I got an email from Cheryl Morgan a couple of weeks ago (much appreciated, Cheryl) that had itself been forwarded from the Glasgow Worldcon people, asking for contributions towards an article for local paper the Evening Times. Turns out that the local tv station, STV, were putting together a drama set in Glasgow, in thirty or forty years time.

Oh dear, I thought. When it comes to television drama produced up here, north of the border, the results aren't always promising. BBC Scotland has a series called River City, appalling enough to just about edge into the 'Ed Wood' category of so-bad-it's-funny. As for STV ... well, I have distant memories of a drama they did about the Loch Ness monster many, many years ago, for which the producer, scriptwriter and cast should have been publicly tarred and feathered. As for locally produced 'genre' drama apart from that, the best there's been - the only there's been - was Sea of Souls. This was actually quite a worthy attempt at doing something more X-Files-y. It didn't work, either, or at least the first series I saw didn't: I never saw the second.

Curiously enough, by chance I got chatting to someone peripherally involved with the creation of Sea of Souls. They first thing they did when the name came up was to apologise for it, then to reassure me the second series was much better. I hadn't even said anything.

So anyway, there were a couple of questions relating to the STV show, called, apparently, IM. What did I think Glasgow might be like in thirty years, what's the future of publishing, etc etc: fifty words or less. So I knocked together some rampant bullshit and emailed it to the paper five minutes later. The article appeared, apparently, on Friday, and somebody gave me a copy of it earlier today. Photo - not great. I'm a 'sci fi' writer - yech. Fifty words trimmed down to about three so, hey, they must really have been impressed!

What also strikes me as slightly worrying is the ease with which IM has slipped under the general radar. If it wasn't for Cheryl's email, I would never even have heard of it. It was on on Thursday, but given that I had no idea when it would be on, or what it was even called, surprise, I missed it.

In fact, I just found the stv website for IM, which turns out to be part of a series of specially commissioned one-off dramas, including - now I'm really kicking myself - one based on a short story by Charlie Stross! Aargh!

Now that I really did want to see.


paul f cockburn said...

Apparently, the Charlie Stross adaptation was a typical case of "buy a good story, take out everything that makes it good, put in really crap stuff instead, and roll with the abomination". I believe Charlie Stross was sad about it; other people, though, were absolutely livid...

Gary Gibson, science fiction writer said...

Really? That's a shame. I checked out a trailer for it which looked quite cool, but sounds like the usual story otherwise. I'd still be interested in seeing it I think, at the very least to compare it to the original and see just how far from it they went.