Hidden Treasures: Live Panel Discussion on the Anthology with Fincham Press, Roehampton University

This event is now over, but you can watch it below.

I’ll be discussing anthologies with Clare Bogen from 3 of Cups Press as part of this FREE event by Fincham Press, Roehampton University.

“We invite you to find hidden treasure in our two latest student writing anthologies: The Box and All That Glitters. Each book contains secret smiles and delicate touches; small human moments we may have overlooked before.

We are launching the two books in a series of online video readings throughout May, culminating in a live panel discussion on ‘the anthology’ as a type of publishing, featuring special guests Clare Bogen and Giselle Leeb. You can also hear some contributors to The Box and All That Glitters reading their work live on the night.”

Aurora Writing Competition prize giving, Bromley House Library, 28 April 2016

Bromley House LibraryI read my short story, ‘As You Follow’, at the wonderful Bromley House Library, Nottingham.

‘As You Follow’ was placed third by Paul Mc Veigh in the Aurora Poetry & Short Fiction Competition (Short Fiction Category), Writing East Midlands’ inaugural competition for poetry and short fiction.

Ambit 222 Launch and Summer Competition 2015 Winners’ readings

I had a fantastic night reading my short story, ‘When You Fell’, which came third in the Ambit Summer Competition 2015, and meeting the other writers and some old friends.

Join us for the launch of Ambit 222 in the newly refurbished basement of The Sun and 13 Cantons. Competition judges Dan O’Brien and Alison Moore will be reading alongside the 2015 competition winners in poetry and fiction. Free entrance with the purchase of 222 or a 5 pound donation. Cash bar open until late.



Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet: Readings, Conversation & Social, 4 Nov 2015

Wednesday 4 November, 7pm start

Sign-up to this FREE event here


Nottingham Writers’ Studio Presents:

Hope or Disaster? Humanity’s Relationship with the Earth

Join us in the bar at Rough Trade for an evening of fantastic literature and performance, featuring award-winning writers from Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet and a chat with guest-editor, Michael J. de Luca, via Skype; puppetry from Sean Myatt, and readings from local authors Roberta Dewa and Giselle Leeb.

Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet

LCRW #33 approaches its theme of humanity’s relationship with the earth with a little humor, a touch of horror…Includes multiple award winner Sofia Samatar, Nebula and Shirley Jackson award nominee Carmen Maria Machado, and World Fantasy Award nominee Christopher Brown among others.


Michael J. DeLuca, guest editor of Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet
Michael J. DeLuca

Michael J. DeLuca was born in Boston and now lives in Southeast Michigan. His fiction has appeared in Interfictions, Beneath Ceaseless Skies and Apex and is forthcoming from Mythic Delirium and Escape Pod. He is the guest-editor of LCRW #33.

Roberta Dewa
Roberta Dewa

Roberta Dewa’s publications include a novel, The Esplanade, a short story collection, Holding Stones and a memoir, The Memory of Bridges. She lectures in language studies at the University of Nottingham.

Giselle Leeb
Giselle Leeb

Giselle Leeb’s stories have appeared or are forthcoming in Ambit, Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet, Bare FictionMslexiaRiptide, and other publications.

Carmen Maria Machado
Carmen Maria Machado

Carmen Maria Machado is a fiction writer, critic, and essayist whose work has appeared or is forthcoming in The New Yorker, Granta, The Paris Review, AGNI, The Fairy Tale Review, Tin House’s Open Bar, NPR, The American Reader, Los Angeles Review of Books, and elsewhere. She has received the Richard Yates Short Story Prize, the CINTAS Foundation Fellowship in Creative Writing, and the Michener-Copernicus Fellowship, and has been nominated for a Nebula Award and the Shirley Jackson Award.

D. K. McCutchen
D. K. McCutchen

D. K. McCutchen is a Senior Lecturer for the UMass College of Natural Sciences. Lack of poetic DNA led to tale of low adventure & high science titled The Whale Road (Random House, NZ; Blake, UK), which earned a Pushcart nomination & a Kiriyama Prize Notable Book award. In a literary attempt to save the world, she’s now writing mostly scientifically accurate, sometimes erotic, gender-bender-post-apocalyptic-speculative-fiction.

Sean Myatt’s work includes traditional and contemporary puppetry, and performing objects. He has studied and worked with Barry Smith, Peter Schumann, and Philippe Genty. He was a Puppet Captain at the opening ceremony for the 2012 Olympics, and a consultant and performer in ‘Before the Dawn’, Kate Bush’s 2014 show.

Sofia Samatar
Sofia Samatar

Sofia Samatar is the author of the novel A Stranger in Olondria, winner of the William L. Crawford Award, the British Fantasy Award, and the World Fantasy Award. In 2014 she received the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer. She co-edits the journal Interfictions and teaches literature at California State University Channel Islands.

Mayhem Horror Film Festival

Mayhem Horror Film Festival

I’m reading two short stories at the Mayhem Horror Film Festival, along with some talented writers and story tellers. It’s a Halloween reading so expect some argh and eek.

