band Dinosaur Jr's 'remix' of Entertainment. Despite advertising it's a cover not remix. No one from Phoenix appears in this version and the vocals and instrumentals are all reinterpreted by Dinosaur Jr. I find it absolutely beautiful and actually (don't shoot me) better than the original. It is slow burning, tortured, heartfelt, etc etc. It is the perfect kind of cover, the kind where the band has put their own style onto a song without losing what made that original song so magical and worthy of being covered in the first place. It's very different from Phoenix's electro pop take on alternative music but if you approach it with an open mind you should find it just as enjoyable as the original.

Friday, 13 September 2013

Minx Reviews: Confessions of a Blabbermouth

Hi guys - sorry for the silence! I've been preparing for a milestone in my career: having my first ever short graphic story published! So in honour of that I present to you my next Minx Review, the graphic story Confessions of a Blabbermouth written by Mike Carey and his daughter Louise Carey and illustrated by Aaron Alexovich.

Confessions of a Blabbermouth is about teen blogger Tasha whose mother moves in her new boyfriend, Jed, and his boring daughter Chloe. Jed is a writer, something Chloe also aspires to be which severely puts Tasha's nose out of joint when Chloe applies for the same job as Tasha on the school paper. Tasha takes to her blog to air her grievances about Chloe, even if what she says isn't true, causing all sorts of mayhem however from the flames of animosity friendship might still bloom.
I think the thing that stands out most about Blabbermouth is Jed. He most definitely can be added to the Minx douchebag list. He starts the story a minor douchebag and finishes, not redeemed but as a super douchebag (only enhanced by Aaron's ability to make him look like a crazy man)! As someone who doesn't really get on with their mother's partner I find it strangely satisfying though I can also see how it might feel weird. We are forever being sold realistic stories where the step-parent is miss-portrayed as the villain and that it is actually the hero(ine)'s grudge where the problem lies (compared to fairy tales where the step-parent is always evil). It's kind of nice to know that sometimes the problem IS with the grownup and that the teenage protagonist isn't just being hysterical! Jed, however, is a bit of a super villain in a what is supposed to be a realistic story. He is a character designed purely to be disliked and I think if you cannot empathise with someone who doesn't get on with a step-parent you will find him too one dimensional. Jed being a nogoodnik whilst Tasha and Chloe cement a relationship does cause for a strange ending. It makes you wonder how their future will be able to continue when surely if Jed is removed Chloe will also have to make an exit.
The second most obvious thing is that ever present lesson: be careful what you say in the Internet! Back when I was Tasha's age I had a livejournal where I wrote every little thing that popped into my head. I shudder just to think about it now! But that's how the Internet was back then, you were in your personal little space not realising the whole of the world could read it if they so chose. Of course the Internet's a little different now, blogs are usually themed and feature informative articles such as this one (hehe), all grievances are saved for Facebook and instant messengers and though I steer away from both I'm pretty certain all it takes for an unwise word to go nuclear is for one not so friendly friend to re-share it.
Teenage girls are always going to gossip. It's a fact. And things will always be said as fact that are actually pure feeling and opinion. This is one of the book's best lessons for both Tasha and Chloe - learning to actually get to know a person before judging them - but to be fair that's one of the hardest lessons we all need to learn! In a sense Tasha is lucky that she unites with Chloe over a common cause. If that had not existed and Chloe had been completely innocent Tasha would have come across as a complete bitch. I most definitely don't recommend bitching about someone you see as a threat as a way of becoming best buddies!
The art is by kimmie66 artist and writer Aaron Alexovich and is much more realistic (for him) so as to suit the realistic setting. It definitely feels like a good access point for his art as the characters contain his trademark level of expression without appearing too stylised. Tasha is hyperactive, Chloe always seems to be carrying the weight of the world on her shoulders and Jed is terrifying! It's also very curious to see a British secondary school through the eyes of an American artist. I especially loved how he managed to express various students through how they wore their ties.
Unlike the other Minx titles Blabbermouth is the one most purely enjoyable by teenage girls only thanks to it being half-written by one such creature! If you have never experienced the highs and lows and emotional rushes of being a teenage girl you just won't get it. Characters over-react, the go into moods for no reason, do completely unreasoned things and see other characters either as purely good or purely bad...which is how it is as a teenage girl. It won't make for the best reading experience if you are looking for some classic Mike Carey but if you're a girl and you just want someone to empathise with then you could do much worse than read Confessions of a Blabbermouth.

