dark am i, yet lovely, a lily among thorns, majestic as stars in procession

dark am i, yet lovely, a lily among thorns, majestic as stars in procession

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

20 INTERESTING THINGS ABOUT ME by Host Blogger Andy Donegan

Above: Painting a cup

1. At parties, I like to impress one or two people by reciting the historical list of Ms Olympias in chronological order, backwards.

2. I have followed Tom Jones' career very closely, and used to play and sing along to 'Sex Bomb' every morning when driving to work for about six months straight.

3. I have 2 special sets of corduroy trousers which I have never donned. One is beige and the other is lime green.

4. My favourite TV programme is Heartbeat, because of how Sgt Oscar Blaketon speaks to Claude Jeremiah Greengrass like he was something he stepped in.

5. My favourite kind of music is Donk.

6. I once ordered chips with gravy and curry in the same tray - didn't like it.

7. When I was a kid I accidentally manslaughtered my pet budgie by suffocating it on too much toast.

8. I used to be addicted to smashing glass bus stops with Budweiser bottles.

9. I once entertained Jeremy Kyle at a book signing in the local supermarket by bowing on one knee and proposing to him.

10. I find it incredibly difficult to wear new socks. I collect them in their unopened packaging and leave the drawer open so I can see and smell them every time I go into the bedroom.

11. My favourite member of Take That is Wet, Wet, Wet.

12. The only ever time I took the train to Southport, I took one look at the beach and got the first bus back.

13. My favourite beverage is ch√Ęteau expensive (pronounced shat'o'ex'spen'seeef).

14. I once found a slug in my mixed veg and have since written letters of complaint to almost every chain of supermarket around the country under a variety of different aliases in return for free 50p gift vouchers.

15. I am passionate about immigration laws (the more the merrier), traditional pig-keeping (I have a Rottweiler too), and blood-pressure monitors (myocardial infarction, aka bum ticker).

16. I am the only person in my family to ever appear on TV. It was a social services outing to the Jimmy Saville show in '88. He didn't touch me.

17. I am the only person on my estate who can afford tailored jeans.

18. I like to twitter about rabbits and hamsters.

19. I know a friend who checked himself into a head clinic overnight after inhaling passive smoke from a roach-less ready-rolled herbal skunk cannabis & ketamine cigarette.

20. The only time I ever spoke publicly I somehow managed to fall over while standing still in front of a microphone.


Monday, 27 September 2010

More Pottery Pictures

the bottom of a new gift cup
even the simplest designs with the scraffito tool are painstaking
moderately busy in the oven
still plenty of shelf space to go around though
when things go wrong....Termite House
never happy to see damaged goods
The venture into the realm of ceramics started with painting a cup. Then 2 more cups. Then a couple more. Today it has swung back full circle as another cup, the eighth in all, (or ten, including gift cups) was begun, after months and months away from even looking at a cup. Class time will now be reserved for detailed painting, mostly, short-term wise. After a spell of getting to grips with clay over the last year or so, it's now time to get busy with precision and detail on some ready-made good 'ole drinking mugs again.
One useful tool just come into use is the writing tube, demonstrated by the wording in the top picture. Easily used on the flat base, but a different proposition altogether on the surface curvature.
The worst part of decorating a cup is undercoating each one in 3 foundation layers. This is a common pain-in-the_____, and seems to take forever to dry while meanwhile you twiddle your thumbs wondering what else there is to be done while waiting.
It can be tricky handling the thing when half of it is wet, too. NEVER PAINT THE HANDLE FIRST! One heavy smudge or smear over a patiently executed intricate pattern can have you looking for the nearest dumpster.
Another thing is knowing when to stop, when enough is enough. Sometimes, less is more.

The Shape of Things to Come

in conjunction with Chapelford FC

Saturday, 25 September 2010

Repair Job

Kong Island Range

Friday, 24 September 2010



I’m not giving him an introduction because lately we have been slagging each other off. Me in DNM Fiction paper pamphlets and he on creative writing forums. All I will say is that this is his flash story and he is the author. Ah what the frig...the original and best, here he is, buckle your braces, you either love him or loathe him, marmite thru & thru, as odd and as zany as a bathtub full of cut seagulls on the back of a 3-wheeled travelling freak show circus carnival thingy....Mr D dot Howsar.

