Tag Archives: flash fiction

Interview on Splice

Over the course of a few months, I was interviewed for Splice. You can now read the whole thing, if you’d like here.

 

Helen McClory is a prolific writer of flash fiction and short stories, as well as a novelist and an advocate for overlooked works of literature. In reviewing her two story collections for Splice, Daniel Davis Wood called McClory a “distinctive” writer who “survey[s] the stuff of folklore and mythology and weav[es] it into serious fiction with vivid imagery and poetic flair”. Throughout the summer of 2018, following the publication of her most recent collection, Mayhem & Death, Helen McClory generously set aside time to talk to Splice about her work, her interest in different literary forms, and her plans for the future

 

Wood also reviewed both On the Edges of Vision and Mayhem & Death here.

 

One of my pieces, “It Seemed Impossible it Could Ever Begin” was one Fictive Dream’s September Slam flashes.

 

Another apocalyptic story of mine, “A Quiet, Important Thing”, is up on Minor Literatures.

 

 

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The Inciting Incident

chris close photo

(my portrait by Chris Close at the Edinburgh International Book Festival, taken by D.)

 

Thank you to everyone who came along to events I was speaking at and to the organisers – Blackwell’s Edinburgh, the wonderful (as always) EIBF, and Amnesty International. Back to quietly writing things.

Here’s a story from Mayhem & Death in Books From Scotland’s Festival edition:

 

‘A room can have disorder or stains in it. But this room does not, will not. All is in order, now. Let’s take one last look, one long breath in and out. A room in a story cannot be a haunted room, unless the writer puts the ghosts in there, or the suggestion of ghosts into it.’

read the full thing here.

 

Small sidenote: If you’ve read Mayhem & Death and have opinions on it, please consider leaving a review somewhere to help others make up their mind on whether or not to take a chance on it. If you have a Goodreads account the book can be found here.

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See Me Here

(my books for sale at the EIBF bookshop)

A few places to see me reading this week:

 

Tomorrow, at Blackwell’s Writers at the Fringe (Blackwell’s Edinburgh), from 6pm, with Jonathan Whitelaw, Sam McColl, Noelle Harrison and Robert J Harris (free!). Tickets here.

Friday, at the Edinburgh International Book Festival (Writer’s Retreat), 6.30pm, with the excellent Camilla Grudova (£8/£6). Tickets here.

Saturday, at the Amnesty International Imprisoned Writers Series at the Edinburgh International Book Festival (Baillie Gifford Corner Theatre), with Roxanne Bouchard, Gina Miller, and Gunnar Staalesen (free) tickets available in box office on the day.

 

At the first two I’ll be reading from recently published Mayhem & Death– at the Blackwell’s I’ll be reading a story in that collection dedicated to my father. In the third, I’m reading the words of an activist silenced in Edrogan’s Turkey.

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Interview on Minor Lits + review

Here’s an interview with me on writing, darkness, little fish and knife fighting in the afterlife:

 

You’re now published by one of the most exciting indie presses around, 404 Ink – how do you think the rise of micro presses like this have changed the literary landscape, and what has it meant for you as a writer?

I think small presses have made it possible for the literary scene to be more diverse than it would otherwise be – they are like little rockpools carved out by hand, full of life…

 

read the full thing here

 

A kind, sharp review of Mayhem & Death appeared on the Never Imitate blog:

 

Deep within the bowels of her carefully chosen words, reflections of the ordinary are made dark, lonely, threatening. However inspiring the view on the surface of an individual’s life may be, under McClory’s piercing gaze its desolate depths are revealed.

 

This is, the reviewer says, a good thing. Read the rest here.

 

 

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Filed under 404 Ink, experimental fiction, Helen McClory, Mayhem & Death, On The Edges of Vision, Scotland, The Goldblum Variations

No Longer Naked

The covers for Mayhem & Death and On the Edges of Vision are here!

 

md-final-cover   oteov-cover

 

I think they’re stunning & perfectly eerie.

 

Mayhem & Death is a brand-new story collection which also includes Powdered Milk, a novella, along with woodcut illustrations to go with each story. You can pre-order it from 404 Ink here.

 

On the Edges of Vision was first published in 2015 and won the Saltire First Book of the Year. This reissue brings it back into print for the first time since then, and I’m so delighted 404 Ink have chosen to do so. You can pre-order it here.

 

Or – if you’re a little canny and want to have both, you can buy the bundle, and save a little in the process here.

