Tagged: Flash Fiction Month 2015

Osiris Likes This – Paperback Available

The paperback version of Osiris Likes This is now on sale!

 Osiris Likes This Front Cover

The book should be appearing at several online retailers, but for the moment Amazon UK and Amazon US (or your local tentacle of the Amazon shoggoth) are likely the simplest, most reliable places to get it. If you feel like chucking some extra royalties my way, you can also order direct from Createspace, though you may not get the best deal (especially if shipping to the UK: Amazon UK offers free shipping on orders over £10). Continue reading

Advertisements

Flash Fiction Month Win and NaNoWriMo Plans

I’ve just discovered that I was the Week One winner for this year’s Flash Fiction month!

Needless to say, I’m pretty chuffed about it. Despite having originally just joined on a whim (as the introduction to my first book [which I put together before I knew there would be a series {or how to use nested brackets} and now feels kind of weird] says), FFM has become something I really look forward to each year. As an event, it hits the perfect balance between being challenging and frivolous, and it’s a big part of the reason I write flash fiction at all.

I’m also chuffed because the winners for weeks Two, Three and Four are all people I’m glad to see get a mention for something FFM-related. Their names have all turned up in my collections at some point or another–usually as part of some kind of community/collaboration challenge–because these are (some of) the people I’ll look to when that sort of thing comes up:

:iconintelligentzombie:   :iconjoe-wright:   :icongdeyke: Continue reading

“Osiris Likes This” Out Today!

Osiris Likes This is now available, and can be found in any format you’d like, DRM-free, right here for just $0.99.

Osiris Likes This Cover

Thanks to the (admittedly brief) preorder period, it should soon be appearing at your favourite retailers as well. I’ll also be taking this opportunity to make all the previous books available through Amazon’s Kindle store, though unfortunately Amazon won’t allow me to give them away free as I do elsewhere. If you want free copies of my first three anthologies for Kindle, your best bet is to download the .mobi (Kindle) version over on Smashwords.

OCR is Not the Only Font Cover REDESIGN (Barbecued Iguana)Red Herring Cover (Barbecued Iguana design)Bionic Punchline eBook CoverOsiris Likes This Cover

If you’d like to have a look at the stories without buying the book, you can read online right here on my blog and also on deviantART (the home of Flash Fiction Month). This anthology is mostly for readers who want them collected up neatly to read on the go, or who’d like to support me by chucking a little money my way.

If you’d like to support me but wouldn’t like to spend any money, you can do so for free by reviewing or sharing any of my books. Email them to your friends! Throw them at your enemies! Also throw them at your frenemies (but gift-wrap them first, to show that you care)!

But if you would like a copy of Osiris Likes This, here’s that link again.

“Osiris Likes This” Available for Preorder

You’ve read the stories, now read the book! All my work from Flash Fiction Month 2015 is bundled up and ready to go.

Osiris Likes This Cover

The book is currently available for preorder on Smashwords at the low low cost of $0.99 and will be released at midnight on the 10th of October. It’ll still be priced at $0.99 after that, though, so don’t worry if you don’t quite catch it: I’m mostly just trying to give the book a couple of days head start to reach retailers before it’s officially available.

If you’re looking for extra stories, you’ll be happy to know that the introduction to this year’s collection features the vengeful masked avenger himself, Captain Redundancy, and that you can read that portion online before release as part of the sample.

OCR is Not the Only Font Cover REDESIGN (Barbecued Iguana)Red Herring Cover (Barbecued Iguana design)Bionic Punchline eBook CoverOsiris Likes This Cover

For anyone wanting a paperback copy to add to the rainbow party on their shelves, those are in the works too. Formatting the ebook (not to mention writing the front and end matter) has got me 75% of the way there, but I want to take the time to get the remaining 25% right.

For anybody wondering about the title, it was partly down to the poll I ran a few weeks ago, partly down to practicality. As well as being one of my personal favourites from this year’s event, Osiris Likes This lent itself nicely to any number of blue Egyptian objects, and was a short enough phrase to fit easily on the cover. Some Disassembly Required, the top option, would have been nice (and was similarly well suited to a few different blue images) but ultimately would have been difficult to squeeze onto the cover neatly.

If you’d like to buy Osiris Likes This, here’s the link again. And of course, if you haven’t yet read the first three books in the series, they’re still absolutely free.

MA Finished; Fun Begins

I’m done! I handed in my dissertation earlier this week, which means the entire MA course is all wrapped up. Besides getting the dissertation mark back, that is. If I’ve worked out the numbers properly, then my final result will depend entirely on that one 20,000 word story and its accompanying rationale, so at this point I’m trying not to think about it too much. The work’s all handed in, so there’s no point fretting.

Instead, I’m thinking about where I’ll go from here.

