Writing…

My writing Process

I wish I had more time to write. I love it, and I am looking for jobs in the publication industry, as well as working on two books with a story lined up for a third novel. I write FAST. I mean really fast. A lifetime spent working with computers, college, university and being on facebook and msn will do that too you. I can easily churn out several thousand words in an hour.

I have soooo many ideas for books, stories and novellas. I read with every spare second I can and I watch a lot of TV and films with my girlfriend and I have plenty of ideas and have more and more every day,

I just wish I had MORE TIME!!

I am working on many projects at the moment. The first of which is a novel set in a world of my own creation, a fantasy/sci fi setting which I have built from the ground up, with potential to expand to a series of books and short stories. I may post an extract on here at some point.

The second book is a twisted tale of murder and deceit, lies and cover ups. It is something that is grounded in reality and I think some people will really enjoy, but this I have barely had a second to get off the ground.

One piece of work that I am working quite hard on at the moment is a book set within the Warhammer 40k setting.

Most people when reading that are going to stop reading. The reason being?  Warhammer has a really nerdy name, and a bad name to most people. It makes Star Trek fans who argue over who was the best captain look like sex gods.

For most of my life I had that exact opinion myself. I was always a bit of a nerd, I loved my Si Fi films and TV shows and had an unhealthy passion for playing video games until I had to get up and go back to school, although not many people knew, I was the ultimate nerd at home. I boast a 160,000 gamescore on xbox live to prove this, which I managed to calm down a lot on thankfully after university.

I lived relatively near a games workshop, and ventured in once out of curiosity and it gave me a very bad impression, full of fat pasty kids and strange old men. Warhammer to me seemed like that step over the line that would result in those monstrosities that end up addicted to World of Warcraft.

I got into the hobby about two years ago now, not the models or gaming side, although I do appreciate the artwork and design side of it, I really love it for the fiction. I had always enjoyed reading, and would tear through good books in days and occasionally hours. I loved sci fi and fantasy but often found I was done with them very quickly and found my appetite was never really sated due to lack of novels on the subject. So when I discovered a series I liked, I read the two or three books required, and moved on. Sometimes weeks or months would pass until I picked up another book.

My then girlfriend used to read for several hours a night, and I cannot sleep with any form of light or movement in the room, so quickly started joining her. But again found I was going through books so fast that I was quickly running out of books to read.

One day where I was working at the time (a little shit hole of a blockbuster to put myself through uni), I had the good fortune to be working with Xav, a great guy who is now one of my best friends. His girlfriend brought him in a book that he had left at hime and knew he would want to read it, and I will never forget what it was. It was James Swallows ‘The Horus Heresy: Nemesis’.

Xav explained the book, in the simplest of terms to me. 30,000 years in the future, mankind has conquered most of the know galaxy at the will of a man called the Emperor, a godlike being, who created twenty sons as demi-godlike beings as his sons and as generals to the vast army of mankind. When the wars are drawing to a close, the sons turn on one another and the galaxy erupts in civil war.

That is far too brief of an explanation; yes there is a hell of a lot more to it. The series is currently running at 24 full length novels, 3 special limited edition novellas and 9 audio dramas as well as 2 e-shorts and several other short stories that have been tucked away in anthologies.

The Heresy is essentially a story of a great and tragic betrayal, where the most beloved and trusted son, turns on his father, and the galaxy burns for it. It mirrors the Christian religion with Lucifer the most beloved angel of heaven turning on god, and trying to take glory and worship for his own purposes.

Some of the books in the series have risen to dizzying heights, where man’s very nature was questioned and our dependency on religion to lend meaning to our lives in a world controlled by science.

The vast majority of these books are amazing, with stunningly well-developed characters and an epic overlapping and intertwining series written by dozens of authors. There are many major plotlines running during several different time periods, and many occurring at the same time. Some books cover the same events, but from the perspective of another side, most notably in A Thousand Sons and Prospero Burns, giving accounts for both sides of the conflict. The event is also delved into down to its origins. Many of the books begin years, even decades before the start of the heresy. One short story takes you hundreds of years before the civil war erupted.

When Xav explained the series too me, I was very excited to begin reading the books. The Entire series is also just explaining one facet of the Warhammer 40,000 universe’s backstory. The 40k universe itself now had hundreds of books, thousands of short stories, games and even a film.

The prospect of diving into this almost unlimited sci fi universe was all too tempting and very little ha disappointed. But for every boring book like Battle for the Abyss and Atlas Infernal, there were master pieces such as Aaron Dembski-Bowdens stunningly beautiful Night Lords trilogy, the breath-taking Inquisition books; Eisenhorn and Ravenor by Dan Abnett and his Gaunts Ghost series. Not to forget Graham McNeill’s Storm of Iron and Priests of Mars.

New books are being released every month and new authors are pitching in to build of the universe. The last I read was Siege of Castellax by C.L Werner and it ranked amongst my most loved novels.

After two years, and probably more than 60 books in the expansive universe read, I am reaching the point where I know all there is too know and have read every series in the universe that I really want to read, but new books still surprise me, and that is a VERY good thing.

The book I am working on now is set within the 40k universe, so 10,000 years after the great heresy. It covers the life of a man who begins as just another pawn of the great uncaring imperium of man, but realises that his destiny, is to become so much more.

I can’t wait to get back too it. 

Mass Effect 3 Review in 500 words

Is this the epic conclusion we have been waiting for?

With Mass Effect Bioware gave every Si Fi fan a true gem of gaming brilliance, creating a fantastically deep and immersive universe, with brilliant characters that you actually cared about. Where Bethsaida was building worlds to lose yourself in, Bioware was creating stories that you felt a part of.

At first glance, it seems that ME3’s gameplay is almost identical to ME2. Essentially you will be approaching situations in very much the same way as you have in previous games. It certainly looks and more importantly feels like a Mass Effect game.

However, the combat and gameplay overall has now been fine tuned to the point where it is hard to fault. Combat flows even faster and easier than it did in and of the previous games. With each of the individual character classes being perfectly balanced and depending on your preferences the game can deliver a different experience to every player. You will have to make some tough decisions not only in the story, but in your own characters development.

Do you go as a Soldier, which is the generic weapon specialist, the Biotic Adept who can attack with the force of their mind, or the Tech Specialist, or any of the hybrid classes in-between? And once you have made these decisions, you are given further choices, how to develop your character. What equipment you ware for defensive purposes and what perks they provide. Also, now even the amount and type of weaponry you carry affects your power recovery time.

The combat which has now been polished to mirror sheen not only flows, but feels and looks better than ever. It is easier than ever to bring death and devastation to your enemies, with easier hotkeys marking it simple to chain powers together with your team mates to create devastating effects.

There is now less of a variety with your team mates, there are a few new additions which in the long run are not as memorable as other past characters, and a few old favourites make their return. Most of the old team mates, if you let them survive of course, make a return, but you can take disappointingly few with you.

What made the first two games amazing was not just the gameplay, which is now better than ever. It was the story, and along with the combat, this is the focus of the game. The graphics and animation are as usual for the series, in a league of their own, with voice acting that has yet to be matched even by most movies.

The story is written brilliantly, and there are many truly brilliant moments. The ending however, leaves much to be desired. For all the decisions the game gives you, the ending makes them all seem irrelevant.

But as they say, it is not the destination, but the journey that matters, and with that Mass Effect will be remembered as one of the best games of the year.

9/10

+Fast Addictive and diverse combat

+Brilliant Story and characters that you actually care about

-Ending is a let down