When inclusive holidays exclude the locals

“How’s business?” we asked the local taverna owner as we ordered our tzatsiki.

“Terrible. I’m closing up the end of June. It’s over for me. I’ve paid my taxes but no one protects me. The inclusive resorts have killed my business. We are a small town surrounded by three resorts. Few tourists come any more…” (more…)

June 27, 2013. Tags: , , , . Blogging, Comedy writing, Humour, travel, Writing. 16 comments.

When the digital economy means working for free

“Governments play up the idea that a digital future creates jobs rather than eats them up. Culturally, there is now a fantasy world of start-ups and blogs and YouTube TV where a very few people manage to make money but most work simply for ‘experience’,” writes Suzanne Moore in today’s Guardian. (more…)

June 6, 2013. Tags: , , , , , . Blogging, Humour, Publishing, Theatre, Writing. 22 comments.

Peter Bazalgette is right – theatre companies need funding

Peter Bazalgette, the new chair of the Arts Council, has warned against the cuts to arts funding in the UK and has called on business to do more for the culture – ie invest in it. I couldn’t agree more.

We are thinking about taking Martini Bond up to Manchester Pride in August, but this time we need some funding in order to do it. Profit margins are so slim for small theatre companies – and probably large ones too – that it seems you are fortunate if you cover your costs through ticket sales. Forget about paying the actors, crew or writer a living wage. They all need other work to subsidise their dreams (or, after yesterday’s Budget and if you’re George Osborne, aspirations).

We are thinking about holding a James Bond quiz night as a fund-raiser and we will look into applying for grants and approaching business for support. I’m fairly hopeful we will raise some funds. After all, Pride is for a good cause, raising money for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender charities and organisations as well as HIV groups.

Local theatre, local bands or local comedy nights really need your support, though, because these acts are part of the culture of your town, and, as Bazalgette said, “are central to the life of the city and to the local economy”. Without bums on seats, the show can’t go on! So please go and see a local act on in your town.

When was the last time you went to see a local show? Were there many people there? Did you enjoy it? Do you care about arts funding?

March 21, 2013. Tags: , , , , , , . Comedy writing, Humour, Theatre, Writing. 14 comments.

Writing about sex – badly

Let’s talk about sex, or rather write about it. Usually badly. Take The Quiddity of Will Self by Sam Mills for an example: ‘Down, down, on the eschatological bed.’
What does eschatological mean anyway? (more…)

March 14, 2013. Tags: , , , , , , . Comedy writing, Humour, Publishing, Writing. 34 comments.

Top tips on how to start a blog, from naming celebrities like Russ Abbot to randomly mentioning sex

‘Hello, queen of the blogs!’ Ha! This is a friend who knows how to say just the right thing. She wanted some tips on how to start blogging – and it’s also my first anniversary of blogging – so what better way to celebrate then outline a few tips I’ve learnt. (more…)

February 28, 2013. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Blogging, Comedy, Comedy writing, Humour, Publishing, Writing. 31 comments.

Ben Affleck and Herbert Kretzmer show the way for ‘second acts’

The Hollywood actor-turned-director Ben Affleck recently spoke about being given a “second act” after he won the Best Director award at the Baftas for his film Argo. Similarly, Les Miserables lyricist Herbert Kretzmer told The Guardian he “was able to give up my day job at 61” after it became clear that the show had a fairly certain future. (more…)

February 21, 2013. Tags: , , , , , , , . Comedy writing, Fiction, Publishing, Writing. 14 comments.

TV sitcom writer Maurice Gran on how to beat writer’s block

“Who was the person I hated most at school and how could I kill them now?” This was one of the top tips on how to beat writer’s block by Maurice Gran, a leading sitcom writer in the UK. (more…)

January 10, 2013. Tags: , , , , , , , . Comedy, Comedy writing, Publishing, Writing. 15 comments.

Taxing time for Amazon et al – and me

Amazon, Google and Starbucks are not paying enough corporation tax in the UK. That was the excuse I needed to stop surfing the net about how to publish your ebook through Kindle Direct Publishing – an Amazon service. The coffee I could buy from Costa – a company that does pay their way. (more…)

January 3, 2013. Tags: , , , , , , . Books, Comedy writing, Publishing, Writing. 24 comments.

Lose the shoes for a great party

This is a bit of a cheat this week. I loved Onthehomefont’s blog on Do you need shoes to be party hardy? – ie does taking your shoes off mean your party is, well, BORING. This was a little too close to home, what with the party season coming up and I’d just emailed the following invite:

We have moved into temporary accommodation – the servants quarters/writers’ garret/franklytooexpensiveforus – a posh pad that overlooks the skyline of London and has a garden the size of a park.

Park your friends outside if they want to wear shoes on cream carpets…

Come and enjoy the views along with a few Christmas drinks…erm, no shoes, no red wine, no spillages…ok if you want to wear shoes, drink red wine and spill stuff stay in the kitchen. Or the park. Or write us a cheque. On second thoughts give us cash. Other than that, come and RELAX!!!

Please RSVP so we know how many packets of crisps to buy. (more…)

November 23, 2012. Tags: , , , , , . Comedy writing, Humour, Writing. 15 comments.

No place like home

I’ve been fretting about not blogging. And about not writing. I thought by being silent on the net everyone would think I’d been busy writing my next big thing…The truth is, I couldn’t find  my computer, we had no internet connection and, ok, we moved house.

I now know why people don’t move very often. It’s because you can’t find anything for weeks, even your new home. I had to remind myself which way to go home – but not home, as in the place I had lived for 13 years.

Moving house boxes

OK, so that doesn’t look like books. Is wire useful?

(more…)

November 15, 2012. Tags: , , , , . Blogging, Comedy, Comedy writing, Writing. 21 comments.

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