Tuesday, 17 July 2018

How would you survive?

When you hear the word "Apocalypse" or "apocalyptic, what pictures come to mind? Zombies? nuclear war? Solar flare hitting the Earth or coming too close? Although I agree that you would be right to think about any of the above, what about if the National Grid where to go down? I mean off line as in power supplies to the whole country going off line? I dont mean for just a few hours, power could be out for 24 hours or even a few days, weeks or even longer. Global or National loss of electricity is only one possible scenario, there are many possible ways that SHTF, heat wave, arctic blast, pandemic, human error, stock market crash to name a few.

For the sake of this post I want to talk briefly about a loss of power, something that we all take for granted. We get up in the morning, get washed in warm water and put the kettle on, maybe make some toast while listening to morning radio, If the Grid were to go down, long term, we would soon become totally lost, no TV or internet, no mobile phones (Mobile networks are run on electricity), the food we keep in our fridge freezers would defrost within the first 24 hours 48 if the grid were to go down in the middle of winter.

The checkout tills in our shops as well as their freezers would not work, no light, no heating. Literally no power anywhere, unless youre lucky enough to own a generator. How would you survive?

What would you think if I were to tell you that there are people all over the world who spend their time preparing for just such an eventuality. They call them selves "preppers". Maybe the first thought that pops into your head is that these people are just paranoid, survival nuts who spend their time building huge arsenals of weapons while storing masses of dried food and water in underground bunkers.

You could not be further from the truth, especially if you consider how in 2018 England was hit by an arctic storm named "The Beast from the East" which literally brought the whole country to a stand still for days, roads were impassable as the temperature dropped to -25 degrees C. Now, if you consider, we have winter every year and yet we, as a country seem to be totally unprepared for it, yes we could have a mild winter but then again, like this year, we might not.

The video below is one I took as the Beast from the East first hit the North East of England.

Then there is America, America has had a horrendous few years with extreme weather conditions, as hurricane after hurricane hit them, New Orleans is flooded and much, much more..

Some of these preppers are getting ready for the coming winter and the possibility that this winter could be so bad that the grid does go down, might just be for a couple of days, but it could be longer, We could be only one disaster, away from the structure of society as we know it today, breaking down and if this were to happen, how would you prepare, should SHTF as preppers call it? Are you ready?

Friday, 13 July 2018

The Survivor Goes Live

This week we have been building up to the official release of Episode one of the survivor Secrets and Lies.

At 8 o'clock on Friday 13th of July 2018 the first episode quietly snuck into YouTube and Anchor.fm. Earlier this week two podcasts which I like to think of as prequels hit Anchor.fm where we met the main character Jim Carter as he prepared for his coach trip to see his family in Scotland.

Im not going to say anything about today's episode except that I have written and re-written it about four or five times and uploaded about 4 different versions of it before I finished with today's.

You will be happy to hear that we (my daughter and I) already have the end of Season one organised and have plans set up for the start and end of season 2 and the possible start of season 3, so I personally dont think that The Survivor will be leaving the internet any time soon.

Monday, 9 July 2018

The Survivor Goes It Alone

There has been a slight change of plans with regards to Jim Carter and The Survivor series. Origionally I planned to upload The Survivor to my Anchor.fm podcast account but think it will be better and a whole lot more fun if Jim Carter, the main character and narrator of The Survivor had his own podcast account.

The Survivor

We have chosen to stay with Anchor.fm because of how easy it is to use their website and app, meaning that Jim can record and publish updates on the go, as well as his weekly episodes which can be found here Anchor.fm/TheSurvivor

I personally have to say that I am very excited about the change and am looking forward to seeing how The Survivor progresses.

Friday, 6 July 2018

The Survivor. Relaunched

About 25-30 years ago I had an idea for a post apocalyptic horror story involving a free-lance photo journalist who, while on his way home to Scotland for the summer, wakes up to find himself in the middle of an alien invasion.

Last year 2017 I started to write the story, but never really got it rolling out so to speak. This was until I started to write it in a first person narrative style, where the main character Carter, is the narrator.

The story layout has been changed a few times now. In August last year I started to write it out in short 4-5 minute episodes with the idea that they would be recorded as an audio series and uploaded to a website called Vidme, the site isn't around any more.

After a few months of not doing anything with the story, I looked at it again and managed to see why I got stuck, it was the aliens, I didn't connect with them. So this week I started to rewrite all 12 episodes, I know that it sounds harsh, until you consider that all I had to do was change the type of protagonist from alien to the much-loved (and misunderstood) zombie.

