Second Chances, Seconds, Chance

Happy New Year!

In many ways, 2019 was a terrible year — the state of the climate and the state of the politics to name but two — but, I happily confess, on a personal level last year was a pretty good one for me. Let me count the ways:

  • I moved to a new city, Barcelona, which I like very much. I miss my friends in Madrid a lot but, since Spain plans to make its high-speed rail system considerably cheaper in 2020, I may well impose myself upon them more frequently in future.
  • I got a new day job. Not only that, but a real job, after faking it as a teacher of Business English and earning a pittence for most of the last decade. I now work as a technical writer, and while I’m hardly raking in the cash, by comparison it feels that way.

That’s right, real-life changes of circumstance! But I mostly talk about my writing life here, and I had a few moments of note in that context too:

  • I co-published a novel. The year previously I wrote a serialised fiction project with my collaborators, Charlotte Ashley and Kurt Hunt, resulting in about 150,000 words of historical fantasy on the high seas of the 17th Century. Now available in book form!
  • My writing appeared in the latest SFFWorld anthology. Co-edited with N.E. White, DYING EARTHS was released a week or so ago and it closes with my story Convertir, in which a young member of a cult confronts what might be the end of the world…
  • I also sold a short story to TRIANGULATION: DARK SKIES. This was a bit special, partly as it was the first time I was selected for an anthology I had no part in publishing, but also because I think the story, Blow the Stars Away, is one of the best I’ve written.

Not bad, I think you’ll agree! But there’s something I’ve left off that list, something which, although it technically happened in 2019, has only today come to pass.


I’m very happy to let you know that my reality-hopping short story SECOND CHANCES, SECONDS, CHANCE has just been published in a new speculative fiction magazine named Cossmass Infinities!

Obviously I’m pleased about that generally, but this story also represents my first “professional” fiction sale. For those not in the know, there are various magazines and other markets out there for short scifi, fantasy and horror fiction which are catagorised as “pro”, “semi-pro”, or otherwise according to the rates they pay to contributors. One milestone passed: next stop, the bestseller lists!

To celebrate, magazine editor Paul Campbell has given me permission to run a little competition, winners receiving a copy of Issue One in either EPUB or MOBI format. To take part, all you have to do is send me a cool sentence that includes the word “infinite” (or infinity/infinities), the more interesting the better! You can post your entry as a reply here, or to Facebook or Twitter, the first five get a copy.


It’s a nice feeling to kick off a new year with a new achievement. I happen to know that I’ll be returning with news of a second such thing before too much more time has passed, but I’ll try not to get ahead of myself just yet…

Instead, let me wish you the very best of all things for 2020, and whatever ills befall us, be it individually or as a species, don’t let them drag you down!

9 thoughts on “Second Chances, Seconds, Chance

  1. Congrats! Your commitment to your craft is damn inspiring. Here’s to infinite encores.

    (P.S. Every bedtime our school-aged son says to his mom and dad: “I love you more than infinity.”)

  2. For some reason Luke can only understand the concept of “infinite” in Catalan and when I use the word in English he has no idea what I mean

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