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Messages - Wroclaw

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Easy mistake to make - I'll move it over.

Thanks, guys. Where am I now?  :o  Oh yes, now I see.

Well folks, no sooner have the gates closes on subs to Eibonvale's last anthology ('Rustblind and Silverbright': an anthology or railway-themed stories) than they are launching a new one. This one will be edited by the great Hal Duncan and the wonderful Chris Kelso. Entitled " Caledonia Dreamin' ", they will be looking for 'strange fiction' in the loosest sense, i.e. modern and surreal rather than historical pastiche, each story to be inspired by a particular Scots word. Don't worry if you're not Scottish, because you'd be surprised how many Scots words have eaten their way into the world's wider vocabulary. Few of them translate into English directly, and therefore embody culture-specific ideas which are a rich treasure trove to busk on. Here's a link to the full guidelines:

Word limit: 1000 - 12000 words. Closing Date: 31st May.  Noo get birlin' an' scrievin' ya rapscallion gowks ye!  ;D

Esteemed editor, writer and Slipstream guru Allen Ashley and Douglas Thompson (author of such books as Ultrameta and Sylvow) will be talking and reading at an event at Glasgow's CCA (Centre for Contemporary Arts) in Sauchiehall Street this Thursday evening (20th December). Douglas has two new books out, Mechagnosis and Entanglement, loosely speaking one Horror the other Sci Fi. So something for everyone and a good excuse for a party afterwards. Such luminaries as Hal Duncan, Neil Williamson and Kirsty Logan intend to be among the audience. More details here:

General Discussion / Re: My 666th Story!
« on: September 16, 2012, 06:50:07 pm »
Nice tea cosy, Rhys. I prefer using a black cat. Strangely enough... a piece of flash fiction of mine is about to appear in an Australian anthology called "100 Lightnings" and I realised yesterday that it is exactly 666 words long.... something brewing and wilting indeed.

FantasyCon / Re: Thoughts/queries about author readings at Fantasycon 2012
« on: September 14, 2012, 08:36:22 am »
Yes, I also second this (or is that third?). Have read before, but applied well in advance this time and have been refused. It will be very interesting to see how the slots have been allocated, from which we will be able to judge for ourselves what the criteria were.

Half an hour is actually a long time to listen to prose by the way. From my own experience, 12 minutes of story is about the attention span limit without a break. If there really is a log jam developing for some reason, then we might suggest that future years should consider the possibility of 20 minute slots, 3 per hour.

I do think that reading stories aloud is a great learning process for writers of all stages in their careers, as well as something fascinating and varied for audiences as Roseanne describes above.

Thanks for posting that. I've always had a fascination for abandoned railway lines, trains, bridges, stations, etc. There's some creepy video footage to be found on You tube. Never done a railway horror. Tempting.
Come on in, the water's lovely. And spread the word...

Eibonvale Press is issuing a call for submissions for an anthology of stories connected to the railway. The concept is pretty open but the
book aims to gather a collection of works revolving around the railway with a modern and innovative aesthetic ranging from horror to
surrealism and beyond. "Rustblind and Silverbright" will be published in 2013. It takes its title from a wonderful short story about trains by the German writer Wolfgang Borchert, who was said to have cut his trigger finger off on the Russian Front so that he couldn't serve the Nazis. Ponder that over your suburban breakfast. More info and the full guidelines can be downloaded at:

Screaming Dreams / Re: Estronomicon eZine
« on: May 19, 2012, 04:48:03 pm »
Comments needed to go with an article in the next Estronomicon issue... What is your fave 'found footage' movie and why? All comments (well, all 'sensible' comments anyway!) will be included in the issue, along with a small pic of yourself. Either leave your comment below or e-mail me at the usual address. Thanks!

It's gotta be "Cloverfield" or "Monsters" really, hasn't it? ..... or am I misremembering Monsters, was it hand-held at all? The remarkable thing is how, when the action is done well, the brain ceases to notice the camera wobble.

General Discussion / Re: What drives you to write?
« on: May 07, 2012, 01:58:56 pm »

I hope you don't still believe this bit, though! ;D From someone who used to train people how to use 3ds Max for Autodesk, I can honestly say that this is a bit of a urban myth  ;)

Ahh yes, thanks for that clarification. It's little glitches in the world like that which trigger the mind to invent something interesting sometimes. It wasn't true of 3dMax but it IS true of the human mind. Reminds me of Nostradamus and 9/11. The original "prediction" was probably garbled generalised nonsense, but there are many books in print about it before 2001 stating clearly that they interpreted it as meaning there would be "an aerial attack on New York". The original material is less interesting than the group-conciousness which aggregated around it. Like sand in an oyster's shell, or an ink blott test.... but I digress!

