We all need a bit of hygge in the grey winter months so Story Fridays‘ next theme is ‘HOME’. We’re going all cuppas with a nip of whisky and slippers by the fire. But not all our stories will be that cosy, we can guarantee it. If you’ve got a Home story we’d love to read it. Stories should be 2,000 words or fewer, deadline for submissions is 26th February for Story Fridays event on 9th March in Bath. Please ensure you are available to come along before you submit. If you don’t want to read your story, and would like one of our wonderful actors to read it for you, please let us know when you send in your story. We can’t wait to read them! For more information, to listen to the kind of stories we like, and to submit your story, click here.
This coming Tuesday, 16th January 2018, we’re holding the London launch event for The Shadow Booth: Vol. 1, in partnership with Unsung Live! The event is FREE, but please RSVP using the link at the bottom of this post if you’d like to come along.
The evening will feature readings by RICHARD V. HIRST and GARY BUDDEN, both featured in Volume 1. There will also be readings by Unsung guests JAMES MILLER and STEPHEN ORAM – so prepare yourself for an evening of speculative readings, heated discussion, and the weird and wonderful. The event starts at 7pm on Tuesday 16th, and runs until about 9.30pm. It takes place at The Star of Kings, 126 York Way, London (near King’s Cross).
Reading this evening, we have:
JAMES MILLER: James Miller is the author of the novels LOST BOYS (Little, Brown 2008) SUNSHINE STATE (Little, Brown 2010) and most recently UNAMERICAN ACTIVITIES (Dodo Ink 2017) as well as numerous short stories and articles. He is senior lecturer in Creative Writing at Kingston University where he runs the MA in creative writing.
GARY BUDDEN: Gary Budden writes fiction and creative non-fiction about the intersections of British sub-culture, landscape, psychogeography, hidden history, nature, horror, weird fiction and more. A lot of it falls under the banner ‘landscape punk’. His work has appeared in The Shadow Booth: Vol. 1, Black Static, Unthology, Year’s Best Weird Fiction, The Lonely Crowd, Litro, Structo, The Quietus and many more. He was shortlisted for the 2015 London Short Story Award, and his story ‘Greenteeth’ was nominated for a 2017 British Fantasy Award and adapted into a short film by the filmmaker Adam Scovell. He also co-runs the indie publisher Influx Press. His debut fiction collection, HOLLOW SHORES, was published by Dead Ink Books in October 2017. He might also be part of the Eden Book Society.
RICHARD V. HIRST: Richard V. Hirst is from Manchester. His writing has appeared in The Shadow Booth: Vol. 1, The Guardian, The Big Issue and Time Out. His latest book is THE NIGHT VISITORS, an award-winning ghost story co-written with Jenn Ashworth and told entirely via emails.
STEPHEN ORAM: Stephen Oram writes science fiction and is lead curator for near-future fiction at Virtual Futures. Currently, he’s the cultural partner in a collaborative project with scientists at King’s College, London – they do the science he does the fiction. He’s been a hippie-punk, religious-squatter and an anarchist-bureaucrat; he thrives on contradictions. He is published in several anthologies, has two published novels, QUANTUM CONFESSIONS and FLUENCE. His recent collection of sci-fi shorts, EATING ROBOTS and Other Stories, was described by the Morning Star as one of the top radical works of fiction in 2017.
All are welcome, so please come along for an evening of free speculative fiction and good company!
If you’re interested in coming, please RSVP via the Meetup link here. See you at the Star!
(Note: If you can’t make it along, but would like to read The Shadow Booth, we now have paperbacks and ebooks available via our online store. Volume 1 includes stories by Alison Moore, Paul Tremblay, Gary Budden, Malcolm Devlin, Annie Neugebauer, Richard V. Hirst and many more.)
Grab your hats, coats, shoes and socks and be sure to wipe your calendars clean for the evening of Friday 26th January 2018.
Because on that night ‘The Squat Pen Rests’ Short Story Spoken Word Event will be barrelling into the Wyvern Theatre, Swindon, with a freshly sharpened pencil clamped between its teeth, and brandishing a proper-fancy gaggle of fabulous stories for anyone brave enough to pitch up and listen.
Six super-fine short story writers will duke it out in front of a live audience to find out who will be crowned the very first ever ‘The Squat Pen Rests’ Writing Competition Champion of the World!
