Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Tree porn #2

A new film from Greenpeace to highlight an upcoming EU vote on protecting forests from illegal logging. I fully support the cause, but I reckon the film's a little bit ... tacky. I mean, there's tree porn and there's tree porn. Greenpeace apparently based their idea on this promo from the EU:

In which we get to see all those Europeans in sweaty, angsty, copulatory glory.

Anyway, if you want to support Greenpeace's campaign, (and help them make better tree-porn) they're looking for volunteers to snog trees.

'We need you to take pictures and/or videos of yourself and your friends spreading the love in a forest. You don’t have to be quite as expressive as those trees, but don’t be too shy either. We need as much kissing as possible.'

More info here.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Our back garden is part of an enclosed oasis, overgrown with clematis and honeysuckle, surrounded by a square of tenements. Yesterday, out cutting grass with a blunt pair of shears, holding handfuls and snipping slowly through the strands, I listened to the neighbour's kids.

"What if nothing had names, and we could, like, decide what to name everything?"
"I call this tree."
"I call this shed."
"Chicken shed."
"I name you Ali."
"I name that sky."

Remember when the world was so fascinating you had to find names for everything? The strands of an orange, every tiny groove and place in your face, cat's fur when it's no longer attached to the cat.

Sometimes writing feels like that for me. Hunting words with a butterfly net and your eyes shut, trying to sniff out the real, the right name for a particular thing.

At the moment I'm working mostly in my head - turning over the characters, waiting for them to come alive and tell me how the story should go. Usually, I jump right in and write, which might be the best way to work. But this time I want to have the story formed before I start cluttering it with words. So I'm trying out plots in my head, trying to make it tested and tempered so that it's strong and good. Talking to people with life experiences utterly opposite to my own. Trying to understand things that confound me. Researching, reading, soaking in detail. Waiting for the time when I'm ready to start naming things.

Friday, July 18, 2008


'Big Exit' by the fantastic, incredible PJ Harvey

Sinking into summer. And as I promised myself, listening more than talking, hence few words on here.

I'm starting to write stories without sex in them. Or, I should say, where the sex sinks back and lets other elements of the story come forward. It's frightening. Feels like I'm starting all over again, back at square one. Groping around in the dark. Hauling out all the old poems and trying to work out if they're okay or complete gibberish. Unable to tell if there's any merit or point in what I've written or am planning to write. Waiting for something to rise up out of the bare ground and start moving. Ready to follow it.

At the moment, writing feels like standing at the bottom of a very high mountain. The summit is covered in clouds, but that's even a joke, because I suspect there is no summit. It's all about the endless climb.

And I'm hanging around here at the base camp, listening to other people's stories and making preparations for a long trip.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Not I, Samuel Beckett (Part 1)

I woke up this morning with something like this in my head. This summer the days are white and heavy and thick, the sky tightening all morning, until we have a rainburst, a monsoon, in mid-afternoon. Afterwards it's clear and I can breathe for a while.

I get struck dumb with this blog. I'd like to write, but I feel I should write about sex or erotica, and then I stop. I am stopping. Rather - I'm going to give up trying to shoe horn myself into some sex-shaped box and just post as it comes.

I would have put a poem here, but jesus, really, how could anyone follow Beckett? Today I might just listen instead of writing.

Sunday, July 06, 2008


Just another love song:

The Beautiful Weekends

Saturday morning, the red ache. A monthly reminder of the body, my womb pinning me in the world. I stay in bed, you bring me hot water bottles and tea, rig up the video so I can watch films.

Saturday evening, in a bar. A muddle of people, old schoolfriends and colleagues. You and I sit back to back, ignoring each other, talking freely and every so often feeling that slight pressure, warmth in the base of the spine.

Saturday night, when we get home, firing the fake-gas fire and sitting by the coals, rambling with beer and cigarettes into the small hours. Giving each other secrets like gifts, knowing that here, in this room, we're unshockable.

Sunday morning, the dark craze of hangover, sucking your cock while you sleep. Waiting for the moment I know you will wake up and turn me over, fuck me so matter-of-factly. Open me up like a magician.

Sunday afternoon, driving the winding road into the rough beauty of the highlands. Climbing up through the rusted hillside, the banana-yellow gorse, the burning sweet air. Knees as weak as string. We reach the waterfall and behind us is this beautiful country, the gathering winter, the storm clouds approaching. Together we watch the river rushing over black rocks, the noise too loud to speak over. You hold my hand. I think - this would be a good place to die. I would be happy

Friday, July 04, 2008

# 2

Phh. The kids next door are having a screaming competition. They do this most mornings, but today I think the builders working outside with flame torches and angle grinders have inspired them to really test those high-pitched vocal chords to the limit.


In real joyful news - 'Madrid' and 'Sweets' will be appearing in Frenzy, edited by Alison Tyler, featuring 60 wee short-shorts out in November.

I love flash. Sweet little mouthfuls of prose. Here's a 100 word hidden flash, just for those of you reading the secret entries:


As my skin thins and my breasts sag, will you love me, still? As my hair turns more salt than pepper, as lines criss-cross and liver spots dapple my hands, will you?

The fickle mirror reflects a stranger – but I still recognise you. Your ineffable, awkward grace.

I picture us in a distant, quiet room with sunlight falling in. I’m kneeling in front of you on creaking joints, sucking your cock into my mouth, caressing it with toothless gums.

The photographs of the future bleach white as we fuck, slower and slower while the light fades around us.

Copyright 2008 Nikki Magennis, all rights reserved

Thursday, July 03, 2008

# 1

Lately, I'm in limbo. After finishing The New Rakes, I've been drifting and considering what to do next. I'm not sure where I'm going, so I'm just sniffing the breeze.

While this blog is vaguely obscured, I'm going to work through some thoughts about writing in semi-secrecy. Links and pictures should still show up, so at a quick glance you can see all the shiny professional stuff that a writer is supposed to stick on their page. For example:

Yes, Sir got a lovely review at the ERWA.

'"Under his Hand, I Blossom" is a spiritual meeting of two souls. One demanding Dom and a sub of whom can do nothing but trust him. Blind anticipation meets with pleasure and pain and a moment of sheer bliss, but what will it be—submit completely or say goodbye. Well done, Nikki Magennis for this memorable, bum warming tale.'

Angelika Devlyn, ERWA

But underneath, if you care to highlight the posts, you should be able to see a bit more. Maybe thoughts, maybe a poem. Hopefully something worth looking for.

And this is all kite flying. Like I said, I don't know where I'm going yet. Or even how to begin!

Okay, here's a recent wee poem that seems appropriate:


is not always visible

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Like whispering ...

Congratulations, you cracked the code. White on white means I can write secret things that only the gifted can read.

Just as soon as I've finished this story I'm working on - mermaids and burlesque, mmmmmm ... - I'll think of something deadly secret to share.