You'll like Confessions of a Blabbermouth if you like:
Re-Gifters, Gossip Girl, Mean Girls, The Parent Trap, Step Brothers, trashy talk shows and a bit of cheeky gossip blogging.

You'll like Confessions of a Blabbermouth if you don't like:
Your step-dad.

Selected graphic novels also by Mike Carey:
Lucifer, The Sandman Presents: Petrefax and The Furies, various Hellblazer volumes, Batman: Gotham Knights #37: "Fear is the Key", Detective Comics #801-804: "The Barker: When You're Strange", My Faith in Frankie, Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere, various Crossing Midnight volumes, God Save the Queen, Faker #1-6, Re-Gifters, The Unwritten, Ultimate Elektra: Devil's Due #1-5, Spellbinders #1-6, various Fantastic Four volumes, various X-Men volumes, Ultimate Vision #1-5, Ender's Shadow, The Torch #1-8, Thor: Wolves of the North, Sigil #1-4, Red Sonja #0-6, Vampirella: Revelations, Wetworks: Worldstorm, Voodoo Child and The Stranded #1-5.

Novels also by Mike Carey:
The Devil You Know, Vicious Circle, Dead Men's Boots, Thicker Than Water, The Naming of the Beasts and The Steel Seraglio (co-written with Linda Carey and Louise Carey).

Also by Aaron Alexovich:Eldritch!, Serenity Rose and kimmie66.

Thursday, 5 September 2013

Taking that ride to Nowhere

Every time I go on holiday to Folkestone I ride the RH&DR light railway from the beginning of the line at Hythe to the end of the line Dungeness and back again via a model train museum at New Romney. It's such a wonderful experience because the trains are very small versions of old fashioned steam and diesel trains such as the train featured in Rail. There are also lots of excitable children (which is always lovely to see) and the end destination, Dungeness is like another planet!

Dungeness is basically one gigantic shingle beach where next to nothing can grow. Due to this the power station was built however they needed places to house the workers so little wooden shacks were built. Despite being right next to a power station these shacks are powered by gas canisters as the area is so isolated. Some of the shacks now have been sold off and are galleries.

I like visiting Dungeness as it is so beautiful but also so creepy. You can stand next to the power station looking at the vast expanse of nothing and hear this strange, disembodied, echoing voice floating from the speaker system of the mysterious power station.

If you would also like to visit Dungeness I definitely recommend going via the RH&DR (Romney, Hythe and Dymchurch Railway). It's always a fun ride and some days are eve themed rides such as at Christmas, Halloween and the local festival Day of Syn.

Once at Dungeness you can either eat a picnic on the beach, have a cream tea at the railway café or try some regional food at Dungeness' only pub, The Britannia Inn. There are also cafes / restaurants at Hythe and New Romney.

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

IS Blog Tour 1

Hi guys, just a quickie because I'm sick in bed.

Lovely Hannah, the editor of Impossible Spaces has posted the first of four (yes the number has now doubled as part of my plan for global domination) guest posts I will be writing as part of the Impossible Spaces blog tour.

You can read it here (I made the link nice and big so you have no excuses for missing it lol).

Remember when I wrote about how to plan a story? Well my post for Hannah is an expansion explaining how I personally go from the planning stage to the finished article. Enjoy and expect more soon!

Saturday, 31 August 2013

My Top Jim Carrey Performances

Last week I went to see Kick-Ass 2, a little bit because I'd seen the first Kick-Ass but a whole lot more because one of my favourite actors ever, Jim Carrey, was in it. I've been thinking about the many roles he's portrayed over the years for a while now (since catching The Number 23 the other month) and it's roles like Fingerling in The Number 23 that reminded me how he's so much more than just a rubber-faced comedian. I would be amazingly honoured if he ever chose to portray any of my characters. So here is my list of my favourite Jim Carrey roles in chronological order:

Riddler / Edward Nygma - Batman Forever (1995)

I'll be the first to admit that Batman Forever has as many bad moments as it does good. It's horribly camp, completely deviates from any cannon and basically deserved better but once you accept these facts it becomes kind of fun too. Jim Carrey and Tommy Lee Jones steal the show as Riddler and Two-Face and I would love to see (in some magical alternative universe) them reprise their roles with a stronger script (hello Paul Dini I'm channelling you) and a more serious approach to the directing. Being a Riddler fangirl I love that Jim references my second favourite Riddler, the almighty Frank Gorshin, as an inspiration and love him even more for inspiring the vocal delivery of possibly the best Riddler that will ever exist, Wally Wingert's Arkham video game series Riddler.

