Wednesday 4th January, 2017

Welcome to 2017. How are we liking it so far?

As last week was my “end of year” post, Mousie’s carolling with her mouse choir went unmentioned but you can still catch up with her best wishes before Twelfth Night (if you’re reading this before 6th January). I think Mousie might make another A-Z this year (you can see her Thurnscoe entries here) but we will have to invest in a book or two about the local area so we can plot her sight-seeing hike.

Also unmentioned last week was the first review of the third Elkie Bernstein book, Fool If You Think It’s Over, from Kate Coe (here: [External Link]). We’ve also recently put up a Goodreads page [External Link] in advance of publishing and it looks like the book itself lands in mid-January. This basically means things should be coming out somewhen around my next weekly update or the one after.

Wednesday 28th December, 2016

It’s here again, the end of the year post. I hope those who celebrate had a good Christmas and wish you all a Happy New Year for Saturday night / Sunday morning. And, of course, Happy Hanukkah as I believe that continues until Monday.

What I Learnt About Writing in 2016

Well, time again for that annual tradition that was first inspired by Foxie [External Link]. Here’s my stats for this year with last year for comparison:

  • Submissions = 0 (6, 2015)
  • Total pieces in circulation = 8 (6, 2015)
  • New pieces in circulation = 2 (1, 2015)
  • Rewrites = 1 (0, 2015)
  • Acceptances = 1 (3, 2015)
  • Published = 3 (4, 2015)

NOTE: These numbers are a combination of Duotrope figures and some notes for submissions to non-listed destinations but do not include stories written for the website or published here. Attempts to rehome stories published here and elsewhere have been included.

I think in wordage terms, I’ve been as productive as last year. However, I haven’t been working (so much) on short stories so things are staying in the “working on” queue a little longer and there’s no sign of submissions. Elkie hasn’t quite made the published numbers this year as her third outing, Fool If You Think It’s Over, is due out in January – although she was accepted in 2016. I never included European Monsters or African Monsters in my figures and I had to step down from co-editing duties this year for Asian Monsters (and the remaining works in the series). My excellent partner in crime, Margrét Helgadóttir [External Link], has picked up the slack marvellously.

I’m in a much more regular job this year but I find it a very mentally absorbing in an enjoyable way. When combined with a number of issues (I still have a house 70-odd miles away and the hormonal influence of my implant finally became too much to bear), it means I’ve been spending more spare time soaking in books and movies rather than creating new work.

Writer, Editor, General Dogsbody

So, here are the plans are for the immediate future of my writing and editing career:

The work I long work I started first draft of in 2015, A Fistful Of Feathers, is now looking for a new home. Actually, it’s currently being used to help me find an agent who may then find it a new home. More news when I have something to share.

ASIDE: This is not because of any issues between myself and Fox Spirit Books [External Link], and there may be further Fur-Skins related news from them for 2017 or 2018 but it’s a small press and the lovely Auntie Fox (Adele Wearing) is a very busy lady.

My main work from 2016 was an attempt to craft a folk-tale that mimicked (but wasn’t identical to) existing stories. Redraft should begin fairly soon and I’ve apparently enjoyed it enough that the first draft I recently started is another one. I have a suspicion that I’ll end up writing – or starting – several before I get this out of my system.

The adventures continue.

The Ink Plan

I’ll be looking at my book numbers soon and making a donation to the NAS [External Link]. “Soon” probably translates as end of January / beginning of February.

What I Learnt About The Rest of Life

Dora continues to be the source of adventure. She’s attempting to take over the role of Grand Dame. However, this can lead to fights with the somewhat more youthful Rosie to the effect of “You’re not my real mother and you can’t tell me what to do!” These occasionally get physical. In fact, I shall be dosing them both up with anti-inflamatories tonight so they don’t get stiff from today’s exertions (brought on by a young girl paying attention to ROsie, not Dora).

Oh, and Lancashire isn’t that bad, after all. I’ve recently found a tai-chi club and I’m fencing most weekends!

Wednesday 14th December, 2016

Exciting stuff first: Elkie 3, Fool If You Think It’s Over, has gone for formatting. Book cover and cover blurb here. If there’s anything you want to know about Elkie’s world, please ask!

Slightly less exciting stuff: there’s a new flash fiction story called The Secret Ingredient on the site. I wrote this as a minor celebration for achieving 666 followers on Twitter. The vagaries of Twitter being what they are, I promptly lost a follower or two. I don’t believe this is a reflection on my writing ability.

And that’s your lot. I’m back to procrastinating and watching lame Christmas themed romantic comedies on tv!

Which reminds me. I appear to have messed up my usual Advent video thing by not posting as often as I should do. The best I can do is offer you my current ear-worm. Enjoy!

The Secret Ingredient (Flash)

Download as PDF

Rob inherited his family’s failing dairy farm sometime in our university drunken haze years. He was one of those that fell by the wayside in our quest for meaningful adulthood in the city – any city. Lilla grew up to be a journalist. She’d fallen into working at some barely existent magazine while trying to get her dream job in publishing. She didn’t get the dream job … Continue reading

Wednesday 30th November, 2016

Despite almost complete silence on here for a month, I ain’t’nt dead, yet. I’ve just been forgetful about updates and easily distracted. Which is not to say that the current fairy-related WIP is going especially well (it’s very slow going) as I’ve mainly been procrastinating with the help of a number of games.

However, we have (drum-roll please) a book cover for Elkie 3, Fool if You Think It’s Over, and I need to work out some related blog-posts. And possibly some kind of blog tour (anyone want to host?) or something. So please let me know if there’s anything you want adding to the list of Elkie Bernstein or Fur-Skins materials on site!

Elkie Bernstein: The Collected Covers

So here you go, the reveal of the Fool If You Think It’s Over cover alongside the covers for 25 Ways To Kill A Werewolf and A Pack Of Lies, marking the official completion of the complete Elkie Bernstein trilogy.

Fool If You Think It’s Over will be out soon from Fox Spirit Books [External Link] although dates have yet to be finalised. Until then, here’s a quick run down of the trilogy, … Continue reading

Monday 24th October, 2016

Things are very quiet at the moment. I’m doing my best to herd fairies (16,000 words and counting) and ignore the trap of evil games – made somewhat easier by the fact that the newly released Civ VI doesn’t apparently play on Linux. For productivity’s sake, let’s hope it stays that way. Although Civ V is still doing a good job of seducing me into “procrastination” for an old(er) game.

More news on Elkie 3 / Fool If You Think It’s Over as and when I have something worth admitting to. But, rest assured, things are going on behind the scenes! And don’t forget we already have cover blurb if you want to know what it’s about. Actually, while I think about it, maybe I should mention that I’ll be doing some blog posting and interviewing to publicise Book 3 when it’s nearer the (currently unknown) due date, so now would be a great tie to tell me if there was anything you ever wanted to know about Elkie and her world!

Monday 10th October, 2016

I almost didn’t get to this week’s post because I’m busy going through what I’ve written so far for my fairies idea. I’ve had to have a re-jig of point-of-view and I’m almost finished recasting the 10,000 words (ish) I’d already written.

Anyway, this week is an Elkie / Fool If You Think It’s Over week as it’s been officially accepted and I’ve been allowed to release (a version of) the cover blurb. In celebration, here’s a gentle hint as to how the book got its name:

And, yes, that is who Elkie’s named after, as I admitted here.