A Bit of News – At Last

Lately, things have been immensely quiet on this site. Since the launch of the amazing Lost Films, all of my other projects have been ‘in-progress,’ with no real end product to share with you all. But, with halloween just around the corner, things are about to get busy again.

Releasing any time now is Terror Politico, from Scary Dairy Press. There are so many great stories here and mine, ‘No Such Thing As A Free Lunch’ is perhaps one of the most disturbing I’ve written. I hope you’ll check it out and enjoy it. It’s a political horror release (the clue is in the title) and it’s hoped that the stories there are ones that will make readers think every bit as much as they shock and scare.

After this, I’m happy to say my first ever YA release is coming in the November issue of Frostfire Worlds, the YA speculative fiction magazine from Alban Lake Publishing. More news on that at launch. My story is ‘Your Blue Friend,’ a supernatural tale involving Egyptian ‘ushabtis’ and cosmic horror.

This week, I also sent back the final, approved version of my story, ‘Muscle Memory,’ a story set in a hospital that I don’t want to reveal more about, for Renaissance Press’ We Shall Be Monsters anthology of work inspired by the two-hundred year-old classic, Frankenstein. I can tell you that the proof I have seen of this book looks so gorgeous, you are not going to want to miss it.

A new release has also hit the shelves this week, in the form of The Horror Tree’s Trembling with Fear: Year One anthology, which features hundreds of short stories and drabbles by a wide variety of authors. My story, ‘The Long Road to Immortality’ is a chilling reference to the world of instant celebrity through technology and how it, sometimes, can bite back.

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These releases are very exciting but, perhaps most exciting of all is the supernatural horror novel which I am currently working on, set in a long-abandoned mining community, where a man is looking to rehabilitate his family’s past with dark, unforeseen consequences. I’m aiming to finish the manuscript this year and to start shopping it to agents and publishing houses in 2019.

Finally, I have just sold two more stories this week. One, a dark sci-fi short will be featured on a well known podcast, while the other, a classic horror tale, will be featured in an anthology in 2019. More news on both, as and when possible.

Today is Book Day! (Lost Films, Slow Summer and more)

Happy bookday to myself and a host of fantastic authors, some of whom I can also call friends, such as Bob Pastorella, Brian Asman and Thomas Joyce of the This is Horror community. Lost Films is out today! I know I’ve been blathering on about it for months, but this anthology means a lot to me and I feel it is a big step in my writing journey, not to mention an honour, to share a platform with people I’ve looked up to from the moment I first read their work, such as Gemma Files, Brian Evenson, John C Foster, Kristi DeMeester, Jessica McHugh and all the other writers who made the cut. Everlasting thanks to Max and Lori at Perpetual Motion Machine Publishing for believing in my story, ‘The Fourth Wall’. Great reviews are coming in for the whole anthology, so I think and hope you’re going to love it.

Anyway, for the final time, if you don’t have your copy, I strongly recommend taking a look at it by clicking the image below:

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Moving on, this summer has existed in two phases, from a writing perspective. On one hand, I planned an as-yet-untitled novel at the end of the school year and managed to put down about 8,000 words of it in just under two weeks. Then I came to the UK to do some university work and since then my time is at a real premium and so I’ve managed only a little more than a thousand words in a month. That said, the WIP is still vivid in my mind, I still believe strongly in the project and I will be getting back on it with a vengeance in a fortnight.

Aside from that, the We Shall Be Monsters anthology of Frankenstein themed stories will be coming from Canada’s Renaissance Press very soon and I look forward to seeing what people make of the story there which I’d struggle to categorise as horror, even with certain horrific realisations. After that there’s nothing new until October, although my Baba Yaga novella remains with a publisher and I eagerly anticipate a response for it. There are other stories out for submission and, of course, the moment I hear anything positive, I’ll post them up here.

For now… back to work…

Taking the rough with the smooth

After a great end to 2017 and a better start to 2018, there were inevitably going to be bumpy roads to navigate at some point. Listen to any writer you care to mention (besides Stephen King and a few others) and they’ll tell you that rejection is a part of the writer’s life. Even when you’re good. And known. And known to be good. Even more common for a newcomer then.

They’ll also tell you it never stops hurting.

Such has been this last two weeks for me. Two rejections that I was feeling really rather confident about. Stories I believed in – and continue to believe in – which I thought were good fits.

You can take these setbacks in different ways. Since I started writing more seriously, at the beginning of last year, my method has been to see every rejection as an invitation to learn, improve, polish that story (if you still think it’s worthy) and get it back out there.

So that’s what I’ve done. Fingers crossed they’re more palatable to the editors they’re with currently.

Whether they are or not, we writers just have to keep on keeping on.


On a more positive note, a story that did find a home was released somewhat quietly, in an eBook anthology, just over a week ago. Dies Infaustus, edited by Shannon Iwanski and put out by the lovely people at A Murder of Storytellers, features my story ‘The Wraith’ and is available now, here. Take a look at Alan Sessler’s beautiful cover art, below.

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2018 – the story so far

I’ve only just set up the site, but here’s a little update about what is coming up in 2018. So, here goes:

Autumn is looking like the time of year when it’s all happening for me this year, as I have a story, entitled ‘No Such Thing As a Free Lunch’ coming up in Scary Dairy Press’ Terror Politico anthology. Scary dairy have been a delight to work with. Contracts are signed and now I’m simply awaiting edits to confirm/deny. The anthology is inspired by the current political climate in the US (but could arguably be transposed with few changes to the UK) and features a local billionaire politician who decides to provide free lunches to the homeless. The catch is there’s no such thing as a… well, you get the idea. I’ll have more information on that when it’s available.

Second up, scheduled for release in the December issue of Alban Lake’s Frostfire Worlds magazine, is my first YA story to make it into print. The story is titled Your Blue Friend, and involves ancient Egyptian enchantments and a devilishly smart teenage female protagonist who I loved writing and I hope you’ll love reading.

There is one more confirmed release which is aimed at late summer but, at this stage, I am not liable to say what it is. Only that, in terms of exposure and the potential for my work to feature alongside some truly stellar fiction, this might well be my most eagerly anticipated release so far.

As you might imagine, there are other stories awaiting the thumbs up or thumbs down from various anthologies, magazines, etc and other stories that are somewhere between my brain, my laptop screen and an email to another submission call.

Finally, a word on the novella I’m working on. It’s tentatively titled The Balance and is a (hopefully) fresh take on the Slavic mythology of Baba Yaga. It’s set in Poland, a place where I lived for a few years and a culture I believe I know well. It’s currently in its third draft stage. My hope is to have it ready for submission before too long.

That’s all from me. Be well and do, please get in touch if you have anything you’d like to say or to share with me.