“She wants me back home to mop her brow? Don’t talk wet.”
That’s my friend Markus speaking. I’m on my mobile talking to his girlfriend, who is giving birth. She has called me because she knows I am with him. She is well into the labour wails in her kitchen at home. There is no time for an ambulance. Thank heavens her mom is there with her, but unsurprisingly she really wants Markus there with her too.
“Nothing I can do,” Markus mouths at me, shrugging his shoulders. “Tell her I’m on the WAP.”
I tell her three or four times. She repeats the word ‘what’ with increasing volume until the last one is a full-blown shriek. I find myself explaining what the WAP is, even though I don’t know. I heard of it a couple of years ago. It was something to do with the early internet on a cell phone, so far as I knew.
“WAP? What WAP? What’s a WAP?” she yells at me.
“Checking my spam,” Markus whispers in my other ear. “Tell her I’ve got a pile of spam to check.”
I tell her.
“SPAM!?” she shouts at me, and I have to hold the phone away from my ear before I lose my hearing. “SPAM!?”
I know that spam is junk electronic mail. I thought everyone knew that. Online Viagra cheap Viagra Special Erection Pack Viagra. “Yeah, you know....” I say. “He’s checking his spam on the WAP.”
Markus shakes his head, busy on his new phone. I don’t know what’s annoying him, the fact that his girlfriend is giving birth, the fact that I am acting as go-between, or whether it’s something to do with the spam on his WAP. I think it’s me. Does he want me to hang up or what? I can’t hang up. Instead, I thrust my phone at him.
He takes it and launches it over someone’s roof. “How many times?” he seethes. “I am on the f**king WAP!”
I’m speechless. He just threw my phone away. I’ve always wanted to throw a phone as far as I could, and he just did – mine.
me, angry
“It’s the birth of your first son,” I put to him. “What the hell is wrong with you?”
He doesn’t look up from the screen, but his voice becomes all apologetic. “I don’t do placentas.”
© Doogie Howsar MMX
Selected Stories

Alien Dagger

make paint cook
<Creative Possibilities>
b e c a u s e c l a y r e m e m b e r s
Koestler, Not Shut Up, Co-operative, Big Issue, Hypno-Textures, Art Till Death, Definitely Not Mainstream Fiction, Ya what, ha? Productions, Zombie Publications, Chapelford FC, O'Malleys Gym

Thursday, 23 September 2010

Mushroom Bong

x marks the spot
<Creative Possibilities>
Koestler, Not Shut Up, Co-operative, Big Issue,
Hypno-Textures, Art Till Death, Definitely Not Mainstream Fiction,
Ya what, ha? Productions, Zombie Publications, Chapelford FC, O'Malleys Gym

Ornament Collection

It's the end of a chapter. Seeing the bulk of the ornaments together provides a visual picture of the journey so far. It has been a journey very experimental in nature. Several useful techniques have been practised, and several lessons learned, but nothing is predictable and it will always be a hit n miss venture. Gambling with glazes will never not provide volatile results.

The plan is to churn out more unique one-off ornaments, but faster. The key goal, from here on in, if it hasn't been put into work already, is to make the observer ask themselves what it is they are looking at. Making a plant pot or a hand or a figure of a woman is all well and good, but they are all too obvious and have been done before (and far more expertly, at that).
Greater care will be taken in the shape and structure of every object to come. Each one will have a little more purpose and direction. In some cases previous, it was just a case of bish-bash-bosh and seeing whatever came out. There will be more handwork going on, more curves, more bizarre oddness, and, unfortunately, by the looks of it, less gold.
< Creative Possibilities >
The Ceramic Devision

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Curlicue & Bamboo

all original blob designs protected
Copyright Okus Pocus



Elephant Tree

Clay, hands, knife....and spit.

