Sophie’s Shaun Hunt

43. Lotus

And with the lotus flower we meditate on the journey so far.
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44. Bahhbersheep

Where are the other three my friend? You’re not a quartet with one.
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45. The Pirate Captain

…and a bottle of rum, yo ho me hearties yo ho.
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Badger Meets Tallulah Grace…

…and it’s fabulous!

You may remember that last month we Meme_S1E5_7discovered the fantastically funny Feather and Toast, and as a result badger was moved from her lethargy enough to write a review.  Well, after some negotiations we have managed to score an interview with celebrity chef and humanitarian Tallulah Grace!  We hope you enjoy it.

What is the connection between fashion and food?

One should be inspired by ones sandwich darling. As is commonly accepted, one feasts with the eyes before the mouth and therefore if one is faced with a dreary looking limp sandwich one runs the very real risk of turning ones stomach. Just as one should not be slapdash with ones attire, one should take a moment to snip a sprig of basil for ones scrambled eggs for example. Because you, at the end of the day, deserve it. Fashion and food go hand in hand as both are vital to ones life, at the end of the day.

Not everyone will have saved a life using a sandwich, how would you suggest those people find inner fulfilment?

Very true darling, in fact I would go as far to say that I am indeed the only person in the world to have saved a life with a sandwich. Unless of course there is someone somewhere hiding their life saving sandwich light under a bush. Inner fulfilment can be found in a myriad of ways, but it all starts with self-love, a decent meal and I would hasten to add a mime or two in the kitchen. One should remain nimble and lithe when handling life. If one is rigid, one risks breaking altogether and that, at the end of the day, is never a good look.

Meme_S1E6_9-300x300What is the key to a successful sandwich?

The key to the successful sandwich is knowing where one is going with it. Ingredients can cause sleep inducing qualities, energy or confidence so one needs to have an idea of what they’re after before they simply dive in with a knife and a couple of slices of bread. I would also suggest that a soggy sandwich will get you nowhere fast so try to keep ones bread dry if at all possible.

How do you stay grounded living with the adoration of thousands of fans?

Very good questions. Luckily I have my guru on speed dial and am not alone in keeping my feet firmly on the ground. I have a team of experts and I do at the end of the day say one has to simply think eagle not chicken and see the bigger grander picture then all seems to be calm once more. Thing is not to get carried away. I do read about Mother Teresa and Chanel and such to get tips from the top on how to handle success.

Describe your ultimate sandwich.

My ultimate sandwich would be a tuna melt darling. It reminds me of my parents house in the far north Scottish highlands, huddled around the fire without too much mayo (please see note on soggy sandwich avoidance)  A veritable hug in a sandwich.

What do you do when you aren’t in the kitchen?

When I’m not in the kitchen working up a storm of new recipe ideas and such I have a very full schedule. I am constantly working towards my Nobel Peace Prize so am looking for further ways to expand my mission. A lot of time, as one can imagine, is taken up with answering fan mail and talking people off cliffs and such.

Would you say that all chefs would Feathers and Toast Posterbenefit from classical mime training?

Yes classical mime training is as rudimentary to the modern chef as knowing what a bain marie is and how to squeeze an orange. Keeping nimble and being able to duck and dive around la cuisine is extremely necessary in today’s fast moving world.

If, hypothetically speaking, someone were constantly having their Zen shattered by circumstances beyond their control, and/or the behaviour of others, what would you recommend they do to restore it?

It always comes back to the eagle darling. Think higher road not down in the muck pecking with a non-stop moving head. Clucking gets you nowhere fast and you risk never being able to fly.

And from the fans (we had one response, which is 100% increase on the last time we tried to involve them).

Judith from Bristol would like to know:

“When I boil water it gets incredibly hot, to the point that it is a health and safety concern. What am I doing wrong?”

Love the question from Judith and will answer that in a vlog, thank you!

How exciting, Nibblers, you see, there are rewards to taking part, maybe you should try it…

And as with most celebrities you can find Tallulah all over the internet:

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Pre-Apocalyptic Interviews: Monica Chereches

In a special series of interviews building up to the launch of C H Clepitt’s new book I Wore Heels to the Apocalypse we will be meeting the team behind the online launch party and getting to know a bit more about them.

