Shakespeare was on it.

So, they killed Osama Bin Laden. Because their kind of killing is better than his kind of killing. Because the book they wave around to justify slaughter is better than the book he waves around to justify slaughter.

Look, I have no problem with books. Love them, in fact. I think there’s a lot of wisdom to be found in books. Books are not the issue. The pen is mightier than the sword in a lot of ways. But when we willfully chose to interpret a book as a mandate to kill, as some kind of linguistic Lady of the Lake handing us Excalibur and saying “slice ‘em up, baby,” we are in serious trouble.

Let me make this very clear: both the Koran and the Bible are filled with some of the most beautiful notions the human mind ever conceived of. But the human mind has a tendency to interpret some of these beautiful notions in the ugliest of ways.

I have a book I’d like to wave around. The Complete Works of Shakespeare. The great thing about Shakespeare is no-one thinks he’s God (there may be a little known cult somewhere that does, perhaps, but I’ve never heard of them. Come to think of it, if anyone knows of the Cult of Shakespeare, point me in their direction: I’d like to join), and everyone knows HE’S A POET. So the figurative nature of his work is not some great ontological contention. No-one’s soul is in mortal danger for mis/reinterpreting Shakespeare.

I refer you to one of my favorites, The Merchant of Venice, 4,i,180-194.

The quality of mercy is not strained.

It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven,

Upon the place beneath.

It is twice blessed.

It blesseth him that gives and him that takes.

It is mightiest in the mightiest,

It becomes the throned monarch better than his crown.

His sceptre shows the force of temporal power,

An attribute to awe and majesty.

Wherein doth sit the dread and fear of kings.

But mercy is above this sceptred sway,

It is enthroned in the hearts of kings,

It is an attribute to God himself.

And earthly power dost the become likest God’s,

Where mercy seasons justice.

SHIT, I mean, ‘Crap.’

I am writing a book.

It’s a bit of a Frankenbook.

It has faeries AND vampires.

Its target audience is adults who like to read Young Adult fiction. So, people who grew up with Harry Potter but wish it weren’t, erm, WRONG to have a crush on the protagonist.

So, I’m wondering, given the target audience is adult, but the style is Young Adult, and it could plausibly be read by a YA audience…


Arch Nemesis.

Scene 1.

A restaurant.

Our hero, CARNIVORE, sits at a large table of ten or so people who chat quietly, waiting for the first course of their set-menu banquet to appear . He is focussed intensely on something on the table in front of him. The light shift, revealing a bowl of salad.

CARNIVORE: Alright, Lettuce. I don’t like you and you don’t like me, but you’re the only thing here, so let’s get it on.


The bottomless money-pit.

I don’t think I’d like to have a bottomless money-pit.

If I put all my money in a bottomless pit, it would all fall out in north-western Turkey, or somewhere thereabouts.

Actually, if I dropped all my money in a bottomless pit, the antipodes of which would be somewhere in north-western Turkey, it would probably burst forth on the other side of the world and then, due to the effects of gravity, it would shoot back through the earth and burst forth here. Then, once more due to gravity, it would shoot back through the earth. Of course, this time it wouldn’t burst forth, but reach a point somewhere underneath north-western Turkey and then, due to the effects of gravity, start hurtling back in this direction. This would carry on, my money shooting back and forth along an ever diminishing segment of the diameter of the earth, until, due to the effects of gravity, it reached an equilibrium and stopped. And then my money would be stuck in the middle of the earth.

This is assuming my money were heat-proof and didn’t just melt once it got to a certain really-hot-bit somewhere on its way to the centre of the earth.

Either way, I don’t think throwing my money in a bottomless pit is a good idea.

The right to write.

After a rather intense argument with a complete stranger about what I am and am not allowed to write (apparently comedic flashfiction/microfic is patented… my bad) I have decided to start a blog.

This blog will not, for the most part, be comprised of flash/microfic (although some may sneak in, but you mightn’t detect it, so stealth it will be). I will simply observe. From the bus. From my car. From my front window. From my seat in the theatre or the cinema.

I call it ‘Cyberlit Stand-Up’ and it will often not live up to its name. Often, it will not be anything deserving of the nomenclature ‘literature’, and whether or not it is funny is a matter of taste.

But with any luck, at some point, one of you will read my word-doodle and chuckle and say “it’s funny coz it’s TRUE!” and then, most likely, return to Facebook and forget you ever read it.

Much love,

The Culture Sniper.