Poetry Live – 25th June

22 Jun

Come along to Poetry Live at the Thirsty Dog this Tuesday evening and let me talk at you for half an hour!

There will be an open mic set to begin, followed by the guest musician John Goudge, followed by me (the guest poet for the night), and ending with another open mic set.

Poetry Live has been running for over thirty years, and happens each Tuesday night.

Guitargh Nonet – this Friday!

17 Jun

This Friday I’m going to be transformed into one of these guitar-plucking, hat-wearing man-clones, as I perform in one of the guitar trios that make up the Guitargh Nonet event.

At the Audio Foundation, under the Parisian Tie Factory on Poynton Terrace (right beside Myers Park), this Friday the 21st, 8pm. Koha entry. Come along!

 

Geysercon!

30 May

This year is New Zealand’s 40th National Science Fiction and Fantasy Con – GEYSERCON– held in Rotorua this Queen’s Birthday weekend.

I’ll be milling about, a pile of books in hand (no doubt), attending the panels and workshops, and also starting off the Poetry Slam event at 4pm with some of my latest speculative fiction poetry.

One of my poems is also published in the con book, which you receive when you arrive!

Immi the Vegan and Harrow

11 Nov

Our Immi the Vegan PledgeMe crowdfunding campaign went live 10 days ago. Our aim is to raise $6000 during November, which will be enough to shoot another 5 episodes, giving us a first season of six episodes. See the pilot here!

We need all the support we can get, so please make a pledge! If you’re within New Zealand there are heaps of very awesome rewards from a bunch of very generous sponsors. For those overseas, there are still some options to receive some Immi the Vegan love. Check out the PledgeMe page.

In other news…

HARROW was released on Watch Me on October 31st. It’s a slightly comical found-footage horror mini-series, set in New Zealand. I had the pleasure of co-writing this. (And by “pleasure” I mean a lot of late nights, and a lot of rewrites…) Watch it here!

Singing, acting, writing

6 Sep

Last time I blogged, I’d just spent 10 days in LA researching my novel. Since that time I’ve been incredibly busy. But instead of hunkering down during the cold winter months and working assiduously on the novel itself, I busied myself with entirely different projects… it’s weird how procrastination works.

Here are the things I’ve been up to:

SINGING

James Summerfield, a UK-based muso and Americana-meister, asked me to sing on one of his tracks. I agreed of course, and was pleasantly surprised when he actually sent me four tracks to sing on. It was my first experience of making music with someone I’d never actually met. Here’s a little sample of the songs on the album. You can pre-order it here. The female vocalist – yup, that’s me.

 

ACTING

My brother is the actor of the family. He starred in New Zealand’s longest-running soap opera Shortland Street for about four years, as well as starring in Spartacus and various other shows and films. Acting is something I’d never considered doing myself…

But then, suddenly, I felt like trying it. And with the help of Pigville Productions I created the pilot episode of a weird little comedy called ‘Immi the Vegan’. More Immi the Vegan to come soon!

WRITING

Most of my writing time has been spent co-writing a found-footage horror web series, along with writer Guy Pigden. It’s been a very different experience for me, writing with someone else, and also writing to commission – with very clear outlines given by the producers. The most important thing I’ve learned so far is to not write too much before showing it to the production company – because in all likelihood you’ll have to scrap the whole damn and start again. The shoot for this show is in October, and I’ll post about it then!

But in other writing news, three of my poems were published in the latest edition of takahe magazine, and can be read here. The first poem, in particular, is very special to me.

Los Angeles

6 May

I’ve just come home after a 10 day spell in Los Angeles. I’ve been quietly working at a novel for the past eight months, and nearly half of the story is set in LA. I’d been to LA before (briefly, 2010) and had some idea of where I wanted the scenes to be set. Google Maps came into play a fair bit. Still, I figured it was probably worth going over and actually checking firsthand the places where I planned to set the scenes.

Wow, and aren’t I glad that I did?

Looking out over LA from the Observatory Trail’s peak.

Santa Monica Pier, sundown.

In fact, I had to rethink several of my scenes after actually standing on the spot where I imagined the action taking place. Santa Monica Beach, for instance, is still crowded on a cold and windy weeknight after the sun has gone down (at least crowded by New Zealand standards), not quite the romantic spot that I’d envisaged. Hollywood Boulevard is a touristy hellhole and not the kind of place you’d find anyone actually affiliated with the movie industry. And, contrary to my imagination, the Hollywood sign isn’t a quick stroll away (my character, peering up at the sign, had been inspired to leave the cafe she’d been sitting at and walk straight up to it), but is in fact a car ride followed by a two hour hike through the hills away. (It was a beautiful walk though!)

About half way – walking to the sign.

The sign, from behind, at night.

I also learned that the ocean’s water is very cold indeed, that it takes a good hour to get anywhere on the bus, and that I’ll no doubt have to take another trip to LA because in ten days I barely scratched the surface.

All in all, though, a very successful journey. Locations chosen. Photos snapped. Notes jotted.

Zuma Beach, Malibu.

 

 

Filmmaking and social media – the pros and cons of direct engagement with fans

24 Feb

Just a short post to promote my latest article, published today at Pantograph Punch. I particularly enjoyed writing this, as all my interviewees were generously open about all aspects of what they do, and were also very excited about their different projects (which made me excited). I felt so inspired, in fact, that I’ve begun working on a webseries of my own – more on this to come!

Click here for the article.

harley-guy