Thursday, July 23, 2009


I will be appearing, with Hal Duncan at the Fringe in Edinburgh on Sun 23rd of August, Fingers Piano Bar, on Frederick Street, 7.50 onwards. Organised by Gavin at Underword  . Not sure what I'll be reading yet, most likely Nelson's Blood and something from the new novel. WordDogs will be performing their greatest hits on the 21st.

The joy of being unemployed means I have been able to complete the first draft of a new novel, The Harrowed Garden. On the back of the synopsis for this, and on the strength of Adocentyn, I will now be represented by The McKernan Agency.

And with a new job starting in August its going to be pretty busy.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Robots Beyond

I've just been told that 'Robots Beyond', which contains my John Dee story Primero, is now available from Permuted Press. You can get it from (I'm sure it will appear on their site soon).

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Dog Day

Its time for another Word Dogs. Wednesday the 3rd, 8pm, 13th Note, King St, Glasgow.

I'm on last, so you have to stay until the end :)

Novel revision has been completed. I just need to do another pass on the final section and find a few thousand words to reach 80K and I'll be happy for a crit and then start finding an agent, again.

Monday, August 11, 2008

And now the end is near

I recently updated the main website: so now it should be all shiny, W3C compliant and er up to date.

After supreme efforts each day (1K+, it helps when you have a plan) I'm within sight of the end of the first draft of Adocentyn. I haven't finished and already I have half a dozen edits I know I need to do. Mainly fleshing out paragraphs into whole chapters, a whole plot thread I left dangling and generally dramatising scenes. I decided to finish the whole thing rather than go back and finese part 2. Since it takes so long to get up to steam, better to make the whole journey, I thought. Polishing is much easier than raw creation.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008


I have received the proofs for Nelson's Blood, to be published shortly in New Writing Scotland 26. So I'm guessing that goes to press pretty soon.

Have had a productive time of late. Closing in on 50,000 words in Adocentyn and I don't think I've quite got to the half-way point.

Friday, May 23, 2008


My Grandpa died recently, and at the funeral I gave a short speech on behalf of my family. Cleaning up the house, in preparation for Asura moving in later today, I found the paper I had handwritten it on and was about to throw it away. I thought better of it, and have decided to preserve it here. It is a bit rough in places, as a scribbled first draft will be, but it is also from the heart, as a scribbled first draft will be.

How do you summarise a life? I don't think that you can recount all the words and deeds. But it is by someone's deeds that we should know them.

It is only relatively recently that I got to know my grandpa's history. One of his characteristic features was his relatively quiet presence. I don't think that it is necessary to have done great deeds to be a man - you don't need to explore unknown rivers or build a nation to be a man. A man's true deeds are much more subtle. His very life and the way he lives it - the example he sets- these are the deeds we should measure.

As I've said, my grandpa was softly spoken. I never heard him raise his voice - he never needed to. His word, when used, carried the weight of authority.

Despite provocation, I never saw him truly get angry. As a child, I had recent discovered that grass could be used to make green marks and his newly painted bungalow wall was the perfect canvas for me to continue this experiment. He was annoyed, but still I don't recall him raising his voice in anger or otherwise.

My grandpa always seemed content with what he had. He didn't seem to seek some elusive extra. I was amazed that he could eat a bar of chocolate over a week or two. It did however provide me with the opportunity to sneak downstairs in the middle of the night and nibble on it. This allowed my grandpa to show his keen eye and detection skills and deduce that the small teeth marks were mine.

My grandpa had huge reserves of patient and had time for everyone. He helped me learn to read, ensured I remembered my times tables, and eventually I could name my favourite dinosaur, Archaeopteryx.

The summary of my grandpa's life is before you, and around you. His family and friends. The people he influence by being himself. The summary of my grandpa's life is me. And for that I am happy and thankful.