There will be prizes, live music, a bar, some occasional bawdiness and, of course, those six spoken word performers who will have travelled from far and wide (maybe even further) in pursuit of the Holy Grail that is ‘The Squat Pen Rests’ Writing Competition Champion of the World title.
The game’s afoot: and upon this charge (just £5.50 per ticket), cry ‘gimme one!’ (or maybe two) to secure your seats.
‘The Squat Pen Rests’ is actively seeking writer-performers. So, if you’d like to be in with a chance of performing your story on the night (and winning fifty smackers, to boot) then we’d love to hear from you. All you have to do is follow the link for further details. The Squat Pen Rests Writing Competition
And when does this glorious event take place, I hear you roar. Well, because you’ve roared so nicely, I’ll tell you.
The date is Friday 28th January 2018. Doors will open at 7.30pm and the readings will commence around 8pm. Closing time is ‘late’.
And Where, pray tell, doth this event take place?
All right Shakespeare, keep your hair on. I’ll tell you where:
The Place – Wyvern Theatre,
Swindon SN1 1QN
For all other enquiries please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Missing Halloween already? Been inspired by ghosts and ghouls and things that go bump in the night? Story Fridays wants your stories on the theme of HAUNTING. This is our firstly ghostly themed Story Fridays in five years, so we’re really excited and just a little bit scared already! Stories should be 2,000 words or fewer, deadline for submissions is coming up fast on 13th November, and the date of Story Friday Haunting is 24th November in Bath. Please ensure you are available to come along before you submit. If you don’t want to read your story, and would like one of our wonderful actors to read it for you, please let us know when you send in your story. We can’t wait to read them! For more information, to listen to the kind of stories we like, and to submit your story, click here.
We’re looking for your stories! The next Story Fridays in September has the theme the Speed of Light. Take it literally or metaphorically… Perhaps we’ll go to the dark side of the moon, or the furtherest far away star, or perhaps we’ll get caught up in the state of the nation, and enjoy how political fortunes can change at the speed of..well. You get the idea. Story Friday – The Speed of Light will be on Friday 22nd September at Burdall’s Yard in Bath, deadline for submissions is the 11th September.
We are looking for short stories or monologues, fact or fiction (but mainly fiction), maximum 2,000 words. If you want to enter a flash piece that can work too. No poetry, thank you. Please check that you are available to come along to Bath on the 22nd September before you submit. We like the writers to be in the audience for these events.
We have some wonderful professional actors who are very happy to read your story if performance gives you the jitters. Let us know when you submit if you’d like someone else to read your piece.
For more information, or to listen to the kind of stories we like, click here.
Flash fans, get your glow-sticks out and you furry boots on – it’s time for Flashers’ Club 4! We’ve got the usual open mic session, no need to submit in advance. Flashers don’t book. Sign up on the night and we’ll pull names out of a hat if there are too many people. Fiction 100-1000 words welcome, anything goes*.
Our special guest will be local novelist Jane Bailey, historical and young adult fiction writer. Jane will be sharing some of her writing. She’s also launching her new book ‘What Was Rescued’ just the day before, so you’ll be able to snag a copy fresh off the press.
There’ll be free litmags for all who brave the mic – we’re not mentioning title yet, it’s secret. It’s not that we haven’t got a mag confirmed yet. Don’t go thinking that.
We’re at Smokey Joe’s Coffee Bar, Cheltenham, on Aug 3rd, 7:30pm onwards. £3 in on the door, all profits to the very worthy charity First Story. Full details, disabled access info, FAQs etc on the website: www.flashersclub.wordpress.com. Follow us on Twitter @flashers_club or find us on Facebook /flashersclubcheltenham.
*except porn, polemics and Quentin Tarantino rip-offs
Story Friday South is at the end of June, in the long hot days of summertime, and we’ve chosen the theme ‘South’ to set us all up for the summer hols. Whether you go for the blues and sleepytime down south, the breezes and tunes of South Pacific, the waves of southern oceans or the platforms of Southern Trains – or whether you take a different tack altogether – we hope ‘South’ gets your creative juices flowing. Story Friday South will be on Friday 30th June, deadline for submissions is the 19th June. Stories should be a maximum of 2,000 words. Please make sure you can come to Bath for Story Fridays on the 30th June before you submit. We look forward to reading your stories!
“Probably the best short story event in the South West” (Cheltenham LitFest programme), Stroud Short Stories is open again for your story submissions. And will be until 22 April 2017.
Ten stories will be selected to be read by their authors at our event on Sunday 21 May 2017 at the SVA (Stroud Valleys Artspace) in John Street, Stroud, GL5 2HA. Doors 7.30 for an 8.00 start. Tickets only in advance as we sell out each time. Ticket info will appear here when available.
The Rules and How to Submit are here. It’s free to submit, and the stories can be unpublished or previously published. These stories will be in our next anthology – due 2018.
The judges this time are brilliant short story writer Ali Bacon and SSS organiser John Holland. More info on them here.
Check out our website.
Launched at the Solstice Shorts Festival, and now on tour, thanks to an Arts Council grant.
Friday 7.30 06/01/2017 Oxford Albion Beatnik
Poem (and story): Sarah James. Story: Wendy Gill, Pauline Walker, David Mathews, David Steward.
Midnight in an hotel, a strained Sunday lunch, A promise kept, a mother searching space for her daughter, refugees and mice, and a day in the trenches.
Wednesday 7pm 11/01/2017 Lewisham Library
Poems: Lisa Kelly, A J Akoto. Stories: David Steward, Cherry Potts, Liam Hogan
A divided family, midwinter, a day in the trenches, An unwelcome visitor and bringing the sun home.
Sat 3pm 14/01/2017 Essex Wivenhoe Library
Stories: Rosalind Stopps, Cherry Potts, David Steward, Katy Darby, Poem: Lisa Kelly
A bleak time on a station. an unwelcome visitor, a post apocalyptic broadcast , and a divided family.
Tuesday 10/1/2017 St James Wine Vaults 10 St James Street, Bath, BA1 2TW
Combined reading with Liberty Tales. poem: Bernie Howley, Elinor Brooks, Jeremy Dixon, Jill Sharp; story: Nick Rawlinson, Pippa Gladhill, Katy Darby, Cherry Potts
Saturday 04/02/2017 2pm North Kensington Library
Poems: Bob Beagrie, Lisa Kelly, A J Akoto. Story: Katy Darby, Liam Hogan, Pauline Walker, Cherry Potts
Several takes on midwinter, a divided family, bringing the sun home, an unwelcome visitor, a search across space, an old gods.
Arachne Press are half way through an Arts Council funded tour, taking Liberty Tales, our Magna Carta inspired anthology of Short Stories and Poems round and about with several London dates, and Oxford and Newcastle already achieved. here’s a sample from the Oxford gig, at Albion Beatnik.
Next up is (appropriately) on Human Rights Day – Saturday 10/12/2016 2pm North Kensington Library West London
Stories from Carolyn Eden, Jim Cogan, Cassandra Passarelli, Cherry Potts. Poems from Jeremy Dixon. Walking out, being let out, finding a way out, breaking out, coming out.
Tuesday 10/01/2017 7pm Bath The Gallery, St James Wine Vaults (Combined reading with Shortest Day Longest Night)
Poems from Bernie Howley, Elinor Brooks, Jeremy Dixon, Jill Sharp: passports, religious freedom, coming out, reading in the dark,
stories from Nick Rawlinson, Pippa Gladhill, Katy Darby, Cherry Potts, David Mathews: Fish weirs, old gods, and… we’ll see which stories everyone else decides to read…
Wednesday 25/01/2017 Essex Greenstead Library Colchester time to be confirmed
Carolyn Eden, Helen Morris, Jim Cogan, and Sarah Evans read by Carrie Cohen, and David Guy and Jeremy Dixon read by Cliff Chapman.
All events are FREE (of course).
Hi everyone. Any plans for the New Year? You have now! Submit a story to Story Friday Ice and you could have the chance to come along to Bath and read it to a lovely warm and friendly audience! We are teaming up with B&NES Library Service again and part of this Story Friday is a B&NES-wide competition. So if you live in B&NES and haven’t had a story at Story Fridays before, you might win a thrilling prize as well as the chance to shine on stage!
We’re looking for submissions on the theme of ICE – short stories up to 2,000 words. Deadline for submissions is 2nd January (plenty of time to get over that New Year’s Eve hangover!), and Story Friday Ice is at Burdall’s Yard in Bath on Friday 13th January. Please make sure that you can come to the event before you submit. Submit stories via the website www.awordinyourear.org.uk.
