Wednesday 26 January 2022

Angry Robot Open Submissions Period for Novels coming in February

I got an email with the following information regarding the Angry Robot Open Submissions period that's coming up in February. If you've got an SF/F/H manuscript ready to go and no agent, this might be an excellent opportunity for you.

The Angry Robot Open Submissions Period is Coming Back!

We are delighted to announce the Angry Robot Open Submissions Period is happening once again! Our submissions are open from the 21st to the 28th of February to SFF/Horror writers without agent representation.

The AR team are very excited to see what fantastically weird and spellbinding SFF novels you submit. In the past, our Open Submissions have led to the publication of many of our well-loved books, including both our January publications, ‘Deep Dive’ by Ron Walters and ‘Obsidian’ by Sarah J. Daley! This is your chance to wow us with your manuscripts. We’re looking for new and exciting stories, and particularly encourage writers of colour and LGBTQ+ authors to submit. Send in your stories – we promise to take care of them.

The Submission period will run for one week, from Monday the 21st of February to Monday 28th February. We don’t prioritise early submissions, so take the time you need to polish your documents before you send them in!

To apply, please send us:
– A sample that consists of the first three chapters of your work (or first fifteen pages if the chapters are short).
– A synopsis of the full work in a separate Word document.
– An elevator pitch and author bio in your email.

We are looking for:
– Novel length works.
– Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror.
– Adult fiction.
– Finished manuscripts.

We are NOT looking for:
– Short story collections or novellas.
– Young Adult Fiction.
– Works in Progress.
– Works that have been submitted to our Open Submissions before – unless they have had a significant rework (rewritten or structurally edited completely).
– Previously published works.

More details on where to send your submissions will be released soon.

If we like your submission, we will get in touch to request the full manuscript and go from there! Only one submission per author, and remember that the Open Submissions period is exclusively for authors who do not have an agent.

We can’t wait to read your amazing stories!

Friday 21 January 2022

Witches Frolic Kickstarter

I was contacted by Inkdrop Studio regarding their kickstarter project to bring back into print the story "Witches Frolic" from Ingoldsby Legends, by Thomas Ingoldsby (the pen name of Richard Harris Barham). The edition they want to reprint is from 1888 with illustrations by Ernest M. Jessop.

The rewards start at 5 Euro, for a digital edition. Check out their kickstarter page if you're interested in learning more. 

Tuesday 18 January 2022

Book Review: Servant Mage by Kate Elliott

Pros: interesting politics, fascinating magic system, fun characters

Cons: too short

Fellian is rescued from her indentured servitude by a group of Monarchists who need her help as a Lamp - a fire mage. But are the Monarchists really any better than the liberationists that overthrew them years ago?

This is a novella so you’re not getting the in dept world-building you might be hoping for. It’s a bit of a shame as the world is interesting and I’d have loved to learn more about the politics and magic. I loved the idea that human magic is caused by demon-wraiths nesting in their bones. The politics were complicated and messy as expected when a revolution has recently occurred.

Fellian asks a lot of questions, annoying her companions but giving the reader vital information. She’s clever and resourceful. Her team is an interesting mix and I enjoyed their dynamic.

The book is fast paced and compelling.

This is a quick, enjoyable read.

Tuesday 11 January 2022

Music box wooden model

I got this model for Christmas and spent several hours over two days putting it together. It plays a song from the Ghibli film Castle in the Sky when you wind it up. Though the online listing proclaims 'no glue required', it not only came with glue, but most steps required gluing pieces together, which I thought was hilarious. It's a nice looking piece, but a bit finicky and not the most stable. You have to carefully cup the upper part of the bottom to turn it, because the dowels used for the stand are quite thin and won't survive long if you twist it holding the base.

Tuesday 4 January 2022

Book Review: Where the Drowned Girls Go by Seanan McGuire

Pros: thought provoking, plus sized protagonist, interesting story


Cora Miller is still having nightmares months after returning from the Moors and no longer believes Eleanor West’s Home for Wayward Children can help her. So she transfers to the other school for children who have found doors to other worlds, Whitethorn. Upon arrival she realizes she’s made a terrible mistake. But while it’s easy to enter Whitethorn, it’s very hard to leave.

This is the 7th novella in the Wayward Children series and relies on knowledge of the prior books to really work. You find out what happened to Regan after the events of Across the Green Grass Fields as Cora deals with the trauma of visiting the Moors in Come Tumbling Down.

Cora is a fantastic character and though it’s not her origin story (so no mermaid adventures in the Trenches) it was wonderful watching her grow and realize that she doesn’t need to be in a portal world to be a hero. And that sometimes you just have to deal with your problems head on.

I found the book thought provoking as it pointed out some of the daily horrors humans inflict on each other, especially towards those with larger bodies.

The story is engaging and the perfect length.