Sub ref, please

Watching my son play football yesterday (his team lost to a sickening last-gasp goal), I noticed straight away that the opposition coach had an extraordinarily loud voice. So what else could I do but write down everything he said over the course of the 80 minutes… First Half Keep it moving. Make it stick. Always […]

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Advent Stories #17

THE COLD December sleet, Shude Hill, Manchester. Six in the evening. Temperature dropping. Jesus wept. The things we do. The things we grow to be. No, Simmonds, I do not want another fucking coffee. Get on to Arley and find out when forensics are going to bring their tents and toothpicks over. And get that […]

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Advent Stories #7

f/8 Up ahead, the trees gave way to a field edging the final row of cottages before the Derbyshire hills and the brittle January night took over. The road was visible for a little way but there was no moon. Behind him, the lights from Manchester formed a thin meniscus of pale orange. Tommy felt […]

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Next stop… Shudehill

I have a July deadline. But due to various commitments, my writing time has been cut to two days a week. Luxury, I hear you cry, and you’re right. I’m not complaining. I’m not moaning. But it means I’m having to be a bit more proactive in terms of what I get done and when. […]

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Tram: 13.11.14.

That man on the tram. The one who catches your eye. There’s usually someone. Don’t you find that? An anomaly. A jarring presence. Or maybe not. Maybe just someone other. An against-the-flow type. A grit in the grease. This girl with the tattoo. A heart on her hand. For some reason. This guy with headphones. […]

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Shadows & Tall Trees

On October 7th I posted a blog about the Gothic Manchester Festival, and how I was hoping to write a new short story in time for a reading I was scheduled to perform at the International Anthony Burgess Foundation along with Ramsey Campbell and Stephen McGeagh. I intended to write something “brisk and baleful”, around […]

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Hit me with your Twitter stick

As part of the Gothic Manchester Festival I’ll be reading (alongside Ramsey Campbell and Stephen McGeagh) at an event run by the excellent Twisted Tales people (27th October). The evening is an opportunity for us to talk about why we have chosen to set so many of our stories in Manchester. It was lovely to […]

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Day Thirty Nine… Hard Return

844 words. It proved very hard to get back into this novel after a number of weeks away. The edits were completed quite quickly, but then I had to fly to Germany to participate in the Ruhr Lit Cup with the England Writers’ Team, a tournament in which, despite playing well, we finished 6th out […]

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