A natural cold remedy that really works? Yes, it’s true!

man with coldI hate colds so much. Hands up who’s getting one right now? Worse, who’s getting manflu? Well, you can stop feeling sorry for yourself because I have the answer.

Like anyone else, I’ve been getting colds all my life. In that entire time, this is the first remedy I’ve tried that actually has an effect. So far this year, it has stopped two colds in their tracks, leaving me fit to get on with and enjoy the run-up to Christmas.

Caveat: if you don’t dig garlic, you’ll probably want to stop reading right now. Continue reading

Eco Shock Horror

Broadcaster Alex Smith works tirelessly and single-handedly to bring you cutting edge information and incisive wisdom on the environment: latest science, authors and issues including climate change, oceans, forests, pollution, Peak Oil, the economy and peace.

Listen to his weekly show and you’ll be most dreadfully educated about the ecological challenges we all face.

Alex was kind enough to take an interest in my ecologically inspired horror and fantasy novels, including MEAT, Garbage Man and The Black Dawn series.

We had a great chat, me sitting on my sofa in Northamptonshire recovering from killer man-flu and him somewhere in Vancouver – a place I’ve always wanted to visit.

Take a listen for an in-depth discussion of the eco-horror genre or visit the Ecoshock blog for a written précis and info about the rest of this week’s episode…

Re-imagining democracy for Parliament Week

On Wednesday 19th November, for Parliament Week, I joined Mike Carey, Mike Fell and chairman Dr. Chris Tyler to reinvent democracy with an audience of  gamers, sci-fi, fantasy and comic fans, LARP-ers, scientists and people interested in the future of politics.

The evening was part of a week of events intended to encourage people to engage with politics. (You can find out more about this using the hashtags #scifiparl & #DoDemocracy.)

Everything was filmed – there was even a stenographer! – so you’ll be able to see what we each came up with on the Parliament YouTube channel very soon. Chris and the two Mikes had many things to say, ranging from the fascinating to the terrifying and the audience was full of astute, broad-minded people who asked some very challenging questions. It was an excellent night and I was glad to have been invited.

The following was my contribution. Continue reading

The idiot abroad – JD’L goes to the Houses of Parliament…

The future of UK democracy in the hands of fantasists. You know it makes sense…

You may find this hard to believe but Mr-I-don’t-have-a-political-bone-in-my-body here is going to give a presentation at Parliament on Wednesday evening.

I know.

But hey, people, it’s Parliament Week and I was extremely flattered to be invited.

Myself and two other authors will each outline our visions of a future (better? Hm. Not sure…) democracy and audience members will be able to ask questions and debate what we come up with.

For me, not having a great deal of enthusiasm for or understanding of politics, this is turning out to be an intriguing exercise. Having been given less than a week, I’m attempting to come up with a brand new democratic system – one that re-imagines what’s been in place for hundreds of years!

So, wish me luck.

Better still, if you can make it to Westminster, come and see what the SciFi Writers of today think the future of politics holds for us all…

The Mahe Mailshot – Confessions of a failed hunter gatherer

Carnivorous Cabbage - this woman's bones and handbag were later discovered in a bin liner behind the trader's stall.

Carnivorous Cabbage – this woman’s bones and handbag were later discovered in a bin liner behind the trader’s stall.

In March 2003 My wife and I went to live on a small island in the Indian Ocean. We stayed there for a year of tropical delights and frustrations. As a break from fiction – and to help maintain my sanity in the midst of a strange culture – I wrote a series of emails to folks at home…

 

 

 

 

 

 

—– Original Message —–
From: JD’L
To: Undisclosed Recipients
Sent: Saturday, June 21, 2003 9:56 AM
Subject: Confessions of a failed hunter gatherer

Dear weight watchers,

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The Mahe Mailshot – Box 341

My idealistic impression of what the postal service is all about.

My idealistic impression of what the postal service is all about. A friendly cat is essential.

In March 2003 My wife and I went to live on a small island in the Indian Ocean. We stayed there for a year of tropical delights and frustrations. As a break from fiction – and to help maintain my sanity in the midst of a strange culture – I wrote a series of emails to folks at home…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

—– Original Message —–
From: JD’L
To: Undisclosed Recipients
Sent: Saturday, June 07, 2003 4:16 PM
Subject: Box 341

To all mail recipients,

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The Mahe Mailshot – Breakdown and Recovery

Victoria, Mahe, Seychelles.In March 2003 My wife and I went to live on a small island in the Indian Ocean. We stayed there for a year of tropical delights and frustrations. As a break from fiction – and to help maintain my sanity in the midst of a strange culture – I wrote a series of emails to folks at home…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

—– Original Message —–
From: JD’L
To: Undisclosed Recipients
Sent: Friday, May 23, 2003 2:20 PM
Subject: Breakdown and recovery

Fellow motorists,

Continue reading