Cosmopolitan Predators!

… and now for something completely different.

Not a novel, not a series of short stories, but a little bit of both.

I had the germ of the idea for this years ago when I read Armistead Maupin’s Tales of the City.  I love many things about Maupin’s writing, but one of the things that really caught my attention about the Tales was that they originally appeared as regular instalments in the San Francisco Chronicle.

That struck me as a really different way of writing.  When I write a novel, I plan it out, write it, redraft it, change the beginning, change the end, redraft again… I’ve often wondered what it would be like writing a story as a serial, not having the luxury of going back and changing what I’d done.  What would that mean?  Would the characters evolve in a different way?  The idea has fascinated me for years, however there’s always been one drawback.  Nobody really publishes serial fiction any more.

I discussed this with Chris Beckett at Eastercon last year, and it turned out he was fascinated by the idea of serial fiction, too.  So, it turns out were Keith Brooke, Eric Brown, Juliet E McKenna, Philip Palmer, Adrian Tchaikovsky and Ian Whates.  We all wanted to write serial fiction, but there was no outlet for it…

So I decided to do something about that.  My wife is an experienced editor, I have the IT skills and so…

Athernet Magazine will be launching on March 30th.  Aethernet Magazine is the magazine of serial fiction.  In it you’ll find serial fiction by the above authors, and by me.  Cosmopolitan Predators! is just a little but like Tales of the City in that it follows the lives of a series of characters, however it scores over Maupin in that it has more robots in it.

The concept behind Aethernet Magazine isn’t a new one, but perhaps its a concept whose time has come again.  See what you think…


Colinthology is a collection of light-hearted, uplifting fantasy and SF short stories, put together in memory of Colin Harvey, who passed away suddenly in August 2011. All of the stories have been donated for free by friends of Colin, and all of the proceeds are being donated to Above & Beyond, the Bristol-based charity for which Colin volunteered in his spare time.

I was proud to be asked to contribute to the Colinthology. For some reason I’ve never quite understood, people thought that Colin and I were brothers. It became a standing joke at conventions, with Colin getting his friends to come up to me and pretend they thought I was him. Obviously, we were both blessed at birth with outstanding good looks, prodigious talent and incredible modesty, but Colin had something else that set him apart from me and most other writers. Colin genuinely enjoyed every aspect of the writer’s life. Everyone likes to talk about their own work, even if they pretend not to, but I’ve never known anyone with as much enthusiasm as Colin for other people’s work, other people’s workshops and other people’s talks.

Conventions will seem a little less inviting now that my brother will not be there waiting for me.

Short Stories

(Please note, this list is incomplete.  I’m working on updating this blog…)


Nature, issue March 19th 2009


In the Anthology WE THINK THEREFORE WE ARE, edited by Peter Crowther (DAW, 2009)


In the Anthology SUBTERFUGE, edited by Ian Whates (Newcon Press, 2008)

Why are Rocks?

Hub Issue 40, edited by Lee Harris

Matthew’s Passion (with Eric Brown)

KETHANI by Eric Brown (Solaris, 2008)

Third Person

In the Anthology THE SOLARIS BOOK OF NEW SCIENCE FICTION, edited by George Mann (Solaris, 2007)

Reprinted in THE YEAR’s BEST SF 13, edited by David Hartwell and Kathryn Cramer

Aristotle OS

In the Anthology FAST FORWARD 1, edited by Lou Anders (PYR, 2007)

Reprinted in THE YEAR’s BEST SF 13, edited by David Hartwell and Kathryn Cramer

The Exchange

Postscripts 7

The Robot and the Octopus

Nemonymous 5

A Matter of Mathematics

In the Anthology THE MAMMOTH BOOK OF NEW JULES VERNE ADVENTURES, edited by Mike Ashley and Eric Brown


In the anthology CONSTELLATIONS, edited by Peter Crowther (DAW, 2005)

The Ugly Truth

Interzone 191

The Waters of Meribah

Interzone 189

Reprinted in THE YEAR’s BEST SF 9, edited by David Hartwell and Kathryn Cramer

Teaching the War Robot to Dance

Interzone 178

Real Man

Interzone 174

Indecisive Weapons

Interzone 172

Restoring the Balance, 2

Interzone 168

Restoring the Balance

Interzone 167

A New Beginning

Interzone 163

Single Minded

Interzone 162

The Blue Magnolia

The Third Alternative 22

Reprinted in the Mammoth Book of Comic Fantasy, edited by Mike Ashley


Interzone 144


Interzone 139

The Sixth VNM

Interzone 138