Book Review: The Astronomer's Crypt by David Lee Summers

NOTE: David Lee Summers, author of this book, is a blogging and Facebook friend of mine. This said, the following review is an objective one, warts and all. David has, as always, packed an awful lot of ideas, information and tropes in his horror novel The Astronomer’s Crypt. Love it! The basic premise revolves around the trope of stolen Native American artifact with supernatural qualities and the havoc that ensues.

Interviewed in #MidnightEcho

Hi all, just a quick one. I was interviewed in Midnight Echo along with a bunch of other #horror authors and artists. It’s really only just one question about my inspiration, but I tried to make the most of it. The interview can be found here: Midnight Echo 14 inspiration interviews – part 2 It’s nice to have a little bit of success. I’ve had a few rejections for some of

Exciting to see my name turning up in the TOC for #MidnightEcho

Today award-winning author Deborah Sheldon contacted me to inform me that the table of contents for the upcoming 14th issue of Midnight Echo Magazine has be published. My name appears there. Yippee. So please hope over and take a look at the stories in the upcoming issue. Thanks. :) Greg

How not to plot - dissecting my first attempt at a novel

From 2013 to 2015 I wrote a science fiction / fantasy novel called Tempting in Shade. I sent it to Beta Readers who were very kind. Then I sat back and reread it. In doing so I came to several conclusions, the dominant one being that the novel was unpublishable. This post examines my decision from the perspective of four years later. It focuses upon how I mangled the plot.

Two achievements - a short story and a computer graphic - yippee!

My health has been a little dodgy recently and, with a minor hospital procedure this week, I cannot say that I had been in a good mood. However with every cloud there comes a silver lining – and I got two! The first was that the magazine Midnight Echo bought one of my short horror stories. Yay! The story is called “Alive!” and examines one alternative for prolonging existence. Apparently

Review: Authors Publish - a useful resource for writers    #AuthorsPublish

As a struggling author one of my common Google searches is “Call for submissions fiction.” Now my my future novel has turned into an epic series (when will I ever finish just one of these books?!), I find myself writing little pieces just so I know that I can actually finish something. The good news is that I am getting nibbles in respect to these short stories and that is

Why? Why? Why? The why behind my plot.

Many years ago I was identified as a possible Public Service leader of the future. Well, it didn’t pan out, but for a year the government did pay for me to have a personal mentor. This man taught me a lot about leadership and motivating people. One of the big lessons revolved around “why?”. Why should your staff care? Why should your bosses care? Why should your customers give a

My story "Eighteen Steps" is now published   @TribeZine

Hi all, Just letting you all know that my short horror story “Eighteen Steps” is now published in Thief, a micro-publication by Tribe Media. An online version can be found at http://tribemedia.org/eighteen-steps/ Please be warned that it contains some vulgarity. At the time I wrote it I was watching a bit of the Sopranos and I imagined my protagonist as that sort of tough guy with that kind of language. I myself

My writing goals for this week

On Monday I listed my writing goals as: finish reviewing and editing my short story “Restored” Identify possible buyers for my short story Identify next most viable short story idea I have now finished reviewing “Restored”. My wife, upon reading it, felt that I needed to give some clear indications of what transpired in the story. This is because my chief character changes bodies three times within the story without

Finished first draft of "Night Terrors" renamed "Restored"

One of the tasks that I set myself for this week was finishing the first draft of my short story called “Night Terrors”. The good news is that I succeeded, but not as I quite expected. Okay, let me explain, and note that there will be spoilers should you ever choose to read this tale. My initial notion for this tale was a horror story where a woman wakes during

Celebrations - my first work of fiction has been accepted!

Hi all, Just a brief update: the short horror story that I submitted to Thief has been accepted by the editorial committee. Yippee! Apparently, it is now being sent with the other accepted works to an illustrator, a process that takes about a month. I’ll let you all know details when it is published. All I will share with you now is the title: Eighteen Steps. It’s funny. I’ve had published

Submitted a new short story to Lamplight Magazine  @lamplightmagazine

Possessed of a writing frenzy, my second short story in as many weeks has been sent off. I have sent it to Lamplight Magazine. As with last week’s short story, it’s now just a matter of waiting to see whether they accept it. My biggest concern about my story is that it is not speculative fiction, but rather a dark reflection of current society. Here is their call for submissions

Submitted a short story to Tribe Media's Thief  @TribeZine

Now that I am back to being creative, my first endeavour has been to attempt a short story for Thief. They have made a call for submissions that I would encourage any other authors to contemplate: CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS The theme is horror. The word limit is 1,000. So I’ve given it a go. May not make it in, but who knows? It was fun flexing the literary muscles again. In

An article of mine will appear in a new #StarTrek related anthology

Focusing upon Star Trek: the Next Generation, the book titled “Outside In Makes It So” is a collection of both serious and funny articles upon each episode of the iconic series. My particular article is a Shakespearean deconstruction of the episode “Next Phase” in which Geordi and Ensign Ro become invisible to their crew mates. Without giving too much away, I seek to convince the reader that the episode is based

Does an artificial world need to be geometric?

This entry is part 4 of 4 in the series Mapping Shade

So I sit here with Scrivener open, contemplating writing (contemplating writing is always so much easier than actually writing) and my mind falls to my world of Shade and maps. Should I map my world? Then I remember that I had contemplated this three years ago and even written some posts in which I used Bryce and Photoshop to create a maps of the chasm city of Shade. Wow! So

Plummeting towards the drawing board  #writing

So I am writing. Typing away furiously. I’ve just hit 180,000 words. And then it all comes crashing down with a  single realisation – I’ve stuffed a part of my world-building. So how did I do this? I’ll try to answer that in a spoiler-free manner,  just in case I ever finish this novel or you ever read it. I have a race of magic users (well, kind of). They

Writing progress and thoughts

During my months of vision impairment I spent a lot of time frustrated by my inability to write each day. During that time, now many months past, I found myself listening to podcasts on the topic of writing. All these months later a few things stand out. Firstly, a lecture by Stephen King. Oh – I listened to lots of his lectures and talks and interview – but yes, one stood out. In it

The British Newspaper Archives - a geat historical resource @BNArchive

Introduction You know me – I’m all over the place with my interests.  And yet I am not. All my interests overlap so that the sum is greater than the parts. The British Newspaper Archive is something that I have held membership of for a few years now. And I love it. I use it for a number of my interests. This article will address two of those, namely writing and

If you want to be a published author you must interact with other authors

Late last year I attended a session run by my local library (Sutherland Library). Led by travel writer Walter Mason the topic was along the lines of “How to publish your book”. While a large space had been set out, only about fifteen people turned up. I was early and so chatted with Walter (actually not realising that he was going to be the speaker). He was a very pleasant guy and

#Writing: changing a character's gender to improve a scene

For each chapter I write little notes beforehand, telling me what I am trying to achieve. Then I write to fulfil this goal. So I have a chapter. It’s intended to introduce a character named John Sutton. My note reads: Meet ex-mercenary John Sutton. He has just made camp with the rest of the expedition. There is tension between Sutton and Lord Trickett, whom he suspects is up to no