Thursday, 24 November 2011

To Catch a Spider.

The milk bottle fell in slow motion. She flung out her tiny hands but it was too late. She lost control. It poured like a stream of innocence across the kitchen table and Kitty knew she was in trouble. That was the last time her daddy hit her, always on the body where nobody could see. Sitting in the dark cupboard among the spiders she realised love is like a fire escape. It rusts out of sight and out of mind, but carries you to safety in emergencies.

Next morning in school the teacher called for the principal who called for the police. And like the little old woman who swallowed a fly, prison and showers swallowed Daddy. He sat on the bunk shaking with fear. Some prisoners scratch away the days, the weeks and years to release on their cell walls. Kitty’s dad scratched away the hours to the blade. He’d feel it one way or another. Either from behind when he least expected it, or from his own hand when it all got too much.

Kitty sympathised with the parcel in the children's party game. Home to home, family to family she was ripped apart, turned and passed around. One day the music stopped for good and the parcel found a safe pair of hands.

Nobody ever asked if the six year old had cut her own face, marked it for life. Nobody would ever think such a thing possible. They assumed her father had been careless. Most only mark the body, places where clothes hide the abuse.

Love is like a fire escape, she though after her new mum tucked her in. On the way down it’s scary but on the way up it feels like going home.

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

100 Horrors. Publication News.


I've recently sold a very short story to Cruentus Libri Press for their unique anthology titled '100 Horrors'. The innovative aspect of this book is providing 100 stories of 100 words by 100 horror authors. I think it's inspired to sell a collection of flash fiction  in this busy fast forward world we live in. There will be so many stories that can be dipped into when the reader only has a moment or two to spare during their day. 

My story, 'Hush Little Baby', a tale of demons lurking in the nursery walls has been selected for publication in this anthology.

So if you like your shocks short and your anxieties abundant then why not treat yourself to a copy when it’s released. It’s sure to have something for all types of horror aficionados. They are also looking for a few more stories from other writers, so if you have a tight 100 word terror in mind why not send it along.

Submission guidelines and all other information is here-

They promise this will be the first of many themed anthologies to come so it looks like exciting times at Cruentus Libri Press. Until then I hope to meet you in the darkness.



Wednesday, 2 November 2011

'The Endless Game' Horror Short Story Competition Winner.

I'm extremely happy to report that one of my dark tales,‘The Endless Game’ has been selected as winner of a short story competition hosted by Lily Childs at her wonderful site The Feardom. The theme was ‘Damnation’, an idea which sparked dark images inside my mind that eventually led me into the murky world of Jago and the creatures who come calling for his soul.

It’s a story or penance set in a disused Victorian water reservoir in the middle a Liverpool suburb. I used the real life setting because it’s a building that has always fascinated and scared me since I was a small child. So it seemed the ideal location to place my felonious character Jago and the monsters that crawl through the dirty waters seeking retribution.

The prize for winning the competition was a wonderful pre-release copy of TheMammoth Book of Best New Horror Volume 22, edited by Stephen Jones and signed by the editor as well as many of the prestigious authors who contributed. The anthology features tales from some of the best writing talent out there such as, Michael Marshall Smith, Brian Hodge, Simon Kurt Unsworth, Mark Morris, Christopher Fowler, Ramsey Campbell, Stephen Jones and Kim Newman. It doesn't get much better for a passionate horror reader and writer. 

So I’d just like to extend my gratitude to Lily Childs for selecting my story to take the top prize. I know through her own writing with books such as her Magenta Shaman series and her editing of the horror segment of ‘Thrillers,Killers 'n' Chillers’ she’s a rare talent to impress. I’d also like to say a big thank you for the wonderful signed copy of the book which I’m devouring each night before the nightmares call.

The runners up in the competition were-

Dorothy Davies with her story- 'Victims of War.'

Chris Allinotte with his story- 'Tempting Morsels.'

Asqui with her story- 'Born This Way.'

Click here to read 'The Endless Game', the winning story in the Mammoth Book of best New Horror Competition.

Paws: The Revenge.