Slow Melt has been published as part of Menu 8 from 69 Flavors of Paranoia. It is the second story involving DCI Sembilan to make it into the public eye, though it was the first written. For those who haven't kept track on Sembilan's progress, he is basically a Glasgow cop ala Taggart, who winds up dealing with all manners of the supernatural. I set it in my native Glasgow, because as one punter put it to me "I could believe anything of that place - zombies, vampires, Indian burial grounds..."
The stories are also my tributes to my favourite horror writers and stories. In this manner, Slow Melt is a tribute to the work of E.F. Benson, specifically Negotium Peramambulans. A strange serial killer is stalking the criminal underworld, and only one dead conman seems to link what was left of the victims together. The police were stumped, until DCI Sembilan was brought on the case...
The first published Sembilan story was Character in Search of an Author, which you can read at this link here.
Multiple Choice is a simple tale. You get to choose if the victim lives or dies through simple choice. I loved Choose Your Own Adventure novels when I was younger, and this is a mini-tribute to them.
Some might say I came up with the last line first and worked backwards, but that is not entirely true: I came up with it second. As opposed to Curiosity Killed The Cat?, which was quite obviously a case of coming up with the last line first, and then swiftly writing a few hundred lines to justify that finish. But I make no apology for that, or my quality level of puns.
Breaking News is the remnant of a short sketch which I never performed, but by the time I am rich and famous and writing my memoirs I may have altered history to change that fact. It's either hilariously funny or makes no sense, bitingly satiric or stupid. There is possibly no middle ground.
I wrote it, so naturally I love it. Breaking news as our reporters stand by for the news breaking out imminently...
Scotland in Space started off as a first line, which I kept for ages. Then one day I decided to add to it. And the results are plain to see. I am not very good at Sci-Fi, so I kept this one short and to the point, to avoid any plotholes or dodgy science. In fact, there is still oodles of dodgy science and I get round that with my ever useful "Fantasy Not SF Writer" get out of jail free card. Find out what happens when Scotland takes to the stars.
I even managed to chuck in an admittedly subtle shout out to Duncan Lunan's laws/politics of survival.
Evil Machiavellian Identical Army. Have you ever wondered what would happen if an army of Penguins took over Number 10 Downing Street? So had I! So I wrote down a brief sketch of the end of democracy as we know it. This one is utterly bonkers, and so, like all of my utterly bonkers children, I love it utterly.
Issue 19 of Whotopia is due out any day, and should include my guide to the World's Cup. And no, that's the one genuine non-typo here.