Friday Photo Blogging: Mono

An appropriate title for today, in some respects; after a few weeks of very passable sunny (though brisk) weather, Velcro City is once again drowsing beneath a sky the same dull grey as pre-dotcom computer hardware, the pavements slick with a noncommittal rain that suggests even the elements can’t be bothered to do anything properly today – bank holiday Friday, innit, mush?

Appropriate or not, it seems I never FPB’d any of the shots from the Mono show[1] I caught the other week, so here you go:


Great band (as suggested by the liberal deployment of Fender Jazzmaster guitars, among other things). Good music for cold dismal weather, too.

Of course, if I was at Eastercon with the great and the good (and the weird) of British science fiction, I wouldn’t give a monkey’s about the weather. But I’m not, so I do. Selah.

About that service interruption

So, yeah, last week. To cut a long story short: my girlfriend finished with me. She had some justification for being upset with me; whether her response was proportional to the issue in question given the prevailing circumstances of her life is something only she can judge. I’m gutted, but I’m getting on with stuff. Life’s too bloody busy to sit around and mope; I neither need nor deserve pity.

That’s about it.

Album of the week

Suitably enough, the best album I’ve heard in the last few weeks has been Mono‘s Hymn To the Immortal Wind. Go buy it.

Writing about books

In a shock turn of events, I’m well behind on review writing – I need to get finished on Reading Science Fiction (eds. James Gunn et al), but that should be in some respects less challenging than a fiction review, given that it’s supposed to be criticism of criticism. Then again, I may prove to be fooling myself there. We’ll see.

I still haven’t reviewed Cyberabad Days, either, which is second on the priority stack. And last night I finished reading Chris Beckett‘s Marcher, so I need to do a reading journal entry for that as well. If you want to read a thorough review of Marcher by someone better qualified, Niall’s Strange Horizons piece is the one you need.


It’s business as usual at the world’s foremost near-future science fiction webzine… at least as far as content rolling out of the door is concerned, anyway. I have a big list of emails that need to be sent regarding new fiction purchases for the coming months, and it’s high time I got them done.

In other news, I’m in the process of roping in a new columnist to the team, which looks like it may work out pretty well. It’ll be good to have another new voice on board. Now, have you read Tim Pratt‘s story for this month yet? No? Well, get to it – it’s short but fun.


It’s all go in on the business side of life at the moment, largely thanks to me dropping the metaphorical balls of productivity last week and scrabbling to get them airborne again. This is the major upside of not being at Eastercon, namely having a whole long weekend to get myself back up to speed (and to schedule) with a bunch of different projects and tasks. Which should, in turn, distract me from thinking about how much I’d rather be at Eastercon.[2]

Plenty of other interesting stuff on the horizon, too. Myself and Adam Wintle of Mallmus Media are putting together a two-prong pitch for a fairly prestigious local project, which will be a lot of fun to do if we land it. We’ve also been swapping experiences with different CMS packages and hosting options, and I’m now pretty much convinced that it’s time to rent myself a proper VPS or dedicated server and stop pissing around with huckster hosting companies. Which means all I have to do is choose a good vendor and learn how to do command line sysadmin tasks… anyone got any Modafinil?

But hey, I’m busy, and there’s work in the inbox. That’s something to be grateful for.

Aeroplane Attack

So, it’s our first gig in just over a fortnight, which is pretty cool. We’re pretty confident that we’ve got our set sorted and rehearsed; now all there is to worry about are the logistical challenges of crowbarring a five-piece band who have four half-stack amps and a drum kit between them into the limited space available in the actual venue… well, that and selling more tickets, of course.

But hey, you can help with the latter by buying one yourself over the magical tubes of the intermuhwebs! Three quid for three bands, one of which is a frighteningly loud reincarnation of the fuzzy melodics of nineties grunge, shoegazer and alt-rock? That’s a bargain right there, so buy one right now.

Go on.

Books and magazines seen

No fresh books in the last few weeks (or rather “no books in which I’m interested and haven’t yet already seen a different edition or binding of”), but the turn of the season means that the quarterly poetry mags are starting to arrive. So far we’ve had Obsessed With Pipework and the newly redesigned Iota… if the latter’s content has improved as much as its outer appearance, it’s going to be a real contender.

Iota poetry magazine #83-84


So, not the most gripping of FPBs, but what can I say – that’s just the way it works out sometimes, y’know? Anyway, you’re probably either at Eastercon or doing something else to enjoy the long weekend, and I’ve got stuff to do, so I’ll play the hand of mercy and shut the hell up. Have fun doing whatever it is you’re doing, and take care of yourselves. Hasta luego.

[ 1 – Like many venues nowadays, Digital uses those horrible light cans that have LEDs instead of incandescent bulbs. Great for the environment (and cheaper in the long run), but they make getting a decent shot of a live band with a cheap camera a virtual impossibility. Meh. Mono look good a bit blurred, anyhow. ]

[ 2 – Yeah, like that’s gonna work. ]

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