Hellebore: The Yuletide Special

Cat’s out of the bag! The secret Yuletide edition of Hellebore landed. My piece, The Hauntings Of Cold Christmas, is among some very exciting company: Katy Soar, Jackie Bates, John Callow, John Reppion, Shane McCorristine, Roger Clarke, and Elizabeth Dearnley. Artwork by Blood and Dust, Eli John, and Nathaniel Winter-Hébert.

I was having WordPress issues over Christmas, hence this post is late, but as a festive treat I recorded a three-part reading of my ghost story Florabelle to my Patreon for $1 subscribers. A Victorian medical student picks a man’s pocket to pay off his gambling debts, only to find himself in the midst of a very active haunting…

Hellebore: Malefice Edition

Happy October, quaranteenies. You can now pre-order the Malefice edition of Hellebore zine, just in time for Samhain.

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In The Akenham Devil, I uncover the Victorian tragedy that changed the English way of death forever. As always, I’m thrilled to be among such esteemed company as Catherine Spooner, Rebecca Baumann, Thomas Waters, Catherine Winter-Hébert and Finn Robinson, Thérèse Taylor, Maria J. Pérez Cuervo, and Colin J. McCracken.

Disturbing The Body Kickstarter is LIVE!

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Following the success of Disturbing the Beast, a collection of weird fiction stories by some of the best women writers in the UK, indie publisher Boudicca Press are crowdfunding for a new anthology of speculative memoir centred around experiences of mis-behaving bodies, from women and those who identify as women in the UK. The Kickstarter will launch on 15th May and they seek to raise £2300 to print the books, pay all the authors, editors, designers and book makers involved in the project.

The crowd funding campaign comes at a time when many businesses, bookshops and independent publishers are striving to survive the wide reaching effects of Covid-19. Boudicca Press hope that this campaign will ensure the fruition of a much deserving anthology and the fair pay of all involved.

The new anthology, Disturbing the Body, came to fruition when Verity Holloway, author of Pseudotooth, Beauty Secrets of the Martyrs and The Mighty Healer, approached Boudicca Press with a unique idea that she felt needed to be heard. Verity started writing about her perception of pain in intensive care following her experience with open-heart surgery. Tanked up on morphine, Verity met a lot of people who turned out not to be real, time was warped and she felt that the sense of her body completely changed. After speaking with Georgina Bruce of This House of Wounds and Louise Kenward, an artist and writer with a background in the NHS, working as a psychologist and psychotherapist, she discovered that they had all written creative non-fiction pieces in response to their unnerving experiences with their bodies. Verity says “It’s world changing, isn’t it, when your body goes out from under you? You see everything from a strange angle.”

Disturbing the Body explores body-horror themed creative nonfiction from women and those who identify as women of all ages in the UK. Body themes range from experiences with major operations, dealing with cancer, childbirth, chronic illness, disability, or any moment where a woman can feel powerless and out of the ordinary against her own body. Submissions were obtained through an open submission period, with Verity Holloway and Louise Kenward contributing their speculative memoirs stories.

The Kickstarter campaign to raise £2300 to fund the anthology will launch on Friday 15th May 2020 at 8am until Friday 12th June 2020 midnight. The book will be published by Boudicca Press in October 2020.

Call for submissions: Disturbing The Bodies

Attention, women writers of the UK! Introducing Disturbing The Body, an exciting new ‘speculative autobiography’ project published by Boudicca Press. Submissions are open. We can’t wait to see what you come up with.

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We’re looking for pieces that explore women’s personal experiences of fractured relationships with their bodies. Body themes could range from experiences with major operations, chronic health conditions or chronic pain, dealing with cancer, childbirth, disability, or any moment where a woman can feel powerless and out of the ordinary against her own body.  Your piece must be about something you personally experienced, but you may be as creative as you please. Think the arch fantasy of Angela Carter, the anxious surrealism of Charlotte Perkins Gilman, and the body horror of Margaret Atwood. Tell us about your body, your way.

The broadcast that scarred a nation is back

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The tenth edition of The Ghastling is available for pre-order today, and it could not be more beautiful. Nathaniel Hébert has done a fantastic job of lovingly recreating the look of the occult exploitation movies of the sixties and seventies. My Victorian spookfest, Florabelle, sits alongside stories by Alys Hobbs, Dan Coxon, Catrin Kean, David Hartley and many more. I cannot wait for Halloween.

The King of Terrors

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Hellebore #1, the sacrifice issue, is available to pre-order now. There’s an interview with witchcraft expert Ronald Hutton, essays by David Southwell of Hookland and DeeDee Chainey of Folklore Thursday, and something by me on the lost Doom Paintings of Medieval Suffolk. Maria J. Pérez Cuervo has worked hard to create something really special in Hellebore. Tell your spooky friends.

The Con Is On (again) – Nine Worlds and Not The Booker

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I’ll be talking cityscapes in SFF with Amy Butt, Jared Shurin, and Al Robertson at Nine Worlds on Saturday. I’ll have a bundle of Pseudotooth bookmarks with me, so if you see me, say hi, and I’ll hand some out.

You find us from 11:45 – 12:45 in the Bordeaux Suite.

Panellists discuss the architecture of SFF – how cities are represented and how they can flavour a story. The discussion will range from the dystopian feel of cyberpunk urban jungle to the various flavours of fantasy as well as examining how real world cities are seen in fiction.

While I’ve got you, something cool has happened – Pseudotooth has been longlisted for The Guardian’s Not The Booker Prize! If you’re feeling benevolent, all you need to do to vote is go here and leave a comment in this format:

[yourusername] – Vote # 1 – [Book title only]
[yourusername] – Vote # 2 – [Book title only]
[A short review of one of the two books.]

You have until the 8th of August to vote. Remember to vote for two books on the list, or your vote won’t be counted.

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