Friday, October 01, 2021

Comic Cuts — 1 October 2021

I have spent most of September working on the Action project, the downside of which is that I don't always have a lot to talk about in these columns. I was worrying about what I might have to write about, this being week four wholly dedicated to Action... but was it?

Thinking about it, Action hasn't been hogging my whole attention. Saturday was Mel's birthday, so much of the day was dedicated to that. Then on Sunday I started reading and writing a review of one of the books I received during the previous week. I didn't quite get it finished (I do like to read the books before I write them up, which is why it can take so long!), but I should finish it off this week-end.

I have also been sorting out some scans for an upcoming book from Hibernia Press, who recently published a reprint of a fine old Jesus Blasco yarn, The Indestructible Man. Well worth checking out if you haven't already.

Then there has been a bit of back 'n' forth over some corrections and additions that I made to The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction, and double checking some of the information that might have been misinformation that has crept in. The SFE is switching servers at the moment, so there might be a bit of down time, but it shouldn't be for long.

I did a little bit of tinkering with an article that I'm hoping to use in the upcoming mag. and was also contacted by the son of a publisher about whom I wrote an article last year, again for the upcoming mag., so that can hopefully now be checked over for factual accuracy by family members, perhaps even expanded with new information.

I'm also trying to resolve a bit of a mystery regarding the name John Gabriel, which at least three authors have used. Trying to figure out who wrote what a century on is proving tricky, although I've sorted some of it out.

There's also the little matter of the kitchen needing a new oven, as the old one is old, leaky and about to be condemned by the gas inspector. (I'll leave you to make jokes about my similarity to the oven.)

And that brings me up to today, where I have spent part of the morning reading about censorship in children's literature, and this afternoon's reading was on folk devils and moral panics. We went out this evening to a meeting about a local planning application that seems to involve removing the nearby bus stop, but the meeting must have been cancelled as the office where it was to be held was empty... so we went and bought fish and chips.

The pic of the top is me and comedian Simon Evans, who finally managed to bring his 2020 tour to Colchester Arts Centre. 'The Work of the Devil' is a densely layered critique of the modern world but seen through slightly different eyes compared to previous tours. There is a revelation about Evans that moves the show in a startling new direction and changes its tone entirely. To say more would be giving things away. I'm not in agreement with some of Evans' political and social views, but he's a marvellous comedian and, even as an affirmed tree hugging leftie myself, I agree that sometimes tree hugging lefties need their pomposity pricked. We can take it.

That could be our last gig of the year. Got to save some money for Christmas now... how can it be October already?

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