A Deluge of Stories!

I’m getting really bad at updating this blog, aren’t I? And I have no excuse… it’s not as if there hasn’t been much to talk about. Because there very much has. I’ve been on a lovely roll of story success over the past few months, which has been great as my productivity has been badly dented by the joys of 2020.

Twenty Bloody Twenty, amirite? Sigh.

Anyway – stories! Stories are helping me a great deal at the moment, as even though my writing output has been low, I’ve been reading a ton. And if you’re also finding stories helpful at the moment, may I point you gently in the direction of a few things I’ve had out this year?

My fantasy flash story about a pair of friends with an intense connection, ‘One and One Makes One’, came out at Harbinger Press as one of their Flash Fiction Fridays in January.

In March, I had two stories out back-to-back. ‘Lux Nocturna’, a horror/dark fantasy story about one woman’s battle against darkness via the power of music, appeared in Galaxy’s Edge in March. I was honoured that this story appeared as part of the tribute issue to Mike Resnick, who very sadly passed away earlier this year. He purchased all three of the stories I ever sent to him, including ‘Lux Nocturna’, and I’ll forever be grateful for his support of my work.

And a couple of days later, ‘Mycelium’, another dark fantasy about a woman communicating with trees as she mourns her brother in a woodland burial site, came out at PodCastle. It’s my first story appearance there, and I couldn’t be happier to finally have a story grace the Flying Castle’s airwaves. You can read or listen to it as you choose!

Just yesterday, I had another first appearance, this time at Nature: Futures, with my story ‘Variations on Heisenberg’s Third Concerto’. This is another story about the power of music, this time sci-fi. What if there was a piece of music that was never the same twice? What if it could change the universe?

I also have a few stories forthcoming. Truancy will feature ‘Rose Briar’, my science fiction retelling of Sleeping Beauty. And I have a reprint forthcoming in an anthology from Flame Tree Press.

Perhaps most exciting of all, my favourite story from last year, ‘What the Sea Reaps, We Must Provide’, has been selected for The Best of British Fantasy 2019, due out next month. It’s my first Best-of anthology and I’m really excited!

Check out the amazing cover art…

Best-British-Fantasy-2019-Full

*comes up for air*

Quite a deluge, methinks. But I’m not complaining… it’s wonderful to have so much of my work out there at once. Writing is all about highs and lows, and I intend to enjoy the highs while they’re here.

Greetings From the Bunker

Whoa, it’s been a while since I updated. Poor little blog.

*dusts*
*polishes*
*spruces up*

That’s better.

I have a fair bit of news from the last few months! I’ve mostly had my head down working on a new novel. This time I actually got my act together and managed to outline properly, from start to finish, which is something I’ve never done with a novel before. That’s why the last one took me so damned long to finish. But it’s made such a difference this time. I went in entirely confident with where I was heading, yet still with room to explore and discover things as I went along. So I had all the structure of outlining with plenty of the surprises of pantsing built in. I may have found my perfect method.

I started the draft in July. I finished it last week. That is a massive record for me. I’ve still got plenty of work to do before it’s ready for beta readers, but I’m really happy with what I’ve got so far, and amazed at how much faster the process has been this time.

In other writing news, I’ve had a couple of new things out since I last posted. ‘The Convincer’, which first appeared at Galaxy’s Edge, came out at StarShipSofa in July. The narration is superb, and it’s great to be able to share this story with no paywall. I was delighted with how it turned out, as this story remains one of my favourites. Go have a listen!

I had another story out in Galaxy’s Edge, also in July. ‘Doomsday in Springtime’ is a weird, slipstream story about worlds connecting through fiction, and loving someone whilst knowing their whole story in advance. It’s been close to my heart since I first wrote it several years ago, and I was delighted it found such a good home.

I’ve recently sold a story to Daily Science Fiction, which will be my second appearance with them. ‘Objects Left Behind At the Sea of Tranquillity Public Library’ (my longest title to date) is a post-apocalyptic piece of flash about the deep memory connections objects can have for us, and how loss can be measured in small things as well as the huge ones. I’m not sure when it’ll be out, but watch this space for updates!

And to invoke Galaxy’s Edge once again, I’ve just sold a third story to them. ‘Lux Nocturna’ is a dark Halloween tale of one woman’s task to keep monsters at bay through the power of music. I can’t wait to share this one when it comes out.

It’s been a busy few months! I’ll try not to leave it so long next time…

Story News From The Overcast and Beyond!

I’m delighted to report that my science fiction story, ‘Daddy’s Girl’, which first appeared in Crossed Genres, is now out once more at The Overcast. This is my second reprint story and my second audio sale. Hearing your stories read aloud by professional voice artists is such a great experience, and The Overcast‘s J. S. Arquin has the most wonderful reading voice. He’s truly done this story proud, and I couldn’t be happier with its production.

He also has very kind things to say about the piece, including that it has one of his ‘all-time favourite first sentences’: Daddy lived in the cupboard under the stairs. It’s lovely to know when your stories have made such a great impression on someone.

You can listen to it online, or download it onto your media player of choice. The Overcast produce some terrific story podcasts, so if you enjoy ‘Daddy’s Girl’, please check out some of their other productions.

In other story happenings, I’ve recently made two more pro sales, and hope to share details of them soon.

Watch this space; happy listening!

‘Rule of Five’ Available for Your Listening Pleasure!

My first-ever audio publication is now out at Pseudopod! ‘Rule of Five’ is a psychological horror piece that explores the stress and pressure of living with OCD. It was first published in Bete Noire in May 2012. I was really looking forward to hearing it read aloud, and the podcast’s presenter, Alasdair Stuart, has done a marvellous job. He thoroughly delivers the menacing, creepy aspect of the story and I found the hairs on the back of my neck standing up as I listened (even though I kinda know how the story progresses…). He finishes the podcast with a personal anecdote that sums the whole thing up perfectly and absolutely nails the point I intended to make with this story.

All in all, I’m really impressed with how it turned out and delighted that I now get to share this story with a wider market. It’s free to download or stream through the site, so go and listen or load it onto your MP3 player to while away a journey to work. If you enjoy it, consider throwing Pseudopod a donation to keep up their great work. They’re an excellent market for reprints as well as new stories, and everything I’ve heard from them so far has been a top notch production.

Go find it here: ‘Rule of Five’

Happy listening!