At the beginning good fortune, at the end disorder

I recently saw the galley proofs of Storylandia issue 7, (and a sample of the issue is now available from the website) so all appears to be on schedule as far as publication goes (which may still be up to two months away). I’ve been very impressed with the professionalism of the magazine and am really looking forward to getting hold of a copy. As the autumn storms rage here in Mount’s Bay, early but no less fierce for it, I’ve been tidying up Theophany/Darkworlds Part Two. For a 14,300 odd word opus that practically fell out of my head and onto the page, it’s appearing to need a lot of tidying up but remarkably little rewriting. Thanks are due to Peter Tennant, writer and Black Static reviewer/columnist, who publicly encouraged me to write a sequel to the original Darkworlds. Ten years down the line, living a very different life to when the original was penned, it’s been amazingly easy to get close to the same headspace, although I think my change in environment and “born-again Paganism” (to quote a wise man) is clear in the second instalment (which is possible to read without having to be familiar with the original, I think) I’m at a bit of a loss as to where to send it: I’m not arrogant enough to assume Pigasus Press (who published the original in their Premonitions: Causes For Alarm anthology) would be interested, if they’re even still publishing new work. However, that’s a minor concern. The work is what really matters. With Pieces awaiting consideration for another anthology and The Ferocious Night hopefully appearing towards the end of September, the question is: what next? Perhaps a re-write of a very old story called Angel Wing, which I had a read through recently. The general story is good enough although it needs some work, but it was the last paragraph that made me sit up and want to see the piece realise its full potential.

Three pieces of music(k) have been accompanying my every written word and nearly my every move over the last months: King Creosote/Jon Hopkins’ John Taylor’s Month Away (a melancholic Scottish folk song), Fougou’s Further From The Centre of Disturbance (a very dark, otherworldly, ambient album somewhat reminiscent of Lustmord and Coil, very emotional in places, in a beautiful art package with the field recordings made at sacred sites in West Cornwall) and Cyclobe’s Wounded Galaxies Tap At The Window (more dark ambience; Cyclobe’s claim to be drawing water from the same well as Coil is well justified).

4 thoughts on “At the beginning good fortune, at the end disorder

  1. As long as you keep going – with writing, submitting, etc. I like to keep a running list of publications to submit to, so when a response (rejection or acceptance) comes in, I can submit to the next one down, and so on. Good for you for pursuing your creative work.

  2. After an embarrassing incident where I submitted a story twice to the same editor (he was very nice about it) I started keeping a list of what goes where and when, although I’m not as organised when it comes to publications to submit to – I tend to trawl Duotrope or Ralan when I need to. I do know where I want Theophany to appear, but as it’s double the mag’s usual word length maximum, I’m probably being optimistic!

  3. >>embarrassing incident where I submitted a story twice to the same editor

    I recall a story that Gene Wolfe did almost exactly the same thing when he started out. He used to submit stories to SF magazines from an alphabetic list he kept, and sent one to Frederik Pohl at Galaxy which was rejected. He then sent it to the next title on his list, If, not realising Pohl also edited that magazine, but this time Pohl accepted it.

    Andy has accepted up to 13,900 at Black Static, so worth querying him perhaps. There’s also quite a few publishers going into chapbooks at the moment – Pendragon, This Is Horror, Spectral Press, Nightjar. At the length, I’d say Pendragon and This Is Horror are the most likely to be interested.

    I reprised the review of Premonitions over at my blog, as I know a ‘photo opportunity’ when I see one:-

    • Nice to know I’m not the only one! I think it was Graeme Hurry, then editor of Kimota. He was very polite about it. Black Static is a fine magazine, but Andy and I had a falling out a decade or so ago so I promised to keep my distance. Will check out your other recommendations though. Thanks! And great to see your ‘Premonitions’ review on your site.

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