The team at Fireside Magazine have opened their Year Two archives to the public. Previously, you would have needed a subscription to read any of the stories. What this means is that there are a wealth of them now available for FREE.
My contribution, a Twilight Zone-ish tale entitled A TRICK OF THE NIGHT (first published Issue 9, January 2014) is available to read online here. If you do read it, feel free to share your thoughts.
My 4000 word short story A TRICK OF THE NIGHT is now available to read at Fireside Magazine. Written during my five month stay in Malta in 2012, it is at heart about the fears of parenting and the lengths a mother will go to protect her son from his fate. Here’s a short excerpt from the opening:
“I met the devil in my dreams and he told me this would happen.
Strictly speaking, he wasn’t the devil; he was Joseph Ruskin, the actor who played the genie in the Twilight Zone episode The Man in the Bottle. But in my dream he was the devil, all right. I saw him standing near the end of a railway tunnel, silhouetted against the light, a man in a black suit. Did I tell you the tunnel was made out of elephants? Well, it was. Their bodies were packed together to make the walls and the roof, tight as sardines they were, and as I walked past them toward the man in the suit I could see their eyes blinking at me. I didn’t want to go, but he was waving me over, and when the devil waves you over, you go over, you don’t get a choice in the matter. And then Joseph Ruskin the devil told me my son James was going to be involved in a mass shooting. He wouldn’t say when, wouldn’t say how. I asked. I begged. I pleaded. They say the devil is in the details, but he doesn’t like to give them, because all I got out of him was a cold smile and this: A lot of people are going to die, Anna, because of him. The devil knew my name. He knew my son’s name. He knew what was going to happen. And it did. Sixteen people lying in the morgue; four or five times that number lying injured in this hospital. Women and children — children. I don’t want to think about it. I swear I tried to find out more, but Jimmy’s screams from the next room tore me right out of the dream and ended the whole thing. At least I thoughtit was over, but… do you think he knew, doctor, even back then? Do you think he knew and tried to stop me talking to the devil before I could find something out — something that could have stopped all this?”
The lovely artwork accompanying the story was created by Hugo Award-winning artist, Galen Dara.
Thanks to Brian White, the editor of Fireside, for selecting my story to be a part of his ambitious project and for his professionalism throughout. And if anyone is interested in reading a little more about the story’s genesis, I talk about it briefly in this Q & A I did as part of the project’s Kickstarter campaign.
This month, with the publication of Crimewave 12: Hurts and Black Static #37, I have achieved two trebles. The first, to have three stories appear in horror journal Black Static. The second, to have a story appear in all three TTA Press periodicals – Black Static, Interzone, and Crimewave. In short, what a lovely way to tie up the year!
I’ve talked about Crimewave elsewhere, so here are the final cover, ToC, and interior artwork for Black Static #37.
(Cover art by George Cotronis)
“When Charlie Sleeps” by Laura Mauro. Art by Rich Sampson.
“Bones of Crow” by Ray Cluley (recent winner of the British Fantasy Society award for Best Short Story for “Shark! Shark!”) Art by George Cotronis.
“All Your Faces Drown in My Syringe” by Ralph Robert Moore. Art by David Gentry.
“The Strongest Thing About Me is Hate” by DeAnna Knippling.
“The Sunflower Seed Man” by Priya Sharma. Art by Richard Wagner.
“The Sound of Constant Thunder” by Steven J. Dines. Art by Joachim Luetke.
Please visit TTAPress for more details, or to take out a subscription. I recommend you do.
There will be no other new material from me this year, but I have a story, A TRICK OF THE NIGHT, due to appear in Fireside Magazine in January. I’m also working on new short fiction for 2014 including THE BROKEN AND THE UNMADE and my first ever collaboration. Details to follow!
Let me tell you about the time four old ghosts held death captive in a basement. Let me tell you what that power can do to a man and the sacrifice he will make for the gift of time. But first, let me tell you how we became ghosts in the first place.
– MEN PLAYING GHOSTS, PLAYING GOD
The new issue of Black Static (#35) is available now from TTA Press. Stories by Daniel Mills, Steve Rasnic Tem, Michael Griffin, Caspian Gray, Jason Gould, and Carole Johnstone. The cover artwork is by Richard Wagner, who also provides the interior art for my contribution, the 9800-word novelette, MEN PLAYING GHOSTS, PLAYING GOD. It is particularly satisfying for me to see this story in print because the character, setting, and a (very) small part of the plot first appeared in an unfinished story of mine from 2004, OF BEE AND UNDERTOW. For 8/9 years I’ve wanted to find out what happened to Henry Eddowes in that residential care home, and now – now I know.
Other stories coming soon are THE SPACE THAT RUNS AWAY WITH YOU (novelette) in Crimewave 12 (publication date still to be announced) and A TRICK OF THE NIGHT (short story) in Fireside Magazine (due Dec 2013/Jan 2014).
It’s been a quiet time for me on the writing front (personal issues, Life, call it what you will) but I’m feeling reenergised and ready to get back to some black business… Indeed, I have a number of projects and ideas in the pipeline that just need prioritising before I mention them on here. So, expect some more updates soon.
$25,000 target achieved with 3 hours to go. Very happy right now as it means A TRICK OF THE NIGHT will see publication in a quality fiction magazine. Congratulations to The Editor, Brian White, and good job!
There’s a short Q&A with me over at Fireside Magazine’s Kickstarter page here. For anyone who’s interested, there’s a little bit about the background to my story, A TRICK OF THE NIGHT. And, of course, any donation toward the campaign would be most welcome! Just 6 days to go…
Brian White’s ambitious Kickstarter campaign has, er, kicked off to a promising start. He has big plans for Fireside Magazine’s Year Two, a small part of which includes publishing my story, A TRICK OF THE NIGHT. So, follow this link, read Mr White’s proposal, and if you feel like making a donation, by all means do so. If you’re still not convinced but want to read more about the authors involved, follow the links to their websites or revisit the page this coming Monday onwards, when author Q&A’s are due to be posted.
Short fiction review site, Tangent, recently posted this review of Issue Three.