I chose to release my submarine novel for free under a Creative Commons license because I am committed to the open-source ideal. Unfortunately, it seems that no publisher would ever touch CC these days, and (more distressingly) lots of readers won't consider it because of our sad cultural heuristic of "free novel = awful". And then the book also doesn't fit nicely into any particular category. It's not really science fiction (the science is realistic). It's not really alternative-history (Hitler doesn't win the war). And it's not even a good fit for submarine novels (the submarines in it are cargo subs, not war subs — it also has strong female leads.) I fear I've doomed the thing to obscurity from the start. But I put years of work into it. I re-wrote it many times. I had it professionally copy-edited. People who do read it, love it. I love it. But this promotion stuff sucks. So if it sounds even vaguely appealing, save me by giving the book a shot! And then tell someone else about it… [more inside]
Twelve years ago I posted a project here - “DelilahDirk.com - a graphic novel, serialized online.” Then, for a decade, I kept my head down in an old-fashioned authorly manner and made two more in the same series and some other books I’m proud of. Now I’m making another comic on the internet, it’s full of pirates, it's been nominated for a Will Eisner award, and the final instalment of the most recent chapter goes up on International Talk Like A Pirate Day. [more inside]
I've finally pulled the trigger and started a Substack! [more inside]
So after a short break from writing of about 20 years, I'm starting up a little story that's just for fun. It's a whimsical fantasy adventure sort of thing with lots of silly jokes and bad puns. There is a talking mustache that is actually a mycelium network. That kinda thing.
Tales From The Town (previously on projects: 1, 2) is my ongoing weekly story series about a small, strange town (latest episodes appear here every Saturday; earliest episodes can be found here). About half the stories follow the adventures of four siblings growing up in a weird, rambling, semi-haunted house, and the rest feature various vignettes about the other inhabitants of the town. It recently reached its 101st episode and to celebrate I've released two free anthologies of the stories from the first two years of the series. Volume 1 (Summer, then Winter) collects the first 52 (standalone) episodes, while Volume 2 (The Lodger Suite), which was an attempt at an ongoing episodic story, collects the next 40 or so. [more inside]
A new online magazine for speculative poetry and flash fiction. [more inside]
I've started a newsletter about influential passages in fiction as they relate to the craft of writing. One post every Tuesday. Each a five-minute read. [more inside]
A story about revenge, written in the form of an epistemology exam. [more inside]
A blog of short stories detailing every awful fate that might befall someone, written for both kids and adults. Some are creepy, some are sad, some are funny. All are strange, weird and bizarre. New stories every Wednesday evening. [more inside]
My first novel in a new fantasy series called "Ms. Whitaker's Last Year" is up on Kindle! Martha Whitaker is a middle school English teacher who refuses to let anything interfere with what she thinks is important, not even her own possible death, an immense egg on her kitchen table, or a mob of the deceased trying to retrieve their escaped dog. Martha is both utterly focused and utterly wrongheaded, but she will do anything, including braving the bleak concourses of the Afterlife, to help out the various young people who rely on her.
Modern Love is a short hypothetical story about love in the age of data. "It was the tradition now. To go along with those old markers of commitment – engagement rings, joint bank accounts, borrowed clothes, shared rent – there was this opening up of your data to each other, all the things you had said and done and seen and been, all the way back to the beginning of time (2007). There was no deeper symbol of your trust, no greater intimacy in your relationship, than this limitless mingling of information. Anna and Oya laid their phones on top of each other and between them they shared everything." [more inside]
This is a very tiny story (less than 500 words) that I wrote years ago for a writing workshop, and the vagaries of social media recently reminded me that it exists. I re-read it, and remembered how much I like it and thought I would share it with Metafilter.
And They Were Not My Words is a small collection/zine of various cut-up fiction experiments, in which I’ve tried creating new works from old pieces by various authors. Includes Five Entries Recovered From Jorge Luis Borges’ Imaginary Book Of Beings, In The Terminals Of Minraud (a William Burroughs trilogy), Thirteen New Tales by the Brothers Grimm, Five Tributes To The Works Of Daniil Kharms, and What Haruki Murakami Talks About When He Talks About Women. [more inside]
The third book in the Ways of Magic series is finally available, a mere twenty years late. [more inside]
Please enjoy two of my trunk stories, horror and gothic and historical. I've posted them for fun over at Medium. Roughly 24 min. reads each.
