There's plenty happening this week and plenty of news I should be posting about, both good and bad, but most of it will take more than five minutes to get down, so let's go with something that's literally just happened and can be summed up without too much effort on my part: Stephen Theaker has accepted my story Devilry at the Hanging Tree Inn for the next issue of his ever-entertaining Theaker's Quarterly Fiction.
Theaker's Quarterly Fiction is my favourite small press magazine, bar none. It does everything I'd want a small press 'zine to do, and does all of it really well. And Mr Theaker is the patron saint of my more odd and / or silly stories - of which there are, let's face it, quite a few. I believe this is the fifth of mine he's accepted overall, and the fourth he's taken for TQF.
As for Devilry, it was my stab at inventing a straight-up, honest-to-god English folk tale, with all of whatever that entails. I'm not even entirely sure what I mean by that, just that I have a clear mental image of what a traditional English folk tale should look like - and Devilry was me trying, some years ago now and for reasons I can't explain, to get that down. It's got a character named Jack. It's got a rule of three. It's got, as is probably pretty obvious, the devil. It has fights, kerfuffles, comic arguments and a hanging. I even seem to remember that it's sort of based on a real, made up fact, albeit a real made up fact that I may or may not have made up myself.
You know what? That folk tale writing business is harder than it looks. I don't know that I exactly nailed it. Come to think of it, though, it was a pretty inherently impossible challenge to set myself, what with not living a couple of centuries in the past and all. So hey, hopefully I came up with a fun story in the trying.