One more day left of the Sci Phi Journal Half Price Sale!

The half-price deal on ebook versions of the first four issues of Sci Phi Journal is into it’s last day, so take advantage of that while you still can.

In other news, I have rearranged the kindle version of Selected Verse: Faith and Family so that the Amazon ‘Look Inside’ feature is now much more informative. If you ‘look inside’ and select the ‘kindle book’ tab, it will show you the first five poems, plus part of the sixth. If you select the ‘print book’ tab, it tells you the complete list of contents, so you know which of the poems from this blog are to be found inside.

I hope that this will enable prospective readers to make a more informed decision on whether to buy a copy of the collection for themselves.

Sci Phi Journal Issue 6 on sale!

Sci Phi Journal Issue  cover art

Look  whose name got put in a separate cage – rawr!

The Kindle ebook version of Sci Phi Journal Issue 6, featuring Beyond the Mist chapters 10 and 11, and the Beyond the Mist Naming Contest, is now on sale:

UPDATE: The paperback version is also now available from amazon:

or direct from createspace:

The first four issues of the rest of the journal are still on sale for another few days, so this is your last chance to get caught up with the action for less. Enjoy your read, feed your mind and good luck in the contest!

Sci Phi Journal Issue 6 Artwork Sneak Peek

Sci Phi Journal Issue 6, featuring Beyond the Mist chapters 10 and 11, (plus of course the Beyond the Mist Naming Contest), is about to enter the final proofreading stage. Here to whet your appetite is a look at some of the artwork in the issue by the irrepressible Cat Leonard. First of all the cover imagesciphi6teaser Then artwork for each of the issue’s stories. Let your imagination run wild!frank on-the-bottle-copystunted there-is-an-app-copy the-story-is-a-lie-copy TN-3960 whispers

SuperversiveSF Livestream – No girls allowed

In less than 8 hours, I will be taking part in another livestream discussion on depicting female characters in fiction.

The livestream can be followed here:

Any questions for the group can be left in the comments section there.

Happy Rhonda Day

Today the faceless machine masters that run facebook informed me that the first person to become a fan of my writing without knowing me personally has her birthday today. I thought I could do a little more than my usual facebook birthday wish, but then I got a little carried away, so for that I apologize, Rhonda.

Happy Rhonda Day

With a name like Rhonda, you really have to wonder:
If a grandma, tall and proud, can dare to mention right out loud
How much she loves her country, kin, no matter what their shade of skin;
How much more the young and strong (showing that they do belong

To that great spirit, good and free, loving independently)
Can rebuild a nation’s hopes, free it from the snaring ropes
Of soothing lies and crony theft, philosophy that’s so bereft
Of all that’s good and healthy for a soul that stands alone before

The great decisions that life brings: mere pleasure or far higher things?
Integrity or fleeting fame? Noble fight or crooked game?
Public scorn for choosing life? Faithful spouse or trophy wife?
So now I bring a birthday wish, for cake and other tasty dish,

But most of all from Him above, source of all life, joy and love,
And faithfulness and unity, wisdom and community,
Health and strength and family, the best in all humanity;
Blessings like an April rain, that overflow your cup again,

This and every other day, in this and every other way,
That all will know that you are His, so full of life and buzz and fizz,
And all will want to know Him too, follow His trail high and true,
Until such time as we all see Him face to face eternally.

Book View Café mentions the Naming Contest (as something they would never do)

Brenda W. Clough over at Book View Café makes mention of the Beyond the Mist naming contest (although she links to the announcement at SuperversiveSF rather than here), and has this to say about it:

I would never in a thousand years do this. A contest to name the protagonist? A character with whom I am going to be spending the next year of my mental life, whose every dream, digestive upset, sexual encounter and trauma from birth to grave I am going to invent out of whole cloth? I would never hand over such power to anyone; I shall reign like Alexander, and I shall reign alone.

You can’t pick the name for your hero off a list.

She is right, of course. I would never normally surrender control of such a pivotal character-molding parameter and guard my creations with absolute care. So what has happened to my sanity in this case? My response:

Before anyone asks, nobody else suggested to me that I do this, I have been planning it for more than six months and first suggested the idea to the editor of the journal three months ago. He gave the go-ahead, and here we are.

It is a risk, and I wouldn’t do it for any other venue, but I have faith in the intelligence of Sci Phi Journal‘s readership (a journal dedicated to philosophy and science fiction is going to attract intelligent readers). My faith seems to be justified- I had a placeholder name in mind, but the very first (and currently winning) entry suggested a name that I would happily use instead.

I expect most of the entries will come in after Issue 6 is out, and if someone can come up with something better, great.

I look forward to reading what else Sci Phi Journal’s fine readership can come up with. Don’t disappoint me!

SuperversiveSF Roundtable 3- Dystopian Fiction

Another SuperversiveSF roundtable discussion is coming up tomorrow (Saturday the 6th of June) at 3pm Eastern time (7pm GMT, 9pm Central European Time), the topic being dystopian fiction in all its forms. If you have any questions that you would like the group to discuss, leave a comment at this page:

A link to the livestream will appear at when it goes live, so listen in and hear me (and writers more knowledgeable than me) discuss this fascination with societies gone so horribly wrong.

Name the Main Character in Beyond the Mist!


How many times have you been offered the chance to name a character in a published work? And how many times has that been for the main character of a work where a substantial portion has already been published?

As those of you who have been following Beyond the Mist know*, the main character has no memory of who he was, would like to recover his old name, but has the option of choosing a new one for himself. The instalment in Issue 6 has been tweaked so that it will end just as he is about to choose a new name, and I am inviting Sci Phi Journal’s readers to choose what that will be.

This will be done in the form of a contest; the winning entry will determine his legal name in the story world from that point forward, (and will remain so even if he later discovers what his old name was). This name will reflect what he has discovered about himself so far, as well as what kind of man he intends to become in the future.

The format of the contest is as follows:

  1. Choose a first name and family name, and write a short justification for choosing those names.
  1. Email your entry to with ‘Beyond the Mist Contest’ in the subject line (important, if you don’t do that, your entry will not get to me.)
  1. The closing date for entries is 11.59pm GMT on the 14th of July (approximately two weeks after Issue 6 is published, so that people can adjust their suggestions according to what they learn about the main character in chapters 10 and 11). This will give me enough time to decide on the winner and incorporate it into the next instalment.
  1. The winner (chosen by me) will be announced publicly in Issue 7, will receive a free printed copy of that issue as well as signed copies of Nobility Among Us and Selected Verse: Faith and Family. The printed copy of the journal may take a number of weeks to arrive, depending on the winner’s location in the world.

The contest is now open, good luck and spread the word as widely as you can, please!

*and if you haven’t been following the story, now is your chance to catch up, since chapter 1 can be read for free here, and the ebook versions of issues 1-4 of Sci Phi Journal are now half price for the whole of this month.