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Friday, 9 April 2010


Almost everyone hates their hometown, sometimes because it's a dead-end town, sometimes because it's a case of familiarity breeds contempt. There are other reasons too, but I think those're probably the main ones. Scunthorpe is a cesspit, with the main industry being provided by the steel works. But even this huge complex, that I have a lovely view of from my bedroom since it's less than a mile from my house, is dying. The whole town is dying.

Yet, I don't mind being back here. There's countryside literally at the end of my street, and a massive lake near my house, that used to be a quarry (so it's impossibly deep). Plus, my main group of friends are all here, and I have a cool job in an art gallery. Not to say I intend to spend the rest of my life here; I'm not mentally ill.

I've been considering the "unpublishable story" angle recently. I don't mean something that's controversial or anything like that, but rather a story that's an awkward length (like 9000 words) or combines genres that don't typically go together/aren't popular. Where can these stories find a home? Unless you're lucky enough to find a niche market or open-minded zine: nowhere.

For a while now I've toyed with the idea of putting together a short story collection, with a solid central theme. I don't know how "easy" something like this is to get published - I think it's 50/50 as to whether someone wants it or not...never mind if they actually like the style/genres. Anyway, if I use some of the "unpublishable" stories I've been polishing, I have something that's around 45K words. My aim to have double that word count, with a total of 13 stories, and I think I can do it. Since I'm struggling to get anywhere with my novel (thanks to it being a strange format and 'unpopular' style) I'm going to get this collection sorted and see what happens. It appears my niche is 'small town horror' so that'll be the central theme. Lord knows I've experienced enough of it where I live.


and as a special amendment: can anyone translate this for me: 辛苦了!祝你愈來愈好

I tried to find out what it says and found a blog that, translated, said a load of crazy guff:

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