The main thing will be trying to find less a job and more a career. One good thing about the MA besides the actual instruction (and the degree itself, provided nothing goes horribly wrong) is that it’s helped me focus on one particular area I want to get into. I’m planning to look for a job writing for games, possibly through QA testing, which I hear is one way into the industry as a whole. Having done a fair amount of interactive fiction at this point, as well as writing for one game that’s since reached quite an audience, I figure that games could be a good niche.

With that in mind, I’m hoping to do a lot more interactive stuff in the very near future. I’ve actually got one new interactive piece ready right now: Project Pandora 2.

Project Pandora 2

It’s a direct follow-on from the first Project Pandora, so if you haven’t had a go at that yet then this would be the time. I’m hoping that some of the technical workings of the Project Pandora series will prove useful for my NaNoWriMo project this year. As I was far too busy to tackle the event in 2014, I’m planning to make up for that this year by producing 100,000 words instead of the usual 50,000. However, in order to make that goal not-totally-impossible, I’m planning to cheat by producing an extremely large non-linear story rather than a start-to-finish 100k novel.

I’m still not absolutely set on how that non-linear story will play out–I’ve got a whole bunch of mutually exclusive ideas in mind–but I figure that it’s beest simply to go into November with whatever idea I’m happy with at the time. I will probably be doing a significant amount of planning maybe a week ahead, though, as it’ll be extremely important to know when the reader will be making major decisions and when those decisions will pay off (or come back to haunt them. It’s all good).

In the meantime, I’ll be working towards getting my fourth flash fiction anthology together, and I’m aiming to have it on sale very soon. Currently, I’m planning to make the book available on the 10th of October. That’s barely more than a week away! There’s still a lot of work to be done (not least choosing a title and creating a cover), but it’s been long enough since Flash Fiction Month itself that I’d like to get the collection together as soon as possible.

Finally, though I’ve finished all the work for my course, it turns out that I’m technically still enrolled at the university and could remain so for some time. As far as I’m aware, that means that my access card should still get me into the buildings and even let me use some fairly impressive audio equipment. I don’t know exactly how often I’ll be able to spare the time, but ideally I’d like to record some stories and maybe even put together an audio collection.

So that’s pretty much it. I’ve finished my course, Project Pandora 2 is now available, and the new book should be coming out on the 10th of October.

Flash Fiction Month 2015 Writeup

It’s been a fun (if very, very busy) month: 31 stories in 31 days. Having now finished four rounds of Flash Fiction Month, I’m starting to think less about how my writing changes as the days or weeks go by during each event, and more about how it’s changed as a result of the events as a whole.

OCR is Not the Only Font Cover REDESIGN (Barbecued Iguana)Red Herring Cover (Barbecued Iguana design)Bionic Punchline eBook CoverFFM 2014 Temp Cover

Participating in Flash Fiction Month just once requires that you write more stories in that month than you ordinarily would write in the entire rest of the year (unless you’re particularly prolific or tackle something like Flash Fiction Day). Participating in multiple years, you accumulate quite a catalogue of work: my FFM pieces have now reached triple figures, meaning that I’ve actually got more stories now than many of those stories have words. Continue reading

Beguiling the Black Throne

Flash Fiction Month 2015, Day 31

Challenge #14: Write a story with a word count divisible by 31, featuring a multi-headed entity. It must include all 31 one-word prompts from this year’s event: Celery, Moon, Forgiveness, Excelsior!, Judgment, Dauntless, Terminus, Amorphous, Barbarian, Flabbergasted, Pulchritudinous, Twinkle, Ennui, Anagnorisis, Ethanol, Skank, Defenestrate, Moist, Summoned, Chiaroscuro, Legend, Elemental, Eldritch, Unfurling, Ending, Cicatrize, Catalyst, Codpiece, Facetious, Carrot, Google.

Girth Loinhammer was not a fan of this new-fangled internet thing. Everywhere he looked, people were gawping at tablets and squinting at phones. Very slyly, he leaned over to check what the barfly next to his left was looking at. “Super Cute Duckling Thinks Carrot is Best Friend,” read the massive headline on the tiny screen. Girth peered over the shoulder of the drunk to his right. It was a YouTube video about cats with boobs.

Girth settled back into his seat at the bar, adjusting the spiked leather straps of his torturer’s uniform. He’d sure like to find out where the internet lived and give it a piece of his mind, whip, and poker. Then again, knowing the internet, it would probably enjoy it. Just like all the other perverts he’d encountered during his not particularly long or distinguished career. There was no place for non-kinky torturers anymore.

He propped his elbows on the bar and lowered his head into his hands. “Another mead, barkeep.”

“The answer to your problems isn’t at the bottom of a mead horn,” said the barbarian barfly to his left.

