I’m just recently back from Sci-Fi Scarborough 2022, a Sci-Fi convention in the North East of England. It was my first convention up north so it was interesting to compare it to other conventions I’ve been to.
My main reason for going was that Sixth Element Publishing https://6e.net aka Gillie Hatton & Graeme Wilkinson was having a stall there and they generously invited authors who’ve contributed to the Harvey Duckman Presents anthologies https://harveyduckman.com to come along and share some of their stall. Sixth Element was launching the latest volume – Harvey Duckman Presents Volume 9. Since I’ve just published Moonsleep and Other Stories, I took advantage of the offer and the chance to meet other Harvey authors.
It was great to meet the other authors and to clutch the paperback of my book in my hands. It’s the first time I’ve had a paperback of my own. It was also a thrill to sign books as an author, both Moonsleep and HDP9. I also had bookmarks to give away. Bookmarks of my very own book!
And I got to have a weekend away! Even if I didn’t see much of Scarborough itself.
I’m writing this at the end of February 2021 so I hope everyone is doing as well as they can. In the UK, the vaccination programme is going well and 21st June is the date that we hope to be able to move about freely again. Definitely something to look forward to.
2020 was a busy year for me, book wise at least, I had five stories published in anthologies, three of them in Harvey Duckman Presents books. They were Harvey Duckman Presents Volume 5, Harvey Duckman Presents Volume 6 and Harvey Duckman Presents … Special Pirates.
2021 is probably going to be a much quieter year for me. I’ve had one urban fantasy novella, The Raven King, published by Demain Publishing in January 2021, my very first novella to be published. I have, or will be, submitting a couple of short stories to anthologies but I’m planning to spend most of 2021 writing a novella or possibly a couple of novellas.
When I say writing, I really mean rewriting as there are two short novels that I completed as part of Nanowrimo that I want to look at again and see if I can turn them into novellas worth publishing. But before I do that, I’m taking part in an Imaginary Worlds worldbuilding course run by Megan Kerr of The Writers’ Greenhouse – www.thewritersgreenhouse.co.uk It’s a six week course and I’m enjoying it very much so far. It’s certainly given me some ideas for my stories.
I’m also planning to publish a print version of Quirky Christmas Stories later on in the year and perhaps a couple of Christmas themed short stories.
September is turning out to be a busy month for me. I was very excited to be asked to support the online StopHate UK Festival celebrating the 25th anniversary of the anti hate crime charity by providing something for the festival. StopHate UK works to prevent hate crime and supports victims of hate crime. I’ve recorded myself reading my short story, “The Boom Show”. This will be screened on the Stop Hate UK channel on Youtube and on Facebook Live on Monday 21 September 2020 at 7 pm (GMT) and available to view after that. More details on www.stophateuk.org
“The Boom Show” is a dystopian science fiction short story that I published recently. You could call it a Hunger Games for seniors. It was chosen as the Monthly Story Project for the British Fantasy & Science Fiction society in January 2020.
Next, I have relaunched my collection of flash fiction with a new cover and title. I’ve also added a few new stories especially in the twiterature section. It was called Dribs and Drabbles but is now called Fantastic Flash Fiction. I decided to change the name as not many people picked up on the pun and I realised I was trying to be too clever, a no no when choosing a book title. I love the new cover and hope everyone else will too.
Harvey Duckman Presents… Pirates Special 2020 will be launching on 19th September 2020, National Talk Like A Pirate Day. I’m proud to say that my short story, “Tully and the Pirates” is in that select collection. This time, Tully is on the sea and encountering all sorts of interesting and terrifying people and creatures.
And last but not least, the Kickstarter campaign started today for the anthology, Fairytales Punk’d. My story, “Mirror in Her Hand” is one of them and I love the promotion material for it. Here’s one below.
Time for an update. I’m pleased to announce that my short horror story’A Monster Met’, no 7 in the Short! Sharp! Shocks! series, is now available in print on Amazon. It also contains a bonus short story, ‘Mason’s Revenge’, a horror story about a minor character in Jane Eyre.
I’ve been told that Volume 5 of Harvey Duckman Presents will be coming out this month. My short story, ‘The Perfect Ham Sandwich’ is in that one. I’ve also had a short story, ‘Tully and the Geese’ accepted for Volume 6 of Harvey Duckman Presents. That volume should be coming out some time this year. The publishers, Sixth Element Publishing, aim to get two to three volumes out every year.
I’ve also had a short story, “Mirror in Her Hand”, a dieselpunk version of “Snow White” accepted for the Fairytales Punk’d anthology. Very excited about that.
I’m still waiting to hear the fate of a couple of other short stories that I’ve submitted. Fingers crossed.
The Chinese have a curse, “May you live in interesting times” and it certainly applies now with all the fear, grief and uncertainty caused by the Corona virus. I’m staying at home and trying to be productive. I’ve recently had some good news about a couple of short stories, which cheered me up enormously.
The first story, “Scared of Girls,” a short horror story has been accepted by Demain Publishing for the second series of Short! Sharp! Shocks! and should be appearing sometime later this year. I’ve also been told that my story, “A Monster Met”, which is Short! Sharp! Shocks! No 7, will be appearing in print form sometime fairly soon this year. The print version will include an extra one, “Mason’s Story”, a horror story about a minor character in “Jane Eyre”.
I’ve also recently heard that another short story, “The Perfect Ham Sandwich”, a comic alternative history story, has been accepted by Sixth Element Publishing for the fifth volume of the “Harvey Duckman Presents” anthology.
I have two more stories out on submission at the moment so will update when I have further news, good or bad. Don’t hold your breath. The Corona virus is taking its toll on the publishing industry too.
I received an email today saying that my short fantasy story, “Tully and the Ghost” has been accepted for the anthology, Harvey Duckman Presents. It was going to be Volume 4 but then got a further email saying going to be in Volume 3, which should be out in October 2019.