The Ancients anthology is out! This is #10 in the Dark Drabbles series by Black Hare Press, and is full of drabbles (100-word stories) inspired by ancient civilisations.
I have two tiny tales in this one. The Bean-Nighe (from ancient Celtic beliefs) is set in the Scottish Highlands. Rebellion on Ynys Mon is set on Anglesey at the time of the Roman invasion. Ynys Mon was an important place for druids, and the Romans wanted to wipe them out.
I'm looking forward to reading all the other stories in Ancients. Here's the link if you want to have a look.
My thanks to the amazing team at BHP. Check out their site and have a go at submitting some stories of your own!
Phantom #2 is out, hooray! I love the gorgeous cover, so couldn't wait for the antho to become available. This is one of the series of Lockdown anthologies from Black Hare Press. You can get it from Amazon, or if you want a free version you can get it from these other sites. It will only be available during the ongoing lockdown/coronavirus situation, so hurry if you want to read it.
My prize-winning short story Travellin' Light is reprinted in Phantom #2. I'm looking forward to reading all the other stories in the book.
Other Lockdown fiction is due out shortly.
Fab news! Two more of my stories have been accepted by Black Hare Press for their free lockdown anthologies. Travellin' Light won 2nd prize in the Scribble Summer Competition back in 2009 and was printed in Scribble magazine. Readers of the mag made some lovely comments about the story, so I'm hoping readers of the Phantom #2 anthology will enjoy Travellin' Light too.
My story Fifth Summer will appear in Fantasy #2. I wrote this several years ago and thought I had lost it, as I deleted a load of stuff from my computer. But recently I found it! It has never been published, so I'm pleased it will appear in print soon. Fifth Summer is written in the form of a magazine article reproducing a 'found' page of a long-lost journal. Read it and the clues within it should give you an idea of what may have happened to Sylvirah Oakbriar after she wrote her journal...
Both of these anthologies will be free of charge and available during the Coronavirus Lockdown of 2020.
The Oceans anthology is out now! It is full of 100-word stories (drabbles) set on or in the ocean. This is #9 in the Dark Drabbles series by Black Hare Press. And it includes my story The Artist. I can't wait to see it in the book, and to read all the other stories in there!
If you want to check Oceans out, either click the pic above, or click here. My thanks to the Black Hare Press team for the lovely fishy pic.
Black Hare Press have several writing opportunities on their site, so have a look and then have a go at writing and submitting your own stories. I wish I'd found them sooner, as I just love their book cover designs.
Those lovely people at Black Hare Press are hard at work on a series of Lockdown anthologies. These anthologies will be free of charge and will be released during the Coronavirus Lockdown only. They will cover genres such as horror, paranormal, sci-fi and fantasy, so you'll have plenty of fiction to stop you getting bored!
My story The Tip Of My Tongue will be reprinted in the Sci-Fi#2 anthology. The Tip Of My Tongue was previously published years ago on Weirdyear and then on Flash Future Review. Both of those sites no longer exist, so I'm pleased my story will be reaching new readers.
I'll let you know when these anthologies are available.
Good news! My story The Bean-Nighe has been accepted for publication in the Ancients anthology, by Black Hare Press.
Ancients is #10 in the Dark Drabbles series of anthologies, and is going to be full of 100-word dark tales inspired by ancient civilizations. Mine is inspired by one of the beliefs of the ancient Gaelic civilization.
Bean-Nighe is pronounced something like Ben Nee-yeh or Ben Nee-yuh. Nobody wanted to meet her!
UPDATE: A second drabble, called Rebellion on Ynys Mon will also appear in this anthology. This story was inspired by the Roman invasion of what is now called Anglesey. Tacitus described the incident, which involved the druids. I imagined a story around that.
I had news of an acceptance yesterday. My story Wrong Room has just been published on the 50-Word Stories site. I've been enjoying the little stories on there for some time, so I'm really pleased to have my own tiny tale on there. This is one of those stories where I knew the last line I wanted to use, and then had to work out what led up to it.
Check out the stories, and have a go writing your own!
UPDATE: Good news! I've just heard that Wrong Room has been chosen as 'Story of the Week.' My thanks to the editor, Tim, for selecting my story.
I have a few stories 'out there' in submission-land at the moment so it's fingers crossed, and I'm anxiously checking emails, hoping for an acceptance. I'm really enjoying writing drabbles and microfiction, as they are so easy to fit in with whatever else I'm doing. Because of bus times I sometimes have a 20-minute wait once I get to my destination, so I use the time to jot down ideas for my next drabble and then type it up when I get home.
This month I read The Family by Louise Jensen. This is a psychological thriller and is a real page-turner about a mother and daughter who are offered a home with a local community. But once they are there, will they be allowed to leave? The story is full of misunderstandings, motives and secrets and makes you wonder if you can ever fully trust anybody. Or fully know anybody, even those closest to you. I'll definitely check out more of Louise Jensen's novels.
Christopher Fielden has recently updated his very useful list of writing competitions. He has listed comps in various categories, which makes it easier to find what you're looking for. So you'll find lists of prestigious comps with big prizes, annual comps, one-off comps, and more.
You can also see, at a glance, the closing date, entry fee (if any), word count, and prize. This is handy, as it saves clicking through to the comp site only to find your story doesn't fit the word count or that you've missed the deadline!
If you enjoy entering writing competitions check out his page here.
I’ve just finished reading one of my Christmas presents, which was Jonathan Pinnock’s Dip Flash. An entertaining collection of quirky, witty and surreal short stories.
My absolute favourite was Ventriloquism for Dummies. I’ve read several ventriloquist-dummy stories over the years, and Pinnock’s version is the best, in my opinion. It was deliciously different, and I loved the ending.
Other stories I liked were Adagio Assai and Around The Block.
I also recently finished reading Stephen King’s The Bazaar of Bad Dreams, which is another collection of short stories. My favourite story was Obits, which was about a writer who can actually kill people off just by writing their obituary. It stayed with me long after I’d finished reading. Just think what it would be like to have that sort of power. I think the world would be a very different place. And what obituaries would I write if I had that power? And would I really use that power? Hmm…