Monday, 30 April 2012

Moving house....

Virtually, that is.

I've migrated my blogging world over to a different home, so this place won't be kept up-to-date any more.

You can find all the latest news at

See you soon!

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Made it to the final 8!!

But fell at the final hurdle.... So here, for your delectation, is a little vignette called Chalk....

It was one of those summers that kept its heat, built on it every day, added another brick then another till it felt like we were walking round in a kiln. It was the summer that saw the end of Old Lilian and Don Grayson and that poor little dog that Troy Welkman left locked in his truck. Most of all though, it was the summer that killed Tony Moretti. 

Everyone knew Tony and Tony knew everyone. Knowing everyone was Tony’s business. He knew when it was your birthday, always came with a gift and a song. He knew when you were sick, sent one of his sisters round with soup. He knew when you were behind on your TV payments or struggling to make rent, and there he was again, this time a clutch of dollars in his hand.
Tony was a saint half his life, Father Thomas said at his sending-off. 

It was the other half that worried us, we replied in amen.
 Tony knew everybody and Tony knew everything. If you got a new job or a bonus for Christmas, there was Tony for his share. If your cousins came into town with some fish or some beef - no labels, no questions - there was Tony, making a claim. If your sister got married and the Italian side of the family came with brown envelopes bursting green notes, there was Tony, dancing with the wives at the wedding as he put his hand among the cash and took his fill. Every shopkeeper in town dreaded the rattle of the door, the clatter of the bell that meant Tony was coming in to check the register. 

It was the summer that killed Tony. The heat that kept on building like a string that kept on stretching. Stretch it so far and - snap. 

Someone shot Tony, twice, in the back, as he walked up the church steps late one night. Could’ve been anyone, the town said, and the Sheriff could only agree.
They drew a chalk line round where he fell, took his body away. His sisters came that night and washed away the blood from the steps, careful though to keep the chalk line neat and clean. And the summer kept its heat and the sidewalk kept the shape of Tony Moretti, splayed like a spit roast.
And each time we went up the steps to church, there he was, waving us in, reminding us that you can be half a saint and half a sinner, but sometimes it’s better to be one thing or the other, not both at the same time. Because if you’re both, said Father Thomas, the Lord doesn’t know what to do with you, and you can spend a long time in a limbo made of chalk if the summer keeps its heat.

Thursday, 3 November 2011

Grandpa Ping

So I thought I would share it with you. It's part of a series I'm working on, so feedback very welcome! This one is all about Grandpa Ping.

Grandpa Ping was in one of those camps out in California in the war. Never quite got over it. At the time he protested, said he shouldn’t go to the camp because he wasn’t Japanese. Told the military he was like a mongrel dog, a little bit of everything, all kinds of Asian thrown in together like some sort of soup. Turns out the soldiers processing him weren’t really listening, heard the word “dog” and the word “soup”, came up with “dog soup” and thought ‘this guy Ping is a troublemaker’. Started his time at the camp in solitary. Got a lifelong hatred of men with clipboards from that day. Didn’t like dogs much either.

Monday, 5 September 2011

Another comics update

Two more bits of groovy comics news:

I've had a piece accepted for this year's Hallowscream, an online anthology of sweet and innocent tales of loveliness (erm...). Delighted that Louis Carter is putting pencil to paper on it. Publication date - Halloween 2011 (obviously). Keep an eye on the Back from the Depths website here - you can also download the 2010 anthology which featured a gently little tale called Windle, written by yours truly and drawn by some bloke called Boyle.

And secondly, the lovely Owen Watts is now putting together the second edition of Dr WTF!? and has kindly allowed me to graduate from a one-pager last time round to five whole pages this time. Naturally, I have repaid him by producing a story partly set in a toilet, but what do you expect? This one will, I hear, be drawn by Pete Wood. This one I think will come to see the world at Bristol Comic Con next May.

More soon :-)

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

A story about cake

Advisory: don't read this immediately before or after eating. It's not nice.

I would say "enjoy" but that's probably not the right word....

Monday, 15 August 2011

Patience rewarded (I hope)

Because you have all been so lovely and patient, I've decided to upload two stories for you today - how generous am I!?

First up this stand-alone story called The Scene. It starts like this:

So it's late, ten or half ten maybe, and me and Tommy and Chris are out, and we're in Soho and the streets are full of people and cars and scooters and we stop to look at the scooters and there are girls, “man, the girls” is what we say, and we look at the girls but only carefully so they can't see us looking.

And Tommy says he can get us into the Scene Club and that's where we're headed because that's where they're playing, the greatest rock and roll band in the world: the Rolling Stones. And Tommy says he can get us in because his sister who's older is seeing a guy who knows the man who drives the van with all the Stones' equipment in, all the guitars and the amps, and they say there's always whisky and beer in the van in case anyone gets thirsty and when they first started out the band would travel in the back of the van with all the instruments but they don't any more because now they're successful and they have a car.


Thursday, 7 April 2011

It's all about the comics....

If you're wondering why it's been a bit quiet here lately.... Well, there's been a lot going on in the background. Thought it was time to share:

I've had two (count 'em), two comic scripts accepted by Future Quake for inclusion in Something Wicked later this year. Delighted that Pencil Monkey is drawing one of them (his blog here) and very excited to be working with Chie Kutsuwada on the other (amazing website full of piccies here).

Not only that, I've got a short but sweet story coming out in a new Not-Dr-Who anthology, Dr WTF!? Drawn by Tony Rothwell, it was great fun to write and to see made real. See more of Tony's stuff on his blog, and follow the Dr WTF project on Facebook - there's a link at

And and and and....

Chris Cronin is editing an homage to all things pulp, including a caper I'm putting together with the inimitable Dark Jimbo - watch out later in the year for gangsters, vixens, chases, escapes and some mozzarella.....

So, that's why there haven't been any new stories. Sorry ;-)