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Monday, 22 December 2014

What kind of a year has it been? (Pt. 1)

Well, goodness.

2014 turns out to have been the year when, as the youth would have it, shit started to get real.

Looking back over the list of publication activity this year, I'm honestly kind of shocked, even a little anxious. It's hard to credit, given how recently I've started taking this writing thing seriously, just how well things have gone this year, and I'm torn between a sense of pride, and a genuine anxiety for 2015, and how the hell I'm going to top it!

Anyhow, without further ado, here's my Record Of Achievement for 2014, in somewhat chronological order (links to buy included in the story titles):

January: My debut e-novella The Loving Husband and the Faithful Wife (plus short story The Debt) was released by Black Beacon Books. Reviews have been very positive, and I'm proud as hell to be part of this amazing group of writers and editors.

I also had my short science fiction story Reverse Engineering published in Do Monkeys Dream Of Electric Kettles? - a sci-fi anthology from MonkeyKettle Books. The MonkeyKettle arts collective are a group I've been a longtime fan of, so it was a real thrill to be included.

I also also self pubbed a short mood piece called Fox '75 to The Disciples Of Gonzo's blog - check that one out for free.

March:  Short horror story Cold Shock was published as part of the Till Death Do Us Part anthology, the debut collection from Burnt Offering Books. Was really happy with this tale, and glad to be part of this exciting collection, featuring some amazing stories.

In other news, I began would would later become the 'My Life In Horror' blog series over at the magnificent Gingernuts Of Horror website, with posts about Stephen King's IT, and an extended essay on the greatest movie ever made. Some of the most fun I've had writing this year has been my pieces for this site, and I think it shows. Click through for more, you won't regret it.

June: Short western story When The Pin Hits The Shell was published in A Fistful Of Kettles, another themed anthology from the MonkeyKettle collective. This is a dark little slice of nasty, and I had a blast writing it.

July: Flash sci-fi story 'Time Out Of Mind' was published as part of the Yesterday You Said Tomorrow time travel anthology by Burnt Offering Books. This was one hell of a writing challenge, and I think in the end it brought the best out of me.

August: Following on from 'The Loving Husband...' I self published my novella Lifeline via Amazon. Feedback has been amazingly positive, with some great advance notices and reviews from authors whose work I respect and admire greatly. This forms a loose thematic trilogy with 'The Loving Husband...' and 'The Debt', though each tale stands alone and can be enjoyed separately. It's also dark, violent, visceral, and scary as hell.

September: Was blown away that my short horror story 'Baptism' was accepted for inclusion as part of Widowmakers: A Benefit Anthology of Dark Fiction. This anthology, put together in response to James Newman's horrific accident earlier in the year, contains 47 stories from some of the brightest, darkest stars of the horror firmament, and every penny of profit goes to help a great writer and incredibly friendly guy defray his appalling medical costs. I had the pleasure of working with James later in the year for a Gingernuts of Horror article, and can confirm his reputation as a knowledgeable and affable horror fanatic and all round good guy are well earned. If you only pick up one thing from me this year, make it this one - it's a fantastic anthology of top drawer stories and all for a great cause.

November: Short (and very nasty) horror story Wide Load was accepted into Splatterpunk #6! This Zine has a deserved reputation among horror fans as the go to place for quality extreme writing, and this issue is certainly no exception. Also featuring stories by James Newman, Bracken MacLeod, and others, and with exclusive illustrations for each story, plus non-fiction articles and reviews, this acceptance was a big fat cherry on the top of a very good year... sundae, I suppose. Hmm, that one got a way from me a little. Anyhow, if you only buy two things form me, make this the other one, and do it quick because this zine is limited edition and sells out fast.

Bloody hell, what a year.

In 2015, I have two publications I already know about. First, I have a short story appearing in At Hells Gate II: Source Of Evil. This charity anthology has attracted a ton of incredibly gifted indie writers, and the first in the series had massive and deserved success. To have been selected for the follow-up is both awesome and humbling, and I'm profoundly grateful to be in this with a story called Genesis.

Genesis also serves as a prequel to my debut novel, GodBomb! This long-delayed title should see the light of day early next year - I apologise for the continued delays, but I want it to be in as good a shape as possible before I put it out there. The bad news is it needed the work. The good news is, I'm putting the work in.

After that, I have the next novel/novella planned out already and the one after that starting to take shape. I also have a few shorts in various stages of readiness, and plenty more busily out collecting rejection slips.

Part 2 will focus on some of the amazing work I've read from others this year. In closing, thank YOU, so much, for continuing to read my work. It's been a hell of a year.


PS - I will be running a competition next year for people who sign up to my mailing list, with a chance to win some genuine money-can't buy prizes. If that, and the idea of getting an email a month (max) of progress reports, random musings and exclusive content from me interests you, then please just drop an email to kitpowerwriter[at]gmail[dot]com . Thanks, and happy silly season.

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