make paint cook

Golden Grapes gone wrong....now they're Black Balls
all original blob designs are
Copyright Okus Pocus

Termite Bulwark

In the beginning it was painting cups, but now the idea is to get the hands dirty. This piece took over 3 hours, because during that time several other more conventional objects (vases) were attempted first, and subsequently ditched. It is all trial and error in this game, but there are to be a minimum of rolling pins used from now on. After spending forty minutes on something and then scrunching it up 2 or 3 times on the run, the natural reaction is to bugger off home and call it a day, but something will always, always arise, given patience. This was a last gasp effort which barely rescued what was a frustrating session. You win some, you lose some. That's the deal when there is no planning involved. Blueprints have to be sketched....

Follow link beneath for painted cups

Inside the Kiln & Lorenzo Quinn



The two knobs you can see on the front of the oven (below) are called bungs, and I think they come out so the heat from inside can be released gradually before opening the door. Above are photos looking into the holes where the bungs plug in.

Sunday, 19 September 2010

CODE FOR NEVER by Sebastian Worboys


This was pulled from one of Sebastian's college folders. It was a flash exercise, with the keyword being someday. On the other side of the paper was a poem about a tiger and a shopping list, and some doodles. The shopping list included a red pen, a portable CD player, a dictophone, a bandanna, and a bunch of flowers.

....is someday. Someday. Someday I will be a stranger on a balcony, gazing at the stars with nothing to lose. Eating and drinking what I like as the waves lap the shore all night long. The kids shall no longer be cub scouts and brownies, but career people tending to cub scouts and brownies of their own. My ripe old age will be healthy and wealthy, having used the system to my advantage, standing on the shoulders of giants.

I will be a person with nothing to fear in the morning, a peaceful pensioner breathing crisp beachside air. My phone will be off, and my music on; music so loud that the luxury sailing yachts can hear it out on the bay.

The following day will be a pot pourri of mysteries, spent with interesting & beautiful people in exotic locations. A jet ride here, a helicopter ride there. Theatre, opera, sports in a stadium. Eye-popping, outdoor lovemaking.

Anything. Nothing. Everything.


I will whisk you away. Yes, you. Into a life you never knew existed. A heaven and a paradise on Earth. My suitcase will be busting with cash, and my eyes burning with zest. We will never be still, m’lady or m’lord, whichever it shall be. The world will be our oyster, and us orchestrators, on its stage.

I promise it. So for now, get on with the usual chores and hold your head high throughout your working day. Take it one day at a time, until I sort something out.

It will happen for us, I guarantee it. Someday is not a kop-out word. It is not code. It is a reality soon upon us, when we shall ski down the sides of pyramids and much, much more....

© Sebastian Worboys MMX
Zombie Publications

Saturday, 18 September 2010

INK is for INCUBUS by Sebastian Worboys

DNM Fiction
Sebastian was the friend I never got to say goodbye to. He left behind a heavy volume of work which I reclaimed from his flat, parts of which I will continue to post on The Blob™ as and when is appropriate. I’m gutted he never got to see this blog, but at least his family now know that finally his stories are been read by a few people. Although his work over the last few years was sombre with the knowledge that he was on limited time, after battling with cancer, it was also repeatedly interweaved with messages of hope. Sebastian was a fast and prolific writer.

I’m a good Incubus. There are bad ones. If you don’t know, an Incubus is a mythical creature that visits you in your dreams. I’m a kind of ghost. I did something very wrong during my time on Earth, when I was alive. Something very very wrong. I was unhappy, understand, and I thought nobody cared. Instead of going to someone for help, I decided to take care of things myself, only I couldn’t see or think straight at the time. I was confused and upset and angry.

Now, on the other side, it’s different. I regret what I did. I wish I had stayed alive and lived life. But I chose the wrong path. I let spite and wrath into my heart. To begin with, before I became corrupted and deluded, I was a good person. That’s why I am not in the lowest place, where lost souls are damned forever.

I report to angels, not demons, and to make up for the awful deed I did when I was still just a young man with so many adventures ahead of him, it is now my duty to save others who might be heading along the same dastardly path. When I have rescued 77, I may ascend into the higher place. And, one day, reincarnation.

