Christmas 2015, Or The Year I was A Victim of Violence from a Christmas Pudding

I felt a bit out of place for Christmas anecdotes until this year. I made my way to lovely Falmouth in lovely Cornwall to be with my lovely lady and her parents for the Christmas break. This year, I decided to go all out. Several presents were food-related and home made and I decided to throw myself in and make a Christmas Pudding.
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Happy Christmastide – A Look at Medieval Christmas Food

Last year, I wrote a blog post on Saturnalia and Roman festive food. I mentioned in the comments that I hoped to write an article on medieval Christmas as a companion piece. A year later and here it is! Hmm, should I perhaps aim to do a Tudor and a Victorian one this year too, though you may have to wait until 2016 for those! Continue reading “Happy Christmastide – A Look at Medieval Christmas Food”

A Personal Thank You and Happy New Year!

End of year gushy stuff and I want to thank each and every one of you for helping make my blog a success in 2014. Yes, I know I have to put in the effort to continually turn out good quality content that engages people, make it visually appealing, pick up the typos and make sure I have enough content to keep people coming back, but some bloggers fail to recognise the importance of its readers.
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Wrong Word Wednesday Special: Xmas

If there’s one thing that gets Christians riled up, it’s the apparent war on Christmas. I’ve discussed that at my other blog here and here. One of the complaints most commonly heard is replacing Christmas with Xmas. Christ is, quite literally, being taken out of Christmas. But is this part of the secular agenda, or something else?
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Happy Saturnalia! Roman Festive Food

My post on Roman street food from earlier in the year proved hugely popular and I am dying to try out some recipes. One of my New Year’s Resolutions will most likely to be a bit more adventurous in the kitchen. As most people know, Christmas as we know it today is the fusion of several ancient festivals. Though most of the food traditions we have – the decorated tree, the Yule Log, what we eat and drink – all come from Germanic paganism, there are some things we’ve carried through from the Roman Empire. Continue reading “Happy Saturnalia! Roman Festive Food”

Snippet Sunday 23/3/14

I’ve decided I want to write a Christmas story for children this year, perhaps even a novelette if I can get enough distance out of what I have in mind. I have one specific idea associated with Christmas that I want to write about and already have a fair idea of what will happen and how it is going to end. I’ve written nothing of it yet so I’m using this snippet to begin that story. The following snippet is the literary equivalent of improv… unedited and presented as is. Continue reading “Snippet Sunday 23/3/14”

Angel’s Mass: A Ghost Story for Christmas

2681be80-5e9c-4465-9f72-6d90bc6f0b77Below is an excerpt from my Christmas ghost story Angel’s Mass from the volume Herrenvolk and Other Stories. It is 1345 and the story is of young Brother Edmund of Tintern Abbey (south Wales) who is woken in the early hours of Christmas Eve by a ghostly voice calling him to the newly built church. What is the nature of the ghost? And what does it want with Brother Edmund? Find out in Herrenvolk and Other Stories, available exclusively on Amazon Kindle.

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Book Review: ‘Tis the Season by China Miéville

Social commentary on the commercialisation of Christmas does not come better than this! In fact, the political satire of commercialism, exploitation and even capitalism does not come better than this and it does it in a way that only a socialist with a dark sense of humour like Miéville can.

It starts out typically of our first-person narrator discussing his and others’ enjoyment of the festive season. Hell, it got me in the spirit! But it all comes crashing down just a couple of paragraphs in when he refers to not being able to hold a party because he couldn’t afford the EULA fee. Continue reading “Book Review: ‘Tis the Season by China Miéville”