Monday, 25 August 2014

Secret Cinema, Digital Revolution, City of Stories and much more...

I hope those of you who've been used to getting regular updates recently will forgive me for taking a couple of weeks to update.  It's been a busy time and I've taken the chance to get some R & R in while I've been away from work.

So what have I been up to?  For starters, I've been spending time in London, and I've been to see both the Secret Cinema's live action screening of 'Back to the Future' and the Digital Revolution exhibition at the Barbican.

Digital Revolution was something of a box of tricks - it began with a trip through the history of gaming, the exploration of electronics and electronic interaction as art and an organ keyboard hooked up to play the relevant note from any one of dozens of live-streaming radio stations. A specially recorded Will.i.Am track was captured in a visual medium as programmed instruments played the track.  There were also games you could control with your mind and even a sneak peek at Lady Gaga's levitating dress.

It's tremendous fun, and good value compared to many similar London exhibits.  There's still a fortnight left, so go and see it if you can.

The Secret Cinema event turned out to be good fun too, given that the lead up to it was something of a fiasco for a variety of reasons.  The venue turned out to very close to the Olympic Park at Stratford, a part of the city I know well.  Hill Valley was faithfully and attractively reproduced , the live action parts of the event were well presented and even the rain held off as the night progressed.  Sadly, organisers did miss out on a bit of a trick with merchandising, and the comic book shop, record store and clothes store were all small and understocked.  Next time, they would d better to form partnerships with specialist stockists to the benefit of all parties.

One of the success stories of the night was the synth band 'Avec Sans', who were playing in one of the bars attached to the event.  Their video 'Hold On' is below - I can recommend them as great artists and visual entertainers.

I also had the chance to attend the first of twelve weekly 'Norwich - City of Stories' events entitled 'Through the Eye of the Beholder'.  Part sponsored by Norwich Writer's Centre, this was an evening of music, fine food, poetry readings and stories from noted local writers, including several alumni of the University of East Anglia's illustrious creative writing program.  Best of all, my partner Melissa Brown performed a reading of her poem, 'The Library.'

In other news, my Twitter buddies Wordnerd, Melindrea82 and I will be working to complete Steampunk submissions for 'The Lost Worlds', a forthcoming anthology for Eldritch Press.  We've given ourselves until October 1, and I'll provide an update on our progress ahead of news about Nanowrimo 2014, as well as a forthcoming review of the Hugo and Nebula Award winning novel, 'The Doomsday Book' by Connie Willis.

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