Infernal Clock

Dead Reckoning

Last week on the evening before going to Bishop's Castle I finally sent out the draft of the DeadCades story to the editor, Steph. It was great to get it out. I was given a little kick to do it when I saw Shake's Tweet that he was close to getting his done - and let's face it I didn't want to be the last one.

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Awaiting edits sometime over the next week or two. And then I can look forward to getting my hands on the book in the months ahead. With all the great authors in it (and me) it's definitely going to be a doozy.

The first two books of the Infernal Clock trilogy (the Infernal Clock and Calendark), which I am proud to have been included in, are available from that Amazon behemoth if you ain't already got them.

InfernalClock Calendark

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Have Laptop Will Travel

It was time today to get some writing done. I thought I'd nip out for a few hours into town and give it a go in a few places and see what worked in terms of getting a fair chunk of the Deadcades story progressed for Infernal Clock.

I had just under 1400 words already written and the ultimate aim for these stories are around 5000 words. Having given the initial 1400 words a re-read at the weekend I am pretty happy with them. Although it has started as a police procedural largely and horror is yet to surface (if you don't include simple dead bodies as horror). My aim for today was a minimum of 1000 words.

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I first headed for the coffee shop downstairs in the Liverpool Central Library - I was in need of some caffeine before starting after all. That went really rather well. In just over an hour whilst perched on a soft comfy sofa with my Americano I got 1000 words done in one sitting. Jeez. But I was on a roll so it was time to go onwards and upwards up to the Picton Reading Room after bladder emptying (those medium coffees really are quite large aren't they?).

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The cafe had been busy enough downstairs but the Picton was packed with largely university aged (children I tell you!) boys and girls filling all the central tables. A bit of a shame as I've always liked working on those tables. Anyway, needs must and all that so I ended up getting one of the single seats around the periphery and plugging in my laptop there. It really is a nice environment to work in - even if again I had the laptop on my lap rather than a table. An hour and twenty five later and I had down another 1400 words. Bloody hell, flying!

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It was now time to redeposit some more of that caffeine and then pop out for some lunch. I couldn't avoid the unbeatable All Day Breakfast at the Shiraz on Williamson Sq. I'm a sucker for it. Then it was time for at least a little more of the writing whilst on the roll. This time I went to somewhere where it may prove a bit more difficult (beers and music) but it had some advantages (tables and plugs) - I headed to The Head of Steam on Hanover Street. And yes, bang! Another 1150 words in a little over an hour.

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I'm sure the last 1000 words will prove the least useable but they in any case do sketch out how the story will go.

So whilst I left the house wanting to do 1000 words I ended up doing 3600 (i.e. I've got 5000 words of a 5000 word story). Job well and truly smashed.

Now I've got to get it printed, read, redrafted and then again and again. It's good to feel it moving; even if it proves that only the first 1400 words are still any good. What have I learned from an afternoon of writing in three quite different environments (albeit two being in the library - the Picton is different to the cafe I can assure you). Well, I can write anywhere really. I dare say attempting to write for more than an hour or two in a pub would be the most difficult in terms of the music background (in some pubs) and the consistency of the writing (after a couple of stronger beers). Whilst in all three locations I almost wrote a 1000 words an hour or so the key finding is probably that if I ensure I set aside an hour a day then 500 words a day or more really is very attainable. And I should do that.

I should. But will I?

Thanks to the Head of Steam I even managed to update my website with this wee blog. And I have a Titanic 'Iceberg' to boot. It's a win, win, win. Huzzah!
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Drafting: DeadCades

Started writing the story for the final instalment of the Infernal Clock trilogy: DeadCades.

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Already it has changed from the story I thought was going to write. I'd said before that I had a good idea for a story setting which I thought I could use for this almost as a testing ground. However that setting is probably a few decades later and would also, at least as a first tale, warrant a bigger story. In any case whilst driving along minding my own business the other day another story came into head apparently from nowhere. I think it must have been floating through the cosmos and got to somewhere in north Wales around the A55 whilst I was driving past and 'hey presto!' it popped into my coconut head. Story particles are like that; I reckon they'll find story particles in the Large Hadron Collider at some point. Fairy Tales will prove to be fundamental particles. Probably.

Anyways, I think it's a good idea - well of course I do!

However I am only 1200 words into a 5000 word story and I can feel it may need 15k words to tell it so I'll have to see where it goes. I haven't got to any scary bits yet, which is a bit of a worry in a horror tale (though there are two dead bodies).

Good to put pen to paper (well plastic keys into aluminium shell) and get it started. I'm using Scrivener but to be honest I could just type it out into any word processor with this length of story. But I'll find a few things out about Scrivener no doubt whilst I'm using it so it's worth using it rather than Pages anyway.

