Tag Archives: WHEE!

BristolCon 2017 – tomorrow!

I’m at BristolCon tomorrow! It’s at the Hilton DoubleTree in Bristol from 9.30, so if you’re in the area, come on in! It’s £30 on the door but well worth it, with a whole mix of panels, readings, authors, deals and general chaos. Hopefully this time won’t include exploding battle chickens, but we can always hope.

I’m on a panel about ‘You Are The Product’ at 10am – It’s long been said that if something on the Internet is free, then it’s you that’s being sold. In an increasingly social media obsessed world, where every click you make feeds into an algorithm somewhere, maybe we should be concerned about just what companies do with our information. Is this just tinfoil hat paranoia, or could your online life genuinely affect your “real” life, from the billboards you see to your chances of getting insurance? What will this look like in another decade? Another century?

It’s with Gaie Sebold, Adrian Selby, David Gullen, and chaired by the excellent Kevlin Henney. We’ve been having a chat over email about it and have somehow got onto the possibilities of sacrificing kittens and/or puppies instead of goats….so if that’s anything to go by, it’s going to be a fun panel!

You’ll also be able to find Grimbold Books in the Dealer’s Room with lots of lovely deals and books, so come and check us out. I’ll likely have my Bold hat on so should be pretty recognisable, so say hi if you see me!

5 Happy Things: October 2017

Five things that are making me happy in October…

1.I started watching Avatar: The Last Airbender, and I like it! I’m doing my Kate thing of watching with something else on (I find TV and films – and audiobooks, incidentally – stressful, even though I do like watching some things, so that’s the best way) and so far, it’s amusing. We’re only three episodes in but I’m planning on carrying on.

2.I’ve created my NaNo novel – I’m doing The Thief & The Seer. Wheeee!

3.Autumn colours. I’ve been getting out for walks every day, and seeing the trees change has been beautiful. I really need to start up my Instagram photos again…

4.Trello. ORGANISATION! I’ve made a board for my writing, and I’ve got one for my editing etc as well. While I do have a spreadsheet of submissions, it’s nice to be able to see what is in progress and needs to be worked on, and the dates.

5.Tidying. I’m moving house, and there’s something very satisfying about being able to organise! I have ridiculous amounts of shelving that’s empty, just for me (happy librarian!) and I’m currently packing my books up, planning where they’re going to go, thinking about storage and organisation….there’s definitely a reason why I gravitated towards libraries!

So that’s me for October for the moment – I’m moving on Wednesday so I should remember to do a post, but if I don’t, it’s because I’m filling a van with boxes and trying to ensure that the cat isn’t amongst them…

Gimbold Books wins British Fantasy Award 2017!

All of them. ALL THE AWARDS.

Actually, we won Best Independent Press. Whee! It’s amazing to know the work we’ve been doing over the past few years has been recognised, and it was definitely good timing to give us a boost! I love my lil’ Grimmie family, and it’s been great fun (ok, frustrating, but fun) working on the editing and slush pile and covers, as well as everything else that goes along with a small press. Sammy’s a superhero: it’s not the easiest job in the world to run a book publisher, but there’s always a lot of passion and love poured into every book, and it’s been amazing to be part of it.

And if you want to know why we’re awesome, check out some of our books…(plus mine, of course. Obviously check out all of mine.)

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Interview + Portal

I did an interview with the lovely Isha Crowe for the Ink Pantry – mostly about writing and GreenSky, but also about games. And that got me thinking – have I raved about Portal? I don’t think I’ve raved about Portal. So I’m going to. Because IT’S AMAZING.

First, you need a computer that can cope with a computer game. Then you need Steam and an internet connection to download it. Then you need about two days and a brain.

You’ve got all those, I know you have.

Portal‘s a puzzle game, where you wake up in a facility with a gun that shoots portals – one blue, one orange – and anything you put through one comes out the other (including yourself). You’re in some sort of testing facility, and you have to solve the puzzles in each chamber to reach the next one – but they slowly get harder and harder, and there’s more puzzles, more dangers (although the Turrets – above – are weirdly adorable) and the AI’s voice slowly gets more and more sarcastic…

Ah, who am I kidding. She’s thoroughly sarcastic, and it’s one of the best parts of the game. Definitely play with the sound on!

I love it because there’s no creeping dangers; you know where the turrets are (even though getting shot isn’t great) and everything’s a really nice, solveable puzzle. It doesn’t get boring, either, despite the fact you’re using the same basic tools: there are a huge variety of ways to put the obstacles together which means each chamber requires a new approach. The game isn’t too long either, which is nice, but you can save and come back easily.

There’s a second one too, which has a different feel (but just as good!) so it doesn’t feel like a repeat of the first – and you get to see different areas of the facility, as well as meet different people. And potatoes. And robots. The co-op mode in Portal 2 is amazing, as well; Atlas and P-Body are great fun, and you can drop each other in gunk! Accidentally. Honest.

So if you haven’t come across it and you like puzzles and sarcastic humour, definitely play Portal!