In Death’s Shadow – 1st Chapter (2017)

It has been over a year since I first posted an extract of my current story. In that time I have learned a lot about editing and actually pushed to get reader feedback so now have a far more polished version of the story. This polishing isn’t fully finished yet but I figured that I would show how far the story has come by posting the 1st chapter of its current draft.

The original version can be found here.

Once again, any feedback is welcome. Enjoy.


Chapter 1

A dark shape flew through heavy clouds far above Abernethy Forest. In a land of ancient myths such as Scotland, where mountains vie with dark forests while snow and cold winds dominate the rugged landscape, it was all too easy to see contorted faces staring down from the icy heavens. The shape disappeared into the churning clouds before erupting out from the silently screaming mouth of an angry god to swoop down low above the treetops. Leathery wings glided serenely for several seconds then lunged into the greenery to vanish from sight completely.

A short distance from here was a large wooden building known as Aife’s Lodge. It had once been a private manor house but had been converted into a hotel in recent years. Fitting with its remote location it was the kind of place where people went to escape society completely.

The clouds parted just enough to reveal the moon through the black veiled sky. A warped howl echoed through the snowy night. Nobody heard it over the festivities though. It was just before midnight on New Year’s Eve and the few guests of Aife’s Lodge had forgone seclusion and gathered together in the main hall to celebrate. A stone fireplace dominated one wall while numerous stuffed animals showcased the local fauna. Long dead deer and wildcats seemed almost alive in the flickering light. The guests mingled awkwardly in groups of two or three, the conversations gradually becoming less passive as the alcohol flowed. Continue reading

Words of Fate: Of Quills and Swords.

City walls of pale stone stood proudly on the horizon ahead. Around it rougher stone structures clung together in a hodge-podge of designs and materials like a cancer. Farmland covered the ground between the settlement and a lone hilltop many miles from it where a young man stood taking in the sight of the legendary city. Dense forests made a ring around it all.

It was early in the morning and the young man hoped to be within those walls come nightfall. He wiped an arm across his face to remove a trickle of sweat and grimaced at the smell that rose from his sleeve. He had been travelling by foot for over two weeks now without a single change of clothes. Washes had been few and far between and the summer’s heat had been like the innards of an oven for the entire time.
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Writing, Publication and Depression.

“When the researchers looked specifically at authors, they found that they are overrepresented among people with schizophrenia, depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety syndrome, and substance abuse problems. Authors were also almost twice as likely to commit suicide as the general population.” – (http://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2012/10/study-writers-are-twice-as-likely-to-commit-suicide/263833/)

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Christmas Sale!

Winter is coming and that means so is Christmas. Money is tight so I have made it that much cheaper to pick up a nice read.

If you still haven’t had chance to read ‘The Sword Summoner’ now is your chance. Throughout December you can pick up the ebook version for a single pound. That’s right, £1.00 for 350 pages of entertainment.

Visit any ebook retailer for this great deal or click the link to the Amazon page below:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Sword-Summoner-His…/…/178306322X

Pinnoca

Here is an Angela Carter style subversion of a fairytale that I wrote about six years ago. Its not horror but it is kinda creepy. I wrote it as an end of year present for my English teacher then used it on numerous occasions after for school and even uni projects. Enjoy.


Pinnoca.

The death happened on a sunny day down by the peaceful brook where families often picnicked in the warm days of summer. Who among the villagers would have guessed that a venomous snake lurked among the dark bushes that lined the silver stream? The girl Pinnoca, who was entering into the cusp between child and woman, certainly didn’t. As she picked the sweet smelling flowers of dazzling colours that grew beside the water, the snake had struck out and plunged its fangs into her rosy flesh. In her shock she had staggered back, lost her footing and plunged into the chill waters. The bite was not deep but the venom spread through her veins and froze her limbs. She drowned, her lips inches from the air that they so desperately sought.

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Our Father who isn’t in Heaven.

Something a little bit different today. Another poem I wrote in lesson when bored but this is far from simple. I can’t tell if it is mindless ramblings or something thought provoking. I’ll let you guys be the judge. If you’re religious, I apologise if it causes offence.


God. The Father, the Son and the bastard ghost

The mirage in the sweltered landscape of humanity

As true as anything in a false world

Of false people who wander through life

Like sheep to be flocked Continue reading