Day 14 - First to know alert! Sound the alarm; this is not a drill ....


Welcome to the first ‘First to know!‘ post of my journal. As mentioned previously:

'Not only will I be discussing my progress and my process here but I will also talk about other side projects - my novels, writing challenges or competitions I take part in, etc. - and share exclusive excerpts of my writing, as well as complete short stories, for you to read. I am also hoping to provide a tell-first service on here for any new and exciting news or updates that may occur - in other words, you will be the first to know anything even before it’s released on my website!’

Therefore, I would like to share with you my latest news and an exclusive sneak peek!

Following my previous post ‘Day 12 - I’m back from summer Camp (NaNo)! Time to unpack ...‘, I looked at my current novel project - Sanctuary-on-Severn, an alternative historical fiction piece set in 1351 - and decided to revert it back to the short story it originally started as. This is for a few reasons, but mostly because I believe it was a stronger piece back when it was in this form instead. I may return to it as a novel at some point in the future but, for now at least, I am sure this is the right path for it. So, over the weekend and this morning, I isolated the short story narrative from the novel, spruced it up a bit, lined it up with the publisher’s guidelines, and sent it lovingly on its way with a little suitcase to a magazine called Alt Hist: Historical Fiction and Alternate History.

Their current waiting period for acceptance or rejection is ‘within three months’ so potentially a long wait, but I have many other writing projects to keep me occupied until then. For yourself, lovely reader, see below for a preview excerpt exclusive to this journal!

From Sanctuary-on-Severn, the short story:

'The shouts of the gang continued to grow louder until the girls could hear the creak of the cart’s wheels. One of the oxen gave a deep bellow as if to announce the gang’s arrival. Maven ran back over to where the roof had collapsed. The fallen wooden beam beneath the thatch had left a compact space between it and the back wall of the house. Maven helped Dulcina into the gap then entered it herself. Behind the thatch felt warm and the air felt thick to breathe in. Their backs pressed against the stone of the wall and they had to tuck their knees up to their chests to fit. The only relief was the cold but slow draft that ebbed and flowed throughout the house. They sat still, silent and listening. The front door banged against the stone of the house as it opened and heavy footsteps scuffed against the floor.'

(© 2016 by Dan Morris - novel cover design)


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