And so the ritual begins. Small humans roam the streets, all hyped up on the kinds of treats that big humans typically ration for the purpose of bribery. Humiliating outfits are abound, comprised of old rags, plastic sacks, enormous white sheets, obnoxiously large, wide-brimmed hats, and an array of peculiar masks which make humans look a smidgeon uglier than they already are. Vegetables are carved to look like ghoulish grinning faces and plonked outside doorways and in windows to give us poor felines a fright as we go about our night-time exploits. (Felines other than myself, of course. Nothing frightens me, I can assure you.) Then there’s all the noise—the yells and screams and cries from humans of all sizes, even the ones large enough and old enough to know better. The entire palaver makes my tail itch.Continue reading “A Lockout | Short Story (Excerpt from ‘All Hallows’ Hell’)”
Missed Part 1? Read it here
Missed Part 2? Read it here
I remember the first visit to the specialist hospital for treatment. That building, a giant grey block of concrete, was like a great tombstone towering over us. I had visions of it careening over and crushing us as we walked through its doors. And it did, in its way. It snuffed out our spirit.
She grew sick of hospitals, sick of doctors, sick of me telling her to cooperate. And I was sick of her too.
‘I’m not going back again, Sharon. All they do is prod and poke me and then tell me its more doom and gloom.’
‘They’re trying to help.’
‘They all know I’m a dead woman walking.’
‘They’re trying to keep you walking for as long as possible.’
‘What if I don’t want to?’
‘You’re ready to die, are you?’
‘I think I am, yes. You should just shoot me rather than keep dragging me down that hospital.’
‘Alright, Mum. I’ll see if the bloke at Holme Farm’ll lend me his shotgun and we’ll put you out of your misery, eh?’
‘You’d love that, wouldn’t you?’
‘Absolutely. Would give me a great deal of satisfaction to blow your old brains out.’Continue reading “My Mother and Her Cat (Part 3) | Short Story”
Missed Part 1? Read it here
The wee thing didn’t stay wee for very long. It grew at a rate of knots on a diet of sardines, mackerel, salmon, steak—bloody steak!—and anything my mother left on her plate after each meal. That sodding cat was better fed than Mark and I had ever been as kids.
It wasn’t fat, necessarily, but by heck was it big. Solid. Strong and burly like a furry, whiskered wrestler. It would strut up and down the street like a panther, intimidating anyone who dared to approach it with vicious hisses and snippy flicks of its tail.
Arrogant, it was. It would lay out in the middle of the road on its back, sunning its belly and getting its coat blathered in dust and flecks of gooey tar that had melted in the summer heat. When a car came along it wouldn’t move. Brakes would screech and cars would lurch to a halt, and the damn cat would merely peer up at the vehicle before it and blink at the driver, as though they were doing it an inconvenience. A pip of the horn or rev of the engine was the only thing that got it to shift, and even then it moved at half-speed, luxuriously stretching out each of its limbs as it got to its feet and wandered over to the pavement to find a new sunbathing spot.
And it was this sheer bloody arrogance that killed it. Eventually a driver came along that couldn’t give a cat’s arse for the wee thing and its ego.Continue reading “My Mother and Her Cat (Part 2) | Short Story”
My mother always said that cats choose their owners. I always said that my mother talked a lot of old shite.
It wasn’t just when she was old that she talked nonsense. It started when I was young. Scratch that; it probably started when she was young. She insisted that eating my crusts would make my hair curl, but I ended up begging for a perm by the time I was fourteen because all the sodding crusts in the world wouldn’t put a single kink in my limp locks. She said apples were as good as toothpaste for brushing our pegs, but that theory was disproved when our Mark insisted on eating two apples a day instead of using a toothbrush and spent more time in the dentist’s office than he did in school. She insisted that leaving shoes on the table brings bad luck, but I don’t think I’m any unluckier than the next poor git despite going against this titbit of motherly advice more times than I can count over the last forty-nine years.
And she said for decades that she’d be dead by eighty. Said she could feel it in her bones. Said it was written into her fate. She got that wrong. No, she stubbornly hung on for as long as she could. Shame, really, because if she hadn’t, we wouldn’t have had to put ourselves through the shambles that was her eightieth birthday party.Continue reading “My Mother and Her Cat (Part 1) | Short Story”
Feelin’ festive? Fancy a freebie? My short story collection, Merry Bloody Christmas is available for FREE for the next five days.
In a gloomy Yorkshire town on a snowy Christmas Eve, nothing pans out exactly as it should…
An awkward breakup, a vengeful turkey, digitalised ghosts and alien abductions. A chocoholic grizzly bear, a talking Christmas tree, mince pie overdoses and a very bloody murder.
Will poor old Saint Nick make it out alive?
Head over to Amazon to grab your FREE copy of Merry Bloody Christmas now.
Ho-ho-ho, Merry Bookmas!
Silly stories from my social media pages this week…
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It’s Spring Bank Holiday weekend here in the UK, which means three things: an extra day off on Monday, ice-cold cider all weekend long, and my latest eBook available to buy for FREE in every Amazon marketplace.
Come What May Day has 20 overlapping, interweaving, multi-genre short stories that will make you laugh, roll your eyes, and be a little bit sick in your mouth.
This offer is only available until midnight on Monday, so be sure grab your free copy on Amazon ASAP!
May Day has arrived in a gloomy Yorkshire town, and the storm clouds have parted just enough for the annual May Fair to kick off without a hitch. But how long will it be until the town’s dark streak rears its ugly head?
There’s some very questionable meat on the barbecue, a chainsaw-wielding madman is on the loose, and a couple of aliens are trying to figure out if Earth is worth all the hype.
The Morris dancers can’t remember their moves, the maypole is commandeered by a ribbon-addicted feline, and an animal army is awaiting in the woods to set a revolution in motion.
Will the May Queen be deserved of her crown? Will the Federation of Knitters finally gossip itself into oblivion? And will the Green Man get away with his usual mischief before the twisted trees scupper his plans?
Silly, sweet and sinister, these funny short stories for adults are the perfect read for a lazy spring weekend.
Catch up with some of the characters from the author’s previous collection – Merry Bloody Christmas – or get to the know them for the first time with Come What May Day.
And if you’re a Brit, may the sun shine down on your Bank Holiday Weekend with only minimal amounts of (sadly inevitable) rain.
‘He’s terribly cute.’
Cute aren’t I?
I’d make a lovely lodger. Neat. Tidy. Quiet, except for when the postman comes and you need an advance warning of him shoving danger through the letterbox. Continue reading “An Ode to Sausages | Short Story”
Today is the launch of my latest collection of short stories, Come What May Day, which naturally has me feeling all excited and utterly fraught with nerves in equal measures.
Just like my last collection, each story in Come What May Day takes place in the same nameless Yorkshire town and on the same day, only this time the onset of spring has brought about some new adventures.
May Day has arrived and the storm clouds have parted just enough for the annual May Fair to kick off without a hitch. But how long will it be until the town’s dark streak rears its ugly head? Continue reading “Come What May Day | A New Short Story Collection”