A Decade of (Artistic & Financial) Destruction
A couple of weeks ago — although it passed me by because I could have sworn it came out in April ’06 — was the tenth anniversary of my first paperback, Frantic Planet: Volume I‘s release into the wilds. As time goes on, I’m ever-more impressed by young-me’s blend of confidence and utter naivety in writing and releasing a book when I had no idea what I was doing; and at how fearlessly I assumed everybody would love it, and that I’d be living in a Hollywood mansion within six months.
I do not live in a Hollywood mansion, but I am still writing, and other than pre-FP fiddling around with blogs, websites, and Ian Beale erotica, Frantic Planet essentially marked zero day of my status as a self-described writer. In creating it, I found my voice, and my purpose, and everything that’s been written and read since, came as a result of its conception, construction, and the reaction to it.
So with that waffle out of the way, I thought I’d share-slash-collate a selection of the best posts on this blog (of which there are 271), some of which were well-read at the time, while others slipped through the cracks.
Most famously, there’s The Mad Lies of Hulk Hogan; a post which went viral and lead to me being blocked on Twitter by my own childhood hero. He eventually forgave me, but when this did the rounds again after the recent n-bomb business, Hulk Hogan took time out of his day to think about Millard, and what a bad seed he is. Re-Blocked, Brother.
Other wrestle-nerd things you might like are an early dissection of Bray Wyatt’s character, an obit of the Ultimate Warrior, and the anti-masturbation PSAs WWF Magazine definitely put out in the 80s. Plus Andre the Giant wearing ladies bras as sunglasses.
This post about the crazy, mostly anti-Semitic theories from David Icke’s followers about the life and death of Jimmy Savile, lead to almost two years of hilarious abuse from conspiracy mentalists, over hundreds of comments, emails and tweets. Although I did turn that abuse into publicity.
Funnily, the very first content on this blog, 7 years ago, was the Summer of Savile, where I picked apart Jim’ll’s autobiography as part of a running art project, back when he was still alive and yet to be outed as a deranged necro-nonce. The SoS ended up becoming a strange footnote in Savile history. After the first accusations came out, it became clear that his long-out-of-print autobiography was filled with ‘in plain sight’ anecdotes about schoolgirls and the like. As a result of the extracts I’d used, there was a mad rush to my blog, which had suddenly become the biggest online repository of the barely-veiled admissions of modern history’s worst ever sex-case. (Which would happen again with the publication of the Beach Diaries etc etc)
And this, culled from my most recent book, Buzzfeed style, featuring the 10 most sociopathic acts of Saved by the Bell‘s Zack Morris.
Then, possibly my favourite post on here ever, a look at the amazing, and artfully aggressive mind of Yoko Ono, via her Tweets.
And the uncles I discovered on Chatroulette, back when that was a thing.
Most of the fiction has been scrubbed from here for the book Dirt Baby, but here’s a tiny piece of flash fiction about love, of all things, called Harpo’s Bowl.
Though its original piece can now only be found in Smoke & Mirrors and Steven Seagal, here’s my exclusive interview with forgotten kung fu cultist, and the man no prison could hold, James Hydrick.
As time went on, I did what most people do with age, and began to look inward. Then I did what people do next, and turned that outward to witter on about myself right into people’s bored, horrified faces.
The Beach Diaries, which started out as purely voyeuristic observation, ended up revealing more about me than the humanity I was observing, and if I have a trademark I’m known for, then it’s these. There are so many, it’s hard to pick a ‘best’, but I really like this one, which, over the course of a single day, seems to encapsulate every facet of Englishness.
Charles Manson and the Twenty-Fourth Trimester deals with the devoting of years and years to a project which never sees the light of day, and the mental toll it takes, especially when most of those years were spent trying to method-write as the mind of Charles fucking Manson.
Lastly, a couple of me-me-me pieces, beginning with a post tackling my issues with anxiety and overcoming them.
All seven of my books are available right now on the Kindle for nominal fees, so please do check them out if the stuff here has tickled your interest. In order of release:
And if you don’t have a Kindle, here’s Amazon’s free app for phones, tablets, and computers