Mezz Bar, upstairs at the Broadway Cinema, 7pm

Blog Tour Monday

I’ve been invited to take part in a kind of blog relay by Megan Taylor, the author of three novels who has recently done exceedingly well in numerous short story competitions. It reminds me of school relay races where dropping the baton was the most important thing – that and doing it quickly. I’m passing the baton on, swiftly and smoothly, to Magda Knight, whose speculative fiction has appeared in numerous magazines and who has had two YA novels longlisted in the Mslexia YA Competition 2013; and to Amy Dunne whose book, Secret Lies, has just been published by Bold Strokes books.

What am I working on?

I’m working on my next short story.

How does my work differ from others in its genre?

My genre tends to be literary, with dips into fantasy and soft sci-fi. Some of my stories are a mixture of all three. I like magic realism, slipstream and weird tales and using any technique or style I can get my hands on to make a story work. As Steven King said in On Writing:

There is absolutely no need to be hidebound and conservative in your work, just as you are under no obligation to write experimental, nonlinear prose…Both the traditional and the modern are available to you. Shit, write upside down if you want to, or do it in Crayola pictographs. But no matter how you do it, there comes  a point when you must judge what you’ve written and how well you wrote it.

Why do I write what I do?

I have absolutely no idea. I sit down and write and let whatever comes, come.

How does my writing process work?

I saw Doris Lessing speak at the South Bank Centre in 2008 and her answer to this question was curt and similar to my feelings on it. Each writer has their own way of doing it and if you talk too much about what you are doing, at least while you are doing it, it can cause the energy to dissipate. Keeping the lid jammed down on the boiling pot helps your writing. Having said this, I’ve had a lot of help from reading other writers’ suggestions. My three favourite writing books are:

  • Becoming a Writer, Dorothea Brande
  • On Writing, Steven King
  • Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within, Natalie Goldberg
Dorothea Brande’s book is priceless because she addresses the problem of why people can’t start writing in the first place. Get going first and then worry about technique. I use On Writing after the first draft to ask myself, in Stephen’s words, “what’s it all about, Alfie?” If I had to say something definite I’d say, write, write regularly,  and never judge what you write no matter how odd it sounds. Editing comes later.
How to Write a Sentence by Stanley Fish is also an excellent tool to help you understand what your sentences are doing without studying formal grammar.


Short Story Night at the Broadway – Sat 21 December 2013

Once more, in association with Comma Press and Nottingham Writers’ Studio, we’re celebrating all things wonderfully short story on the shortest day – the longest night – of the year! We’re back at the marvellous Broadway Cinema in the Studio, everyone is welcome and it’s all absolutely FREE!

On the 21st December 2013, from 7.30pm, come and join award-winning and gifted authors –
Alison Moore!
Niki Valentine!
Giselle Leeb!
D P Watt!
& Roberta Dewa!
For totally tantalising tales!!!

And – a short story swap: pick up short stories for free, or bring your own to exchange…

PLUS! Take part in the brilliant book raffle to win signed copies and raise proper dosh for Book Aid.

Can’t wait to see you there!

Love Stories: Nottingham Festival of Words

Sunday 17th February, NTU Newton Building
2.45pm – 4.00pm

Following the success of International Short Story Night in June 2012, Megan Taylor will be hosting another event. This time we will be celebrating short stories at Nottingham’s Festival of Words. Our theme for the event is love, but expect far more than hearts and flowers:

Unique, unsettling and heartfelt tales from Niki Valentine, Caroline Smailes, Giselle Leeb, D.P. Watt and Alison Moore.

Details of cost and ticket buying here.

 About the writers:

Alison Moore’s first novel, The Lighthouse, was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize 2012. Her debut short story collection will be published by Salt in 2013. Novelist Caroline Smailes (In Search of Adam, Black Boxes, Like Bees to Honey, Disraeli Avenue, 99 Reasons Why) co-wrote a short story collection, Freaks! which is published by The Friday Project, HarperCollins. Niki Valentine is the award winning author of The Haunted, Possessed and The Doll’s House. She also writes gritty, realist fiction as Nicola Monaghan. Giselle Leeb’s short stories have been published in Wet Ink, Mslexia and the Leaf anthology 2009 – she has now been shortlisted twice for Leaf’s story competition, alongside running up in the Global Short Story Competition. D.P.Watt’s collection of short stories An Emporium of Automata will be reprinted by Eibonvale Press in early 2013, and two novellas, The Ten Dictates of Alfred Tesseller and Dehiscence are available from Ex Occidente Press.

Word of Mouth: Journeys

Wed 21 November, 7.30pm

Antenna cafe-restaurant, 9a Beck Street, NG1 1EQ (how to find Antenna)
Tickets and Boarding Passes: £4/£3 (NWS members & concessions)

Escape a cold November night with an evening of spoken word wanderings as Nottingham Writers’ Studio celebrates Journeys and Free Expression…

…with readings that range from the British countryside through Europe and on to Russia and Nepal, writing that flies in the face of repression and out into the future, before returning home to our very own Notts.

Prepare to be transported!

Hosted by three-time novelist Megan Taylor.