Creative Writing Sample 001 – The Smoking Room

Stale sweat, tobacco smoke and perfume. This was what he registered upon being shown into the room, and it did little to calm the clamouring nerves coursing their way through his system; he felt as if he’d been thrown into hell, and the assault on his nostrils did little to sway this conclusion. He was in trouble, and he knew it. That’s why they’d asked to see him here, in the smoking room – business and pleasure seldom came separate in his line of work, and an invite to the most elite of his employers haunts could only spell bad news. He shuffled slowly into the dimly lit room, hands clenched in his pockets to stop them shaking, eyes darting nervously around the room all the while. His salivary glands seemed to be working double time, but a lump had surfaced somewhere in his throat, making swallowing difficult. On top of this, his heart was beating ten to the dozen; his palms, armpits, chest and forehead were slippery with sweat and his breath was coming in short, sharp, ragged gasps. In short, Paulo Rodriguez was absolutely terrified.

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The Night’s Hard To Get Through: A Review of Brand New’s The Devil and God are Raging Inside Me

Loneliness, it seems, has found a voice. Mortality, regret, isolation: all these themes find their way in; they  dance and mingle and burrow in through your ears as the album progresses. Feelings are important here; they make up the majority of this album’s message, this juggernaut of emotion that drives at you from the opening line of “Sowing Season” and refuses to let up long after the faint guitar lines of “Handcuffs” fade away.

In the words of DeLillo, longing on a large scale is what makes history; it drives us, it motivates us – but here, all longing relates to alternatives, to what could have been, to what might yet be. Contemplative, regretful and downright depressing, Brand New have created their magnum opus – and it’s absolutely breathtaking.

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A Note On Reviewing (And Spoilers)

I’m intending to review the three “main” types of art on this blog: literature, music and film.

By way of making things as complicated and arbitrary as possible, all CDs will be awarded a mark out of ten; all films will be given a grade (with A* being the best and F the worst); books will simply have a positive or negative review. Reasons for this are based around how “quantifiable” these types of art are, and apologies in advance for any confusion.

Also, all reviews will be written from a post-appreciation perspective; ie. watch, read or listen to the piece being reviewed before reading, or risk encountering spoilers.

First review to follow shortly.



NB: Here, “shortly” applies to a much, much narrower time frame.

An Introduction (Of Sorts)

Aside from the mind-numbing wanders into physics and philosophy I share with my two fellow bloggers on, I felt the need to set up this blog to give myself the space to write about other things – and that’s as detailed a description as I can give. I might write reviews, I might produce samples of creative writing – whether it be prose or poetry. I’m almost definitely going to produce a few needless rants or ravings about anything and everything in this messed up little world of ours.

I’m certainly going to be slow.

So posts to follow shortly.


NB: Here, “shortly” covers a time period that extends up the end of August.