I very much enjoyed being a judge for the third quarter of Flash 500's flash competition. It felt a huge responsibility to pick the winners, but I was very happy with the ones I chose.
I have recently been busy working on my forthcoming flash fiction novella which I hope will be out sometime in 2020. On V.Press's suggestion, I have written two new stories for the collection and also have been busy doing edits.
I have been busy choosing the stories for this year's flash fiction festival anthology. Writers should hear the outcome of our choices soon. With thoughts again on the festival, Jude Higgins and I have been busy tasting food for next year's festival which runs from 19-21 June. I am pleased that I am now a director of the festival, along with founder Jude Higgins.
The date for National Flash Fiction Day next year is going to 6 June. We are again going to be holding it at The Herbert Gallery in Coventry. More details will be available soon. The micro competition and anthology submissions will be open from 1 December 2019 to 15 February 2020.
My novella-in-flash, 'An Inheritance', has been accepted for publication by V Press. V Press is a very highly respected poetry and flash publisher and I am thrilled and excited about the news. In the next few months I will be busy editing the book and getting it ready for publication. This is rather lovely, as editing is my favourite part of writing.
I am very excited to be a judge for the Flash 500's flash competition. Entries close on 30 September. You can enter here
Much of June was spent preparing for the flash fiction festival. This year's festival was held at Trinity College in Bristol on the weekend of 28-30 June. I was, once again, hospitality organiser, a role that gets increasingly demanding as the festival grows. Despite all the hard work, I really enjoyed the weekend. Lots of fun was had and feedback has been positive. Together with publishers Ad Hoc Fiction, V Press and Dahalia Press and writers Damnhnait Monaghan and Susmita Battacharya I was on a panel at the festival talking about the process of publishing with an independent publisher.
In June I was very pleased to join another local book group to discuss Finding a Way. I also talked about flash in general and read flashes by Santino Prinzi and Thomas Malloch.
The launch of the National Flash Fiction Day anthology was held in Coventry this year on 15 June. We wanted to take it to a part of the UK where more people could access it and we were pleased that the day itself proved very popular.The launch was held at The Herbert Gallery who were fab hosts. Stephanie Hutton and Ingrid Jendrzejewski both ran popular workshops and we were really pleased to be joined by lots of new faces. I facilitated a panel on publishing and entering competitions and interviewed Ingrid, Steve Campbell and Jude Higgins. We also had readings from contributors to the the anthology and I read my story Odette.
I was a FlashFlood editor again this year. This was a rather overwhelming as we had over a 1000 entries. The stories were published every five or ten minutes throughout NFFD.
I was obviously disappointed when Finding a Way got no further than the shortlisted at The Sabouteur Awards, but it is such an honour to be shortlisted and we had a really good night at the awards, meeting up with lots of friends.
I am thrilled that 'Finding a Way' has been shortlisted in The Saboteur Awards. I have been invited to the ceremony on 18 May in Birmingham and am looking forward to catching up with friends there and meeting new people. Thank you to everyone who has voted for my book. You can vote here until the 12 May.
Very excited to be doing a workshop at this year's Flash Fiction Festival. I will be doing a panel on publishing with an indie press with the writers Damhnait Monahan and Susmita Bhattacharya and publishers Ad Hoc Fiction, V. Press and Dahilia Press. You can read more about the festival here
As well as being busy with the Flash Fiction Festival, NFFD and promoting my book, I have managed to write a few flashes. I have also had an idea for a new novella in flash and hopefully will have time to write it soon.
My local bookshop, Oldfield Park Bookshop in Bath has been very supportive of my book and has sold lots of copies in the shop.
Pictures have been coming in from the launch of Finding a Way and the picture on the left has to be one of my favourites. It was a brilliant night and I was touched by the number of people who came.
I have been very busy with NFFD for the last few weeks, processing anthology submissions. Everything is read anonymously, and as I am a micro judge, Tino Prinzi is collating all the micro submissions.Prize winners for micro comp have now been announced and I was very pleased that most of my favourites got in the top ten.
I am very happy with how sales of Finding a Way are going. I've had lots of messages from people saying how much they've enjoyed the book and also how much it has helped them. Several people have bought the book to give to grieving friends. I couldn't ask for more. I've also had some wonderful reviews on the Ad Hoc Bookshop, Goodreads and Amazon.
