Monthly Archives: November 2014

#FP – An Archive Within An Ark Hive – Part 06

Another collection of Friday Phrases – In the interests of context, the first two presented here are from Halloween 2013, while the following three are from Valentine’s Day 2014. The rest follow my usual roll-of-the-dice approach to presentation 🙂

The skulls and bats were festooned with spiderwebs, all for the visiting children. She’d thank the spiders later, after they had fed.

The plague killed almost everyone. She roamed Twitter, looking for survivors, and lost hope until the DM at Halloween: “Trick or Tweet?”

He finished breakfast then started to gather what he needed. In an hour, the world would have a new massacre to remember this day by.

He sat surrounded by crumpled pages of terrible poetry. He’d just have to hope his Twitter crush picked up on the subtweets.

She looked down at the crowd. The crossbow felt good in her hands and she had plenty of bolts. “Time to play Cupid.” she whispered.

“How about some scrambled embryos?”
She made the same awful joke every morning, but when I saw my plate, I knew she’d taken it too far.

A cold wind rose, teased her hair and blew litter around her feet. She looked up, and found herself in the shadow of vast, leathery wings.

In the dark, the pillowcase looked rumpled, like a mask of peeled skin. Nearer, I saw that my eyesight was better than I would’ve wished.

The swordsman’s blade whirled, a spinning blur of death. Unexpectedly, Indy shot him dead. Even more unexpectedly, the swordsman sat up.

She didn’t recognise the couple in the old photo, but thought that the groom looked like a younger version of the man brushing her hair.

The teacher slept, drugged. The girls poked her scalp with pens until one glistened red. She really DID have eyes in the back of her head.

“Sorcery!” they yelled. “Black magic!”
The clown’s cheap tricks littered the ground as he fled.
“It’s only a kid’s party!” he screamed.

Of course I washed my dirty hands before dinner. The ones attached to my wrists AND the ones on the plate.

She didn’t realise it was a tweet from the dead until she walked into the house and found him hanging from a ceiling beam, his eyes wide.

He tasted sweat at her temples, yet her skin had prickled to gooseflesh. He read the texture like Braille, until he found her secret words.

Shaggy knew that things were getting weird when Fred traded in the Mystery Machine for a Pinto. Then Scooby got bitten by the bat …

12 rich kids abducted in 6 months. The cops let them take No.13. As the gang reached the remote hideout, the cops detonated the hostage.

“I killed a man and wrote it as a story on my blog. I was all set to leave it there, but when I saw the spike in the stats …”

The knight and the dragon strolled back into the village holding hands. They were smoking cigarettes and the dragon looked very content. The villagers were horrified. “We sent you to kill it!”
“You misheard,” the knight smiled. “I’m a Dragon’s Layer.”

(The above originally posted as two FPs)

Know that your stars and mine are the same.
Know that when your hands are cold, I’m on my way back, and I’m bringing a nova with me.

Thanks for reading! If you’re interested, here are a few more FP-centric posts 🙂

A Love Letter To Friday Phrases

Friday Phrases – I’m In Love

#FP – An Archive Within An Ark Hive – Part 01

#FP – An Archive Within An Ark Hive – Part 02

#FP – An Archive Within An Ark Hive – Part 03

#FP – An Archive Within An Ark Hive – Part 04

#FP – An Archive Within An Ark Hive – Part 05







Jabespeare – Bard To The Bone

Cry havoc and who let the dogs out?

I had some fun last summer with a couple of hashtags that I think I might have initiated (certainly, my tweets are the only ones that display when I use the #Search on Twitter, but if anyone knows better, please tell me). One of them was #BardToTheBone, and the other one, the one I named with probably especially ill-judged confidence, was #jabespeare. The idea blossomed thanks to the collision of a couple of factors. One of them was the evident enthusiasm for all things Shakespeare of a number of fine people on Twitter (I’m still not comfortable with calling them Tweeps), including a fine writer called @ElishaAshworth whose posting of quotes from Shakey rekindled my interest in his works.

