Friday, 30 April 2010

Duotrope's Digest Needs Our Help!

Duotrope's Digest is an excellent free writers resource which helps us find markets and manage our submissions. Whether you are an editor or writer, if you write prose or poetry Duotrope is an invaluable service.

Because it is free, however, they rely on our support in the form of donations and spreading the word. If you can't afford to give then why not follow them on Facebook or on Twitter. Or put a banner on your site. Anything to help spread the word.

If you don't know it, check it out and if you do, see what you can do to help.

Saturday, 24 April 2010

Campaign for Real Fear submission - Loyal to the End

[This was my submission for the Campaign for Real Fear, it was rejected but I still think it's a good piece. This is definitely my greatest fear at the moment; that the world could go this way. Let me know what you think of it, all feedback welcome.]

The day of the election was tense, people were on the edge of their seats waiting, hoping, for the right result. It was the highest turnout in Britain for seventy years and it went our way.

Finally, a strong party, a party of the people. The party we needed.

The Queen was subdued in her congratulations and didn’t that speak volumes.

It was the bombs in Berlin and Newcastle that tipped the balance. Over three million dead. Terror took on a whole new meaning.

At first, we started to deport them, the Muslims, the Arabs, and it wasn't just us; all of Europe --all the world-- was doing it.

We struck back, making the Great Glass Deserts. We made an example.

But it wasn't enough.

We closed the borders and let Europe burn in its own filth. We had our own problems to deal with.

The ones that were left showed their true colours, they attacked us so we did our duty. Groups of us roamed the streets, our boots smashing into bodies and faces. We brought them all to justice. They were all a threat; man, woman and child.

The Queen spoke out against the violence; we never heard anything about her, or her family, after that.

Then the hangings started. A gallows in every city. We came out to watch, we cheered, and we revelled in the justice.

After a while we stopped letting the necks break, we let them kick and struggle, a lesson to everyone.

Once we were done with the Arabs, we turned to the Indians. I mean similar colour right? They were no different, no matter how long they said their parents had been here. We had to stop them before they got started.

We had to make things safe, didn't we?

And when the foreigners were gone? We looked for the traitors in our own ranks. Rooting them out, one by one.

They questioned me because of that bloody leaflet. I told them, I was never going to read it I just picked it up. I told them I was loyal.

They didn't believe me.

I'm standing at the gallows now, waiting. The smell of piss, shit and vomit is overwhelming.

“I’m innocent,” I want to shout, “I’m loyal!” But my mouth is swollen and my teeth are gone.

The noose is damp with the sweat of I don't know how many people. How many vermin. As it tightens I hold my breath, the tears running down my face nothing to do with the stench.

To the left and right of me real traitors are being strung up. Treasonous bastards the lot of them but not me.

The trapdoor falls and I start to choke. I wet myself and my bowels loosen. My feet kick out and all I can think is how unfair it is, that I'll be buried with all these traitorous bastards.

It’s not fair.

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Virtual Book Launch and stuff ;)

This Saturday (10/4/2010) some of the authors of the 'Thieves & Scoundrels' anthology and I will be taking part in a virtual book launch. This will include a live chat, with each of us allotted a 15min slot to answer questions and talk about our stories.

The whole thing will kick off at 5pm UK time and I'll be on at 6.15 UK/1915 Europe. It seems like it'll be a lot of fun and the more people who are online to grill me the better. If you are interested you can find the link here. Also if you are on Twitter you can follow the night's festivities under the hashtag - #ffc3

On the 10th we are also trying to get as many people as possible to log on to Amazon and check the book out/wish list it or even buy it, anything to help push it up the chart.

You can also pick it up on Smashwords for $2.95, which, to be honest, is nothing to grumble about. If you read the book please let me and the other authors know what you think, all feed back is welcome.

Oh, one last thing.

Last year my first story was published in the eZine Estronomicon, which was a big boost to my confidence. Now, Screaming Dreams presents their annual Dead of Night Award, there are plenty of great stories, authors and artists in there so I am not expecting many votes, but one or two would be nice (thanks mum, dad). If you haven't read Estronomicon yet you can find all the issues under the link above and they are all free. Good, eh?