I'm very pleased to have been asked to read my stories at a local book group and to talk to the group about flash fiction. Am really looking forward to it and hope to do more of this kind of thing in the future.
I was very pleased to have my story Another Chance featured on the Adam Crowther show on BBC Radio 4 Bristol on 6 February.
I have been very busy arranging things for the launch of Finding a Way. The books go on sale on Feb. They have arrived and look wonderful, way beyond what I could have imagined. I am having a launch in Bath, but as space is limited, I am having an online launch on Facebook. This will be on 11 Feb at 8--9 pm. It is an open group and you can access it here
Booking for the Flash Fiction Festival is now open. I am once again Hospitality Co-ordinator and I'm really looked forward to the weekend. It's on 28th, 29th and 30th of June. You can book here
I was very pleased to start the new year off with an acceptance from Ellipses. My previously publishes story Saturday Nights will be published in issue 5 of the magazine.
On Saturday 19 January I attended the launch of Flash Fiction Festival Two and the BFFA anthology Things Left And Found By the Side of the Road. The launch was held in Bath and it was fun to be joined by so many writers who have work in the anthology. I read my story Just Perfect.
I was very excited to find out in September that my novella-in-flash was shortlisted for publication by V. Press. Unfortunately, it got no further, but they were very encouraging and all is not lost as they asked me to contact them again next summer with a view to possible publication.
On 6 October I joined fellow flash writers Karen Jones, Jude Higgins, John Wheway, Santino Prinzi, Matt Thorpe-Coles, Michael Loveday and Ken Elkes for an evening of flash readings at St James’ wine vaults in Bath. All the readers are part of the Flash Fiction Festival UK team.
I found out in November, that my story Processing won second prize in the HISSAC flash fiction competition which was a tremendous boost. It’s available to read here.
The anthology from this year’s Flash Fiction Festival, Flash Fiction Festival Two, was published in November. It was edited by Jude Higgins, Santino Prinzi and myself and I really enjoyed reading all the submitted stories. The anthology includes my flash, Haggis which was written in David Gaffney’s workshop at the festival.
On November 15th, I was a guest on the Adam Crowther show on BBC Radio Bristol. I recorded my story A Collection and Adam and I talked about the inspiration for the story, about my forthcoming collection and writing in general. Listen here.
June is a busy time in the flash world and I was thrilled that my story Dividing Time was shortlisted in New Zealand's Micro Madness. You can read the story here.
I was honoured to be asked to be a FlashFlood editor this year. FlashFlood goes live every NFFD. This year’s FlashFlood features my story Saturday Nights. You can read it here
June 16th was National Flash Fiction Day in the UK and as usual there was lots going on. I joined in a flash walk organised by Bristol Flash. The stories, performed by actors, were all winning stories from a competition Bristol Flash had organised on the theme of ‘Urban Landscapes’. Later, I went to some really good workshops run by local writers and NFFD Director Calum Kerr. After a trip to the pub we went along to Bedminster library for the launch of the 2018 NFFD anthology. I read my story A Picnic in the Park. Following Calum Kerr’s resignation as Director, it was decided that Tino Prinzi, Ingrid Jendrzejewski and I would run NFFD in the future. We are all very excited by this opportunity and hope that NFFD will thrive.
The 20th, 21st and 22nd July saw this year’s Flash Fiction Festival take place in Trinity College, Bristol. I had a very busy role as Hospitality Organiser. The weekend was a great success and I found time to take part in some brilliant workshops. I was too tired though to join in the impromptu karaoke.
Since the beginning of the year, I have been very busy working on my collection of flashes Finding a Way, but have found time to enter a few competitions and have had several short and long listings. I was very pleased that my WorcsLitFest story My Dad was shortlisted and is going to be published in their latest anthology, together with two other stories of mine.
I was very excited to have my story A Collection included in the 100 voices for a 100 years project. The project was set up to commemorate a hundred years since women got the vote in the UK. There are some very interesting stories and commentaries. You can listen and read here.
Much of spring has been taken up with writing stories for my flash collection, but I have also been very busy organising accommodation and food for the Flash Festival in July. I have, however, found time to enter a few stories to competitions and am pleased to have had two shortlistings in Flash 500, a longlisting in Bath Flash Fiction Award and to also have my novella-in-flash longlisted for Bath Flash Fiction Award. I was busy much of May as a reader for the Bath Short Story Award and was pleased to have many of my suggestions picked for longlisting.
Being included in the National Flash Fiction Day anthology has been for quite a while, my main goal of the writing year. Having my story A Picnic in the Park included in this year’s anthology Ripening was just wonderful. This is my sixth year in the anthology and I was very pleased to have my name included in the list of authors on the back cover.
My story A Long Way Away was recently published by historical flash publisher FlashBack Fiction. You can listen to it or read it here.
On January 25 I attended the launch of the Bath Flash Fiction Anthology The Lobsters Run Free and the Flash Fiction Festival anthology Flash Fiction Festival One. It was a fun event from readings from writers both local and those who had travelled quite a way. I read my story Six Months Yesterday.
I was pleased to be longlisted in the Retreat West annual prize and My story Just Perfect was longlisted in February for the Bath Flash Fiction Award and will appear in their anthology later in the year.
In March, I was thrilled to sign a contract with Ad Hoc Fiction to write a full collection of flash fictions. The collection will be on the theme of grief and is provisionally called Finding a Way.
The year could perhaps best be described as a year of narrow misses. It started well with a longlisting in 2016 Tears in the Fence Flash Competition. The year carried on with numerous shortlistings in competitions such as Retreat West’s annual and themed competitions; Flash 500; TSS; Exeter Flash. I was also very excited to be shortlisted in the Bath Flash Fiction Award, getting down to the final six.The judge, David Swann, made a fab comment about my story: 'In turn, these decisions meant that I was forced, myself, to overlook a small treasure: Six Months Yesterday. I hated doing this – because it's a superb piece, written with true emotional intelligence'. It was lovely to receive such a wonderful comment. I was also pleased that a short story of mine was commended in The Mid-Somerset Festival. I also achieved a few longlistings in places such as Ink Tears and Reflex.
In 2017, I also had stories published in the following publications: The Write Path (NAWG); Flash, I love You (Paper swans); New Flash Fiction Review; DNA magazine; Wired (WorcsLitFest), Sleep is a Beautiful Colour (NFFD), To Carry Her Home (BFFA), What was Left (Retreat West)
2017, was the year of the first Flash Fiction Festival organised by Bath Flash Fiction and held in Bath. I was thrilled to be asked by Jude Higgins to join the team as Hospitality Organiser. The festival went well, with over 90 guests, some from as far away as the USA and quite a few attending from Europe. Jude Higgins was mostly responsible for the success of the weekend, but there was a hardworking team supporting her. I was extra thrilled that because I had a story accepted for this year's NFFD anthology, I was asked to read it at the launch of the anthology on the Saturday night of the festival. An exhausting weekend, but very good fun.
The year also seemed to include lots of fun things on the writing front. In September, as a shortlisted author, I was invited to the launch of the Retreat West anthology What was Left. It was held at Waterstone’s in Reading and it was fun meeting up with writing chums, Jude Higgins, Amanda Huggins, Joanna Campbell and Jo Derrick and I was pleased to at last meet Retreat West organiser, Amanda Saint.
Despite, once being terrified, I now very much enjoy reading my stories to audiences and always particularly enjoy the readings that Bath Flash organise. In March, I read at St James Wine Vaults along with Carrie Etter, Tino Prinzi, Kevlin Henney, Jeannette Sheppard and Michael Loveday. In the summer, I read my story Launch Pad at the Bath Fringe event More Banksy than Bonnets. The event was run by the cool Stokes Croft Writers. I was also honoured to read at the launch of Jude Higgin’s fab flash collection The Chemist’s House. It’s a stunning collection and it was lovely to read with Jude, Tino Prinzi, Conor Haughton, Meg Pokrass and Michael Loveday. I was thrilled to be asked to read my story A Collection at October’s Talking Tales in Bristol. This well attended event was part of the Bristol Festival of Literature. In November, I was off to Worcester as usual to read three stories at the launch of their anthology Wired.
For the second year running, I was a reader for the Bath Short Story Award. I really enjoyed helping to choose the long list and several of my suggestions made it, with two ending up getting prizes.