The other factor was my first viewing of the Miley Cyrus video for the song “Wrecking Ball”, prompted because of an alleged physical resemblance between Miss Cyrus and a work colleague. The first video that YouTube offered me was a cover version of the song performed by the veteran pornographic actor Ron Jeremy – who, rather confusingly, looks nothing like my work colleague – but once I’d managed to watch that and move on with my life I found the Miley video and found that, irrespective of musical taste, she appears to have excellent taste in footwear.

The song was still in my head when I tuned into Twitter and found a handful of Shakespeare quotes on my feed.  Without thinking – which, for good or for ill, is how I tend to work – I started to type, and mewled and puked the first #jabespeare onto my timeline.

Give not thy voice that I didst walk away
Mine desire shall be forever for thee
Verily, I came in like a wrecking ball

Okay, as lightbulb moments go, it’s not up there with Archimedes’ “Eureka” as he vaulted from the bath, or the alleged cranial collision with an apple that supposedly knocked the Universal Law of Gravitation into Newton’s noggin, but that’s how it happened. The absurdity of the tweet made me chuckle, and it got a handful of always welcome stars and RTs, and so for a few weeks, the lyrics to a number of popular songs were retooled accompanied by the jabespeare hashtag. I never posted the titles of the songs I was reinterpreting, but people seemed to recognise them anyway, which hopefully means that the joke worked, and that I should consider getting myself a wallet with the words “Bard Motherf**ker” on it 😉

Anyway, with sincere apologies to both the diehard fans of Big Bill and also the artists whose songs I reshaped, here are a few more of my efforts …

Fowl spake Quack
Fish spake Blub
The seal spake OW OW OW
But there be a sound
That none shall knoweth
What doth the fox sayeth?

I shall deny all scrubs!
A scrub shall find my love a bolted door!
He jests at the flank of his brother’s cart!
Spewing a gorge!

What fortunes avail thee, pussycat?
Woaha Woaha Woaha!
What fortunes avail thee, pussycat?
Woaha Woaha Woaha!

What fate awaits thine sweet abundance of junk?
The junk thou beareth within thy trunk?

Verily, I shall make thee merry
Make thee merry with the passion of mine hump
Mine lovely little lumps!

Mine solitude doth killeth me
I do confess to thee
I yet believe
If parted from thee
Mine senses fly
Pray gift me a sign
Strike me baby one more time

I bid thee loosen up my bodice baby
Such an illusion of valour!
Thy lustful words doth spill
Yet mine eyes spy no deed!

Mine milk of human kindness brings all the lords to the yard!

Let us make play that the silver’d birds in the moonlight be as falling stars
I would make good sport of a wish this night now

I bear grateful witness to thee, Milady
As thy shaketh dat Bottom!
Shaketh dat Bottom!

Let us draw arms in ignoble conflict so fearsome as to rend the weft of matter itself asunder.
At the Gay Bar, Gay Bar, Gay Bar!

If this be not eternal
But a moment in the grace of this good night
Then let it reign supreme
Oh! Thy sex be afire!

Near to five score dilemmas plague my senses with turmoil and despair, and yet a wench be not one of them!

Ne’er shall I relinquish thee
Ne’er shall disprove thy faith
Ne’er shall I seek a fairer maid
And abandon thee

Taketh my tongue
‘Til I know thee
And let mine lips be as wine to you
And I shall share with thee
All the moves like Jagger

When thy words are as silk
Thou steers a wench to madness
Thy wisdom sees truth in mine flesh
Thou knowest mine hips don’t lie

I should deny the arms of Morpheus
To savour thy sweet breaths
And see thee smile in slumber
As thy soul takes flight in dreams

Oh! Sexy! I hold thee dear and gift thee back!
Thou knaves and fools prattle and dither and know not how to act!

Comely maiden
Bestriding cobbled lanes
Comely maiden
Kin of the angels I seek
Comely maiden
Thy beauty be unmatched

Let us speak of the beast with 2 backs, milady
Let us speak of I and thee
Discourse all the sweet joy or misfortune
That may be

I bid thee, oh thinly form’d spirit, oh narrow ghost!
Abandon thy fakery and arise!
Will the real slim shade please stand up?