“Of course not.” Girth angled the vessel over the faceplate of his helmet and tried to tip the drink through into his mouth. A lot of it missed and splashed onto his codpiece, making it look as though he’d wet himself. “The answer’s in all the lovely ethanol floating about in the middle.”

“Cats with boobs!” shouted the drunk, pointing at something just outside Girth’s field of vision. “Cats with boobs!”

A pulchritudinous woman with the head of a lioness marched swiftly over to the bar and roundhouse kicked the drunk in the face, managing to defenestrate him in the process. Continue reading

Phalanx for Nothing

Flash Fiction Month 2015, Day 30

Challenge #13: Write a fantistorical story utilizing elements of satire. It must feature four elephants and a turtle.

“No more roadworks, no not nada! No more roadworks, this is Sparta!”

“Ugh.” Xerxes slapped his royal palm to his royal forehead. “Seven hundred Thespians. You’ve got seven hundred Thespians with you and that’s the best chant you can come up with.”

“What do we want?” shouted Leonidas.

“No highway through Thermopylae!” came the crowd’s response.

“When do we want it?”

“Never!”

Xerxes turned to the head secretary of the Department for Whipping People. “Did you tell them that the construction of ‘Hoplite Speedway 2’ would create 300 jobs?” Continue reading

The Frabjous Day Picnic

Flash Fiction Month 2015, Day 29

“Did you remember to pack the vorpal cheeseknife?” enquired the March Hare.

“I thought you had it,” yawned the Dormouse.

“Brillig,” grumped the Hare. “Just brillig. How are we supposed to cut the manxome cheddar now?”

The Dormouse had no answer to this.

“We can’t possibly do without cheese,” put in the Hatter, “when we’re all crackers.”

Everyone groaned, except the Dormouse, who instead began to snore.

“I say,” began the Hare. “Jubjub Bird? Could you be a dear and fetch the vorpal cheeseknife?”

“Fetch it yourself,” snapped the Jubjub Bird, from atop a nearby Tumtum tree. “I’m not gallumphing back all the way through the mimsy borogoves.”

“My, you’re in an uffish mood today.” The Hare folded his arms. “Without that vorpal cheeseknife, none of us can have so much as a snicker-snack.”

Just then, the Bandersnatch emerged from the slithy toves.

“Ah!” The Hare waved. Even the most mature manxome cheddar couldn’t withstand the claws of the Bandersnatch. “Little help over here?”

But the Bandersnatch ignored him, whiffling on its way.

“I think he’s upset that we shunned him,” remarked the Hatter.

“Upset?” cried the Bandersnatch. “I’m frumious!”

If you’ve enjoyed this story, you can find my work from previous Flash Fiction Months collected in these books:

OCR is Not the Only Font Cover REDESIGN (Barbecued Iguana)Red Herring Cover (Barbecued Iguana design)Bionic Punchline eBook Cover

Click any cover to download that book in your choice of format.

Hallo Spaceman

Flash Fiction Month 2015, Day 28

Challenge #12: DAVID BOWIE DAY. Score at least 150 Bowie points under the following system:

Score one point for every letter “Z” in your story.

Score 10 points for each:

  • David Bowie song title
  •  …quote of more than three words from any David Bowie song
  •  …character called Ziggy, Major Tom, Aladdin, Jareth or Jean
  • …made up word

Score 20 points for including a:

  • magic dance
  • …goblin king
  • …spaceman or raygun
  • …spider from mars

Score 50 points if:

  • Your piece is 565 words long (“David Robert Jones”)
  • Your story features an androgynous character, or a character who changes gender or sex
  • Your story features a man who fell to earth
  • Your story features a man who sold the world.

 

“You call that a knife?” growled Jareth. “This is a knife!”

“I think you’re in the wrong Bowie fanclub,” said Jean, slicing lemons at the bar.

“ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz” snored Ziggy.

“Ah, nuts.” Jareth plonked his knife down on the bar and looked around. There certainly were rather more spacemen, goblin kings, and spiders from Mars than he’d been expecting. “When’s the next bus to Crocodile, Dundee?”

Jean pulled a face. “I think it’s gonna be a long, long time.

“Ah, nuts.” Jareth gave the corks dangling from his hat a frustrated slap. “I was supposed to meet Major Tom there half an hour ago. These military types expect you to be punctual, you know.”

“Excuse me?” A man or woman in a very impressive lifeguard tower costume tapped Jean on the shoulder with one of his or her long wooden legs. “Will the Hoff be available to sign my lifebuoy today?”

“I think you’re in the wrong David fanclub,” said Jean. “Now if you can hold on for just a minute, I’ve got to move Ziggy along. There’s a starman waiting in the sky, and—uh-oh.” Continue reading