Friday, June 26, 2009

Just sound

This video makes me want to write differently.

Working is sometimes like peeling onions. Stripping layers away. Filling a story with colour and then obliterating it all. Rubbing it smooth. Breaking it apart, turning it inside out, chewing it up. Spitting it out, seeing what's left.

Book, interrupted

All the open books in my house, photographed where they fell:

Top to bottom:

What I loved, Siri Hustvedt
Guide to Childbirth, Ina May Gaskin
The Dumas Club, Arturo PĂ©rez-Reverte
No Great Mischief, Alistair Macleod
Sea Change, Robert Goddard
Mr Toppit, Charles Elton
Wherever you go, there you are, Jon Kabat-Zinn

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Oh, boy.

"I was just a boy when I sat down
To watch the news on TV
I saw some ordinary slaughter
I saw some routine atrocity
My father said, don't look away
You got to be strong, you got to be bold, now
He said, that in the end it is beauty
That is going to save the world, now"

- Nick Cave, Nature Boy, from 'Abattoir Blues'

Wow. I have a son.

: )

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

I can DRIVE!!!

At least, I can drive when I stop crying and find a car.

Look out, world!

: )

Monday, June 22, 2009

Man mmmm Monday

I don't often participate in Man Monday, because

1. I am lazy
2. Not always aware of the day of the week and
3. Aversion to the word 'candy'. Yes, am petty. Actually there are quite a few other reasons - copyright, distinct lack of willing models, and ambivalence about merely flipping a convention being enough to thwart the imbalance. And I like hot chicks, too.

But anyway, no-one can deny that men are beautiful and sexxxxxy and that we like looking at them.

So here is a man picture.

I found it in the street this weekend, among a snowdrift of abandoned photographs. Sorry his nipples are also obscured by a torn other photo. It had rained and he was stuck to something.

I feel quite resentful even sharing this secret wonder-find anyway, can you tell? But that's how much I love you. You can look until Wednesday when I will put him away again, I think.

(I'm also not quite sure of the ethics of sharing a photo of an anonymous stranger, so I've blacked out his eyes. If that's you in the photo and you want it taken down, call me. I'm sure we can thrash something out, maybe over a glass of wine somewhere nice.)

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Gordon, be bold


Gordon Brown, texture like sun.

Do the right thing

- and you might just be able to reignite this country's faith in politics.

Friday, June 19, 2009

The internet is cool and terrible #2

God, I loved this band. They only released two singles, which I couldn't get hold of as a fourteen year old misfit living out in the sticks. I wrote (wrote! remember writing letters?!) to the record company and they sent me an EP, very sweetly (EPs! Remember EPs?!).
I had no idea a video even existed. But here it is, and beautiful.

Happy weekend, all.

Edit: Oh, oops, I forgot the terrible part. Here it is:

Madelynne Ellis got her copy of the German translation of Sex in Public yesterday.

I didn't. I have a sneaking suspicion it has been sent to my old address, and a sinking feeling that the current occupant will open a parcel that to all appearances consists of cheap and nasty Europorn.


Thursday, June 18, 2009

Petra two-mice

Continuuing the parade of Dead Things, here is last night's haul. Petra left them for me as an early-morning present. Isn't she clever? (I'm very proud when they're presented as a fait accompli. When I have to rescue a half-killed, soggy and shivering little creature from the kitty-jaws of death, not so much.)

Anyway, I'm going to make her a heraldic crest today, with these as the Mice Rampant. Anyone know the Latin for 'Two Mice'? Or maybe 'Fickle and Murderous'?

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Don't ask what the bees can do for you ...

I'm working on images of Artemis, sometimes known as the bee goddess, at the moment.

I picture her surrounded by a swarm.

And I think how we've stripped and denuded the land of bee-food and covered it with fucking patios and sprayed the remainder of our ever-more homogenised flora with poison, and filled the air with foul fumes for no good reason and I wonder if we even deserve to share the planet with such incredible creatures.

Then again, I'm also looking at images of Kali and her skull-crushing, and maybe those old gods are a lot less serene than we give them credit for. I wonder if the bees understand the buzz of life and death any better than we do.

I wonder if Artemis smokes unfiltered cigarettes. I wonder if she'd spit on the ground and chew gum. I wonder if she'd swear, over her fifty swinging breasts, at anyone that tried to stop her from satisfying her endless appetites.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


One novel = one bin bag full of research, early drafts and scribbled notes.

I ♥ my shredder. Somehow, it makes destructive activity feel ... really worthwhile.

Monday, June 15, 2009


Today it's overcast with a tense sky. The poppies came out like red flags in the grass. For some reason, the dark atmosphere and the wet flowers made me think of this film by Pipilotti Rist (perhaps not safe for work and perhaps disturbing, depending).

I'm painting my room white right now and making space for new ideas.

Friday, June 12, 2009

A is for Ace

Sing it:

She is

A - Amazing
L - eLectric
I - Indescribable
S - supersiren
She is O - oh - oh - oh - whoops, wait a minute the tempos gone wrong - keep it up and catch it on the next beat where she is -
N - eNtirely Cool


We're throwing you this blogparty as a small way of saying thank you, for all the inspiration and the karma and the fabulous, phenomenal filth you've helped inspire.

AT, you're a star. Thanks for everything.

Happy Birthday my dear Queen of June, have a fabulous day and a wonderful month soaked in champagne and full of dirty surprises ...

with love

Nikki xxx

(Yes it's on my arm. Of course it's on my arm. Where else would I have AT's name tattoed?)

- Thanks to boyf for his ink skillz

Tuesday, June 09, 2009


There should be an excerpt from The New Rakes in this month's copy of Scarlet. I'm still waiting for the pixies to deliver a copy, as they don't stock That Sort of Thing in the local PO.

Meanwhile, I am buried under mountains of faded notes, scraps, torn paper, typed paper, scribbled, illegible, tear-stained, felt-pen, lipstick-written, piles of notebooks that make me feel like I'm going insane. (I'm clearing out my workspace)

Do all writers have this terrible cellar full of forgotten writings? There must be a million scribbled ideas here. Some of them I still like. But their manifold, cumulative existence makes me shiver and squirm and feel guilty and unhinged. Too many words, too many ideas, too many false starts. Suitcases full of notepads. Records of old debts, lovers, heartbreaks. Letters and poems and sketches and diagrams. A box full of notes and research for each of my novels, half a dozen rough and wrong drafts for each. A handful of other, unwritten, books.

I smell the bonfires of the future ...

Monday, June 08, 2009


I know it's been quiet here lately. Changes are afoot.

For the past few months I've been working on something a little different. It's my first ever collaboration, and the co-artiste is my lovely boyf.

Out in November, (subject to the final say of the Great Publishers, of course). As yet untitled.

And we don't know yet if it's a boy or a girl. So I think that means I can choose two tracks to celebrate, right?

: )

Sunday, June 07, 2009


I've been off drifting around Scotland. See when the sun shines, there's nowhere else in the world I'd rather live.

But I get back and I have an unwelcome blog visitor. So, as it seems I have to spell it out, let me be quite clear: This is addressed to the person who posts as 'Lively Lad' among various other monikers.

Your comments are unwanted. Any further posts on this blog, emails or other attempts to communicate are unwanted. Any further communications shall be passed on for someone else to deal with.

To all other readers, my apologies for dragging out what seems like dirty washing. I've kept polite about this for far too long. This year, I am learning to say what I want to say, when it needs to be said, even if that means being rude.

Meanwhile, the cat's been out all night and limped back to the house ragged. I'm off to see if she needs tending. Back soon!