Here are some of my short stories, featured in/on various journals/sites.

 

Short Fiction – Online

Succubus, Manchester Fiction Prize Finalist, 2016

A mechanic is killed in a street fight. The following morning, the taste of tequila in her mouth, Rebecca wakes up in bed next to him.

 

Luebeck-1350The Glassblower’s Daughter, Costa Short Story Award Finalist, 2014

In a 17th century harbour town, a girl lives out her dreams of the sea through the sailors she encounters.

“I take the bottle with the prongs of my fork and carry it to the cooling oven, setting it separate from the perfect glistening green pile of the rest. Those bottles he will sell to one of the ships in the harbour, the one he can get the best price from. I never need ask him out loud whether I can take the imperfect ones. Nor does he ask what I do with them.”

 

Richardson-VenusVenus in Tatters, The List, 2015

Inspired by The Times’ coverage of the extraordinary actions of Mary Richardson, suffragette, in 1914.

“He was halfway through a cigarette when the news came through: there had been a slashing.”

 

 

 

0413brothels_2Lotte, Copperfield Review, 2015

World War I. Lotte comes to work in Tatie B’s stationside tavern, where she incurs a strange and contagious fear from the soldiers.

“I suppose Lotte pulled her weight, of sorts. She did the stitching and the mending, and as the weeks went on she did more and more of the brewing and the cooking. Come November Tatie B put her in the back room, taking charge of the washing, which she said out loud to us was ‘so that girl can keep her idle fingers occupied’, but privately we all knew it was because the night before, one man had caught sight of her huddled up in her velveteen shawl by the fire as he was leaving, and his face had gone pale as cheese and he too had made the sign of the cross just like the French soldier.”

 

bottom of sea of troubles

At the Bottom of the Sea of Troubles, Liars’ League London, 2014

London, the turn of the 17th century. A merchant sailor falls for a well-known poet.

“We were in the tiring house and as soon as I clapped eyes on those rows of silk and lace and floor length French velvet costumes I saw what it was possible to become. He reached into the rack, wrestled out a thick cochineal brocade dress, stiffened into a flat waistband at the stomach. ‘Try this.’ He saw me hesitate. ‘Go on, you’ll fit. It’s meant for a boy.'”

 

 

where it hurts wordle

Where it Hurts, Liars’ League London, 2013

A pregnant woman goes missing during the 1768 London frost fair. One year on, her friend vows to seek revenge.

“I didn’t pay much heed to his words at first. I could hardly hear them. There was a play going on downstairs, a racket being made by angels with greasy wings fighting devils in papier-mâché masks.”

 

Cally Road, Ether, 2012

 

Short Fiction – Print

Escaping Plague, Valve IV, 2015

A guide to escaping plague in Venice.

“Similar bruises to bubos include:

Whip Marks

Stock Marks

Harmless Cysts

Semi-venomous snake bites

Love bites”

 

EQMMARCHAPRILDigging Up Trouble, Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, March/April, 2015

Edinburgh, WWI. When Marie Ravenheath’s dog is accused of digging up graves in the local cemetery she takes it into her own hands to investigate what’s going on.

“Trouble always follows me around. In and out of rooms, through the kitchen, the pantry, the parlour, putting her paws where she knows she shouldn’t and her nose into the crotches of houseguests before I have had the chance to shake their hands.”

 

 

 

 

imageIn One Thousand Years, Dactyl, Issue Two, 2014

At midnight, the spoiled daughter of a marquess follows the kitchen boy to the centre of the garden maze.

 

“He had given her the signal after Act IV. As Prospero’s masque disintegrated, as the servants – cajoled for the night into performing – whipped tablecloths away, as cook banged a saucepan, as the spit-boy raised a great cloud of flour from his palms – she had felt something at her feet. She had looked down and discovered the kitchen boy sneaking an apple under the hem of her gown.”

 

 

 

cover 12blackandwhitewthwords.jpg-for-web-normalLotte, Prole 12, 2013

World War I. The mysterious Lotte comes to work in Tatie B’s stationside tavern, incurring a strange and contagious fear from the soldiers she encounters.

 

“I suppose Lotte pulled her weight, of sorts. She did the stitching and the mending, and as the weeks went on she did more and more of the brewing and the cooking. Come November Tatie B put her in the back room, taking charge of the washing, which she said out loud to us was ‘so that girl can keep her idle fingers occupied’, but privately we all knew it was because the night before, one man had caught sight of her huddled up in her velveteen shawl by the fire as he was leaving, and his face had gone pale as cheese and he too had made the sign of the cross just like the French soldier.”

 

 

DactylCoverOur Beach, Dactyl Issue One, 2013

One woman and her dog out for a lonely walk make a discovery that sparks their imaginations.

 

“Perhaps the Union Canal had lifted it in a giant tempestuous leap of foam right over the Western Approach Road and onto the knoll, then dried it out overnight before the witching hour was up. It wasn’t large, it wasn’t a wide spread, there was no water. But it was a beach.”

 

 

 

 

Valve1The She-Squid’s Embrace, Valve III, 2013

Fathoms deep, a lonely giant squid comes across the drowned body of a sailor.

 

“I propped him next to an old ship’s wheel. His right eyelid was starting to droop a little giving him a lascivious look. His palms kept escaping me, so instead of on the wheel they had to rest by his side…”

 

(there’re some lovely reviews of that one here and here)

 

 

 

Vintage+Script_2India Rubber, Vintage Script, Autumn, 2012

At a political rally in 1910 things go horribly wrong for one suffragette, with tragic consequences.

 

“They were small, red and not exactly shiny, but with a dull glisten to them, the way wet fabric looks. She bounced one off the table and a few women flinched, very obviously. She kept her fist wrapped round it as she talked, squeezing it so that the flesh around her wedding ring turned white in a grip that must have been quite uncomfortable. When she wanted to emphasise her point she shook it at us.”