Thou need not be wealthy
To be mine maiden
Nor be aloof of manner
To command mine kingdom

No constellation of birth need not entwine
I desireth only the hours of all thy days and thy
Lustful lure, thine …


(And if you made it this far, this last one is my personal favourite)

I desireth broad rumps
And will not deceive
How it maketh my senses take leave
When a maid doth prance
With an immodest glance
And the Globe Theatre in her pants!

Thanks for reading!

Cover Reveal – Cradle of The Dead / Dark Waves

Exciting times! Below is the cover for my new novella from Bloodbound Books, Cradle of the Dead …

Cradle of the Dead1l

(Click for larger image)

Wonderfully, my story is only one half of a double-bill of terror – the print release is in a dual-novella format, and I’m honoured to be sharing the scares with the excellent Simon Kearns (check him out at ). The amazing cover for his novella, Dark Waves, is a tantalising hint of the horrors lurking within its pages …

Dark Waves_final

(Click for larger image)

Both covers are by the frighteningly brilliant Andrej Bartulovic, and as you would expect, I’m thrilled to be involved in such an exciting project with such talented co-conspirators 🙂

The novellas are available both as a combined print copy or as individual downloads, and if you dare to take a look beyond those awesome covers, then allow me to point you in this direction …

Thanks for reading!

#FP – An Archive Within An Ark Hive – Part 05

Let’s do this! 🙂 For context, the first FP presented here is VERY much based on the marvellous @clraven – Welsh, Gothic, Red Bull charged twins who write exceptional Horror Fiction and cast caution to the wind with their ghosthunting exploits. You can probably guess how many fanboy boxes that ticks with me, and if you’re not already following them on Twitter and reading their excellent blog, I’d absolutely recommend that you take a look at their genius 🙂

Aaanyway …

“I watched your video,” he sneered. “The haunted asylum one. I didn’t see any ghosts.”
The twins simply smiled. “Didn’t you?”

She walked thru a door that wasn’t there, wearing only her scars and the satin stream in her hair.

He knew kids thought it a lame trick, poking a thumb between fingers and saying “Gotcha nose!”
Lame, until the day of the sharp scissors.

He pointed at my breakfast. “You’re meant to peel that before you eat it.”
“I like the skin.” My mouth was already wet. “And the eyes.”

People ate the chocolate eggs with the sweet, sticky filling, unaware of a factory full of dragons that wept for their stolen offspring.

Unable to find a pair of sufficiently stretchable trousers, Hulk discarded his pants and ran into battle.

He smiled at her thru the glass as he cleaned the windows, singing.
“If you could see what I could see … when I dream of killing …”

“Any regrets?” he asked after the ceremony.
She smiled at the horned faces rising in the flames. “Only that the sacrifice didn’t scream.”

Born in a hospital fire, she thought herself a child of chaos for 80 years, until another hospital, another fire, and she was gone.

The moment before I pressed the blade to my hot, wet wrists, I saw my reflection in the steel.
I didn’t recognise myself at all.

The wind caught the kite and he watched it soar. Once in flight, no-one could see that its taut breadth was covered in tattoos and scars.

He left, and the house stopped feeling like a home, ’til she recalled an old proverb and cut out his heart to keep in the bed beside her.

She felt as if she were trying to scrub his soul from her dirty hands, as if Lady MacBeth was whispering to her, “Keep washing …”

Before he got into the escape pod, Threepio saw the One Direction CD sliding into Artoo’s middle.
“I’m going to regret this.” he said.

She’s dusk and burlesque, an hourglass in moonlit silk. Eyes the colour of risk. A rosebud pout with thorns, a kiss that stings.

A year after the accident, his memory returned. He tracked down his children, only to find that they’d forgotten everything of him.

“Yes, she was a fine artist.” he said. “I have several of her pieces hanging on my walls. This is her heart, here are her kidneys …”

He drew his cold, numbed palm from the wall and saw from the imprint of his dirty hand that, unexpectedly, he was missing three fingers.

“Out, devil!” the priest shouted. “Begone!”
The demon smirked. “It’s a No from me.”
Regrettably, the priest lacked the X-orcist Factor.

“Hey, man.” The long-hair flicked soil from his Woodstock tee. “You can’t just shoot me, you dig?”
I levelled the gun. “No. You dig.”

