Long read: Drowned Books

At the end of my as-yet unpublished novel The Green Man there is a sort scene that echoes one of Prospero’s final lines from The Tempest, “I’ll drown my book.” Prospero (and the character from TGM) realises that investigative rationality (symbolised by his book), and the ability to control aspects of the world with theContinue reading “Long read: Drowned Books”

I’m A Failed Writer – God, That Feels Good!

Yeah, I am a failed writer. And not just once. Several times. A multiple failure, I suppose you could call it. I’ve submitted novels, novellas and short stories to various agents, publishers and publications over the years. And if I totted up all the rejection emails I’ve received then it’d probably be the length ofContinue reading “I’m A Failed Writer – God, That Feels Good!”

Rejection Doesn’t Define You

How many people reading this have submitted a novel manuscript to a literary agent? More to the point I wonder how many people have received rejections? In fact, scrap that. Forget about writing and submitting manuscripts to an agent. How many people have been rejected for anything, ever? A job, a business proposal, a grant,Continue reading “Rejection Doesn’t Define You”

Long Read: The Parable Of Nehushtan, The Bronze Snake

A lot of the background research research for The Green Man has involved reading The Bible. That’s perhaps unsurprising given that the story is about a group of Benedictine, Franciscan and Dominican monks from the 14th century. One of the Biblical stories that I ended up using as a reference point in TGM is generallyContinue reading “Long Read: The Parable Of Nehushtan, The Bronze Snake”

New Short Story: Filthy Shades Of Grey

I’ve just uploaded a new story to the site, Filthy Shades Of Grey, a 2016 short story ostensibly about alien first contact, but from the perspective of a protagonist suffering from the strange and debilitating mental illness Schizoid Personality Disorder. It’s a different type of story, then, but one that I hope still is enjoyable,Continue reading “New Short Story: Filthy Shades Of Grey”

Culture War: It’s not Past vs Present, it’s rescuing your father!

The supposed “culture wars” get a lot of airtime these days. The most infuriating part of it is that, once again, everything (and I’m looking at you, Social Media) is engineered to force people into camps that are binary in their delineation, and must by definition be diametrically opposed. This reduces complex areas into zeroContinue reading “Culture War: It’s not Past vs Present, it’s rescuing your father!”

Confirmation Bias: The Green Man Problem

I’ve made some very encouraging headway in completing the first draft of my third novel, The Green Man, a speculative historical fiction set in 14th century England. As such it’s quite a dramatic departure from Man O’War and The Hole In The Sky. The differences are in one sense quite plain with respect to theContinue reading “Confirmation Bias: The Green Man Problem”

YAWB: Evolution Of A Synopsis in Four Stages

The SFF Publisher Angry Robot has opened up its 2020 open submissions window, and I’ll be submitting The Hole In The Sky. As part of the submission package they have requested a one-page synopsis of the plot. Synopses are nasty, brutish things to write, because they force you to kill your darlings; unless your storyContinue reading “YAWB: Evolution Of A Synopsis in Four Stages”