When does Social Media become intrusive?

It amazes me how much social media has become a part of our everyday lives. Everywhere you look people are staring at their smart phones, posting items on Facebook or Tweeting about what they had for breakfast, taking a selfie and posting it on Instagram and all the other media forums available right now. At the start of the new Millenium all this was just an idea, now though its common practise for us all.

When though, does social media become intrusive. We’ve heard horror stories of trolls bullying people on Facebook and Twitter and the bigger these two giants get the problem will grow with them until they get a handle on how to deal with it.

Will this trend toward displaying all our daily lives on social media grow in the future? Will it incorporate more and more into our lives as the technology gets more available and easier to use?

In the Col Sec Universe my characters all have Neural Interfaces which enable them to access all sorts of tech cutting out the need for smart phones or pads. Data can be downloaded directly to the language sections of the brain where it can be assimilated from coded signals into something the person recieving it can understand. In essence the brain decodes the signal so it can be understood.

Will this sort of tech become available to us soon and if so what will it mean for social media? Will we all be wirelessly connected to the web making social media all that more easy to access? If we’re all connected in that way will there be a social media as we know it today or will that too evolve into something else. If we are connected how easy will it be for the trolls to bully someone?

If you have any thoughts about these questions or anything else to do with the Col Sec series you can leave them in the comments section below.

See you soon,


Old masters

I recently went to see Noel Coward’s Private Lives at one of our local theatres. It was the first time I’d seen the play live, I can vaguely remember seeing the movie version a long time ago, but it was so long ago that I couldn’t tell you who starred in it. What struck me the most about it was his use of dialogue and how it virtually sparked from the mouths of the players bringing the whole thing to life in a very lively fashion.

The acting was superb from all involved and I admired the respect show the play in the way they kept it strictly a period piece and ignored any motivation to bring it up to date. I seriously think if they had given in to any urge in that direction it would have ruined the play.

Going back to the dialogue and how it was written, Coward had a real flair of making his characters real people in just the way they spoke, a skill some writers struggle with, myself included. No matter what setting we place our characters in, no matter how detailed and evocative they are it’s all for naught if the characters sound wooden or just unreal.

Coward was one of the old masters at this craft and along with writers such as Dashiell Hammett and Philip Marlowe he brought his characters to life as soon as they opened their mouths to speak. When this happened we knew we were in for a treat.

I’m off to see King Lear in a short time at the same theatre but this is a reworking of the classic Shakespeare play set in a modern Northern environment. It will be interesting to see how this is pulled off. I know some of the actors work in this play so I know it’ll be a damn good play. It will also be another first for me as King Lear is one of Shakespeare’s play’s I have not seen and perhaps it’ll help my understanding of the play a little better if the language is more up to date.

So from an old master done as it was meant, to an old master brought up to date, let’s see which I prefer.

See you soon


Retribution has arrived.

Retribution, book 4 in the Col Sec series ia now available on Kindle.

Here’s the description,

An explosion on Toldax at the end of Ronin, the first Kurt Stryder adventure in the Col Sec series, saw the destruction of an entire facility and the death of General Solon, General Sinclair’s opposite number in the Alliance.
The clean up subcontracted from MaxCorp make two startling discoveries.
Shortly after that Kurt is attacked on his homeworld of Celeron by a group of strangely similar men. He easily survives but the incident raises more questions than answers.
Are the discoveries on Toldax and his attack linked? Is it the beginnings of a scheme by an old enemy that will lead Kurt back to Celeron? Where Kurt must face the truth behind one of the discoveries. In his struggle to face that truth Kurt takes another step toward his enemy’s endgame, and an attack on the teeth of Col Sec and the heart of the Confederation.
To play this endgame Kurt and the Wildfire Team must overcome their past or face the devastating retribution of their enemy.

It’s another rollicking roller coaster of a ride with enough twists and turns to keep your attention glued to the page and with enough action to satiate any action adventure fan appetite.

You can grab a copy here


Hope you have as much fun reading this as I did writing it.


History in the making

Tomorrow is Election Day for everyone here in the UK and for the first time in recent memory we have a situation where history  could be made. For the first time since Parliamentary elections first took place we have more than the two party race. For the first time in recent memory we have as many parties in the race as we have opinions, or that’s how it seems.

In a little over twenty fours hours we’ll know who will be running the country for the next four years, or five if the Conservatives have their way again. Whoever wins the election you can guarantee one thing. Not much will change, the rich will stay rich and the poor will remain poor. The only change will be the decor to the most famous address in London, but only if the Tories fail to win a second term in office.

This may sound cynical and it probably is, with a hefty dose of realism but that doesn’t mean I won’t be voting. I, like millions of others will put my X in the box of my choosing in the naive hope that my opinion matters, in the hope that things will change for the better.

Until then