Friday, June 30, 2006


Was having a bit of a tidy up and found a couple of notebooks containing old stories. As far as I can recall the first notebook covers stories written when I was between 10 and 12. The second contains comic scripts from when I was in my early teens.

The short stories are a mishmash of my favourite authors of the time. Some of them are post-WWI Biggles stories transplanted to an SF setting. So instead of a trio of pilot pals swanning around in biplanes and flying boats getting into adventures in Africa, South America and other exotic locales you get a trio of space pilots swanning around in a spaceship and getting into adventures on other planets.

Another set of stories took the original WWI Biggles stories and moved them to a WWII setting. So I had Flying Officer 'Tommy' Thompson learning the ropes of aerial combat during the Battle of Britain. I was surprised by how much detail I had on how the planes worked, I'd forgotten most of this stuff. But at the time I was devouring biographies of two of the top RAF aces -- Robert Stanford Tuck and 'Ginger' Lacey. Not to mention H.R. Allen's exploits in the RAF. And Full Circle, 'Johnnie' Johnson's history of aerial combat. I also browsed through Reach for the Sky , in fact I probably read pretty much the whole thing, just not in the right order.

Then there was Dan Rogers, an attempt at a modern day Sherlock Holmes. Embarassing to read now as I had absolutely no idea how police procedure works. I had the police actually calling in this private detective to solve the crimes for them! Anyway, if I remember rightly Dan Rogers was named after Dan Robinson from Terrance Dicks' Baker Street Irregular series (itself an homage to Holmes) and Roger Hunt from Willard Price's Adventure series.

I also found an outline for a Doctor Who adventure. Don't think I ever got as far as attempting a script.

The comics scripts just featured my favourite Marvel characters such as Captain America and The Avengers. The stories are hideously bad. I didn't even know how to lay out a script so most of them are written in prose.

Rather humbling to see just how clumsy my early stories were. But I cheered up when I remembered that I'm now a literary genius :-)

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