Thank you and we look forward to reading your icy tales!
The inaugural meeting of Flashers’ Club was on Thursday 10th November, and we’re happy to say it was a great success. Thirteen writers read fifteen stories, taking us from the Old West to Afghanistan, from married bliss to the trials of being a modern Nosferatu. Head over to our blog to see lots more details and pictures.
With over thirty tickets sold, we raised nearly £80 for the charity First Story. As part of their thanks they’ve sent us a very special poem composed by one of their students, which you can also find on our blog.
Flashers’ Club will now be a quarterly event. Our next meet will be on Thursday 9th February 2017, 7:30pm onwards, Smokey Joe’s Coffee Bar, Cheltenham. There’ll be advance booking available online nearer to the date, and door tickets available on the night. We’ve already got our next lot of free literature sorted (we like to bribe our readers with free books and litmags), and we’re working on a rather exciting guest writer slot. Watch this space.
Flashers Club will be holding its inaugural open mic night on Thursday 10th November, 7:30-11:00pm, at Smokey Joe’s Coffee Bar, Cheltenham. The mic is open to all writers of short fiction between 300 and 1,000 words. It’s open genre. Published or unpublished, old hand or debut, everyone’s welcome. We aim to be friendly and inclusive, and have a good time! Come along to read, or to hear exciting original writing.
There’ll be around 8 slots for readers, maybe more if time and story length allow. Names will be drawn from a hat if there are more readers than time. After each story we’ll have a short time for Q and A – not a critique, just a chat.
You can book tickets in advance or come along on the night. There’s a small entry fee (£2 + booking fee online, £3 on the door), all of which goes to the charity First Story. First Story places professional writers into schools in deprived areas to encourage children to write.
For lots more details, booking link and FAQs, see our website: www.flashersclub.wordpress.com. You can also find us on Twitter @flashers_club, or on Facebook /flashersclubcheltenham . We’d love to hear from you!
Well, this is exciting… After what seems like an age we are returning to The Harrison for Elbow Room Live THIS coming Friday. Our line up celebrates both Volumes 13 and 14, with readings from Richard Skinner, Gram Joel Davis, Owen Vince and Harry Denniston.
We are also thrilled to have the chance to invite Jeremy Tuplin to the Elbow Room stage with his soulful music and intriguing lyrics.
We cannot wait for a night of incredible poetry, prose and live music and truly hope to see you all there. If you can’t make it (and even if you can) we are also having our first ever sale, with everything currently half price. Take a look around our website shop (http://www.elbow-room.org/shop/) and hopefully see you Friday!
The next Stroud Short Stories event will celebrate our fifth birthday – and will be held at the 2016 Cheltenham Literature Festival. It’s on Monday 10 October at 9pm. I have chosen my favourite seven stories from the 100+ read at SSS events from 2011-16. The authors will read them at the LitFest. Absolutely unmissable.
Tickets are £8 and are available from the Cheltenham LitFest website www.cheltenhamfestivals.com/literature/
John Holland (Organiser, Stroud Short Stories)
SSS Website http://stroudshortstories.blogspot.co.uk/
Bring along a story to read at this brand new spoken word event or simply come along to enjoy some fantastic short fiction and meet local authors!
Moments of Being is a brand new spoken word event hosted by Monk’s House, the home of Virginia Woolf in Rodmell – a literary evening full of bite-sized ‘moments‘ of fiction read aloud by the authors themselves.
Come, fine writers, pull your brave pants right up to your chin and read your words aloud to a room full of expectant ears. We want to hear your story…
Here’s how it works:
- Bring along a story (no more than 1000 words please).
- Put your name in the fiction hat and cross your fingers tightly.
- If you’re picked, leap on stage with verve and pizazz, fill the brains of the audience with the sound of your story and then field their questions and feedback like a true pro. Be rewarded for your efforts with a free beverage.
- If you’re not picked, then simply enjoy a relaxing evening of original literature, applaud wildly, and put your questions to the chosen authors.
And if you don’t fancy reading, then simply come along to listen to eight stories by eight fabulous writers, quiz them on their methods, techniques and inspiration, and enjoy an intimate evening of literary brilliance at the home of Virginia Woolf.