General Discussion / Re: What drives you to write?
« on: May 05, 2012, 10:14:03 am »
I have more than one creative outlet, being an architectural designer. My handwritten drafts are sometimes interspersed with sketches of ideas for buildings I'm working on. I find the two help each other. When I'm active in one field, my output is better in the other too. I remember being told once that the program 3dMax ran better on a computer with a couple of other applications open at the same time. I've remembered that and wondered if the human mind might not operate on a similar basis. In other words, like everyone else above, my creativity comes in waves and builds up over days and weeks and needs some kind of outlet maybe at least once a month. It's like some kind of ethereal bodily function. Let's not pursue that analogy, or if we must, visualise semen rather than excrement!

But the big pretentious answer is:

The human world doesn't make sense to me a lot of the time. I write to try to make sense of it. It also often lacks hope and I write to try to rediscover that hope. I also write to try to uncover the wonders inside myself, to haul them out of the darkness into the light of day. I write in the hope of creating beauty that didn't exist before, and at its occasional best; the feeling is one of being a conduit for Nature itself. Creating things that needed to exist, that only needed you as a lightning rod. The feeling is often that you are not actually the creator at all, but doing it for some invisible other. This is what William Blake meant when he drew The Man Who Taught Blake Painting In His Dreams. Architecture is the same: a really good idea will often resemble a natural form, have its own interior logic and rightness, as if God abdicated years ago but left us here as his occasional auto-start-up maintenence robots...   :-* Maybe, just maybe, we can be even better than that...

Promote Your Projects / Re: Eibonvale Anthology: "Where Are We Going?"
« on: March 07, 2012, 11:04:46 am »
The Eibonvale Press Anthology "Where Are We Going?" edited by Allen Ashley completely sold out at its launch at the BFS Open Night in London on 3rd March. Thanks to everyone who helped spread the word and get such a high standard of submissions. It looks like it's going to be a popular title. Available now. Here's the Table Of Contents:

Are We Nearly There Yet  - Introduction by Allen Ashley
Dead Countries - Gary Budgen 
A Faraway City  - Joel Lane
The Way the World Works  - Ian Sales
A Guide to Surviving Malabar  - Ian Shoebridge 
The Human Map  - Andrew Hook 
Journey to the Engine of the Earth  - Terry Grimwood
The Discord of Being  - Alison J. Littlewood
Xana-La  - Stephen Palmer 
At the Rail  - Andrew Coburn 
The Bridge - A. J. Kirby
The Chain  - Frank Roger 
Our Island  - Ralph Robert Moore 
Underpass  - Daniella Geary
Overnight Bus  - Marion Pitman 
Wake with the Light  - Jet McDonald 
Future Prospects (Poem)  - Geoff Stevens
Entanglement  - Douglas Thompson 

One of the best short stories I ever wrote was one I stuck in a drawer unread for 8 years... after which I was able to spot all the naff bits and remove them in one night.

But I think what you're talking about is the classic scenario of a first time writer labouring for years over his first novel. Best advice in my opinion? Put it away now in a drawer for at least 8 years, and in the meantime write as many more completely different and better novels as you can. Move on. You will only grow as a writer through trying new ideas and plots, and you learn from every single one. I lost count.... my so-called first novel (published) was actually about my sixth or seventh.

And yes.... it is healthy to be unhappy with every book you write or publish, even if other people praise it.... it's a sign that you're growing and improving.

General Discussion / Re: Let's all move to Germany?
« on: April 24, 2011, 04:46:29 pm »
Thanks for telling us that. That is really illuminating. Unfortunately my answer to your question makes me so sad that I can't bring myself to share it fully. Suffice to say, it's a bit like British politics: we value marketing more than quality or truth. We patronise ourselves, and thus become more low-brow with each generation. :'(

Well now, if anyone wants to read the first chapter of Douglas Thompson's novel "Sylvow", by way of a taster for the book, they will find it on his website here:

Sylvow is reviewed by Ian Sales in the current Interzone (233), and a review by Pete Tennant is also in the new Black Static(22) hitting the shelves right now...

And of course, other chapters of the book were in Dark Horizons No.55 ("Vivienne's Garden") and New Horizons No.3 ("Veronika") and No.5 ("The Doctrine Of Signatures"), thus between all of those you can read nearly a quarter of the book free already...  8)

Promote Your Projects / Re: Eibonvale Anthology: "Where Are We Going?"
« on: April 03, 2011, 07:26:07 pm »
An update on the "Where Are We Going?" anthology: Allen Ashley informs me that the the deadline for submissions has now been extended to "10pm British Summer Time on Tuesday 31st May 2011...." , so chin up and get writing, all you lovely little horrors and fantasists! :-*
Email submissions in rtf or doc format will be acceptable, as well as by post.

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