Greetings good reader,
Welcome to Books, Films and Random Lunacy; home to the creative imaginings of GD Bastow, but before I get started with the blog, I’d like to take this opportunity to introduce myself.
I’m George, an eighteen year old eccentric geek from the Midlands with a passion for the written word. I share my Warwickshire dwelling with six bald sphynx cats, two furry ones and a mad English Setter who only has eyes for my Mom.
I’ve always loved books and for as long as I can remember stories have been a massive part of my life. My Mom and maternal Grandparents constantly read to me when I was younger; from bedtime tales to Roald Dahl’s delightfully dark classics, I relished them all. After those stories had been hungrily consumed, Mom weaned me onto Tolkien and my little head set alight with fantastical visions of The Shire. With her love of all things mythological, my Grandad’s natural eccentricities and glorious sense of humour and my Nan’s straight and sometimes shocking wit meant there was never a boring day in our house. Bringing with it an atmosphere of sheer madness which I fortunately inhaled and inherited.
I ponder now as to whether my journey into writing was inevitable considering my delightfully unorthodox upbringing. I was born ten weeks prematurely and starved of oxygen at birth which left me with a condition called Quadriplegic Cerebral Palsy. This affects my arms, legs and means I am a full-time wheelchair-user. The doctors said I’d have severe learning difficulties and never walk or talk. Despite their claims, my Mom believed I’d make it and thanks to her love and strength, alongside the support of my maternal Grandparents and my incredible physiotherapist Liz Bubb, I survived. After an attempt within State Education, the system sadly failed my needs, my Mom made the brave decision to Home Educate me. This enabled me to maintain both my vital daily physiotherapy regime whilst learning simultaneously.
My appreciation for all things creative only increased over time and as I learned to read independently I sought out new tales and authors to feed my imagination. Shortly after, I came across the work of ‘The Master of Young Adult Horror’ Darren Shan, and the writing bug sunk its dastardly teeth into me. The ‘Cirque Du Freak’ writer was one of the first people whose tales I found so enthralling that it inspired me to craft my own narratives. He still remains my biggest influence and his work has led me to many other wordsmiths; including comic book legend Alan Moore, whose work helped me realise my other main artistic passion, the graphic novel medium. I’m thankful to those and many other creatives who have inspired my work and this blog.
Thanks so much to The Astral Gypsy Al Davison and Maggie for their continued encouragement and support. Al is the creator of the incredible artwork on this very blog; and also the writer and artist behind the autobiographical graphic novel ‘The Spiral Cage’. Check out the link for more of his art and other work.
I’m also very grateful to Writing West Midlands for all the support and opportunities they’ve given me, including the chance to work with William Gallagher, my mentor and ‘The Master of the Blank Screen.’ Thanks to him for supporting me in crafting an online vessel into which I can pour all my ideas.
Now with the introductions out the way, come with me, as I explore the depths my mind…