New publication, new venture

A 33,000 word novella entitled The Man who Let the Cat of Doom out of the Bag, and subtitled  A Surreal Apocalyptic Fantasy with Poetical and Musical Interludes, has now been released on to the unsuspecting public by Fantastic Books Publishing. When I submitted the manuscript to the publisher I was far from confident because this is fiction that comes out of left field. I deemed it likely to bewilder as many people as it amused, and also to upset the stomachs of many. Accordingly, I was gratified and a little surprised when it was accepted. It can now be obtained from Amazon as a paperback (the shortlink, set up by the publisher, is The e-book will not be released until 16th August, to coincide with this year’s (probably virtual) FantastiCom.

It makes a change from our own real-life quasi-Apocalypse, Covid-19!

Meanwhile, I now have a complete, very rough first draft of the historical novel about Glossopdale’s Elizabethan folk hero, Harry Botham. Needless to say, this is when the work starts, turning the rough draft into a smoother one, then revising it, then getting comments on it from people with no axe to grind (in other words, not relatives or close friends of the author!), then redrafting, then polishing and refining, then considering where to submit it for publication. Writing a novel is a marathon, especially one that involves so many months of research before one can even start the draft, and you go a long way before the finishing post is in sight.

Of more general interest is this year’s Buxton Festival Fringe, which like almost every other public activity (that hasn’t been cancelled or postponed) will be virtual. My lovely creative writing class in Chapel-en-le-Frith has put together a lot of material – lockdown poems, pseudo-folktales, lockdown plays, poems to go with the planned Refugee/Home exhibition at the Fringe – and it will be compiled into a pdf available for free download from the Chapel Arts website, along with several YouTube recordings of the poems, stories and plays. With any luck, all these items will be available from 1st July. Enjoy!


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