Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Writers on Writing - Episode 1

This is a new, semi-regular video series where I interview other writers - I know! Other writers who aren't me! The very thought! - about their writing process. How do they start, how do they develop an idea into a full story, and so on.

Episode 1's victim guest writer is Amber Benson, who has been writing novels, comics and movies for years - her acting background means she has a very different process to me. Although there are many similarities. Oh, you'll see. Just watch the interview, it's really good fun - it's at this link here.

Amber's new book The Witches of Echo Park comes out on January 6th 2015, and you may get it from these places:

Amazon US

Amazon UK

Barnes and Noble US

Foyles UK

There are also some other US links available at the book's Tumblr here. Amber is on Twitter, so you should go follow her. Huge thanks to Amber for being so cool and willing to talk process - we met at LeakyCon, so it was lovely of her to find time to do this. And I didn't accidentally call her Tara even *once*!

I have a few other participants on my list, but if there are any writers you'd like me to talk to - that I might reasonably be able to get - I will gratefully steal your suggestions and pretend I thought of them.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

My FrightFest 2014 phone idents

I've just got back from FrightFest 2014, a 5 day celebration of horror movies and general mayhem, which is Horror Christmas for us horror fans. I didn't have any movies or shorts playing, but I did 2 "Turn Off Your Bloody Phone" idents again, as I have done for the past couple of years (you can see them here and here).

The opening night one was a spoof cinema advert, and many in the audience were fooled into thinking FrightFest had sold out and gone with a really, *really* wanky sponsor... until the mayhem kicked in:



My second one "starred" me as usual, the third in a series of Angry James Moran idents:



They both got a really good reaction, I'm very happy with how they went down.

Some great movies played this year, including The Forgotten, produced by the brilliant Jen Handorf, who roped me into doing the intro for the screening - and then the Q&A afterwards! It was easy enough, as I've been on the receiving end plenty of times, so I know what questions to ask, how to make sure nobody gets left out, etc. Seemed to go really well, everyone was happy.

Also did my first proper interview as an interviewer, getting the chance to ask Jan Harlan some questions - he was Stanley Kubrick's producer for years, there to introduce the new UK Blu-ray of The Shining. As a massive Kubrick fan, I jumped at the chance to speak to Jan, who was really lovely and had lots of great stories.

A very strong FrightFest lineup this year, my highlights were The Guest, Life After Beth, Starry Eyes, Faults, and The Babadook. The venue change to the Vue Leicester Square was worrying, as we were going from one big, main screen to three main screens with staggered start times - but it worked brilliantly, nothing went wrong, and actually meant the bar and toilets never got too crowded, an unexpected bonus of the new system. Very well done, FrightFest folk, and Vue people.

Thank you to everyone who came up to say nice things, or just to chat about movies, or both, the FrightFest audience really is a great group of people. Here's to 2015!