So I’m going to be in a book…

… not me personally, but one of my stories will be.

You may remember a while ago that I was shouting about being on the shortlist to have a horror story published (along with 49 others) in Twisted50: a compilation of 50 short horror stories brought about by the Create50 team.

content_winner

Naturally I’m over-the-moon at this news, and having my story reach this stage means I now get to attend the the gala launch and awards ceremony in London at some point in the near future, where the final awards will be handed out.

The writing in this completion was very strong and I’m really surprised to have made it this far. And like the photo says, I do feel like a winner as getting into the book was always my goal. And did I mention that this is not going be a self-pub, but a real book with a real agent (Blake Friedman) and everything?

I’m starting to wonder if I could go on to be awarded one of the additional awards too? I mean I’m now begining to believe that anything is possible.

Furthermore, the organisers felt so many amazing stories were submitted that they have come up with a companion book called Twisted’s Little Sister, which is 50 of the best stories that didn’t make the final cut. And guess what? I’ve got a story in there too. It’s all a bit much to comprehend really.

That aside, I think one of the most exciting aspects to this is that Clive Barker (Candyman, Hellraiser) is one of the judges, which means he is going to read one of my stories…  one of my stories. Imagine, Clive Barker sitting down and reading something written by little ‘ole me.

So there we are. Just an update of what’s happening in my writing life. I’ll be in touch after the launch party.

I love saying that.

Thanks for reading.

Whoa, I’m a finalist in a writing competition!

Thanks to a fellow blogger, Mr Pootler, I recently entered a short horror story competition called Twisted50. It’s a brilliant idea (and one that has turned out to be more than just a writing comp) where writers who enter are additionally encouraged to leave feedback on other stories in the competition. The minimum commitment they ask of you is to read and comment on three stories for every one story you enter; I entered two stories so therefore I was obliged to leave feedback on six others. In the end I read and left feedback on nearly 60 stories – and some people way more than that. In truth, I found myself a little caught up in the whole process, which was not only enjoyable and entertaining, but also provided some really useful experience in both giving and receiving feedback, be it good… or not so good.

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To Serve a King: A swashbuckling sci-fi short story…

To celebrate getting my short story published in the New Accelerator magazine, I have decided to put it out as a blog post. Enjoy…

To Serve a King

The pressgangs never came around here. Why would they? Pickings for naval impressment were slim in Albany. As one of the kingdom’s more remote regions and situated near the petering end of the Good Hope trade wind, the place was populated mostly by farmers. Granted, there were plenty of scrapyarders and a handful of metal workers here, but experienced sailors were few and far between.

And yet, the dreaded pressgangs had arrived.

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So I got something published…

I’ve not been posting on here as frequently as I would like, and whilst I’m not going to apologise (after all, the only person that really affects is me) I will tell you that I shall endeavour to keep future postings a little more frequent than of late.

So then, trying to get an agent to take on my debut novel is proving about as impossible as I expected. In response to that I’m currently rejigging my story – especially those notorious “first three chapters” that agents ask for – and will be embarking on a second wave of attack in the near future. Right now, though, at least I have some good news to impart…

Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 18.02.24It turns out that The New Accelerator magazine took a liking to a short story of mine and has decided to publish it.

The adventure is set in the same swashbuckling sci-fi world as my novel, and centres around a young lad who is pressed into service onboard a starship. Life aboard a solar-sailing ship tuns out to be nothing like he expected, and we follow his subsequent attempts to get away.

This short story was, in part, an experiment to see if I could convince readers of my maritime sci-fi world… and it appears that I can. Great. Additionally, it has given me confidence in the concept of my novel and the faith to go and get that published.

The New Accelerator is a bi-monthly compendium of sci-fi shorts, ten in each issue, written by authors from around the globe. My story appears in Issue 3, just in case you’re interested.

The magazine is only recently launched (which probably helped my case a lot!) but a few of the writers are excellent. I am incredibly proud to share the pages with some of these guys and certainly chuffed that somebody took up one of my stories.

This is definitely a feeling I could get used to…

Thanks for reading

My first adventure into sic-fi… (sic)

Following an auto-correct glitch one day, I was suddenly faced with the prospect of a new sub-genre: ‘sic-fi‘ (you see what happened, yes?). Anyway, I thought to myself that ‘sic-fi’ — or ‘sickfi‘ — may make for interesting writing and decided to try my hand at a little sic-fi flash fiction.

WARNING: THIS DOES EXACTLY WHAT IT SAYS ON THE TIN AND IS AN INDULGENCE INTO GORE, FILTH AND DEPRAVITY (WITH A LITTLE SCI-FI THROWN IN TOO) IF YOU’RE SQUEEMISH OR EASILY OFFENDED, IT’S PROBABLY BEST IF YOU GO AND READ ONE OF MY POSTS ON SELF-PUBLISHING INSTEAD…

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That’s not lame. That’s brilliant.

WARNING: This post contains profanity and its subject matter may be a small cause for offence. (But it’s quite funny too).

Oh yes, and the names have been changed to protect the incident… Continue reading

Wrapped up in six little words

So I’ve just discovered this thing called the Six Word Story Challenge, or 6WSC, where you have to write a six-word story on a chosen subject. This time it’s film: On the topic of film, write a short story. Simple. Fun. Quick. I love it.

I’ve chosen to do my story on one film in particular and, of course, there was only ever going to be one film for me to write about, so here’s my story:

A childhood spent with plastic figures

And the film?

This one:

Picture 1

Thanks for reading.