There’s a new online journal in town, Bending Genres, offering writing retreats, online workshops and contests and special events. Their pilot issue was pretty special, with work from all the founding names including: Robert Vaughan, Meg Tuite, David O’ Connor, Samuel Fox, Jonathan Cardew, Jessica Mehta, Sisco Hollard and Adam Robinson.
The first issue is now up, and I’m pleased to see a piece I wrote late last year included in there, called Places Satellites Go To Die, amongst some other stellar pieces. This is the first thing I’ve had published this year, so it’s a special one for me – breaking the 2018 seal so to speak. You can read it here.
One other important thing to note, it’s the last weekend to enter this quarter’s Bath Flash Fiction Award. For anyone not familiar with the Bath Flash Fiction Award, it’s brilliant and one of the best contests on the flash calendar. This round is being judged by Tara L. Masih, editor of The Rose Metal Press Field Guide to Writing Flash Fiction and The Chalk Circle (both ForeWord Books of the Year), author of Where the Dog Star Never Glows, and Founding Series Editor of the Best Small Fictions series. So, no pressure there then…
Right, I’m off to find a pen, and a blank sheet of paper.
lancet liver parasite
A creature which spends its entire adult life inside a cow’s liver. After mating, its eggs are excreted into the cow’s faeces, where snails, who like to snack on cow shit, eat the parasite’s eggs. To rid themselves of these unwelcome intruders, the snails package the eggs up into cysts and secrete them through their slime trails.
Next, ants, who use the snail trails as a source of moisture, ingest the sticky eggs. Once inside the ant’s gut, the parasite heads straight for the nerve cells located beneath the ant’s esophagus and hijacks them, taking control of the ant.
Thus, by day, the infected ant goes about their usual business, but as the sun drops, the parasite takes over, drawing the host away from the safety of its colony and forcing the ant to the top of the nearest blade of grass, where it will stand, transfixed, mesosoma upright, waiting for a grazing cow to come along and eat it; So begins the cycle once more.
See also happy new year
Happy Christmas and all that, such a pleasant time of the year and naturally, a time to reflect a little. With that in mind, looking back over 2017, three stories stand out for me.
First, is the quite incredible ‘Collective Nouns For Humans In The Wild‘ by Kathy Fish, published over at Jelly Fish Review in October. Go and read it. It’s probably won loads of awards by now, and is definitely one of my favourite pieces of the year.
Next, is ‘Cat Person‘ by Kristen Roupenian. Apparently this story caused quite a stir when it was published in the New Yorker this month, with a lot of controversy surrounding it. I’ve not read any of that, I just read the story and knew straight away it was going places. Again, read it here. You should.
The last but far from least story which caught my ear this year is ‘Black Holes‘ by Matthew Fogarty published at Cheap Pop Lit. I’ve written three space / science based stories this year so I was instantly drawn to this anyway, but I think Black Holes is a superb example of what can be done in such a way. Well worth a read, and you’ll find it here.
On that tip, I’m pleased to say I’ve had a story called Places Satellites Go To Die due for publication over at (b)OINK in the new year. I’ve enjoyed reading (b)OINK during the past 10 months, so it’s a pleasure to have something due for publication with them. As always, if you haven’t had a look at them, you really should.
Well, that’s it. Another year nearly gone. All the best, and see you in 2018.
Thanks to The Sunlight Press for publishing my story Death Pool this week. If you haven’t had a look at Sunlight’s site, you really should. Get on over there.
Delighted to say I’ve just had a 1000 word creative non-fiction piece called ‘Death Pool’ accepted by The Sunlight Press, a digital literary journal providing a home to new and established voices. They welcome creative nonfiction, fiction, poetry, reviews, photography, and artist reflections on their craft.
I’ve not got a publication date yet but it should be within the next couple of months. The submission process with Sunlight Press was really smooth and the two editors, Rudri and Beth were great to deal with. More importantly, they pay for published work, which is always a bonus.
If you haven’t browsed through their site, then you should – visit them here