Thursday, 3 November 2011

What's Going On? I'll Tell Ya!

I've read so much great fiction these last couple of weeks it feels like there's a literary fest going on in my head.

Here's a little catch up on my and others' news:

  • First things first. Hip, hip! I have finished the final draft of Magenta Shaman Stones The Crow. I'm just waiting for the cover to be completed and intend publishing it on Amazon by the end of next week.

    Twice as long as the first story in the Magenta Shaman novella series, this tale finds the shaman thrown to The Gates of Hell in the realms between modern and ancient Prague. Here's a little excerpt to tease...

    Heavy clouds sped across a waxing moon. At least the magnetic pull was on their side. Magenta hated journeying during the waning period – the closer to the dark moon the more difficult the trip. She lay back on the ground, Tom’s arms clasped around her from behind. To use her meditation cave to enter the trance was a first for Maggie but the protection she had built up in the chalk cavity over the years meant she’d be grounded; that nothing but she, Tom and her ethereal messengers could enter or leave the sacred place.

    A small fire flickered at Magenta’s feet, throwing light around the small space. Mugwort smouldered with sticky frankincense in a brass dish on one of the coals. Maggie had chosen the mildly noxious herb because of its dream recollection properties. She had returned from the previous Houska experience humming with nausea and grief – knowing she’d fought and lost to a demon more ancient, more vicious than any she had battled before – knowing her father Sam had been swallowed into the depths and killed – yet Magenta had no memory of it. The demon, if it were even that, had wiped her head of all but the emotions associated with the event. If her body hadn’t been covered with storm-bloom bruises that swelled and dissipated within thirty minutes of her return, then the emotions were the only residual evidence of the day Samuel French had died.

    Unlike the journey four years before, Maggie had prepared herself better this time. Her former, unfounded confidence had taught her a lesson and she was taking no chances. A thick line of salt made a circle around the couple, its crystalline make-up flecked with crumbled myrrh to protect the cave and its inhabitants.

    “Are you ready?”

    Tom stared down at his wife; her breathing had shallowed almost to nothing. She opened her lips. Tom took a laurel leaf and slipped it beneath Magenta’s tongue. As soon as he felt her weight shift, the flames at her feet died down and he sighed as his wife’s spirit evanesced into the shadows.

    Not read Magenta Shaman, the first story yet? Grab it from or
  • The UK's Writing Magazine recently commissioned me to write a couple of articles on why e-publishing was right for me, and a 'How To' on preparing and uploading your manuscript to Amazon using Kindle Direct Publishing.

    The articles have both been published in the latest, December issue of the Magazine. You can buy it from WH Smith and can also subscribe.

    I also recommend Writing Magazine's online forum Talkback; I joined in 2009 and - it sounds trite - but it has opened so many doors, and I have 'met' some wonderful writers and editors, including Thrillers Killers 'n' Chillers Col Bury. And we know what THAT led to! ;-)

  • And talking of Thrillers Killers 'n' Chillers - as you know, I'm now hanging out as Horror Editor in its dark passages and am currently hosting a week-long Hellicious Halloween showcase.

    Thirteen stories from twelve excellent writers including Predictioneers Chris Allinotte, Phil Ambler, Erin Cole, Sean Patrick Reardon, Dorothy Davies (our Antonia) and our new and inimitable Absolutely*Kate. Plus more brilliant stories from J. Bramwell Slater, Harris Tobias, Keith Gingell, Patricia Abbott, Gill Hoffs and Kevin G. Bufton.

    Here's the line-up. Do give your feedback and support. Thank you.

  • Continuing the theme of TKnC, I simply have to recommend the new e-book by fellow editor Col Bury 'Manchester 6'.

    This collection of "Six Gritty Crime Stories" is a must-have. You can download it from for just 86p (bargain!!!) It's also available from and in other formats - see Col's blog for more details.

  • Finally, I was highly delighted to discover my Pentacle Drummers mate, the Big Man Draven - who has already drummed in Dizzee Rascal's Dirtee Cash video, also performed in Florence & The Machine's Dogs Days Video! How I missed him, I'll never know. Go Greg!!!

    I'm a big Flo fan. Her new album Ceremonials was dropped into my hands this very morning. Dropping it into my ears now...


  1. Lily oh Lily ~

    You had me at "the shaman thrown to The Gates of Hell in the realms between modern and ancient Prague --- " WAIT! I hail from Czechoslovakian heritage and deem the gypsy in my soul must be gift of grandmother Katherine . . . so I read on ... and ON ... have now paid'up to include MAGENTA SHAMAN into my E'Book shining shelvery for delving the further into your stylistics ... spirited as it is.

