Monday 22 July 2013


Spent a week in Crete, reading Horowitz's Holmes novel on the flight over. I went tanked up with writing ideas and wrote 6 little poems (which would normally have taken me 6 months to write). I didn't see Zeus's birthplace, but saw a recreation of Nikos Kazantzakis's room.

People talk about the guesswork at the Knossos site, but what struck me at the museums was the amount of extrapolation involved in many of the exhibits. The photo shows a picture that is mostly recreation. I wondered about trying that idea with words - terminals etc. Another theme was the amount of finds that aren't exhibited where they were dug up. Malia finds are often in Iraklion or even the British Museum

Tuesday 2 July 2013

The UK Short story situation in 2013

In 2002 "fewer than 25 books of short stories were produced by mainstream UK publishers. And two thirds were by writers from abroad" (Debbie Taylor, Mslexia, Spring 2003). The situation then wasn't as dire as it sounds because small presses were producing books. But things aren't so much better nowadays for authors wanting to publish stories. Here are some notes I wrote for a local group


To get the full Duotrope you nowadays have to pay. 3 useful lists are


New outlets

Magazines are closing down faster than they're starting up (even some e-mags have closed down recently). Newish UK paper magazines include

  • Structo (over 50 pages of prose in a typical issue)
  • Prole (over 90 pages of prose in a typical issue)
  • Lighthouse (part of the intention of the journal is to act as a pathway to the publisher, Gatehouse, who are looking to build a catalogue of chapbooks in the coming years)

Salt have recently relaunched the "Best British Short Stories" yearly anthology, which is quite popular. However, it only prints previously published stories.

July 2013's "Writing Magazine" has an article on getting Novellas published nowadays. The article's better on the history of the novella than its future, though it does mention Kindle Singles

There are places online where stories can be downloaded individually for 59p or more, but nothing's become established as far as I know. Of course, you can self-publish an e-collection of short stories.


Flash is an expanding sector. I keep a list of list of Flash outlets.