Wednesday 8th March, 2017

And this week it’s International Women’s Day, so yay for the women! Whether you’re cis or trans*, this is your day 🙂

For those of you feeling left out, there’s an International Men’s Day. Please remember to make as much noise on my Twitter and FB feeds about how men need support too as you’re doing now on November 19th.

And for today’s round up:

The Amazon.com giveaway of 25 Ways To Kill A Werewolf has finished and the five copies have started winging their way to the winners. And Amazon handled all of that, so I may have to do this sort of thing again!

I do have another giveaway to organise in the not too distant future, but it will have to be on another platform that Amazon. I will be attending ChapterCon, a new convention that has an interesting way of doing things. We authors and others in the industry get a work conference in the week and then the Saturday (26th August) will be open to the public – provided you buy a reader’s ticket to cover the morning or afternoon session. And I have three reader tickets available to give away.

I don’t remember to put up events pages for the Yorkshire area SFF socials as often as I should but I’m going to be at the Humber SF&F social in Hull on Easter Saturday (April 15th) so I’ve done a links page here. I’ll be there in the capacity as author as well as the more usual heckling member of the audience who talks too much.

There’s another event, that won’t make it to an event page, the weekend after next called “By the Sword – The Women’s HEMA weekender” (also occasionally referred to as “SHEMA”). I shall be attending and doing a bit of smallsword instruction. So I shall be otherwise engaged for St Patrick’s Day and the Six Nation’s Super Saturday. Greater love hath no HEMAiste, etc.

Other than that, the writing creeps on and I may be looking at the outline of another 40,000 word novella with Greenwood-y themes. I think I may have read too many fairy tales and similar as a child.

Wednesday 1st March, 2017

Dydd Gwyl Dewi Hapus!
(And Happy Saint David’s Day to those who insist on saying it in English.)

Rugby continues to be entertaining. Despite the fact that I cheer for Wales, I’m now hoping for a Scottish Triple Crown and an Irish Championship (it would be an amazing set of results).

On more writing focussed updates, I am now halfway through my current WIP first draft – which is only intended to be a 40,000 word novella, so that may not be the most impressive boast ever – and I have discovered that Amazon.com allows people to do giveaways of, well, almost anything. As a result, I’ve set up a giveaway of 25 Ways To Kill A Werewolf in attempt to attract a few Americans to my work.

Wednesday 15th February, 2017

The Future Fire [External Link] achieved their goal!

Rugby has been entertaining!

I have been writing!

Oh, and – as you may remember – I have a book out. And I forgot to mention I’ve been cleaning up my notes on how the fur-skins world works again last weekend, so here’s the latest Order of Play post.

Wednesday 8th February, 2017

To make up for my hubris last week, my current WIP has barely crawled this week. It’s been more like one of those heart breaking belly-flopping motions that someone makes when they’ve fallen over ad struggle to get up due to lack of co-ordination. Although, persona experience of this has usually been due to too much alcohol and entirely self-inflicted, so sympathy is wasted. Sorry, I digress. I have put words into other things this week, though, along with spending some time reading.

So, I have a new guest post to tell you about, all part of promoting Fool If You Think It’s Over:

  • Werewolves and Writing Process on Shona Kinsella’s blog [External Link]

You may notice that it also ties in with the guest post I did some time ago for The Future Fire:

Speaking of which, that is loosely associated with The Future Fire’s awareness raising for their Problem Daughters anthology. They’re on their last week of the drive, so please go take a look at their Indiegogo campaign if you haven’t already: [External Link]

Wednesday 1st February, 2017

Today’s update is basically an Elkie run down but, before we get into that, just to let you know that the current Greenwood WIP continues to crawl along – well, aside from this week’s crawl was 4,000 words so that’s practically a sprint by my standards.

Anyway. Here’s your Elkie round-up.

Fool If You Think It’s Over is officially published and has been available as a paperback from Amazon since Sunday. We’re still waiting for the Kindle version but it’s usually a week or so after the paperback.

If you would like to know what this Elkie thing I keep mentioning is all about, I have an outline of the Fur-Skins world. However, the basic run-down is that Fool If You Think It’s Over is the third in a trilogy / series of three books about a young girl growing up in rural Wales fighting werewolves and doing her best to escape toxic relationships. You can see the covers, along with blurbs and some basic links for the whole series here.

There is some more in-depth background material released with the first book, 25 Ways To Kill A Werewolf, along with the opening prologue and chapter, so here are their links:

For those of you who’ve read the books, you may like this short story, Second Date, which features a significantly younger Conn.

And, to finish off, if you have any question’s about Elkie’s world, let me know and I’ll do my best to answer in a way that makes sense to someone other than me!

Wednesday 25th January, 2017

Sorry for the silence, at least on the web-site.

However, you’ll be happy to know I’ve been attempting to get my writing groove back. I had to abandon my fairies for their lack of good behaviour in mid-December last year. I managed to get about 22,000 words out of them before they went on strike, so I may come back to them when they’re feeling a bit more talkative.

My current (1st draft) WIP is thematically if not actually linked to the “long” work before the fairies that I mentioned as Greenwood in the tags and The Knight’s Daughter as a working title. The current working title is The Wolf of Ravensholme and I’ve broken 10,000 words today – which means I’m still limping along at about 1,500-2,000 words a week but any progress is progress. And more greenwood-themed story ideas have been noted so, if they’re the stories that get the words flowing, expect to see many more greenwood tags over the next year or so as I grawl through them.

That said, there will always be room for my Fur-Skins and Elkie Bernstein, particularly as Elkie’s third outing (Foll If You Think It’s Over) should be landing this weekend at Amazon. I’ll be putting out my published announcement as soon as she’s spotted but, to tide you over, here’s a reminder of the whole trilogy: The Collected Covers (with blurbs and links).

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!