Flash Fiction Month 2019, Day 17
“Password?” grunted the bouncer through the metal shutter.
There was the sound of a bolt being drawn. The door swung open.
Grant tipped his hat and made his way down towards the basement, the “Oontz, oontz, oontz” of the music getting louder with every step.
Larry was at the bar as always, eating a Wilson’s Snack Pie: “Scrumptious Steak,” it looked like.
“I’m after some information,” said Grant.
“Aren’t you always?”
“Well I’m not here for the twelve-dollar mojitos.”
“Two-for-one on Fridays,” Larry pointed out. “But point taken. What is it this time?”
“Missing person.” He slid the photo across the bar. “You know anyone who might know something?”
“Not here, but try the docks. I hear Big Martha’s having trouble shifting her merchandise: if one of her competitors has anything to do with this disappearance, I’m sure she’d be only too happy to send you their way.” Continue reading
After days of planning, one of which involved getting up at 5:30am to film on board a WWII submarine, Ten Little Astronauts is now live at Unbound. If you’d like to see a hard sci-fi reimagining of Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were none become a thing that actually exists and that you can find in bookshops, now’s your chance to make that happen!
Unbound is a crowdfunding publisher. If you’ve ever organised a project through, supported a project on, or simply heard of Kickstarter, you’ll have some idea how the process works. The main difference with Unbound is that they’ll only take on projects they have some faith in: they already put forward the money to get me on board that submarine with a professional videographer!
However, in most other respects things do work a lot like on Kickstarter, right down to the goodies for supporters. If you just want to support Ten Little Astronauts, the minimum pledge is £10 and you get an ebook to read. An extra £5 gets you a first edition paperback as well. For £10 on top of that, I’ll sign your first edition and throw in every ebook I’ve ever published up to this point. Continue reading
It’s been an interesting morning!
Getting permission to film on board Britain’s last surviving WWII submarine for my upcoming Ten Little Astronauts campaign was actually far easier than expected – the people at the museum were extremely helpful the whole way – but it was still a bit of a rush to get everything sorted on time. Because of that, although I only found out for sure yesterday that I’d be able to film on board, it was actually 6:30 this morning that I set out to record the pitch video.
If you go to visit HMS Alliance as part of the standard tour, you’ll see and hear much the same things illustrated in the video above. My visit to film from 7:45 to 9:45 – in the two hours before the museum opened – was a little different. Continue reading
July 1st, as always, marked the start of Flash Fiction Month, but for me personally there was also some very big news: I’ve had a book accepted for publication!
If you’ve subscribed to my newsletter or have spent some time in the Flash Fiction Month chatroom, you may already be aware of this, but the Winchester Writers’ Festival this year went a little better for me than I initially let on. One of my one-to-one meetings was with Scott Pack, an editor at Unbound. He passed on the manuscript for Ten Little Astronauts, my MA novella, to the rest of the team. A week or so afterwards I found out that they’d decided to go ahead and launch it.
Unbound is a crowdfunding publisher, which is pretty much why I decided to approach them: it is nearly impossible to get a novella published by conventional means. The couple of weeks since they accepted my work have mostly revolved around organising a campaign for it, which alongside Flash Fiction Month and my regular job have resulted in more than a couple of very, very long nights. I’ve been working on a pitch, thinking up rewards for supporters, and – for reasons that will become apparent below – arranging the use of an Acheron-class submarine.
Flash Fiction Month 2016, Day 11
Challenge #5: Write a Mystery in the form of a 369er. The three sections must be written in first, second and third person respectively.
It took you a long time to realise that this was what you wanted. That this—lead pipes, poison, torsos in the billiards room—was what you needed in your life. But having started, having slithered down that slippery slope, you wouldn’t have it any other way. It’s a thrill, finding yourself so caught in the limelight, so much the centre of attention, when nobody even knows your name.
These cases are unlike any that have come before. There are suspects—an understudy here, a supporting actor there—but all have alibis. Whoever did this is good: they only missed one thing. I always get my man, even if it’s not me who gets him.
I dial the number. It rings just once. “I’ve got a job for you. Interested?”
A laugh: “I’ve never turned one down before.”
“Alright!” shouts Nicolas Cage, leaping into the ring of robed figures. “Let’s see who you really are!”
One by one, the circle obliges.
“No…” breathes Nic. “This can’t be!”
“Oh, but it is!” says Kevin Sorbo.
“With no more A-list celebrities,” explains Hilary Swank, “it’ll be our turn to shine.”
The circle of downtrodden actors begins to close in.
“Aaaaah!” screams Nicolas Cage. “Not the ‘B’s!!! Not the ‘B’s!!!”