Booking essential. Visit Writers’ HQ for more details.
Don’t miss out on Small Wonder – the jewel in the crown of short fiction calendar!
Running from 28 September to 2 October at Charleston, the Bloomsbury home of art and ideas, nestled in the South Downs in East Sussex (shuttle buses to and from Lewes Station for every event).
Catch Ali Smith receiving the Lifetime’s Excellence in Short Fiction Award and a new generation of prize-winning writers including Kevin Barry, Eimear McBride, Lisa McInerney, Kei Miller and Petina Gappah. Lionel Shriver, Elif Shafek and Salley Vickers pay tribute to Charlotte Brontë, and actress Juliet Stevenson reads Poems the Make Grown Women Cry. Join in The Literary Death Match and the Short Story Slam and hone your own writing skills in creative writing workshops.
If you’re in or near Bath on Friday evening, 29th July, do come to hear fabulous flash fiction writers at our Evening of Readings organised by Jude Higgins at Bath Flash Fiction Award. Readings from acclaimed US flash-fiction writer, poet, writing teacher and editor, Meg Pokrass, who will be reading from her new collection The Dog Looks Happy Upside Down
together with award winning local flash-fiction writers
Venue: St James Wine Vaults, Bath.
Time: 7.30 pm – 10.00 pm.
Cost £5. Places limited. Book now at bathflashfictionaward.com via paypal or any card
Hello to you all from Bunbury Magazine! We hope you’re doing well. We’ve just swing by quickly to give you some absolutely terrific news and give you some updates.
First off, there is this:
You may remember last time we came by we were asking for your votes to get shortlisted for the Saboteur Awards 2016. Well, we only flippin’ went and did it, didn’t we? We want to thank you all for helping us make the shortlist. The groundswell of support has really blown us away. Keri and I are going to be true to our word and get the tattoos. Christopher is going for the words ‘DON’T PANIC’ and Keri will be getting an ampersand.
Now, we feel like the support we have got from you all has been showered over us but let’s turn this into flowers for May! We’re on the shortlist. We’re in it so we would like to try and win it. There is another round of voting to decide the winner open now. We would be absolutely made up to be able to come home with the big prize. If you need a little convincing, here are some reason that Bunbury Magazine is worthy of Best Magazine:
- Our commitment to supporting grassroots creativity, giving a platform to those who may not find it through traditional media.
- Our commitment to bringing you the best interviews we possibly can. In the past, we have had the honour to talk to Jasika Nicole, Michael R Perry, Phil Jupitus, Christian Reilly, Wil Hodgson to name but a few.
- The Edinburgh Fringe feature we do every year, giving coverage to the stars of the Free Fringe, those who make it a phenomenal place to be for a whole month!
- The focus we are now bringing to writing in our local area, giving space and a platform to the wonderful talent in the North West area.
- Check out some of the front covers. They’re so damn pretty!
And finally, if we win, not only will we get the tattoos, but we’ll go live on Periscope so you can witness them being done first hand. It’s going to be worth checking that out as Christopher is a complete wimp and will probably have a breakdown! You know you all want to see that. So get voting now folks. The link is below for you. There are lots of categories to get involved in too!
In other news, work is underway editing issue 13 for all you folks. If you sent a piece in to us, we will be in touch with you very soon. In the meantime, here is the theme for issue 14! The inbox is open now so let us see what you got, good folks! Click to the picture below for our submissions guidelines and details.
Other than that, we’re just keeping up the good work for you good folk. We have our trip to Edinburgh Fringe 2016 coming up so if you are up there performing do let us know and we will get an interview for our feature to you.
Thank you all so much once again for all your help and support. It really does mean the world to us.
Much love and keep scribbling,
Christopher and Keri xxx
Story Friday in June is very near to midsummer so we’ve chosen the theme SOLSTICE. We’re looking for stories about summer and sun, whether ice-cream or Icarus, and yes, the occasional pagan ritual might go down well… Maximum word count 2,000, and do make sure your story reads well out loud. The event is on 17th June at Burdall’s Yard in Bath. Please make sure you can come along before you submit – but you don’t have to read if you’d rather not, we have some wonderful professional actors who will read your story for you if you prefer. Deadline is 6th June. To submit, go to the A Word In Your Ear website here.