This week I sat down and recorded the first five episodes, about 30 minutes worth in total and I am loving the process so far, I can see a future for Carter as he tries to get back home, as well as what ever adventures he has after that..

So far I am planning to have at least the first 13 episodes recorded and ready for upload to the YouTube as a video and then cross posted to my podcast host Anchore.fm who will pull the audio from it and release it as a podcast I want to hit this target before my kids break up for their summer holidays, which is around the 25th of July, about 2 weeks away.

If I can do this then I will have 6 weeks where I can sit down and start working on the next set of episodes over the holidays, ready to be recorded in September, October this year.

You can listen to the first episode, called First Contact below and if you have a mind to, you should be able to download it as a podcast from the likes of Google, Stitcher, iTunes and the like..

Friday, 29 June 2018


Do have or have I ever fine anything which I have regretted? Yes, loads of things, some of them I regret more than others, one or two I don't even think about, if I did, I know that it would drive me up the wall and I would probably start to obsess about it.

One of those things I choose not to spend much or any time thinking about is my tattoos. If I were to count them individually, I would have over 113 of them, on my arms, legs, back, stomach and my hands.

If I am honest I would say that there quarters of them are, as my wife would say.. "shite", but, as I say, if I was to spend any time thinking about how "shite" my tattoos are, especially the ones on my back I would end up with a serious mental problem.

However something I have said for a while is, if I ever had a chance to get any of my tattoos covered up it would be the ones on my back, I love the idea of having a big pair of wings on my back, big enough to cover all of my back and if these wings could be bat wings, even better.

This week has been a rather hot and dry week so my wife and I took advantage of the weather and got out into the garden to get it tidied up.

Today I got so hot that until I my tee shirt off (something I rarely do) and this time my wife said something that I am sure she has bever said before, when she told me that the tattoos I have on my back are shite.

She went on to ask why i don't go to our local tattoo parlour and ask how much it would be to get a full tattoo on my back to cover up the mess I have there at the moment.

Needless to say I am going to jump at the chance and we, my wife and I are heading to be tattooist tomorrow to ask about pricing.

Problem is, my wife doesn't like the idea if bat wings, we will be looking at some back pieces tonight.

Of course I will let you guys know what happens, if anything.

Thursday, 28 June 2018

The Survivor, Revival

Ever wanted to travel through a world torn apart by Alien invaders?

Some time ago I had an idea for a book where a journalist found himself in the middle of an Alien invasion. After many attempts I gave up on trying to write a book and instead started writing mini episodes which I wanted to narrate in the first person, making the narrator the main character in the story.

To date I have written 12 4-5 minute episodes, some if them I have actually recorded and uploaded to YouTube and my main podcast host Anchor.fm.

It's no good looking for them, they have been taken down again so I could work on them some more, you know, try to make them better.

This is something I have wanted to do for a long time, years even and to, just not do it would be criminal. With that in mind, I am starting over, going back to the first episode and I am rewriting them, I don't plan to change everything, just a few bits that, now that I have heard what they would like, think could be better.

Saturday, 23 June 2018

Bringing Back The Stocks

Looking at the world we live in today there seems to be a set of people who think that they are above the law, kids running riot in our streets who think that because they are under 16 years old the law can't touch them, drug related crime, knife and gang related crime, bullying, shop lifters and those who fiddle the state the list is endless. Our prisons are over crowded with petty criminals who are costing the tax payer to keep them at the Queens pleasure, but not to worry I have the solution. Bring back the town stocks.

Now I know there are people out there who think this would be against their Human Rights or inhuman but I would argue that the crimes that these people have committed are just as bad if not worse. I'm not talking about hanging, stoning or even burning at the stake, god knows we have been there before, public humiliation is the way forward. No, I kid you not I am deadly serious, in a world where image seems to be everything this type of punishment would be quite fitting.

As well as warning off prospective petty criminals and social nuisances there is the jobs that the stocks would create. Obviously the stocks would be run by the local authorities but we will need people to maintain the stocks as well as fit them, we will also need people to clean up the mess left around the stock site after the public humiliation has taken place. Costing would be low as the fruit and veg can be supplied by local supermarkets and once used given to local farms or community garden projects to act as fertilizer so returning them to source.

As well as deterring would be toe rags, the community as a whole would benefit from two or more sets of public stocks in every town centre coupled with the fact that if the Stocks were reintroduced into the legal system in a short space if time the prison population will be drastically reduced, saving the tax payer money that could be better spent else where.