brainfreezeWho are you and what do you do?I'm Chris. I write words for people if they pay me money. Those words include this book, a lot of the content for an actual zombie trial at the Science Museum and far too many tweets.

What are you going to be talking at Hack Circus: THIS IS REALITY? I'm going to be finally answering the question "Are you actually a brain in a jar hooked up to a computer simulation?" Loads of people are acting like this is some sort of really deep philosophical conundrum, but really it's very straight forward and I will finally give you an absolute, definitive answer to that question. Probably.

What are you working on *today*?  Today is divided between writing copy for a website that sells lawnmowers, and editing a short story about an extremely violent 8 bit video game.

Give us one insight about reality based on your work... If you think reality is a story and you're the protagonist, the odds are you're actually somewhere between the comic relief and the villain. You know, apart from me. I'm the protagonist.

Name one great project you've seen recently.  I enjoyed the Tourist Trap game at Geek 2014 in Margate. While everyone else was busy playing retro video games we were given an envelope full of old photographs and given an hour to recreate all of them using only what we could find around the convention venue. Anyone who can get a bunch of complete strangers to go out and start constructing donkeys out of coats has achieved something important as far as I'm concerned.

heatherWho are you and what do you do?I'm Heather Fenoughty, and I'm a composer and sound designer for film, theatre, games and multimedia.

What are you going to be talking about at Hack Circus: THIS IS REALITY? The notion of 'magic reality' and the manipulation of audience perceptions through audio in site-specific theatre, the technology involved (and if I've got time the effect of music and sound on the brain and how that feeds back into the audience members' journeys through the story).

What are you working on *today*? A score pitch for a feature film.

Give us one insight about reality based on your work... Reality is perception; it's the framework or 'matrix' we create in our mind, through which we navigate the world about us. It's pattern recognition and magical thinking, and we're at the mercy of our subconscious minds creating our own personal realities and directing our actions (some might say!).

At a most basic level, audio has a more direct link to the subconscious - evolutionarily, hearing is one of our early warning systems as we'll often more likely hear a threat before we see it - and so, when it comes to storytelling in the open world, in site-specific theatre, setting the scene, manipulating our focus and the level of emotional importance of that focus that our subconscious relays to our conscious, sound design and music is integral.