In our third pre-apocalyptic interview we meetMonica Chereches the author of Less Ordinary and friend of badgers Monica Chereches to find out, amongst other things how exactly she plans to survive the apocalypse.

What are you working on right now?

A fantasy novel with dragons, shifters, mages and other magical creatures.

If you had to bet which would best survive the apocalypse, would you choose vampire or zombie?

Why, a Vampire of course. Just think about it. Zombies are slow, easy to spot and kill and sooner or later there would be someone to figure out a cure or they would just mass murder them by bombing large areas. A Vampire on the other hand you can’t really spot, they tend to look like us (at least during the night), there is no cure to vampirisim, you can’t easily kill one as they are fast and hard to catch and a lot stronger than us.

 

Tell us a story in 10 words or less

I come from Transylvania where the night is dark and full of …

Who is your ideal dinner date?

Tyrion Lannister. I know, I know, it might sound like a clishe but think about it. He is smart, funny, can talk his way out of trouble (not that I’m anticipating any, but you never know), he could help me with my novel, tell me stories about dragons and knights and how he saved King’s Landing during Stannis’s attack.

If you could write a book with anyone in the world, who would it be and why?

Frank Herbert, the author of the Dune Saga. His work just takes my breath away. The amount of research that went into those novels, the complexity and realness of his characters and the world they live in, is just way above everything else I’ve read in my life so far.

Are you more, or less ordinary?

Less, I hope.

What would you wear to the apocalypse?

Comfy and durable outfit and maybe some fangs, just for fun.

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Pre-Apocalyptic Interviews: Chloe Hammond

In a special series of interviews building up to the launch of C H Clepitt’s new book I Wore Heels to the Apocalypse we will be meeting the team behind the online launch party and getting to know a bit more about them.

In the second of these pre-apocalyptic interviews we are meeting Chloe Hammond, author of grown up vampire fantasy Darkly Dreaming to ask that all important question:

How would a vampire survive the darkly dreaming coverapocalypse?

Well, in Darkly Dreaming my vampires can drink animal blood, so they would be fine. They are a next evolutionary stage, evolved by a viral infection that mutates their DNA, so they are incredibly strong and fast, so they would not be at risk from zombies.

What made you come up with the idea for darkly dreaming?

A couple of years ago I started developing acute anxiety symptoms, and one symptom was experiencing vicious nightmares and insomnia. I realised I could either crumble, and let them take over my life, or I could take the vivid scenes I was dreaming, and all the extra time I gained from the insomnia, and write the book I’ve wanted to write since I was seven. Which is what I did. I realised that the dreams could fit together into a story I cared about. As I hit my stride the story took over, and the writing soothed the anxiety.

I found inspiration for my vampire’s gifts in nature documentaries- when the Rage hits Rae and Layla their fingers extend, the bones poking through the skin, and their ribs dislocate and spike through their sides. Both of these ideas came from nature- The Cameroon frog breaks its own bones so they protrude through its skin as a defence; and the Spanish Ribbed Newt juts its ribs through its flesh to protect itself. Both creatures heal very quickly too.

Working with the vulnerable for the last twenty years has allowed me to meet a lot of the survivors of abuse, as well as sharks themselves on occasion, and this knowledge, and the deep anger I feel towards these monsters allowed me to write Rae’s hunting plan realistically, and even take great delight in concocting Thierry’s demise.

Who would win in a fight between Dracula and Frankenstein?

Erm, let me think…..I feel they would ignore each other. I don’t think they would have anything to fight over, so they would ignore each other, both quite repulsed by the other.

Chloe HammondWhere do you begin with a new book?

At the beginning. I not one of these people who can write a book backwards from the ending or anything clever like that. I also don’t plan or research in advance. I sit down and write down an idea that has been playing over in my mind, my characters introduce themselves as we go along, and my ideas unfurl as I write. I didn’t know where the Darkly Trilogy was going to end until recently when Rae told me as we wrote Book 2.

If you could interview anyone, living or dead, who would it be and why?

Oooooooo. Anyone? Ernest Hemmingway. Every time I go somewhere gorgeous on holiday, he’s already been there! I would love to know more about a man who travelled to such far flung places in the days before tourism was common and mingled with the locals while making a living with his writing. He must be fascinating.

What would you wear to the apocalypse?