Chip Douglas - The Cable Guy (1996)
The Cable Guy is classic rubber-face Jim Carrey but look beyond the ballsy, over-the-top 1990s comedy and the character of Chip Douglas is actually very tragic. In the middle of the film he sings Jefferson Airplane's 'Somebody to Love' and it couldn't be more relevant as he literally has never had anyone actually love him for himself. His parents were deadbeats so he was brought up by the TV and with no real concept of social interaction all his adult 'friends' are people he services cable TV for. Whenever he meets someone he considers friend potential he completely latches onto them and when they try to break away he systematically destroys all their other relationships. On the surface Chip may seem the stereotypical funny idiot character but he is also sadly sympathetic and actually quite terrifying, especially if you've been in a relationship with someone like him!

Truman Burbank - The Truman Show (1998)

The Truman Show is a glimpse at the more serious roles Jim Carrey would later take on and is genuinely not just an amazing film but a social commentary which is just as relevant today as it was back in 1998. It is about Truman Burbank who, from the day he was born, was a TV star in a TV show he believes to be reality. Slowly he realises things are not what they seem and he must come to terms with not only the fact that his whole life has been a lie but that there is a whole world out there just waiting for him. This is the kind of role Jim Carrey is perfect for. His ability to fill characters with humanity is amazing: Truman is endearing from the start - you want him to break free and find his freedom - and not only does Jim act with a subtler, gentler humour than in his previous films but with a complete understanding of the complex emotions Truman must be going through.

Joel Barish - Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
Jim gets all mumbly in this indie sci-fi romance about enduring love (or at least obsession). It is his most love/hate role depending on if you can bare the mumbling and if you mind your Jim Carrey coming with a side order of serious acting. Once again Jim applies a perfect assessment of the human condition into producing an endearing performance for a character who, despite all better judgement, you root for to win the girl despite knowing full well that she has and probably will again bring him as much pain as she does happiness. People often scoff at the idea of Jim Carrey being a serious actor but it's roles like Joel that show just how complex and talented he is as a performer and also how complex and empathetic he is as a person.

Fingerling - The Number 23 (2007)
Oooh look at me being all controversial! But in all honesty Fingerling is amazingly hot and edgy and troubled and perfect for good girls who lust after bad boys to fantasise about. Even though The Number 23 is a little uneven (and Jim's other character, Walter Sparrow, is less charming) the scenes featuring Jim Carrey as Fingerling are wonderful homages to film noir - I could quite easily watch a whole film shot in the style of the Fingerling sections featuring the exploits of Jim Carrey as the hard boiled, broody detective. Jim Carrey as the loveable good guy is so established in our psyche that Fingerling is the kind of role you have to experience to believe. No amount of 'I saw him do serious in Eternal Sunshine' will prepare you for his performance in The Number 23. It's like visiting that alternate universe I mentioned earlier. Even if you find you don't like the film I whole heartedly recommend giving The Number 23 a watch so as to see Jim's delivery for Fingerling as well as his amazing tattoo. Fabrizia is one lucky femme fatale!

Colonel Stars and Stripes - Kick-Ass 2 (2013)
Though since appearing in Kick-Ass 2 Jim's views on violence in movies has changed I don't think he should feel bad about his portrayal of probably the most endearing and kind-hearted character in the whole film. The mafia heavy turned born again Christian and superhero is an inspiration to all the other superheroes in Kick-Ass 2 including Kick-Ass himself. He doesn't believe in guns, he doesn't believe in swearing, he doesn't believe that a woman is asking to be raped just because she chooses to walk home at night alone and he has an amazing love for his job. In a film full of over the top violence he is a beacon of (yes I'm going to say it again) humanity and I think due to this his fate speaks volumes about the futility of violence as a means or an answer. If I got in a sticky spot I'd want Colonel Stars and Stripes saving me!

