2023 More Reading: February (+ Writing Update)

Completed reads for February:

  • The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien, ed. Humphrey Carpenter
  • Best Stories of Walter De La Mare (collection), by Walter De La Mare
  • Of Mice and Men, by John Steinbeck
  • The Thunder, Perfect Mind (poem)
  • Cannery Row, by John Steinbeck
  • Cats and Dogs, by H.P. Lovecraft

The Thunder, Perfect Mind is the MacRae translation.

February was an excellent writing month. As noted elsewhere, I submitted the edited Old Phuul (98,807 words) to the publisher on 2nd February. I have since immersed myself in writing short-stories, completing several this month:

  • The Dream of Florian Neame (2500 words): Deindustrial science-fiction about a dodgy alchemist in a future where technology has regressed some five centuries or so.
  • Gilding the Lily (2500 words): Weird fiction/fantasy set in 1920s Britain about a certain El Dorado and a certain lake. I have subsequently realised I need to do some work on character motivation, but I think it is definitely promising.
  • Blackberry Picking (4100 words): Fantasy erotica set in a pseudo-Ancient Greece. Yes, really. Think a gender-flipped take on a Hylas-type story, with the basic concept of consent added.
  • The End Game (2400 words): Some old guys in a pub play a game of chess – the last ever game of chess – during the apocalypse. Obviously speculative, but despite the premise it is not actually dark enough for Horror.

I am also half-way through the Testament of Theophilus Schnee, a Lovecraftian occult-summoning story played for laughs with the ‘academic’ framing device.

2 thoughts on “2023 More Reading: February (+ Writing Update)

  1. I am so jealous of your productivity. I have pretty much only been able to finish stories when faced with a sizable and unexpected amount of free time. How do you do it?

    Liked by 1 person

    • My writing productivity comes and goes, and depends on both mood and available time. Unfortunately, March has proven less productive in the writing department, due to real life getting in the way – I haven’t managed to finish anything in the past couple of weeks.


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