What I do is hang around in busy shopping malls, schools, and youth clubs, waiting for a troubled teen who looks really sad or depressed. It is easy-peasy for me to spot the ones who are crying out for help. Most of the living don’t see the signs, but they are obvious to me. Once I have picked out a lonely girl or sulking boy, I follow them home, to see where they live. Then, that night, once they are asleep, I will enter their rooms and sit beside their bed, touching their forehead with the palm of my hand.

I will sit with them, warning off other bad Inks, and fill their head with pleasant dreams. That is my purpose now. I must protect those who are in need for at least one full night. Often, it only takes one pleasant dream from me to totally change their outlook on life. When someone is positive and happy, the bad Inks don’t want to know.

Please pass along the gist of this message onto some young person who might not know that there are good entities constantly fighting for their well being. If I were to put it in religious terms, I would think of it as the Holy Spirit.

But I am not the Holy Spirit, as such, like in the bible. I was a real human being, who laughed, loved, and lost, just like you.

My name was Sebastian Worboys, and I am a good Ink.

© Sebastian Worboys 2006
Zombie Publications

In memory of Darren Hodgkins.
(Creative Possibilities, photographer and potter)

For more info about Sebastian and Darren, see link below.
Footnote: R.I.P Christopher Percival, who passed this week. Thoughts go out to partner Sharon. Good rugby player: Good man.

Friday, 17 September 2010

BACKSEAT DRIVER by Erika Babbage


Erika Babbage is the wife of Errol Babbage, whose story Hippy Ritual featured in the very first paper edition of DNMF. They live in peace together in Cronton, Widnes, and enjoy walking their dogs around Pex Hill Quarry in the evenings.

My husband couldn’t accept that I’d revised the journey the previous night and had the directions printed out in front of his very eyes on A4 paper. It was like it didn’t count for anything, like I was showing him a couple of pages from Gardeners Weekly Magazine. In his narrow mind, the chances that I wouldn’t get lost were akin to him matching all six numbers on the Saturday lotto. In his extremely annoying, narrow mind, I was a certainty, if left to my own devices, to have us reversing out of a one-way dead-end in the middle of nowhere.

Whistling to himself, he positioned the Sat-Nav in the window, obscuring my view. I could drive the 1st 50 miles blindfolded, so why I needed repetitive verbal instructions from the word go off my own driveway, only he knew. To travel anywhere, no matter how close, without it, was inconceivable.

Watching his big clumsy sausage fingers struggle time and time again to input our destination made me want to grab the gadget from him and toss it out through the sunroof (I often fantasised about flinging it out the window when we were in motion). To set the destination details on our way out of the area we have both lived in for umpteen years, or even perhaps wait until we were on the motorway to set it, was, again, inconceivable.

He finally managed it, and after informing me of how long it would take to get there (emphasising that ETA meant estimated time of arrival), he, for the third consecutive outing, suggested I use headphones with the gadget, so as I didn’t miss anything the Sat-Nav woman said. To think that a headphone jack existed on this hi-tech mod-con was ridiculous, but to actually take advantage of it would be absurd.

Besides, his ulterior motive was to assume total control of the radio station. I preferred smooth, easy listening, whereas he still thought he was young enough to be a headbanger, and listened to what I nicknamed ‘Cutthroat FM. My best friend of late, Radio 4, was, to him, nothing more than ‘old fogies talking’. I let him opt for an over-enthusiastic Jamie Theakston jabbering on about Simon Cowell, just to get us moving, and bit my tongue, as usual, while he put his driving instructor’s cap on, as usual. He simply could not help but commentate on every little aspect of the road, other peoples driving, and, most crucially, my driving.

According to him, I drove too quickly, I drove too close to other cars (emphasising the phrase ‘tailgating’, which means driving too close to other cars), and I took corners with the wrong line. I also – and always – had the heating on too low and the air-conditioning on too high. And, although only he had ever stuck his head out of a moving vehicle to hurl obscene abuse at countless other often-innocent motorists, it was I with the road rage problem.