The Little Lady of the Way
The Invocation of Miss Helen Demmler
(cw: violence, child death)
The Little Lady of the Way
The Invocation of Miss Helen Demmler
(cw: violence, child death)
Female Kill Machine is a lightning-paced absurdist quantum explosion of ever-escalating cyberpunk insanity, set in a near-future world of almost total corporate control, where the world's richest men amuse themselves by attempting to build the most deadly female killing machine possible. But what if you have no interest in fulfilling the purpose for which you've been built? What if instead of fighting all you want to do is think? Warning: this book contains despicable villians, occasional bouts of hyperviolence, and also a penguin. Female Kill Machine is available as an ebook on ko-fi (free/pay what you want); amazon (£3/$4, or free on kindle unlimited); itunes (£3/$4) and patreon (free for subscribers). [more inside]
Recollections Of A Summer is a short story about siblings during some long ago summer, told through a series of six short (nostalgic, poignant, bittersweet) vignettes. [more inside]
A Cast Of Characters (for a story not yet written) is a collection of 60 short illustrated descriptions of strange people, pets, places, and portents. A sort of sequel to last year's A Book Of Beasts (previously on projects; metafilter), this was initially intended as a stand alone thing (hence the subtitle), but since then I've been writing Tales From The Town, which is a series of (very) short stories using the above cast of characters, set in a Moomins meets Twin Peaks sort of world, and with new episodes being published weekly (it's up to tale #7 at the moment). [more inside]
My short story, MOSKVA, is featured on Hobart Pulp today. Described by one reader as "gritty realism," the story chronicles the 2003 adventures of a gaggle of young American college students who have taken to the streets of Moscow after midnight.
I have collected my short fiction from the last ten years into three collections. [more inside]
You might also like... A crowd-sourced short story MetaFilter meta-collection spreadsheet! Anyone can add to it directly. Or add to it by filling out this form. Sort by publisher, author, word count, audio, buyability, and more. [more inside]
A (fictional, maybe) guidebook to the lost knowledge, the thin places and the secret histories of the UK. Be cautious, though. If you follow them, you may become lost yourself. Available on the web, on Facebook, via a bitesize podcast, or a monthly email newsletter. [more inside]
Four and a half years ago, I thought I was a cis man. Then I wrote a book. [more inside]
An editor friend of mine and I have been trying to keep occupied during the lockdown by collaborating on short (sometimes very short) fiction based around reader-submitted photos. These are the tales we have so far.
A couple of years ago I made a free 8-week writing course in podcast form. Starting from Jan 1st I'm releasing a new, bigger version called The 100 Day Writing Challenge. [more inside]
An article from the universe of the SCP Foundation, about a strange entity inside a YouTube channel. Featuring kittens, coffee, and server farms. [more inside]
Seven stories for Halloween: Trick Or Treating By Car (a story about sadness and loss, death and dying); Separations (a tale of parallel worlds, break-ups, and breakdowns); Magic Trick (the story of a disappearance); The Wedding (unsettling events at a royal wedding); Front Door (an ever-escalating haunting); Flood (the strange tale of a crocodile home invasion); The Second Moon (a final tale of slightly overwrought melancholy).
In The Terminals Of Minraud is a trilogy of thematiclaly-linked short stories - March My Captive Head, Last Of The Gallant Heroes, and Fading My Name Through Dying Air - assembled entirely out of sentences from William Burroughs novels. (Stories contain sex, violence, unpleasant language) [more inside]
My short story "The Cadeaux Decision" appears in Issue 19 of Circle Show, available to read in PDF (free) and hard copy (please support!). This is a spooky and personal story, and it made me laugh when I wrote it. The latter is the highest praise I have for my own writing.
