About an hour ago, I sat down with every intention of writing a review of the last twelve months of my life. However, the more I wrote, the more it read like an update of the Forrest Gump script and if I struggle to believe some of the things that happened in 2014 given that I actually went through them, what chance would anyone else have? Suffice to say, both my working and personal lives were, to say the least, interesting.
Thankfully (for you), I don’t do personal on my blog (for personal, read private) nor do I use it for bleating about the negative side of what I do so what follows, in no particular order, are my top ten highlights from the last twelve months of what passes for my career.
1. Top Dog. Released in May to brilliant reviews, it went on to win Best Feature at the British Independent Film Festival where it also captured awards for Leo Gregory, Ricci Harnett and Lorraine Stanley. A night I will long remember.
2. Meeting my agent. Yes, after years of searching, I finally found an agent daft enough to take me on. His impact was immediate and largely thanks to him, 2015 looms very bright. Oh that I’d met him a few years ago.
3. We Still Kill The Old Way. Despite not having seen it yet, the reviews have been great so I’m guessing it’s good. However, it’s fair to say that it wasn’t the greatest experience of my creative life although working with my old mate Gary Lawrence was a proper giggle and I’ll certainly be doing more of that.
4. Paperbacks! The Crew, Top Dog and Wings of a Sparrow all hit (or returned) to the bookshelves in 2014 thanks to Caffeine Nights Publishing and as an author, that was and always will be, a proper thrill. Sadly, they weren’t joined by a new book although one of my main resolutions for next year is to remedy that.
5. Audiobooks. Aside from hitting the screens, Top Dog also gave me my first experience of the audiobook world. It’s a genuine cracker of a listen although it’s very odd hearing someone else reading my words out loud!
6. December. From a working perspective, it was the best month of the year because meetings took place which will hopefully shape 2015 and beyond. That should mean two more films over the coming 12 months. Possibly three.
7. BAFTA. Not many people know this but a few months ago I apparently came close to being selected as one of the BAFTA Breakthrough Brits of 2014. Given the immense talent of the two guys who won the writers awards, I genuinely have no complaints and am simply humbled to have been even considered in such talented company.
8. Stan Collymore. I know it bored the shit out of a lot of people but to me and many others, it was and remains a big deal. If you were involved, you understand.
9. Luther Blissett. Being able to spend time with one of my genuine sporting heroes was a true highlight of the year and helping him start along a new path was a real pleasure. Watch this space!
10. You lot. Despite being a writer for around 18 years now, I still continue to wonder how I’m getting away with it but the fact that I am is entirely down to those people who buy my books or watch those films I’ve been involved with. I can only offer you my heartfelt thanks and tell you that every email, Facebook message, tweet or review is genuinely appreciated.
So that’s that, the end of 2014. It was a year I’ll certainly never forget for all kinds of reasons, not least two of my scripts hitting the big screen, but the positives have far outweighed the negatives and that’s all I could really hope for.
To all those people who helped make it so memorable, a huge thanks and to everyone I met along the way, be it in the flesh, on the phone or even in cyberspace, I hope that 2015 is as good for you as I plan it to be for me. But more of that soon.
Have a great and above all, safe new year.
writer, writing, script, screenwriting, facebook, amazon, itunes, ibooks, macbook, top dog, green street, we still kill the old way, the crew, sex, adultery, spandau ballet