I hope you enjoyed my list, I hope one day one of my films will be on the list, and finally the big question...what is your favourite Jim Carrey role?

Friday, 30 August 2013

Friday Feature - Margret Helgadottir

This Friday is another guest post by an author, this time Margret Helgadottir. It is about writing her character Iselin from her short story Shadow, self-harm and The Moomins and is part of the Impossible Spaces Blog Tour (if you click on the button you can read all the other posts in the tour - I shall be contributing two guest posts very soon too, though I'll tell you more about those as they happen).

Margret is an Icelandic-Norwegian writer who has travelled all over the world and has just started to write fiction in English. She mainly writes speculative fiction and is very much inspired by Nordic culture, climate and folklore. Shadow is about a young woman called Islelin who thanks to both nature and nurture has always felt isolated and different.When she meets freedom fighter of sorts, Berge, she is flung into an alternate, desolate world where lizard creatures, not humans, are the apex predators but could it be that in this hopeless future is where her salvation lies?

Margret with her copy of Impossible Spaces, one of the many publications she has stories printed in.

"I’ve had the image of Iselin in my head for a long time. Iselin is an old Norwegian female name that means dream or vision. Originally I wanted it to be more a chaotic and confusing horror story that travelled through visions and dimensions, with Iselin as the key factor. Then, as I started to write, a different narrative wanted to be told. This often happens in my writing. I’ve started to spend less time on the planning of my stories, because they often seem to have a life on their own. You asked me to take pictures of my notes. For this story I only had five small sentences, in Norwegian, and the only thing that I used was that Iselin entered an elevator on her way home late one night.
I’ve had the image of a scarred young woman who hides from the world, too scared to pop her head up, for a long time, and I’ve also played with ideas of how an outsider would react if suddenly almost all the people were gone and the person had no society to avoid. Would this encourage the person to take up more space in the world, and no longer fear being visible? You know, like plants do when you give them a larger pot and more earth. Their roots will stretch and they will grow larger and blossom. But if they’re forced to stay in the same tiny pot forever, they will remain the same size until they die, and maybe never blossom fully.
In hindsight, I see that the story about Iselin is a sad story about self-preservation. Iselin is a young woman scarred mentally and physically by her childhood. She’s been raised to not be a burden to her parents and has always managed on her own. As an adult, she’s been sucked into a vicious spiral: she shuns contact with people and they in return avoid her, leading to her feeling even more isolated and misunderstood so that she redoubles her efforts to stay away from people, and so on. Getting stuck in such a self-reinforcing spiral is much easier than people think.

Street art by C215 in Oslo that inspired Margret.
Iselin learned to keep all her emotions on the inside early on, so she wouldn’t provoke or disturb her parents. This has stuck with her. The emotions are locked up inside her and someone seems to have thrown the key far away. She suffers, but she doesn’t know how to deal with it. She tries to ease her pain with substitutes, like many people do when life gets unbearable or they want to escape their heavy thoughts. However, she does not resort to starving herself, drinking large quantities of alcohol, losing herself in drug-induced highs, or throwing herself from cliffs. No, Iselin works until she drops, and when that doesn’t help, she cuts herself with razor blades. Numb and exhausted, she drags herself from day to day, hoping no one will notice her, yet secretly longing to be seen.
The world sees only a stone face. Iselin has not only become a shadow of herself, she’s also a shadow in the world. She is like the shy, scared little girl in Finnish author Tove Jansson’s story The Invisible Child, from her book Tales from Moominvalley (1962). Because an adult made sarcastic comments about her, this girl became totally invisible. Under the kind care of the Moomin family, she became secure enough to act spontaneously on her emotions and this led to her gradually becoming visible again. The story about Iselin spins around the same ideas of invisibility. The guerrilla soldier Berge is Iselin’s tolerant, accepting and generous Moomin family. Berge is an old Norwegian name that means “to save”.

Ninny and Moomin play hide and seek in the 1990 Moomin animated series.