This morning I also blasted out a quick rough and ready story for Microcosms for the second successive week. Not sure I'll be writing that frequently for it, but I got told there wasn't a route (i.e. work) for me this morning so I had the time (even if I didn't want to have the time). Ho hum.
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Dreams of Deadcades

Had a couple of days thinking about my story for Infernal Clock: Deadcades and hadn't really got anywhere. Waking up this morning in a dream state I tried to push the dream in a good direction (ie futuristic and rather bad); would be nice to have the story pop into my head without much effort. But the method failed miserably with a dream that went nowhere scary or interesting at all. I'd have been better off just trying to dream about Salma Hayek walking into it, not that she ever turns up these days (I think she's too busy for personal appearances even disembodied ones).

Salma
Too busy

Anyway without Salma or a suitable Deadcade dream I had to lie there a bit and think about my story possibilities and you know what I think I've got it. I've had an idea for a long while about a larger (kinda book length) story setting and I think I can use this short (5000 word) story as a proving ground. Though the story itself would be darker and deadlier than my original ideas for the book it will show if the setting and general ideas have possibilities. Now it's time to start writing it or sketching it out.

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Could be fun. In a dark way.
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DeadCades

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Great to see the announcement this weekend of 'DeadCades' the third and final installment of the Infernal Clock Trilogy. The first anthology - curated and edited by David Shakes and Steph Ellis - was the Infernal Clock (April 2017) and featured twenty four stories based around different hours of the day (which will be why there was 24 stories). My story in it predictably was closing time (11pm) and therefore ended the book.
Infernal Clock

The second anthology was Calendark (December 2017) which was based around the calendar (see, there was a clue in the title) with specific days throughout the year featuring many festivals well and lesser known - my story was set around All Souls Day.

Calendark

And now the final anthology goes on the next stage out ... each story will be set in a specific decade from the 1880s through to the 2020s; that's fifteen decades. I chose the final decade as I spend so much time reading SF & F it seemed appropriate. I'm not saying just because it's the future my story will include elements of SF - after all it's only 2 years away - but we'll see where my keyboard takes me.

The author's for the DeadCades are listed below. If you click on the list it'll take you through to the Infernal Clock website which is worth following to see how the new book progresses and if you fancy getting into the book yourself there is the opportunity to write a drabble. Get drabbling!

DeadCades

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The Dark Calendar

Yes, the day is here, it's come around very quickly. 'Calendark: The Infernal Almanac' is Out Now!

Get yourself on over to Amazon and get the lovely Paperback or download it on to your clever Kindle device thingy and start reading it now.

Calendark

I've only read two stories (and one of them was mine) so I'm looking forward to getting stuck into it myself.

There's all these lovely authors in it, including two of us from The Poised Pen writing group:

  • David Shakes
  • Stephanie Ellis
  • Craig Anderson
  • Sian Brighal
  • F. E. Clark
  • Catherine Connolly
  • Christina Dalcher
  • Mark A. King
  • Marie McKay
  • Chris Milam
  • Sal Page
  • Ewan Smith
  • Chris Stanley
  • Clive Tern
  • AJ Walker

I'm gonna read the stories in the order they come, it is based around the calendar after all; Tick-tock that Infernal Clock.

Once again many thanks go to the Editor-in-Chief - Stephanie Ellis, the Concept Man - David Shakes and the artist - Tim Youster. Well done guys.
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Clocking Calendark

Really looking forward to Calendark - the second of the time-based horror trilogy curated by Steph Ellis & David Shakes. The first was the Infernal Clock, which featured 24 stories each centred on an hour of the day. My story was predictably set at closing time - Last Orders folks!

Calendark is to feature sixteen stories each based around a specific day on the year. There are fourteen great writers in it (and I'm going to be in it too). I'm sure it's going to be a cracker and I can't wait to get it in my hands in paperback (and probably on my Kindle).

The authors featuring in Calendark:

  • David Shakes
  • Stephanie Ellis
  • Craig Anderson
  • Sian Brighal
  • F. E. Clark
  • Catherine Connolly
  • Christina Dalcher
  • Mark A. King
  • Marie McKay
  • Chris Milam
  • Sal Page
  • Ewan Smith
  • Chris Stanley
  • Clive Tern
  • AJ Walker

A few familiar names in there, with a strong showing from the FlashDogs which is great to see. Special mention must go to Steph Ellis and David Shakes for their work in bringing the idea to fruition. It is not exactly a thankless task, for there have been many thanks. And so there should be! One more ... thanks!

