Archive of entries posted on

Poem O’ The Week: Barber Of The Year

Wednesdays are when I disgorge a first draft of a poem for your perusal/monocle-popping disgust. Just doing my bit to correct the terrible shortage of underedited poetry on the internet. If you have any requests for poem topics, please let me know via the ‘Contact Me’ button on the right, or drop a message into […]

Welcome To The Fantasy Zone Presents: My Hero

Release date: 1985 Systems: Arcade, Sega Master System We started our journey through the history of beat em ups way back in April – we’re three months deep already. If you missed previous posts they’re all available to browse. Slowly, slowly, we’re building a bluffer’s guide to the hallowed video game genre known as the […]

News Monday

Ola dear reader. I’ve just returned from a week in Tarragona, swimming, working on my tan (result: patchy, confusing outbreaks of melanin across arms, calves, nose) and eating too much tapas. Seriously. One night we over-ordered accidentally and the concomittant queso-coma nearly did for me. We also saw lots of lovely Spanish dogs, who, I’m […]

Tim Clare’s Cone O’ Tragedy: On Holiday

I am so not going to spend time and love on this week’s post, loyal reader. Sorry, but this is my official holiday week and if I don’t give myself I proper break then I will go into full crazydude mode. Trust me. I know myself. I have been piloting a giant me-suit for as […]

Death Of 1000 Cuts: Cut 6 – Make Your Readers Hungry Before You Serve Them Dinner

Welcome to Death Of 1000 Cuts – making you an awesome writer, one cut at a time. Hey – if you’re working on a novel or short story and you think it’s ready to send out into the big bad world, why not send me your first page, with the title, via the ‘Contact Me’ […]

Poem O’ The Week: Rat-catching

Rat-catching Boiling blood off gin jaws, he stirs his cauldron; witch-finder, squinting through steamy miasma. Droplets form on long whiskers. When he is done, he will bury the traps in the earth for a week, ladling black soil over gleaming teeth. The funk of man will fade, like skin retreating from a skull long sunk […]

Welcome To The Fantasy Zone Presents: Kicker

Release date: 1985 Systems: Arcade, Commodore 64, Amstrad, ZX Spectrum Genre isn’t something inherent in a novel, movie or video game. It’s something we do to it when we consume it, a certain prescription of spectacles. Its creator may or may not have had those spectacles in mind when he or she made it. Last […]

News Monday

Oi oi chums. It is indeed Monday, and that means I have a self-appointed duty to serve you up a great gobbet o’ news relating to the sentient meatbot you probably know via his Earth-designated appelation ‘Tim Clare’. What the deuce could he be getting up to this week? What scrapes might he find himself […]

Tim Clare’s Cone O’ Tragedy: Wahey – I’m At Latitude!

As I write this I am sitting in my sweltering office, nursing a grippy tum. On Wednesday I went swimming in two Suffolk rivers. It was lovely, but I think I might have swallowed more than my fair share of bacteria, because ever since I’ve had a grim gut ache. Don’t worry, don’t worry – […]

Death Of 1000 Cuts: In The Barber’s Chair – The North Pier

Salut mes amis, et welcome to another edition of Death Of 1000 Cuts – making you an awesome writer, one cut at a time. Before we go any further, have you read my award-winning book about aspiring writers, the publishing industry, and artistic failure, We Can’t All Be Astronauts? If not, order it now. Make […]

Poem O’ The Week: Pub Stuntman

So today marks a year since I quit drinking. (if I say I’ve been ‘one year sober’ it sounds a bit rock n’ roll. If I say I’ve been ‘teetotal one year’ I sound like an uptight health freak – neither feels right) Thank you to everyone who has supported me. I don’t have anything […]

Welcome To The Fantasy Zone Presents: Bruce Lee

Release date: 1983 Systems: ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC, BBC Micro, C64 When I was growing up, we didn’t know much about the world, but a few facts were passed round the playground as inviolable truths: Michael Jackson was the coolest person in the world, Madonna was the sexiest, and Bruce Lee was the hardest. This […]

News Monday

Hello friend. Hope you had a lovely weekend and were able to take advantage of this heatwave lashing Great Britain. I went swimming in the sea. It was initially perishing then lovely. I rather enjoy that moment where you take the plunge, and it’s so cold you think: oh God, what have I done? Then […]

Tim Clare’s Cone O’ Tragedy: On Song Poems

If you’ve never encountered the phenomenon of song poems, then, my friend, you are in for a treat-a-roo. Song poems were – and still are – made by companies who place adverts looking for lyrics and poems to make into songs. The ads dangle the possibility of radio play and international record sales, but they’re […]

Death Of 1000 Cuts: In The Barber’s Chair – Twilight Kingdom

Welcome to Death of 1000 Cuts – making you an awesome writer, one cut at a time. Does that sound like a tagline yet? This week we put another nascent author’s first page in the Barber’s Chair and go at it with the straight razor. As always, read the extract below, work out what you […]

Poem O’ The Week: The Escape Artists

The Escape Artists Everyone explodes in the end. That’s what they told him, scrubbing blood and supple gut hunks from the walls of the neighbouring cell. The turnkey whistled a maddening tune as he dunked his brush in the soapy bucket. Suds rolled down brickwork like a beard. You’ll feel it first in your fingertips, […]

Welcome To The Fantasy Zone Presents: Double Dragon 3 – The Rosetta Stone

Release date: 1990 Systems: Arcade, Amstrad CPC, Amiga, Atari ST, Commodore 64, NES, ZX Spectrum, DOS, Game Boy, Mega Drive/Genesis And so we come to the last game in the Double Dragon trilogy. Other titles went on to bear the brand, granted, but this was the one that emphatically killed Double Dragon as a viable […]

News Monday

Salutations, Monday friends, and welcome to another instalment of Monday News – all the news that’s fit to print relating directly to the movements of Tim Clare in the upcoming week. The post’s a little late up today because I’ve been travelling back from Ledbury Poetry Festival. Oh my stars, what a time I had. […]

Tim Clare’s Cone O’ Tragedy: You Need More This American Life In Your Life

So a few weeks ago I told you how podcasts have become a major part of my week. I don’t watch much TV anymore (except The Only Way Is Essex, weirdly – I’m addicted) but I make a whole bunch of appointments to listen to my favourite podcasts. It occurs to me that some of […]

Death Of 1000 Cuts: In The Barber’s Chair – Deity

Welcome back to Death Of 1000 Cuts – making you an awesome writer, one cut at a time. This week, it’s time for another In The Barber’s Chair, where we take an author’s first page and scissor it unto death. I could sure use some more first pages to look at! Please send me the […]

Poem O’ The Week: Poem Composed Entirely Of Lines Stolen From School Workshops

I do workshops in schools from time to time and I love ’em. The students come up with such great material. I think every poet who works in schools has had the thought: I wonder if I can nick that line and pass it off as my own? And of course, the answer is always: […]

Welcome To The Fantasy Zone Presents: Double Dragon 2

Release date: 1988 Systems: Arcade, NES, Mega Drive, PC Engine, ZX Spectrum, Commodore 64, Amstrad CPC, Atari ST, Amiga, IBM PC, TurboGrafx CD, Virtual Console, Xbox Coming out a year after Double Dragon exploded into arcades and revolutionised beat em ups with true side-scrolling, 3D playing field action, Double Dragon 2: The Revenge is both […]

News Monday

Wowee. I’m back from Glasto and I’m snotting for Britain. My hayfever is the worst it’s been for years. Goodness me. Before I go any further, can I encourage you to sign up to my monthly newsletter? It’s a great way of letting me keep in touch with you, and I send out free shit […]