He forgets the occasion when he launched a blueberry slush puppy at a cyclist, or used his key to scrape the letters K N O B onto someone’s side panel in a car park, after a heated argument. When insisting that I pay due care and attention, over and over like a parrot, he forgets the time when he opened his passenger door into the path of traffic and watched it get taken off by a taxi like a clipped piece of tin. Fortunately, no one was hurt, but of course, my parking was responsible for the accident, not his rotten timing or failure to check his mirror before attempting to get out.

Here’s to another bank holiday excursion then....

After thirty yards, turn left....

© Erika Babbage MMX

Ya what, ha? Productions


Click below for interview with Errol


Thursday, 16 September 2010

Writer's Recess

Below is what an accomplished bio looks like. If you are an unpublished writer and you have never come into contact with a professional, it can be a lonely existence. No How-To book can rival advice and guidance from the horse’s mouth of someone ahead of you on your path. Coming into contact with other writers is an absolute must. So far, I can count my mentors on one hand. You need to ask questions if you hope to get answers. I recently asked the editor of a magazine if I could write an article for his magazine and he said yes. Simple as.

The route into writing is daunting. Mine was forged by winning a competition, but the bottom rung is fast losing its allure. Someone asked me recently why I didn’t have a book published, in the same way that you might ask someone why they didn’t bring an umbrella out. If only it was like any other job, with vacancies. Best-selling novelist wanted: flexible hours, royalty pension, book signings evenings and weekends....

Small steps though. There’s nothing bigger. Amass whatever credits you can and if you have none then try and get some. My next incentive, for example, is to perform another public reading.


Terry Edge has been a street theatre performer, props maker for the Welsh Opera, sign writer, schools caretaker, soft toys salesman, professional palm-reader, trainer, grasscutter, and table soccer champion. For fourteen years he tutored experimental theatre groups, developing innovative techniques to help better release creativity.

Terry has published several children's/YA novels and non-fiction books. Writing as T D Edge he has also sold SF/Fantasy stories to various magazines, including Beneath Ceaseless Skies and Realms of Fantasy. In 2006, he attended the Odyssey Fantasy Writers' Workshop where his application story won a Gandalf Grant. Disappointed that this did not include a pointy hat and stick-on white beard, he nevertheless had a splendid time and, most importantly for an Englishman, learned how to hug. In 2008, he was happily knackered after attending the master class workshop in Oregon, taken by Dean Wesley Smith and Kristine Kathryn Rusch.

Terry has also been a professional freelance fiction editor for over twenty years. He has tutored creative writing with the Open College of the Arts and various local authorities. He has edited for publishers but nowadays prefers to work with his own clients, both published and unpublished authors.

(There it is. Notice the absolute necessity of having done interesting jobs if you wanna make it as a scribbler. And a sense of humour. And a thick skin. And….)


Follow link below for interview with Terry.


Wednesday, 15 September 2010


Die Big

I put it off for weeks and weeks, months and months, happy to just blitz my chest, arms and back until the cows came home. I would have rather hit abdominals than hit my lower limbs, or traps and forearms or something like that. I got myself into a comfort zone of pumping up my arms with seated machine dips and cable curls. Working out became a doddle.

Sitting down may take your back out of the equation but too much of it can make you lazy. I was driving home after my workouts feeling absolutely large and big up top without even getting out of breath. No such thing as swearing, sweating or shouting, with me – it was an easy ride.

Before I knew it, the very idea of hammering my pins seemed crazy. I actually used to think that putting them through a marathon 45-minute-plus session would drain all the blood from your upper body and make you look smaller in a shirt. Now I know that couldn't be further from the truth.

I always felt like something was missing. I would never wear shorts, so nobody ever seen my lower appendages, but my soul was finding it hard to rest at night, knowing that, underneath my clothes, I was missing a vital piece of the jigsaw. There was no challenge in my training, no effort.

