Movie option!!

MJG Life, Writing 2 Comments

Today I signed a movie option for my zombie book The Last! It is not big money at this stage, but the potential is there. I’m excited. Its a contract we’ve been negotiating for a few months now. I’ve learned a thing or two about movie option contracts in the process. I had legal advice from the Society of Authors after becoming an associate member which was very enlightening. Now it is done, and The Last is in the producers’ hands. They say the vast majority of optioned novels/screenplays never make it to the screen. Fingers crossed The Last will …

Origami light

MJG Life Leave a Comment

Our house settling-in has reached a new and advanced phase. We are almost wholly out of the ‘first-fix’ stage, where we didn’t have a working shower, boiler timer, downstairs toilet, internet, phone, front lights, front door lock or side gate lock. The side-gate lock still needs to be replaced, and the internet is still spotty, but the rest are all in. We are over half of the way through the DIY stage, with dining room, living room, bedroom, kitchen and most of the kitchen floor stripped, sugar-soaped and painted. All that remains is the kitchen floor to be blue-d, the …

Why Tom Hardy’s Legend is basically a true story.

MJG Book / Movie Reviews Leave a Comment

Numerous critics have been slating Tom Hardy’s movie ‘Legend’, about the notorious gangsters Ron and Reggie Kray, on the grounds that it misrepresents history, glamorizes and Americanizes violence and the gangster life, and generally does a poor job of showing the REAL Krays and the REAL social cost of their bloody trail of terror splattered from London’s East End to Soho. But they’re wrong to attack it for that, and I’ll tell you why. ‘Legend’ is a taut action gangster story, full of threat, charm, massive amounts of cocksure grinning, and of course sudden, bloody violence. Yeah, that’s what we …

We went to church!

MJG Life Leave a Comment

Today we went to church. That is not an earth-shattering admission for most people to make, neither is it for me, though from my point of view it is a really foreign and alien-feeling thing to do. My Dad was a Church of England vicar when I was a kid, up until I was perhaps 8, so I’m thinking I must have gone to church a lot then. But around the time I was 8 he and my mom split up, at which point my Dad switched faiths to Wicca or witchcraft, became high priest of a coven, and I …

Was the UK always like this?

MJG Life 3 Comments

I’ve been back in the UK a year now- my longest continuous period in the country of my birth since 2003 when I left for Japan- and many times up til now, with a double whammy today, I’ve been hit with the feeling that- ‘this is not the country I remember.’ Lots of things could potentially explain this. First I’ll explain what the double whammy was. We went to nearby Romford to go to the cinema, a little town on the edge of East London (If I say I live in London someone invariably says- “Mate, that is Essex, ha …

John Grist

MJG Life 2 Comments

Since my Dad’s moved in with his mom (my grandmother) he’s been reorganizing her Kent farmhouse, which involved bringing a few older bits of art to the fore. Here is an image of one of my late Grandfather’s factories – a man after whom I appear to have been named (John Grist). I’m not entirely sure what it made. It does look impressive though. I’d like to see a photograph of the actual factory it represents, but perhaps they don’t exist anywhere. Dad? My grandfather was in industry (maybe oil?) and also worked on the bomb squad in World War …

Tokyo Year 1

MJG Life 2 Comments

My first year in Tokyo was 12 years ago now. I was 23, I think, 6 months after finishing university. It was mad, heady, crazy days- a drunken extension of my Uni days but one where I had a job and a ready-made community of folks to hang with in my language school’s students. I mention this not for any special reason of nostalgia, though both SY and I these days sometimes think about how we miss the ‘simple life’ of our two-room apartment in our latter days in Tokyo, with walkable commutes and loads of great restaurants nearby. I …

Ugne from Bakeoff!

MJG Uncategorized Leave a Comment

This morning on the train into work SY and I totally saw Ugne from Great British Bakeoff!! She was squeezing into the Hammersmith and City line, and I felt the urge to yell out “Hey Ugne!” followed by something like, “Great baking!” I didn’t- perhaps I was too star struck? I should be prepared, honestly, after seeing Richard who nearly won Bakeoff last year just off Russell Square.  “Hey Richard yeah it’s me, great baking!” Of course they don’t know me! 😀 It does feel like you know them though.  I knew moving to London we’d start seeing famous people.  …

Things I’m looking forward to.

MJG Uncategorized Leave a Comment

What with all the forward and backward stepping with the house of late, and no time set aside for doing purely fun stuff, and the next 3 months of term looming ahead monolithically, I think it’s a good time to contemplate the positives. So, a list of things I’m looking forward to: – Seeing The Martian. I loved the book, generally love Matt Damon, and am expecting great things. – Getting my book covers done. This whole process is always very exciting, like the night before Christmas. There are still two covers in the Ruins War and one upcoming Zombie …

Poor, poor Cerulean

MJG Life Leave a Comment

I did some work on chapter three of Zombie Ocean 3 today, and made myself tear up about the ordeals poor old Cerulean is going to face. It is a hard life for him, without a doubt. SY says- “Why does it have to be so miserable?” Me- No great answer. A story needs ups and downs? But why can’t we all just get along? We had a good chat about writing yesterday while having a long lunch in the only nice restaurant in this little town, an Italian place where the lunch set takes 2 hours to eat. At …