 

 

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Filed under 404 Ink, art, book cover, experimental fiction, Helen McClory, Illustration, Mayhem & Death, On The Edges of Vision, reading, Uncategorized

Bundle Up

pexels-photo-235621.jpeg

I don’t know about you, but 2018 has started off, as years often do, as dark and quite gloomy. My heating has broken down again. The snow is incoming here in Edinburgh, but there’s something quite exciting that’s countering my chill –

The first review of Mayhem & Death has been published, and, delighted with its positivity, 404 Ink have decided to launch pre-sales for the bundle of both the new Mayhem & Death and new release of On the Edges of VisionOn the Edges of Vision won the Saltire First Book of the Year back in 2015, and with the press that put it out shuttering, it had gone out of print until 404 zoomed in and saved it. You can get the sparkly new edition along with its sibling for just £15. 

On the Edges of Vision

In On the Edges of Vision, unease sounds itself in the language of legend. Images call on memory, on the monstrous self. Throughout Helen McClory’s daring debut collection, the skin prickles against sweeps of light or darkness, the fantastic or the frightful; deep water, dark woods, or scattered flesh in desert sand. Whether telling of a boy cyclops or a pretty dead girl, drowned sailors or the devil himself, each story draws the reader towards not bleakness but a tale half-told, a truth half-true: that the monster is human, and only wants to reach out and take you by the hand.

Mayhem & Death

Helen McClory returns delving deeper into descriptively mythical yet recognisable stories woven from dark and light, human fear and fortune. Swimming and suffering. Spikes loom ever-threatening. A weight against the throat. Sea where the dead lie pressed into a layer of silt. A silent documentary through a terrible place. Mary Somerville, future Queen of Science. A coven of two. Mayhem & Death is the matured, darker companion to On the Edges of Vision and shows McClory’s ever expanding ability to envelop and entrance her readers with lyrical language of lore, stunning settings and curious characters. Mayhem & Death also introduces the brand new novella Powdered Milk, a tale for the lost.

 

Why should you pre-order? I mean, other than because you might want to make sure two books of uncanny, watery, flash fiction, short stories, prose poems and the like are in your hands as soon as they can be? Well, pre-ordering helps indie publishers immensely if you buy direct from them, avoiding the large online retailer who shall not be named, who frequently undercuts pricing to the point where no one (not even them) make a profit off sales of a book. Supporting via pre-sales allows indie publishers, who work on a hair-thin margin and reserves of passion, to keep the lights on. I’ve mentioned before, but Heather McDaid and Laura Jones, the founders of Award-winning 404, are two amazing young women. They take risks, work incredibly hard, and put out books that other publishers might not even think to pick. Buying from them, whether my book or others, puts your money in their capable hands. You can imagine in doing so you become a kind of minor Medici of the publishing world. All that, and you get books to keep you company on your (armchair) travels.

 

Pre-order here for delivery anywhere. Or use the link to browse the site. It’s Friday, it’s dark – why not buy a little gift for future you?

 

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Advance Notice: Mayhem & Death Launch

Helen McClory, Launch of Mayhem and Death

 

Aye Write, Glasgow’s famed book festival is coming – and so is my second story collection Mayhem & Death! The launch is happening as part of the lineup (which is rich and full, runs from the 15th-25th of March, and you can check out here).

The details for your calendar:

24th Mar 2018  •  8:15PM – 9:15PM  •  Mitchell Library

404 Ink describe Mayhem & Death thusly:

In the anticipated follow-up collection to 2015’s awardwinning On the Edges of Vision, Helen McClory returns delving deeper into descriptively mythical yet recognisable stories woven from dark and light, human fear and fortune. Swimming and suffering. Spikes loom ever-threatening. A weight against the throat. Sea where the dead lie pressed into a layer of silt. A silent documentary through a terrible place. Mary Somerville, future Queen of Science. A coven of two. Mayhem & Death is the matured, darker companion to On the Edges of Vision and shows McClory’s ever expanding ability to envelop and entrance her readers with lyrical language of lore, stunning settings and curious characters. Mayhem & Death also introduces the brand new novella Powdered Milk, a tale for the lost.

 

Get tickets for the launch here (£6). Still unsure? Scottish Book Trust has a wee bit of hype for both 404 Ink and me “One of Scotland’s hottest new writers teams up with the country’s hottest new publisher to bring us a new collection of short stories.” (!!!). It’s well timed for the start of your Saturday night, anyway.

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Filed under 404 Ink, experimental fiction, Helen McClory, Mayhem & Death, Scotland, Uncategorized