Do I get forewarning? In that case I’m going to order some armour from the guys who make it for films and re-enactors. If not, I’d either be stuck in my onesie if I was home writing, or jeggings blouse & Dr Marten’s if I was in work.

And Chloe will be hosting the pre-apocalypse party on Monday 23rd May, 8pm-10pm GMT.  Make sure you don’t miss out, click “interested” now.

If you can’t get enough of Chloe, she’s all over the internet:

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Pre-Apocalyptic Interviews – Heaton Wilson

In a special series of interviews building up to the launch of C H Clepitt’s new book I Wore Heels to the Apocalypse we will be meeting the team behind the online launch party and getting to know a bit more about them.

In the first of these pre-apocalyptic interviews
we are meeting playwright and author Heaton Wilson.  With a background in journalism and PR, and a varied career in different services, Wilson’s first novel, Every Reason is available now.  Along side novel writing and working part time with dementia sufferers he is also able to fit in running his own theatre company, and answering some questions for us. How excitings.

So, tell us, what are you working on right now?

Drafting out the storyline for Every Reason 2 – which is a follow up to Every Reason 1, strangely enough.  I’m also doing a script for a new and hopefully fun stage show, learning lines for 39 Steps, which we’re putting on at Shanklin Theatre on the Isle of Wight every Tuesday in August (plug, plug), and preparing to direct my new play Coach Trip (which is on in September and will raise funds for Royal British Legion).

OK, so, who or what inspired you to become a writer?

I’ve always written for a living, in one way or another. Now I’m writing not for a living … The money’s lousy. But the rewards are much greater… really. I always wanted to do ‘creative writing’ but never had the inclination while i was working as a journalist and in PR. I’m just inspired by writing itself, to be honest. Having said that, I think some early sci fi novels that I read as a child started me off, firing my imagination off into space. And doing an OU short course helped me make the transition from kind of functional writing to something more creative and personal. I found it amazingly hard to make the switch but I’m getting there slowly.

And, what would you say the main difference is in writing for stage and writing a novel, and which style do you prefer?

Writing for the stage is amazing, especially for me because I run my own theatre company so I can put my own plays on! Seeing your work performed and the audience reaction to it is one of the best feelings in the whole universe, and beyond. With a book (not that I’m an expert because I’ve only published one!) it’s like you’re wondering ‘what are readers making of this?’ and you’re operating in more of a vacuum. Having said all that, I love being able to do both, and achieve that balance – I do like working on my book, all alone. I really want to do more fiction writing now.

If you weren’t a writer what would you be?

I always fancied running a guest house, though, knowing me, it would end up like Fawlty Towers. My other option was to be a coach driver. I love the idea of driving people off on their holiday, and helping them have a good time. Plus you get tips, and full English breakfasts.

Who or what inspires you?

People who quietly live their lives, and never complain. The people who care for others. And people with a skill – like doctors, cooks, and car mechanics, and tech people, and people who clean windows on skyscraper buildings … all the things I can’t do.

When designing a world, be it a theatrical space or the world of a novel, where do you begin?

I always start as if I was writing a newspaper article – one paragraph that tries to tell the whole story. That’s my journalistic background coming out. Then I develop from there, and trust my increasingly warped mind to come up with the rest of it. I’m very unstructured. I tend to write sections/chapters, then keep going back and linking things together until it all makes sense (at least to me). It’s so refreshing to do it like this – whether it’s the best way or not, I have no idea!

If you could work with anyone in the world, who would it be and why?

I’d love to spend time with Caryl Churchill and Jez Butterworth, the playwrights, and Charles Dickens (obviously). And that person who wrote that book, what’s it called? I Wore Heels to the Apocalypse, I think … ! I need to mix with people who push the boundaries a bit. I am still at the beginning of my creative writing phase and I need to get more creative!

Well, that last one could be arranged, at least. We have some connections there.  And on that note, what would you wear to the apocalypse?

Leopard skin tie, hipsters, cuban heels, shades. And I’d carry a man bag full of Sports Mixture. Probably. Oh, and a sub-machine gun.
So, there you have it.  Heaton would wear heels to the apocalypse.  And you can meet him and get involved in the online party.  He’ll be hosting on the 23rd of May between 6pm and 8pm. Click “interested” for more.
What would you wear to the apocalypse? #IWoreHeels
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It’s The Apocalypse, Let’s Party!