So eventually I found myself at the squat rack in my rigger boots, performing old-school, high-rep, heavy-breathing, deep-knee-bend, parallel barbell squats, after reinventing myself in the journey that is a ton of calf raises, leg extensions and leg curls. I was once instructed by a man in baggy pink pants with a florescent bum bag to do calves last, because they are at the bottom of your leg, but I torture my trotters first, and work my way upwards.

Starting, sticking with, and finishing a leg workout struck fear into me for years. I made every excuse there is. But when I did 'em again, the satisfaction was unbeatable. The next day....aw wow! Nothing like it. No other body part has the potential to be tender for an entire week. I was high on the results of my endeavours for days on end, bonded to the Earth again by my heavy pulsing beams full of oxygen-rich red blood cells, instead of floating about on wispy threads. Can you understand what I mean here? It's like gravity was suddenly, oh I don't know, more there.

I've never looked back or shied away since and I recommend it to anyone who may feel similar to how I once felt. Your legs are half of you, and sucking in all that air at the bottom of a squat or deep leg press will release natural growth hormone throughout your whole body, making your pecs and guns grow bigger too, believe it or not. So remember, even if it's only now and again, or once every blue moon, it is still of utmost importance....to get them big legs up!

Nothing to it....but to do it.

© Done Legs MMX
Zombie Publications®
Models: Branch Warren and Lisa Auckland
Click below for feature length short story by Done Legs

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Female Bodybuilder Collage

Art Till Death

Valentina Chepiga, Ukraine, 48
Former Miss Olympia 1999
Won the crown from Kim Chizevsky
~ Kim is in main blog title picture
and the woman from The Cell movie (2000)
Original photos of weights in O'Malleys gym. The Body Sculpture 20kg plate is on the hack sqaut machine, positioned by the window and capturing bleached spring sunlight at noon. The stacked plates in the background are on the leg press machine. It's neat how the red, blue and faint yellow can be seen in the iron.
Link for more A.T.D female collages at Redbubble.com

Monday, 13 September 2010

Latest Ornament

Biggest thing yet. Very limited at the moment due to lack of extractor, which produces the long slim wormlike threads, or laces, which are used for weaving through the clay.
Took a couple of hours, unplanned, trial and error as it went along.



2 officers of the law have been binned from the service after writing off a high-powered muscle car they confiscated from a driver they considered to be driving erratically. After pulling him, he kopped for his tax disc been a day out of date. The officers jumped into the Mitsubishi Evo VIII while waiting for a tow truck. The owner, who passed his breathalyser, watched on from the bus stop with his shopping bags as they ploughed his pride and joy into a greenhouse in someone's garden, flipping it in the process.

The pending investigation will try to uncover the reasons why the motor needed turning around, and why, if this was the case, the officers decided to do this via a roundabout nearly half a mile away instead of doing a simple 3-point turn.

The owner of the greenhouse said he thought a plane had crashed into his garden. He had saved for years to do up his cherished garden and had only just finished building the greenhouse. Upon seeing the occupants get out the vehicle, he prepared to throttle what he expected to be a pair of drunken yob boy-racers. When he saw the uniforms, he thought they were morons going to a fancy dress party, and throttled them anyway, thereby getting himself arrested for assault.

The only injury sustained was by the gentleman's dog, who was in the garden at the time, and suffered a fractured ankle.

PC Wigglesworth, a former rugby player, said he 'only touched' the accelerator pedal.

The owner of the car described the officers as 'divvies' who wanted locking up. He is currently seeking compensation.

uploaded via Samsung Swype®

Sunday, 12 September 2010

Ruined Base

In a hundred years time, when this is given to someone or bought by someone, or found in a landfill site by a hoarder, they will say, "ebald seven seven dot blogspot dot com?" Part of the deal with ceramics is that, hopefully, things are getting made that will be around long after you.

The paint, because it was so thick, or because the kiln wasn't quite hot enough, run down the sides and leaked underneath.

Signing products can be a problem. It might be best left to a marker pen in some cases, once it's cooked.

for more pictures of this ornament follow link below

for other termite ornaments follow this one

and for the very 1st prototype in the termite range follow this one