Genre Fiction


Severed Press

Bring on the Monsters

My writing is a mixture of the nearly subtle, and the not at all subtle. At least I think so.

I’ve approached subtlety in my short stories, and my reading passions veer toward the more subtle end of the scale.

But when it comes to actually making money from my writing, the bucks come in fastest from the most unsubtle of my work. THE INVASION is not in the least bit subtle — an apocalyptic alien invasion thing with flesh-eating goop, plucky survivors and nasty, no redeeming qualities aliens. People over the last nine years have lapped it up in their tens of thousands. It’s much the same with other of my more pulpy works, with thousands tuning in for THE VALLEY, ISLAND LIFE and THE HOLE, to name the most popular. And good old Derek Adams still sells regularly.

My recent CARNACKI and GHOST CLUB books, while getting critical praise and good reviews, do sell, but only in the hundreds compared to the thousands of the pulpier books.

I’ve spent quite a bit of time over the last 26 years trying to turn away towards the more subtle, in the hope of making an impression among the weird fiction group, as that’s my own reading passion. But now, the Sigils and Totems stuff, (i.e. the more subtle of my recent work) has fallen off the radar completely, and meanwhile the S-Squad series creature features are taking off, and proving to me, all over again, that the direct, no-nonsense, big beasties and big bangs stuff is what my core readership is after.

So I’m going to chase them for a wee while.

Subtlety be damned.

Bring on the monsters.




The way ahead for a pulpy pensioner

My pulp fiction sells better than my attempts at weird, more literary short fiction.

There’s no beating about the bush about that, it just does. Over the years my heart has been in trying to make a break through in the weird short story field, and I’ve pushed myself hard in attempts to leave a mark in that area.

But after nearly thirty years at it, it’s not got me where I want to be, and to some in the weird fiction arena I’m still–I’ll always be–‘That hack. That pulp guy’.

They see it as an insult. I wear it with pride.

My pulp fiction sells much better than my weird short fiction.

So, now that I’m in my Sixties, and a pensioner to boot, I’ve been thinking about the way ahead again. I had been planning to write another collection of Victorian supernatural stories this year, and even had an editor interested, but on consideration, my heart is no longer in it. I think I’ve said all I have to say in that area in THE GHOST CLUB, which is what I’ll point to if anybody asks why I’m not doing any more. That collection has picked up great reviews, and is selling relatively well. But INFESTATION, my recent pulpy, big-bug short novel is outselling it, and all my other books, by a long way.

So what with that, and my attempts to sell recent short stories to new weird markets not getting me any joy, this year I’m sticking to what works for me. I’ve got a contract to write another pulpy thriller for SEVERED PRESS, my third with these characters, and I’m having a lot of fun with them.

So there’s that, and the fact I want to write another Derek Adams book sometime this year. I’ll be back in the ghost story arena with CARNACKI at some point too, as that’s a love I can’t shun, and I’d like to get a fourth collection done that has some new stories and also collects some published stories that haven’t yet been collected together.

So I choose fun.

Fun is good. It’s better than angst, especially when you’re a pensioner.

Besides, my pulp fiction sells better than my weird short fiction.




Sign up to my newsletter





A creature feature novel from Severed Press.

OPERATION: ANTARCTICA follows the survivors of the Scottish Special Forces squad from INFESTATION, to the opposite pole this time, and an investigation of a derelict NAZI base.

In this one you’ll find more sweary Scotsman, lots of bullets, Nazis, occult rituals, an electric pentacle, Winston Churchill, lots of ice, more bullets, and more swearing.

I’m having great fun with this group of my countrymen.

They’ll be back.

What’s left of them.


Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: