Category Archives: On Writing: General

The Writing Life: full-time or part-time?

beersSo, a some weeks ago I sat in the audience at a writing salon (i.e. a few writers who’d already been to the pub beforehand then staggered to a bookstore and talked about writing) and listened to a discussion of how people work.

More specifically, how writers divide their time between the writing
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Bad Women: Flip

Connie Willis_1996_BellwetherThis week Kathleen Jennings nominates her favourite “bad” woman:

My favourite “bad” character is Flip, a sullen, difficult, way fashion-forward… assistant seems the wrong word for her. She appears very early in Connie Willis’ charming novel of chaos theory and fads, Bellwether. I have never disliked someone so much
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Spectral Book of Horror Stories: Simon Marshall-Jones

simon-marshall-jones1And now, a word from our publisher, the delightful Simon Marshal-Jones, on what inspired the genesis of Spectral Press, why and how the Spectral Book of Horror Stories came about, and the future of horror.

1. What inspired you to start up the Spectral Book of Horror series?

Two things: first, my own experiences
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Spectral Book of Horror Stories: Angela Slatter’s The October Widow

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Yes, the tiara helps me write

In which I talk to myself, quite legitimately, so the Men in White Coats cannot take me away – although my Significant Other is giving me some strange sideways looks. My Spectral Book of Horror tale is “The October Widow”.

1. Can you remember the first horror story
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Bad Women: Miranda Priestly

meryl_streep_miranda_priestly_devilMy friend and talented newcomer, Linda Brucesmith has nominated Meryl Streep’s Miranda Priestly (Beastly Priestly) from The Devil Wears Prada as her favourite “bad” woman:

There’s no forgetting the wonderfully surnamed Miranda Priestly as Meryl Streep created her in “The Devil Wears Prada.” The character was said to have been modelled on Anna
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Spectral Book of Horror Stories: Brian Hodge’s Cures for a Sickened World

Brian-Hodge-112x150Mr Brian Hodge is so often one of my ToC buddies nowadays that if I don’t see him in said ToC I get a bit nervous and assume he’s met with an unfortunate accident. I am therefore very pleased to find him in The Spectral Book of Horrors and
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Bad Women: Goneril

LearsDaughtersThe delightful and talented Thoraiya Dyer has chosen her favourite “bad” woman: Goneril from King Lear.

So, King Lear is supposed to be all about how shit it is to have ungrateful children. He has three daughters and also a massive head, apparently; he asks them which one loves him
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Spectral Book of Horror Stories: Alison Moore’s Eastmouth

alisonmooreThe fact that Alison Moore’s The Lighthouse was shortlisted for the Man Booker should tell you all you need to know about the quality of her work – but I just can’t resist adding a quote from Black Static’s Peter Tennant about her “Small Animals”: ‘Moore writes a pitch
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Spectral Book of Horror Stories: Conrad Williams’ The Devil’s Interval

conrad-williamsThe thoroughly unsettling Conrad Williams has written seven novels, including London Revenant, The Unblemished, and Decay Inevitable, as well as four novellas and two short story collections, and has recently signed with Titan Books – a sure sign of a continuing upward trajectory. He’s won two British Fantasy Awards,
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