And the winner is…

Like headlines and phone calls, rarely in my experience are emails good things. It’s usually work, spam, or a bank statement, none of which I’m particularly keen on. One of the exceptions to this rule are those from my friend Derek Wright, Director at Wordsworth Editions, who has been kind enough to allow me to… Continue reading And the winner is…

The Watch House: A Ghost Story for Christmas

It was Angie – or ‘Angelique’ as she now styled herself – who first figured out that the old watch house on the Spit would make a great venue for a Christmas party. An early adapter to acid house, she loved beach parties in the summer and warehouse parties in the winter. This year, she… Continue reading The Watch House: A Ghost Story for Christmas

The 2021 Olga Sinclair Prize for Short Fiction – Judge’s Comments

It was with great pleasure, not to say humility, that I was asked to judge the 2021 Olga Sinclair Prize for Short Fiction, the results of which were announced this evening. The theme of this year’s competition was ‘Lost’, to be interpreted in any way by the submitting authors, the only limit being the number… Continue reading The 2021 Olga Sinclair Prize for Short Fiction – Judge’s Comments

A little place just outside Diss

A ghost story for Halloween... ‘If there is an afterlife,’ I remember my mother saying one day, ‘then how come people always look so sad when they die?’ Back then, I wasn’t in a position to answer. To be honest, I didn’t want to know. I was already regretting raising the issue with her at… Continue reading A little place just outside Diss

In Conversation with Novelist Audrey Chin

Extract of an interview on the 'Essence of the Gothic' with Singaporean novelist Audrey Chin What is Gothic literature? Is there a difference between the modern and Victorian variety? Or the Asian and European ones? And why is it considered part of the literature of subversion? I’m a neophyte to the genre. Indeed, I would… Continue reading In Conversation with Novelist Audrey Chin

The First Great American Novel

Originally published by Wordsworth Editions… ‘You don’t know about me without you have read a book by the name of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer; but that ain’t no matter. That book was made by Mr. Mark Twain, and he told the truth, mainly. There was things which he stretched, but mainly he told the truth.’ So… Continue reading The First Great American Novel

‘Church ain’t shucks to a circus’: Tom Sawyer and the literature of subversion

Originally published by Wordsworth Editions... Tom Sawyer is one of those transcendent literary characters who go beyond the simply iconic and enter the realm of myth. His statue stands alongside his best friend, Huckleberry Finn, in Mark Twain’s childhood home, Hannibal, Missouri (erected in 1926, it’s one of the first, if not the first, statues… Continue reading ‘Church ain’t shucks to a circus’: Tom Sawyer and the literature of subversion

New Blog Project

I’m launching a new blog today called Tales from a Rat Biker. This is a project that’s very close to my heart and long overdue. Lockdown has given me the time to actually do it. This isn’t a blog about mechanics, or a particular brand. It’s more of a lifestyle/cultural history project, with articles on… Continue reading New Blog Project

Looking for Kafka

New piece for the Wordsworth Editions blog... For an author so revered and obsessively studied, Franz Kafka remains as enigmatic as his fiction. Like Shakespeare, he is a writer about whom so much has been written that it would now be impossible to read it all in a lifetime. And any scrap of textual evidence,… Continue reading Looking for Kafka

‘A man at the top of his game’ – Interview

Nice piece in my hometown paper, the Eastern Daily Press, by Derek James. My mum would have loved this... Norfolk author Stephen Carver is a man at the top of his game. Some say you can’t stick your arm out in the street in Norwich without knocking over a writer. Derek James talks to one… Continue reading ‘A man at the top of his game’ – Interview