More FP collections:

A Love Letter To Friday Phrases

Friday Phrases – I’m In Love

#FP – An Archive Within An Ark Hive – Part 01

#FP – An Archive Within An Ark Hive – Part 02

#FP – An Archive Within An Ark Hive – Part 03

#FP – An Archive Within An Ark Hive – Part 04



#FP – An Archive Within An Ark Hive – Part 04

ForgetPants and enjoy the ForePlay of FictionalParadise with FridayPhrases!

Another serving of FP-ness, which sounds VERY rude if you say it aloud! It’s not the last unwieldy pun or play on words you’ll find if you read on – I have had some fun with such awkwardly deliberate mondegreens many times in my FPs (probably too many) but I’m in good company with that, I think. The first one presented below, as an example, was written one week when the theme was The Key To Oblivion, and all the good interpretations had been used by the time I got to the party so I had to bring a kind of Kobayashi Maru sensibility to it (and that’s not the last Star Trek reference you’ll find here, either).

Aaanyway …

The town was thirst and dust, as if scorned by the river’s wet breath. I saw the signpost as I moored my boat at the quay.

The Redshirt took 4 blasts to the chest then took the Romulans apart.
‘What’s your name, son?’ Kirk asked.
‘Ensign Chuck Norris, sir.’

The axe had cleaved his face in 2, dead eyes glaring at opposite walls. He’d said the 3 little words she couldn’t resist.
“I dare you.”

His boots printed the soil of another town into the carpet as his walk turned to a run. He’d come a long way to tell her he loved her.

An asteroid filled the sky. The crater had been a launch pad, not an impact site. After so many years, the dinos were coming home again.

Sweat dampened her temples. Her breaths were hard, the spandex like a second skin. She smiled down at him.
“I should be out running.”

I will carve you up in a hall of mirrors, just so I can watch you die again and again and again.

He felt like a voyeur, staring through the glass. Beyond the window, the outside world went on without him, tempting but unreachable.

All the King’s Horses and all the King’s Men DID eventually put him together again, but FrankenHumpty terrorised the land for months.

Strangers are just friends you haven’t murdered yet.

Just me and you, changing the rules like we always do, rewriting the proverb and being two in a million.

“I had that dream again,” she told me. “The guy in the mask, chasing me.”
I nodded. I knew the dream well, & tonight I would catch her.

Each night, he dreamt he was a clown killing without mercy. It felt good. Each dawn, he heard the same words.
“Breakfast, Master Bruce?”

The dragon was pleased the unicorn accepted his invitation to dinner. She was charming company, and her horn proved a handy toothpick.

As an exterminator, he’d killed 1000s of spiders in his life, & never regretted a single one, until their ghosts found him in his sleep.

Tenderly, she touched the cuts and bruises on his face, thrilled as his smile – and his blush – filled the spaces inbetween.

She wore more make-up than she used to, and more perfume, but it was Saturday night, and being dead wasn’t going to stop her partying.

Being a body-hopping alien isn’t easy. I dug at my eyes with tweezers for ten minutes until I realised my new host didn’t wear contacts.

His co-workers spoke endless, exhausting nonsense, oblivious to the secret pact he made with himself every day not to kill them.

She found another egg, not chocolate this time. It was already hatched, and the secret inside hissed at her.
“Now it’s MY turn to hunt.”

I was sad to see my boy throw a stick for his puppy, dead a week now, and horrified to see the stick hover as something brought it back.

The clock chimed 12 as she took his sword & removed his armour. Her fingers caressed, & he smiled when the hands stopped at mid-knight.

I watched thru the glass as the man drew back the sheet. I identified the body quietly, musing that the one I wore now suited me better.

That night he didn’t dare look at the clock, but every tick of it was the sound of a chisel against stone, chipping cracks in his heart.

“So,” I said. “What’s with the gender reassignment?”
He shrugged. “The #FP writer realised that ‘He’ is one less character than ‘She’.”

If you made it this far, thanks for reading. More of my FP scribblings can be found here:

A Love Letter To Friday Phrases

Friday Phrases – I’m In Love

#FP – An Archive Within An Ark Hive – Part 01

#FP – An Archive Within An Ark Hive – Part 02

#FP – An Archive Within An Ark Hive – Part 03