Keep an eye on the Infernal Clock blogspot to see how it's going. Or then again you can just keep an eye on here. Let's face it I may mention it.

If you haven't seen the Infernal Clock you can find it on Amazon (just click here).

InfernalClock

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The Infernal Clock Interviews

Infernal Clock Interview

With the release of the fabulous Infernal Clock Shakes asked all the contributors a few choice questions as an 'interview'. My favourite bit was the 666 questions. Some were easier than others however I don't think I've done too bad in terms of picking my bad. Here were my picks:


Who do you think are the 6 most evil humans in history?

GhengisKhan Stalin
Ghengis Khan and Josef Stalin

Adolf PolPot
Adolf Hitler and Pol Pot

Farage Kelvin
Nigel Farage and Kelvin McKenzie

Who do you regard as the 6 most evil villains in literature or film?


Joffrey Sauron 2
Joffrey Baratheon and The Dark Lord, Sauron

Cylons Alex
The Cylons, Battlestar Galactica and Alex in A Clockwork Orange

Bob Sephiroth
Sideshow Bob and Sephiroth (Final Fantasy VII)

Greenback
(if I can’t use a video game then Baron Greenback!)


What do you think are the 6 most disgusting meals or food products ever created?



Andouillette Blanc

Andouillette (far and away the worst thing I’ve eaten - French cuisine my arse) and Blancmange

Delight Hersheys

Turkish Delight and US ‘chocolate' products e.g. Hershey Bars and Oreos

Okroshka Liver
Russian cold soups e.g. Okroshka and Liver


Click here for the link to the full interview sans photos and to see all the interviews from the other authors.

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Infernal Clock available in Paperback and on Kindle now

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Infernal Clock Review

Infernal Clock Reviews

There's been lots of love shown to
The Infernal Clock online and on Amazon and they're multiple Five Star reviews. Woo!

Nice to get a thumbs up for my story in a new review in the
Dream Cage. I didn't pay for the review in fact I don't even know the reviewer; honest! Made me happy this afternoon - I'm easily pleased. But good to know my story isn't out of its depth with all the other great stories in the anthology... and relax...

The Dream Cage review

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In all seriousness though the book is cracking so if you haven't got it yet then what's keeping ya! Click on the cover and get on down to that there Amazon behemoth.
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Fabulous TV Eats Time

TV Eats Time Until There Really Is No Tomorrow

There has been rather a lot of great TV on for the last month or so. And I've loved watching lots of it, but it has slowed my reading down and, even more, my writing. Whilst work takes up so much time I really can't help that. TV though... I should make harder choices about what to watch or not, but flip there have been some cracking shows on. So rather than feel any guilt about it I'm calling it 'research into writing'. Just in case I end up doing any screenwriting.

Current and recent TV must watch for me:

  • Taboo
  • Line of Duty
  • Homeland
  • Follow the Money
  • Inside No 9
  • University Challenge
  • Only Connect

At least Taboo, No9 and Follow the Money have finished (and UC and OC have only the Finals to go) so I may have more writing and reading time without the need for making difficult telly-box decisions over the coming weeks.

Keep Writing - Stop Watching.
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The Infernal Clock has Ticked!

It's That Time, It's Here!

You can get your hands on
The Infernal Clock on Amazon - Right Now! Tick-Tock. What are you waiting for?

InfernalClock

Each story is set during an hour of the day; so that would be 24 stories then (yes it would). And that would be 24 authors too (yes, indeed). Quite a few Flash Dogs on the contributors list and writers who like scaring the bejesus out of us in the horror genre.

Like the Flash Dogs covers there has been more beautiful work from
Tamara Rogers.

Contributors

I've just got mine on my Paperwhite and looking forward to reading all of them. Apart from the last one; I've read that one before.

While you're on there buying it (I'm sure you are) you should also take advantage of the
FREE (yep, gratis) Kindle copy of the last Flash Dogs anthology 'TIME'. FREE. That's good that. It's definitely time to get your Kindle going this April. Time - it's like the two are kind of linked, isn't it? Anyway, time for me to round this off and pick up me Kindle!

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Flash Dogs Anthology 3 'TIME'



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Clock Watching

That Infernal Clock

1, 2, 3 ....
Shakes is getting us all excited about the upcoming publication of The Infernal Clock - it's looking great. And I for one can't wait to get me mitts on it (or on the Kindle with it on). Been hard work for Shakes and Steph ably helped out by Emily and with the art from Tamara; basically it's been a full on positive for the Flash Dogs community and I'm sure their work will have paid off in spades.

InfernalClockYorick

Bring it on.


...10, 11, 12.

Get your Kindle ready for it and watch this space!
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