But Berge has his own scars and is in many ways a shadow too. Rachel, you pointed out that the idea of fate is very strong in the story. You said that when Berge rubs the glove he wears to hide his scales over Iselin’s scars, it feels as if they were meant to save each other from themselves. Thanks for this. You’re right. Berge and Iselin are both miserable and lonely lost souls who live in the shadows of their own worlds. It’s only when they follow their instincts—Berge when he goes to the office building, Iselin when she chooses to follow Berge—that they find the solution. Shadow is all about Iselin and Berge helping each other to come out of the shadows, but on a macro level, the story is about something else: lost souls and a mysterious helping hand from another dimension that responds to their unvoiced cries for help. At least I hope it became such a story. I’ll leave it to the readers to decide whether I have succeeded in this or not.

Street art in Oslo by AliCe Pasquini

So, Shadow evolved from an idea for a horror story to a tale about hope, about how it can be possible to spot the light at the end of the tunnel, regardless of how hopeless the situation is, regardless of how lost you feel. Follow your instincts; follow the good guys; be brave enough to step out of the shadows. There are many kind-hearted lost souls walking the streets, scarred from their own battles, who’d like to meet you."

Send Margret your love via her blog and also on twitter @MaHelgad.

Also if you are a goodreads user / reviewer you can win a copy of Impossible Spaces here!

Saturday, 24 August 2013

I'm Back!

Hi guys! Wow you've all been so busy! It's going to take me forever to look over all your posts and comments but I promise I will!

I got up to all sorts of things whilst on holiday last week so to tempt you in here is a list of the posts I'll be sharing with you very soon:
  • Guest post by author Margret Helgadottir
  • Feature on artist Kate Knight
  • Photos from Hythe's Venetian Float Festival
  • A report from London Fashion Week (yes...somehow I of all people have tickets to London Fashion Week)
  • The last of the Minx Reviews
  • The return of the musical Friday Feature
  • Three faux fur makes
  • Something on Rockabilly fashion
  • As well as more on writing, Batman and graphic novels
Thank you for all your support! xxx

Thursday, 15 August 2013

Arctia Caja - whoever said moths were boring?

Tyger! Tyger! burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?
William Blake didn't write The Tyger about arctia caja aka the garden tiger moth but it seems apt that across the Northern hemisphere small tigers are brightening the forests' nights.
When The Big Butterfly Count sent an email out about spotting tiger moths I just thought pffff we never get anything like that in our garden so imagine my surprise when my mum told me she saw a pretty moth in the greenhouse! I went to have a look, expecting some boring brown thing, and instead saw this big moth with a fuzzy orange head and giraffe pattern wings. I looked it up and it was indeed a tiger moth!
According to Wikipedia, that fount of all knowledge that is never ever wrong (heh heh heh), the garden tiger moth is protected in the UK with it's numbers declining 89% in the past 30 years! That's terrible! So the next time you see a big, hairy caterpillar don't squash it because you think it will give you a tropical infectious disease, move it to somewhere safe such as a big leafy bush and wait for this to happen:

This will be my last post for a week as I'll be going somewhere with no internet however don't be too bummed out as when I get back I'll have another guest post by another published author for you to enjoy!

Wednesday, 14 August 2013


Ahh! Double post! But I totally have to do this one before I go to the coast on Friday :D

A month or so ago Snow from Garoons held a giveaway. I'd never entered a blog giveaway before so didn't expect to win but I did! Yay! Here are the lovely things she sent to me:

When I return home I will take better pictures of the lovely necklace that she made (wow skill) and those wonderful socks (gosh I love socks).
Please visit Snow and send her lots of love from me <3


Animation + Saint Motel = Awesome!

Monday, 12 August 2013

A to Z book survey

I saw The Perpetual Page-Turner's book survey on On The Shelf so decided to give it a go myself! I hope you guys join in too - being a writer I love to know the kind of books my followers read :-)

Also I have a Goodreads account - let's be friends there too!

Author you’ve read the most books from:
Haha this shows my age! R. L. Stine, who wrote amongst other things the Goosebumps series.

Best Sequel Ever:
Phantom by Susan Kay which is theoretically the sequel to The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux. I remember crying as I read the end.

Currently Reading:
Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman.

Drink of Choice While Reading:
Cranberry and raspberry juice. I live off it.