It’s time to party like it’s the end of the world!

On May 26th, 2016 Badger’s latest offering to the literary world I Wore Heels to the Apocalypse will be released to the world, and obviously we will be celebrating.  Don’t worry if you live far away, or don’t like the effort involved in washing, dressing and leaving the house though, because on the 23rd, 24th and 25th of May we will be holding an online event, with a fabulous array of guest hosts, games, giveaways and more!

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Our guest line up is already shaping up to be fantastic, with Chimpcasting’s very own Chimp Jones running a live Youtube marathon, with readings, interviews, music and more.

Newsnibbles very own fashion columnist, entrepreneur and founder of the most fabulous ChaChaRocks, Aline Duriaud will be sharing tips on the best way to dress your pet, and we will have cooking tips and sage life advice from Feathers and Toast’s Tallulah; Mhairi Morrison!

There will be games and giveaways from some superb guest authors, including Monica Chereches, author of Less OrdinaryDarkly Dreaming’s Chloe Hammond and Author of Things, Thomas Duder, among others.

So, if you like the idea of a party, with none of the hassle of choosing an outfit, or the fuss of actually leaving the house, come play with us online! Click interested for updates.

Bearded macho men in army boots reccomend I Wore Heels To The Apocalypse as a survival guide.”

– Samuel Z Jones, macho man, prodigious author

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Something Fishy This Way Comes

Warning, this article (as with many others on this site) may contain sarcasm.

You may have seen this picture before. It is from the Newsnibbles archive, courtesy of Mrs Bush, and may contain fish...

You may have seen this picture before. It is from the Newsnibbles archive, courtesy of Mrs Bush, and may contain fish…

You may have noticed that in recent weeks an increase in the number of discount supermarkets which are recalling products due to quality control concerns.  The local media, one can only assume for lack of a more interesting story have jumped all over it, warning its readers of the dangers of these products and advising their immediate return.  Since we are a media outlet of international acclaim (someone, somewhere must have acclaimed us, right?)  we have not been reporting on the recalls.  We have readers all over the world, local supermarket issues would be of no interest to them… until now.

The latest supermarket to jump on the recall wagon is Lidl, under fears that its tins of herring may contain fish… No, really.

According to The Western Daily Press (which may, or may not contain Tories),

German discount supermarket is recalling its own brand tinned herring fillets because it does not warn shoppers they may contain fish.

It goes on to list other ingredients that are included, but not listed (at least not in English) in a variety of herring related products including that the herring fillets in mustard do not list that they contain mustard.

If you are allergic to herring, or mustard, or both, do not eat the herring fillet in mustard.  Seriously, that is not a good idea.

As you know, here at Newsnibbles, we don’t just report on other people’s scraps, oh no.  We have done our own investigative report into other products that may be improperly listed.  Having made one of our interns get up off the sofa and check the fridge we have discovered that a punnet of red seedless grapes does not contain a warning that it may contain grapes, and tomatoes do not warn that the product may contain tomatoes.  If you are allergic to either grapes or tomatoes we would recommend you not eating these products either.

For those of you who still aren’t sure, we have a definition of herring pasted below, c/o  Wikipedia (don’t cite them at university, kids, the tutors don’t like it).

Herring are forage fish, mostly belonging to the family Clupeidae.

Herring often move in large schools around fishing banks and near the coast. The most abundant and commercially important species belong to the genus Clupea, found particularly in shallow, temperate waters of the North Pacific and the North Atlanticoceans, including the Baltic Sea, as well as off the west coast of South America. Three species of Clupea are recognised, and provide about 90% of all herrings captured in fisheries. Most abundant of all is the Atlantic herring, providing over half of all herring capture. Fishes called herring are also found in India, in the Arabian Sea, Indian Ocean and Bay of Bengal.

Herring played a pivotal role in the history of marine fisheries in Europe,[2] and early in the twentieth century their study was fundamental to the evolution of fisheries science.[3][4] These oily fish[5] also have a long history as an important food fish, and are often salted, smoked, or pickled.

If you have any food related questions, perhaps the best way to deal with a herring, in either tomato or mustard sauce (may contain tomato, or mustard, and probably herring) then we will be posing our questions and yours to celebrity chef and fashionista Tallulah Grace, you can just comment below, as sending an email is clearly too much effort for any of you.

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