Short Stories

the dusk guard

The duskhaze.

That was what they called it. The fog that rolled in from the hills some nights and sent everyone to sleep. When the sun rose, so too did the citizens of Glothe. Under the shroud of retreating mists, they picked themselves up off the street or wherever they landed and carried on with life as though it had never been so rudely interrupted. But there were some who never woke.

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Short Stories

at the stroke of midnight

It smelt like every other library, though it was certainly different after dark. The perfume from the books was stronger at night, sweeter and more pungent, made all the more noticeable by the lingering whiff of coffee.

Mila stumbled behind the others, torch in hand. Andrik led their little group through the shelves, all the while whispering in Tao’s ear. Tao let out a muffled laugh and Mila scoffed; her brother wasn’t that funny.

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Gardens of War & Wasteland

the king & his shadow

The Crown Prince of Holania slipped through the gardens, an ashen figure in a sea of scarlet, azure and lilac. His surcoat, breeches and tunic were all mourning shades of grey, his cloak a wave of obsidian velvet. The sun bled warmth across the spread of his shoulders and a chill breeze kissed colour into his cheeks. It was a perfect spring day, and Kiokharen hated every minute of it.

Kio crossed the courtyard, swatting aside the bees and dragonflies that flapped about with the ubiquitous buzz of spring. For weeks the castle had been alive in preparation for the change of season, excitement pulsing in anticipation of new life. Now all the floral garlands and silken streamers had been leached of their colour, replaced with the monochrome veil of grief.

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Short Stories

the investigator

The smell of death surprised him every time—sweet and pungent in its foulness. Rence stood over the body of Lord Harrison, regarding the pattern of his splattered blood across the slate tiles of the monastery. Beside the body was a pistol—a relatively new model by the looks of it. Pinched between his gloved thumb and forefinger, Rence lifted it from the pooled blood, the barrel cold and greasy. It was a decorative thing: a three barrelled flintlock with brass mechanism and an ornately carved ivory grip. A curious smile crept across his lips.

This was a rich man’s weapon.         

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Blog, Gardens of War & Wasteland

what you need to know about gardens of war & wasteland: the ruptured sky

So I’ve finished my novel. Now what?

While I sit and wait for feedback from my beta readers, I’ve put together a comprehensive guide to the world of Whyt’hallen and everything you need to know about the upcoming Gardens of War & Wasteland Book I: The Ruptured Sky.

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Short Stories

the dreambound tree

Memories define our sense of place.  Friends and family do too.
And sometimes, perhaps, a bit of magic

.

By the time I was thirteen, I knew I was too old to be sleeping in Mum’s bed. But that didn’t stop me crawling in beside her on that two-inch thick fold-out mattress every second night when I woke slick with sweat from a nightmare.

‘Try to go back to sleep, Maddie,’ Mum’d coo and kiss my hair even though we both knew we’d lie there awake until the alarm chimed at three-thirty and it was time for her to get up for work.

 I never lived in a normal house. Well, I did—once. But I hadn’t since I was seven and we didn’t talk about it or actively remember anything of the life before we left. Since then it’s been caravans or share houses; granny flats in someone’s backyard; or a refurbished old shearer’s shed like the place where we lived now. Mum always told me to be grateful because it was the kindness of strangers and her hard work that kept me clothed and sheltered.

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Short Stories

the carpet cleaner

Robert liked his job. Well, most of the time. He didn’t like going to uni student share houses to leech booze and dried vomit off every plush surface the day before a rental inspection; and he didn’t like going to Ms McTavish’s place because she had ten cats and let them pee on the carpet until it was sodden and the house smelt like piss long after he’d shampooed and shampooed it again. He also didn’t like nursing homes, because it was too hard seeing people not that much older than he with defeated expressions on their sunken faces, confined to beds, stuck full of tubes and left to stare at the empty visitors’ chairs in their room all day. No, he didn’t like that at all. As with anything, there were good clients and bad, and the one client Robert loved, more than anything, was Mrs Lavingston. 

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Book Reviews

the raven cycle

Never had I been so invested in a group of teenagers until I met Blue and her Raven Boys.

Ah, Maggie Stiefvater and The Raven Cycle.

Where do I begin without obscenely gushing all over the place? This series has raised the bar for YA fiction and given me a love for the genre which was previously only an occasional interest. Having annihilated all four books in the space of a month—a truly astounding feat for turtle-reader me—it’s safe to say The Raven Cycle shot straight to the top of my favourites and Stiefvater has well asserted herself as one of the premier authors of YA fiction.

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Short Stories

aunty mim’s lost & found

Miriam Sykes had been called many things and not all of them were kind. A witch, a gypsy. Hermit. Lunatic. Satan. But Miriam Sykes was just a woman—a woman who was very good at finding things.

Miriam lived a good twenty minute walk from Sturtville station. Trains didn’t stop there anymore. Well, not trains for moving people anyhow. There weren’t many people left to move in bum-fuck nowhere South Australia. That’s what my brother called Sturtville: bum-fuck nowhere. He wasn’t exactly wrong. Sturtville consisted of opal miners, a high school of about fifty kids, a Woolies, and one sad little servo that sold over-priced fuel. That was our town. Village. Hole-in-the-ground. We didn’t have a lot in Sturtville (more than one doctor, for example) but there was one thing we had that no other place in Australia did. And that was Miriam Sykes.

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Blog

the year that was & the year that will be

And so 2017 draws to a close. I for one can not be more relieved.

This year has been a tumultuous one indeed: I moved countries, got married, began a new day-job, bought my first car, and moved again (domestically this time); I said goodbye to my Grandmother, a second mother who raised me alongside my own; and lost two public figures (Chester Bennington and Kim Jonghyun), who have been a source of love, comfort and inspiration, to this terrible illness called depression, of which I also chronically suffer. It really has been all over the place—I have been all over the place. Personal rollercoaster aside, though, and my writing career(?) has been a pleasantly stable fixture. Let’s take a look.

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