New fiction posted on Simily

I’ve recently been doing a bit of investigation around the different platforms that are popping up for sharing written work. The reason for this is that I’ve had a short story sitting around on my computer that I’m pretty happy with, but I couldn’t find a place to put it. It’s been bounced from a couple of magazines with people saying it’s not there thing, and I feel pretty fine about that. Some of the other magazines that I was interesting in sending it too are still closed to submissions for now following the pandemic, and I’m I feel like I want to get it out there and move on to the next thing. It’s also bit long to post as a blog post, and I feel like my website may not be the best place to get it seen.

So, I’m trying out the new fiction sharing platform Simily, where I have posted my short story ‘Old Grey Beard’. The platform is currently trying to build up a membership and readershi base, and aim to connect readers with good stories and writers with a paying audience. At the moment if you read my story there, whether you decide to sign up to the platform or not, I’ll get paid $0.02 per view (reading for more than 5 second), so if you are interested in reading some of my work I’d appreciate it if you would head on over there and have a read.

I think I’m going to try it out for the next year or so and see how I get on. I don’t write that many shorts and I kind of struggle with them a bit so it may be a good way of getting a bit of feedback from people who don’t know and like me, which would be a great help too. So, I hope to see you over there, any and all comments greatly recieved!

Thank you for reading. I also write, make art and films. If you are interested in the process of creativity and want to get a copy of my free short book of creative prompts, and to hear more about my writing projects please join my mailing list here. You can see my films at my YouTube channel here. You can see things with my designs on at my shop here. Could even treat yourself if you wanted to. Just saying. If buying art is not your thing, but you would like to support what you see I also have a Patreon page here

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Late night research and the Hidden Life of Trees

Followers of this blog may know that I’ve been working on a novel for some time (like ten years worth of time). I think it’s taken so long because it took me a while to work out what kind of book I was writing. When I started I had pretentions towards a kind of literary book, maybe magical realism, but wouldn’t have placed it in any kind of genre. Over time my ideas have evolved and I have ended up writing something that fits more squarely with the science fiction/ urban fantasy genres, with a strong environmental and mental health theme. I hesitate to call it feminist, but it has two female protagonists who are complicated, and as ‘whole’ as I can make them so far.

One of the things I’ve been doing while up in the middle of the night expressing milk for the baby is to read non fiction books that could be called ‘research’ for this. I think this may be where the famous ‘multi tasking’ that women are often claimed to have begins, because I certainly wouldn’t claim to be a multi-tasker, but I’ve found that I can just about manage to hold a breast pump and balance my chrome book on my knees at the same time.

My list so far has been slightly eclectic, and tending towards environmental themes. I’ve read This Changes Everything, by Naomi Klein, which I really liked/ was deeply frightened by, and also Into the Woods, by John Yorke, which is a really nice book about the mechanics of storytelling.

I’ve just begun reading the Hidden Life of Trees by Peter Wohlleben, which is a really interesting insight into the biology of forests. It explains how trees in forests communicate through a ‘wood wide web’ and form a social network through which they can support each other and warn each other of threats. I really like these ideas for my novel. I was finding the idea of writing science fiction because there was no place for things like robots or computer science (yet) in my book. Equally I was having difficulty with the idea of writing fantasy as so far there are no elves or swords in my story (although with time who knows – these things evolve). But I feel like I am on good ground with biological sciences, which I always found a had most affinty with.

For anyone interestes in reading about the social life of trees I would suggest this book as a nice tour. The writing in the early chapters reads a bit like an essay someone has written for GCSE biology, with a series of chapters that read a bit like lists of interesting things, rather than a coherent story, but this evens out later in the book.

Happy reading.

This article contains affliate links. Should you choose to buy one of the books cited with the links here amazon will throw few pennies my way. I also make art. You can see things with my designs on at my shop here. Could even treat yourself if you wanted to. Just saying. If buying art is not your thing, but you would like to support what you see I also have a Patreon Page here.