E-reader or Physical Book?
Physical! I like touching and smelling the pages :D

Fictional Character You Probably Would Have Actually Dated In High School:
Back in secondary school I was madly in love with Anne Rice's vampire Armand (and maybe even more so Marius). Out of teenage characters I imagine I would have been horribly in love with Rafael from Alisa Kwitney and Joëlle Jones' Token and Utena from Chiho Saito and Be-PaPas' Revolutionary Girl Utena series. These days it's obviously The Riddler XD

Glad You Gave This Book A Chance:
kimmie66 by Aaron Alexovich

Hidden Gem Book:
Café Nervosa: The Connoisseurs Cookbook by Julie Fisher - café style recipes and excerpts of Frasier scripts all in one book! Heaven!

Important Moment in your Reading Life:
Wanting to be all grown-up and read one of the old books in my mum's bookshelf only for it to be Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland. It provided me with a role model and a whole new level of imagination to culture.

Just Finished:
Well the last book I 'finished' was The Soft Machine by William S. Burroughs however by 'finished' I mean got to the end of chapter two before deciding I really didn't enjoy a page of it and didn't want to inflict a single word more of it on myself.

Kinds of Books You Won’t Read:
I have an instant desire to run the other way from chick lit romance books however I appreciate that to some people (like my mum) they are great and if a book encourages a person to read who otherwise wouldn't then I'm more than happy for it to exist in the world! I also refuse to read anything which was once fanfiction and is now an 'original fiction' such as Fifty Shades of Grey and The Mortal Instruments series. I very much enjoy fanfiction but I think it is both a huge disservice to the original author and your readers if you take a fanfiction and change the names then call everything about it your own. If you are a good writer you should be able to come up with your own characters and scenarios with no problem.

Longest Book You’ve Read:
Ulysses by James Joyce.

Major book hangover because of:
Wet Moon by Ross Campbell - it feels like such a cool place to live - alternative heaven! Volume seven can't come soon enough (if it comes at all)!

Number of Bookcases You Own:
Four in my office and two downstairs.

One Book You Have Read Multiple Times:
Alice Through the Looking-Glass never gets old for me.

Preferred Place To Read:
In the bath. It has got to the point that I can only read Wet Moon books in the bath. Weirdly I can also only read Neverwhere in London...which is why it's taking me so long to finish it!

Quote that inspires you/gives you all the feels from a book you’ve read:
Grammar Nazi time...the correct word is quotation - easy way to remember it is "I quote a quotation" *hides* 
"We are great writers on the same dreadful typewriter" - Alan Ginsberg, Howl (part III) 
The moment I read that line it stuck with me. It spoke to me so much about that indestructible friendship that forms when you meet someone who has suffered as much as you have and has survived. Just being with someone who has survived makes you want to keep on surviving.

Reading Regret:
Can I say spending good money on The Soft Machine? Actually a bigger regret is that I buy books faster than I am able to read them.

Series You Started And Need To Finish(all books are out in series):
The Looking Glass Wars series by Frank Beddor. The Looking Glass Wars is by no means my favourite book however I feel I owe it to myself as such a big Alice fan to read the whole series and then maybe even the Hatter M graphic novels.

Three of your All-Time Favorite Books:
Oh no! Choices! Erm....Alice Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll, Wet Moon by Ross Campbell and Emiko Superstar by Mariko Tamaki and Steve Rolston.

Unapologetic Fangirl For:
BATMAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! In particularl Paul Dini's various forays into Batman. He writes characters that are so often reduced to stereotypes (aka villains and females) with amazing depth and humanity. I absolutely applaud his numerous attempts at creating more female characters who actually are characters rather than arm candy for Bruce Wayne and eye candy for the male readers.

Very Excited For This Release More Than All The Others:
Oh gosh I don't know! I'm not very informed with new releases, I usually get tempted in by good reviews, pretty covers and recommendations.

Worst Bookish Habit:
I'm not sure how bad this is really but I'm a terribly slow reader. I can't skim read. I like every word to really sink so that the book becomes a memory rather than just a stack of paper. I guess also I get horribly freaked out when I lend someone a book and it comes back to me with the tiniest scuff or bend. It's my OCD.

X Marks The Spot: Start at the top left of your shelf and pick the 27th book:
I tell no lie - on the first bookshelf it was Impossible Spaces. On the other shelves in my study it is: Gulliver's Travels by Jonathan Swift, Walt Disney's Peter Pan and a 2002 Digimon Annual........

Your latest book purchase:

ZZZ-snatcher book (last book that kept you up WAY late):
Hehe probably browsing the erotica samples on the iBooks store.
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