    Cliches aside on the door-opening, right past fright you are! There's nuttin' like nuttin' in finding kindred striving scribin' souls on the same swirling publishing paths. How fortuitous that's how you ran into cool Col.

    Now, the Writers' Mag articles -- only available UK or online hit possible? Am interested in what you have to say and will be including what you wish to AT THE BIJOU when you do enter your shifting shadows into our fray - Would be superb that you spiel some on the writing craft after one of your own splendid stories strut their stuff on center stage.

    THEN YIKES! I came to learn - conduit - intuit - read more about YOU and I find the "inimitable" kindness word thrown in on my craft going to your TKnC gig. Wow - Thanks lovely Lily for so much this red-letter day of interaction and coming attractions I shall e'er recall.

    No edit - pure ramble,
    You've made my day scary CLASSY dame.

    ~ Absolutely*Kate -- PROUDLY playing at Lady Lily Child's Hellicious Halloween scene ala Thrillers, Killers n'Chillers (right now - at this very moment of momentum)

    Now off to stir with the FEARDOM wordsmithers

  2. Whoa, Lil... you're on fire!!! Congrats on the Writing Mag article (which is really informative, so thanks), and cheers, me dear, for the double mention.

    Also, may I say what a tremendous job you did hosting Hellicious Halloween over at TKnC.

    And, all the best getting Magenta 2 sorted.


  3. Ms Kate (a nomenclature only previous reserved for the most deified Ms Kate Bush, I'll have you know) - Czech gypsy? We should talk. I've been researching my travelling 'horse dealer' family for decades and 'know' there's an Eastern European and Cretan connection. Need to do that DNA. See the lights around people's bodies; healing; know stuff - oh fiddly fuck.

    Meeting Col? I don't believe in coincidence. All is, as is.

    Writing Mag. On shelves in the UK but they might run the article on their site. Can email it to you if you ask nicely ;-)

    Love your words. Do you mind if I call you darling?

    Col, thank you. And the entire thing - mentions and HH - is a pleasure.

    Best sleep now...

  4. Wow. Busy much?

    'Gratz on all the recent activity and success! Looking forward to Magenta, Part 2!

    HH has been a stunner - excellent picks all around (that I was over the moon to be part of)

    (And I'd very much like to read that article too... pretty please?)

  5. Just spit coffee rather unladylike at the "Wow. Busy much?" quip. {Thanks pal}

    Oh sure, Chris sashays in the door and diminishes my 'pretty please' speech, all up and practiced. Um ... er ... here goes ...

    Oh gracious Lily, with frothy whipped cream, drippy thick hot fudge sauce, an effervescent cherry on top and toasted coconut wafting down my pretty please, may I read that article and any/all particulars you have goin' on the EBook scene?

    {Whew, Allinotte, you're always a tough act to follow} Likewise, Frankie flew me to the moon and let me play among the stars to do my virgin dance at Hellicious Halloween'ness. I got to see what life was like on Jupiter and Mars, I did.

    Counting on you both to show some muscle to your snappy shadows and go centerstage while NOVEMBER goes NOIR ~ AT THE BIJOU. Saw you joined the popcorn gallery today Lily and that just kicked off my joie de vivre til -- well, til Smart Allinotte got me to shoot perfectly good Starbucks dark Frenchblend on my screen.


    LOVE Ms Kate Bush ... so ~ ASTOUNDED I be, (and proud of your music - saaaaay, do you Spotify? Would love to peruse what tunes YOU write to)

    No gush, I've been delving into heritage and found my grandfather's city on the Slovakia side where he draft-dodged the German army, hiding across France to make it as a stowaway on a fine ship sailing for America at age 18. My grandmother Katherine though was on the Austria-Hungary border and I swear that's the gypsy Czech bloodline -- My mother's family were the Kozels {of Kozel beer, which Paul Brazill has drunk before me}. My mother had "the gift" and I sense it much myself -- healing, energies, empath notions, pre-knowings. Most DEFINITELY no such thing as a coincidence (herego, we've got to this conversation this day) -- would love to write up a gypsy tale with the likes of you from heritage'ville someday, Lily. Would surpass haunting to daunting and no doubt show us some adventurous discovery we were manifesting along our ramble. Your ethereal nature-photographer friend would be superb in paging illustrations and our international acclaim {grin} would soar her notoriety the higher, eh?

    { My e'mail = }

    Love your energies Lil. May I call you Lil - don't wish to taboo around you. You may call me anything I answer to.

  6. Got my copy today, not had chance to read it yet, but I'm baby sitting the dutchess tomorrow evening, she sleeps alot between shouting at anne robinson for stealing the digestives so hopefully will have a chance to read it then.


Lily Childs is a writer of horror, esoteric, mystery and chilling fiction.

If you see her dancing outside in a thunder storm - don't try to bring her in. She's safe.