(cws: child death, corpses, transphobia)
(cws: child death, corpses, transphobia)
Many of the characters in the Deadwood series existed in real life. I've collected contemporary news stories using newspapers available from Deadwood, the Dakota Territories, and Montana. Six entries so far. [more inside]
"Home of Hell is an interactive fiction story in which YOU! must brave the horrors of the infamous Home of Hell to say goodbye to your grandmother one final time." A (slightly) humorous homage to classic Fighting Fantasy books (especially Steve Jackson's House Of Hell), this story contains scenes of sadness, despair and the proliferation of infuriating annoyances that lead inexorably to a mounting atmosphere of anxiety, terror and, eventually, scenes of mildly gruesome horror. [more inside]
"The child in the cage had been found in the forest, they said, left behind by the fair folk there at the passing of the midsummer sun. Or, they said, the child had been a gift from the gods. The child was a traveller, the child was a spy, a thief, a lie. The child was a warning. A warrior. A weapon. The child was an offering. The child was a beast. But the child in the cage was none of these things. The child was a child." The Stolen Child is a short fairy tale in six parts, about imprisonment, escape, and revenge. [more inside]
Late Night in the Studio takes a deep dive into the illustrious history of the CBC. In each episode, our archivist host Moe will show us a special treat (which happens to relate to events in his personal life) from the the catacombs of the CBC; films which feel authentic to the time and place they are supposed to be from... but they're created by us. Late Night in the Studio is part history, part imagination. [more inside]
My late-middle-grade / YA urban fantasy novel about the ghosts of Seattle is free to read online. It follows Mira, a ghost who frees herself from the tether that bound her to the place where she died. Mira learns a terrible secret about the ghosts of Seattle and decides to do something about it. [more inside]
A new piece of short fiction every weekday, sometimes on weekends, mostly old stories, occasionally something new. [more inside]
An Escape is a short illustrated dystopian fiction story, told obliquely through a series of 15 interconnected (mostly) single-page vignettes.
Every workday I write a horror story that is exactly two sentences long, although those sentences do sometimes run on a little.
In The Adventure Of The Empty Nursery, Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson are called upon to investigate the mysterious disappearance of a child from a locked nursery room. But as the case progresses, things begin to take a turn for the strange and the weird. (10,000 words long, contains some violence, self-harm)
My debut novel, Half-Witch, is published today by Big Mouth House, an imprint of Small Beer Press. [more inside]
An accumulation of things is a website collecting together lots of pieces of my writing, including various short stories, fairy tales, picture books, and comics. [more inside]
Information Jones is the world's greatest database detective and one of its least successful IT professionals. Technology managers knock on his door when they have nowhere else to turn. Follow Information Jones' adventures as he cracks the case contrary to all expectations. His expertise is Oracle. His specialty is unreason. Two collections of short stories, free on the web as HTML or an epub.
I made a free 8-week fiction writing course in podcast form. [more inside]
What began as an exploration of my love of weird western stuff has evolved into a discussion of creativity and the professional market for creative undertakings, with a lot of little side trips into the worlds of wrestling, polka, horseback riding, rattlesnake chili, and whatever else attracts our attention at the moment. Cohosted by Coco Mault.
A short SF story I’ve been trying to sell since 2015 that suddenly has relevance thanks to the Vice story about face swap pornography so I decided to self publish it to Medium. Celebrity! Copyright! Intellectual property! Puns!
The Krampus Corps were called "terrorists" for rebelling against the North Pole regime during the War on Christmas, against the chains put on them. I may be the last surviving "hornless brother". And before the regime sends a tiny green & red assassin for me, I want the truth about our revolution (and the horrors the War on Christmas showed me) to be known. [more inside]
A humorous story of real estate appraisal and cosmic horror inspired by H.P. Lovecraft, 90s adventure games, and some other stuff. [more inside]
Connor's cell phone comes to life and accidentally breaks up his relationship with his girlfriend. It must then do everything a 'smart' phone can to get them back together. [more inside]
Storgy has published my short story, “Love, Anger, and Pity; or Fuck Everyone in the Entire History of Humanity”. Coincidentally, it was published the same day the U.S. Supreme Court ruled offensive trademarks must be allowed, invalidating a plot point in my story.
In my story “Who Weeps for Cthulhu?”, the old gods have returned, but perhaps there is a greater horror. Featuring Trader Joe’s tequila and turkey kielbasa, plus mariachi music.
Dual-function site: New mailing list of my creative writing and limited archive of my past writing projects (Victory Shag, Wrestle the Future to the Fucking Ground, etc.) -- fiction, poetry, love letters, what have you. [more inside]