Topical politico-literary humour

This will look out of date in the five minutes that it takes for the news cycle to move on, so I'd better blog about it now. 

Reading James Comey's opening statement to the Senate Intelligence Committee, in advance of the hearings later today, I was struck by the similarity in tone to Kazuo Ishiguro's The Remains of the Day

See if you can identify the source for each excerpt – the great Timothy McSweeney was good enough to put it on his Internet Tendency.

Interview in Lecture in Progress

I've been interviewed on the new Lecture in Progress site, talking about how I got started, building a writing ecosystem and other things. You can read it here. 

On the same site, I've contributed a short piece about side projects, which I don't really like calling side projects. 

Lecture in Progress is a new initiative by the people behind It's Nice That, gathering together practical insight from people across the industry. Well worth checking out and supporting.

Beanz Meanz Blogz


The Asbury & Asbury store cupboard has just got more interesting with the addition of this limited edition tin of beans, signed by Maurice Drake, who penned the best slogan of all time 50 years ago.

I wrote about the slogan for the Creative Review 'Top 20 slogans' issue in 2011. What I said then was:

Beanz Meanz Heinz. The classic brief – associate our name with the generic product. The prosaic answer would be ‘Think beans. Think Heinz.’ This is the poetic answer – a brilliant piece of wordplay rooted in the brand name.

I feel like I could write another 50,000 words about what a good line it is. Not sure there's a better result for a copywriter than having the client put on an exhibition in your honour 50 years later. 

Incidentally, I also like the way they handled the apostrophe after Beanz in the copy.

Thanks to Russell Davies for the unexpected gift – even more welcome as it comes from someone who knows his beans