TagWritingCommunity

Alpha Dog

Construction Site

This was a fun challenge from Writing Magazine. It was a competition to write 1,500-1,700 words of dialogue with no attribution or tags. Literally pure dialogue which is supposed to make enough sense to be read without the need for any other clues. I didn’t actually submit the piece (time and the general dissatisfaction of the writer over their work) but I hope you like the dialogue and the...

A Coronavirus Conversation

Pirbright Laboratory

I wrote this scene as part of my NaNoWriMo project which I am still working on. The WIP is called “Vincent” (working title) who is the MC in the story. He’s a very bright, mid-20s virologist and the WIP is set in 2020 during the pandemic but is not about the pandemic. The conversation happens early in the book and it’s more about establishing Vincent’s character...

The Gift

Bleak, snow-covered mountain

This is one chapter in one of my WIPs which is a sci-fi piece set on a future Earth with mystical overtones. Cults? Hidden Agendas? Pawns in a Bigger Scheme? Of course ...

Pantser, Plantser, Plotter. Is there a right way to write?

Field Notes on a Story

Lets start with a couple of definitions about the three principle types of writer that exist. If you engage in any of the forums you will come across these regularly. Pantser: The least restricted of the three writers. A pantser flies by the seat of their pants (hence the term) and writes where the story takes them, with no preparation or planning and just an idea and the wind (and sometimes...

Succubus

Succubus

The sound of blood,It echoed deep,Stirring her soulAgain to reap. Chained to darkness(This pallid thief)Her silent heartNow succour seeks. In fractured dreams,She hunts the weak.Exploits desireTo find relief. Damned incubusWho stole her seedMade bastard childThis new half-breed. Her Cambion’s dreamsDid inward creepBeneath her psycheAnd arouse’d grief. A mother’s love,It runs so deep,To bridge the...

Dog’s Dinner

Johns Kitchen in Berlin

“Friedrichstrasse tomorrow, Rex. Hope there aren’t any complications. What do you think?” John slowly cut a strip from the steak he was preparing, sensing each sinew sever through his skilled fingers. He glanced at the u-bahn map on the wall. “Two stops.” He looked down at his faithful pit-bull, tongue lolling out of his salivating mouth, and sniffed. “You need a bath.” He flicked a cut of steak...

Defalcator

Silver Pineapple in the Sea

“Do you think they will ever come back?” Her voice trilled, resonating like dancing metal shards jangling in the breeze. “I think so.” The other’s cadence was more measured and cleaner, yet neither female nor male. “How long has it been now?” She asked. “For who?” It was almost a statement with barely an inflection. The water lapped quietly over the silver sand on the shore while the whiteness of...

Review: The Etymologicon: The Hidden Connections of the English Language

Dictionary atop map of England

The Etymologicon: A Circular Stroll through the Hidden Connections of the English LanguageMark ForsythEtymologyAudible Studios1 May 2012Audiobook6h 42mAudible A quirky, entertaining and thought-provoking tour of the unexpected connections between words, read by Simon Shepherd. What is the actual connection between disgruntled and gruntled? What links church organs to organised crime, California...

The Epics of Gilgamesh

Central to the origin stories was Gilgamesh, the shepherd king of Erech. He was as strong as the savage bull, the most splendid amongst heroes and the most glorious amongst men. His strength was unrivalled and he had the most extraordinary good looks ...

Gamesmanship

To define it simply, Gamesmanship is “The Art of Winning Games without actually cheating.” But shouldn’t winning naturally follow experience, practice and determination? Quite often, but the lesser player can still win if he employs a little tactical Gamesmanship throughout the match. So many books have been written on the subject of games and the tactics of play, but so few...

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    About me

    About 40 years ago, I discovered role-playing and Dungeons and Dragons in one of the after school clubs. It revealed a universe that allowed me to flex my storytelling muscles and enjoy a mixture of fantasy and sci-fi and feed the escapist dreamer inside.

    Over time, I played (and story-led - marked with *) many systems including Call of Cthulhu*, Shadowrun, Dungeons & Dragons*, Middle Earth, In Nomine*, Bushido, Chivalry & Sorcery, Chill, Warhammer, Warhammer 40k, Gammaworld, Hawkmoon, Stormbringer, Immortals*, Marvel Super Heroes, Paranoia, RuneQuest, Vampire: The Masquerade*, and a couple of systems my own devising (Medieval* and Parody*).

    I explored live-action role-playing – eventually running my own club and creating my own LARP systems (Fools Gold and Dream Conquest) – and usually found myself in script-writing or game-master duty, writing over 500 individual live adventures over the period (usually weekly), many linked into the world events of the fantasy land we created. I also volunteered for Curious Pastimes and Lorien Trust at their main LARP events (special effects at the Ritual Circle), and did a little script work, cameos and improv for Curious Pastimes. I was also the South East's Editor (UK) for the LARP magazine The Adventurer. The biggest event I ran was a 10-month modern-day "murder mystery" LARP set around parts of Kent where characters were "always-on" and could get updates and interactions at any time outside of scheduled events. That was in the 1990s.

    I was also the artistic director for English Heritage for their live Halloween Horrors events at Fort Amherst in Kent from 1998-1999.

    Now, I write as the mood takes me with occasional competitions and challenges, and this year (2020) I will be taking on #NaNoWriMo.

    Here's to the future!