Sunday, 7 July 2019

Edge-Lit 8

I'll be at the Edge-Lit convention again this year—always a fantastic day. I'll be around for most of the day mingling, eating, drinking, not-winning the raffle, and no doubt buying books. Plus! I'm also part of these programmed events:

3pm – Black Shuck Books – Book Launch
The official launch for Pareidolia, edited by myself and Dan Howarth, alongside The Finite by Kit Power.

4pm – Multi-Publisher Horror Book Launch
Launches for titles from Dark Minds Press, The Sinister Horror Company, and Hersham Horror who are releasing The Woods with a story from me, and others by Cate Gardner, Mark West, Penny Jones and Phil Sloman.

Hope to see a bunch of you there. Say hi!

Wednesday, 29 May 2019

Announcing... Pareidolia!

So, I'm really pleased to be able to announce this: coming this summer is Pareidolia, a new anthology I've edited (alongside co-editor Dan Howarth).

Pareidolia contains stories on that very theme, a phenomena which has long fascinated me and which has formed the basis of many a horror and weird fiction tale. And when you see the contributors you'll appreciate what a huge thrill it's been to be able to read stories this good before the rest of the world! 

Big thanks to Steve Shaw at Black Shuck Books for publishing this. It will be formally launched at EdgeLit 8 on the 13th July—you can preorder it before then from Black Shuck Books..

The blurb, wonderful cover art, and TOC is below:

Have you ever seen figures in the clouds, heard voices in the sound of a detuned TV, recognised faces made by the shadows in the corner of a room?

Pareidolia is the phenomenon where the mind perceives shapes, or hears voices, where none apparently exist. But what if what you were seeing was really there? What if the voice you heard really was speaking to you, calling you?

Pareidolia contains new dark and surreal stories by Tim Major, G.V. Anderson, Sarah Read and many more.

Step inside, and see if you see what they do.

Featuring: Into the Wood ~ Sarah Read | Joss Papers for Porcelain Ghosts ~ Eliza Chan | What Can You Do About a Man Like That? ~ Tim Major | The Lonely ~ Rich Hawkins | A Shadow Flits ~ Carly Holmes | The Butchery Tree ~ G.V. Anderson | The Lens of Dying ~ Charlotte Bond | How to Stay Afloat When Drowning ~ Daniel Braum | Geode ~ Rosanne Rabinowitz | House of Faces ~ Andrew David Barker

Sunday, 28 April 2019


Trying To Be So Quiet & Other Hauntings was published yesterday by The Sinister Horror Company. The title story was originally publishing as a limited edition novella; the new volume contains two extra stories: 'The Second Wish' and 'Damage'. They are all stories on the theme of the supernatural as a manifestation of grief and loss.

Some of the original reviews are linked below, if you'd like to know more...

"If you like your horror quiet, stealthy, and throat-achingly sad, this one is for you." Tracy Fahey

"...a deeply moving story, emotionally charged,with a powerful and rich narrative, it is an exemplary example of ability for quiet horror to chill a reader to the core." 
Gingernuts Of Horror.

"This hugely chilling and evocative story, mixing lyrical language and lost love, is told with great psychological acuity." 
Horror Blog UK

"A small, quiet, poignant novella about grief and significance... No noise, no fuss, just good, honest writing about the things that matter. Recommended." Gary McMahon

"I really enjoyed this short, condensed novelette, which is packed full of bitterness and yearning, defeatism and aspiration. It’s what loss actually feels like... It’s a fine piece of work." Gary Fry

"I literally had goosebumps when I finished reading"

Anthony Watson, Dark Musings

"A must read, wonderful.", Yvonne Davies, Terror Tree

 Trying To Be So Quiet.

Thursday, 25 April 2019

Coming Soon: The Woods....

I've a new story out soon, in a forthcoming anthology from Hersham Horror called The Woods.

My tale is called 'A Short Walk Round The Woods'. As well as mine, you'll be getting stories from Cate Gardner, Phil Sloman, Penny Jones and Mark West....

Saturday, 20 April 2019

Trying To Be So Quiet & Other Hauntings Cover Reveal

This week, the cover for the rerelease of Trying To Be So Quiet was revealed on Gingernuts Of Horror. Now called Trying To Be So Quiet And Other Hauntings, the book will be available to pre-order from The Sinister Horror Company very soon... It features two extra stories new to the rerelease: 'The Second Wish' and 'Damage'. Both are different takes on the central theme of TTBSQ: the supernatural as a manifestation of grief and loss.

I wrote a piece about just that theme to accompany the cover reveal; you can read it here.

“A small, quiet, poignant novella about grief and significance. No noise, no fuss, just good, honest writing about the things that matter.”
— Gary McMahon on Trying To Be So Quiet

You can buy it here.

Wednesday, 3 April 2019

Recommendations: Mea Culpa

It's been awhile since I've posted any book recommendations on here. Life has been pretty busy recently, if only from the constant stress of checking the exact shade of the Brexit shit-tsunami every hour or so. So I'm afraid this blog has been rather negelected.

But I have been reading (of course) and some of what I've read has been brilliant, so here's some super-lazy recommendations of the best of them....

Missing by Alison Moore
Alison Moore is one of the most exception writers working today, in my opinion, and this new novel was a real treat. Exquisitely written, both deadpan and moving, it's a story (if such is the word) of missed connections, ill communication, and the mundanity both of real life and the supernatural. I loved it.

Where Angels Fear To Tread by E.M. Forster
I know, finger on the pulse me, eh? Somehow, I'd never read this before, and it was simply brilliant. Funny and tragic in equal measure. You've likely already read it and know this though, right?

Reservoir 13 by Jon McGregor
This was really interesting. Each chapter covers one year in the lives of the inhabitants of a village where a young girl went missing. The reverberations of this are felt throughout the book, but the stories are told in snippets as the years progress. Structurally brilliant, it's home to some wonderful nature writing too.

Darker Companions: Celebrating 50 Years of Ramsey Campbell
A tribute anthology celebration fifty years of the fiction of Ramsey Campbell, this features too many good stories to mention them all... so I won't. Suffice to say, if you like Campbell's fiction (and come on, who doesn't) this doesn't disappoint.

Thursday, 28 February 2019

An 80s Mixtape, A Plutonian David Lynch, and Phil Sloman's Lowdown

  • I love Mark West's Mixtape blog posts, in which he invites all and sundry to pick their favourite horror tale of a certain type or style and creates a 'track-listing' from the results. The latest - which you can listen to here - is based on stories from the 70s and 80s. I picked 'Vani Fuchi Is Alive & Well And Living In Hell' by Dan Simmons, which I first read in Night Visions 5 but which you can also find in his collection Prayers To Broken Stones.

  • Over on The Plutonian website, you can find this fascinating piece by Scott Dwyer on both David Ligotti and David Lynch. I love both those things; if you do too (and let's face it, if you're reading this that's a distinct possibility) and suggest you give this article a read pronto.

  • Finally, Phil Sloman is the latest author to be interviewed as part of Simon Bestwick's Lowdown series. I had the pleasure of including one of Phil's stories in Imposter Syndrome and he's such a good writer he made me feel that very syndrome. Find out what he was to say here.