Welcome to the Urban Fantasist website, home to Charles Christian's fiction and nonfiction, the Grievous Angel scifi and fantasy, poetry and flash fiction zine, as well as regular news, pictures and blog posts on writing, geek stuff, the just plain weird and anything else we think you'll enjoy. For further details check out our FAQs section or use the Search Box at the top of the page.
New SF&F Poetry & Flash Fiction
Your next instalment of Grievous Angel will be this Saturday!
Two New Urban Fantasy Tales
Two glorious pieces of urban fantasy now. The first story by Jessica Kormos – The Silence of the Yams – has a wonderful pun for a title and goes to ask whether vegetarians are really all that innocent? Our second story – The Prize by Dean Turnbloom – is a dark tale about a small town mystery and how one nine-year-old deals with it. As it happens, in that pragmatic way nine-year-olds always do. You can read them both HERE
From Bus Stop Gothic to a Pocket Full of Fingers
We've not one but five new prose poems for you now, from not one but five writers new to Grievous Angel – so say hello to Rachael Clyne, Zella Christensen, F. J. Bergmann, N. M. Farr and Bethany Powell – and a series of tales covering everything from homesick witches and people-hungry homes, to bus stop gothic and a pocket full of fingers that once belonged to Jesus. You can read them all HERE.
New Flash Fiction from Three New Contributors
We've three new flash fiction stories for you – from three new contributors – all women as it happens. So follow this LINK to meet Patty Templeton, Betty McIntyre and Jessica Patient and their tales of haunted juke joints, sea monsters, and dystopian ice cream vans. We've also got some of Betty McIntyre's pen and ink art, including one we've used for our latest "Grievous Angel". Enjoy.
New Poetry & Haiku from 5 new writers & poets
Sorry we are a day late (delayed by, hopefully, the last of the Horsemen of the Technologypocalypse) but we have a selection of poetry from five writers today, bringing you blood, gore, horror and a little more blood. You can read them all HERE totally free of charge.
SciFi Saturday: New Flash Fiction
The last time we encountered Gary Every was in September last year with his tale of seaplanes and Mussolini's Catfish. Now he is back with a science fiction short story Mars Curiosity (CLICK HERE) which reminds us that Mars is the only known planet inhabited solely by robots!
We've two stories here from Kalamazoo-based William Aksel. The first was as an assignment when he attended the six week Odyssey speculative writing workshop. The objective was to show boredom without using the word 'bored'. The second story confirms the theory that dogs are smarter than their owners!
Top Stories, Pix & Movie Clips
Latest book doing great!
These boots were made for talking !
Time for a little shoe-porn here courtesy of London artists Fantich & Young. The soles of these shoes are constructed from a mixture of synthetic and real human teeth. Talk about putting your foot in your mouth – and presumably you also need both shoe polish and toothpaste to clean them.
The Unseen Lending Library
26/05/15 Out and about at the weekend in "The Saints" area of Suffolk and spotted this local book exchange. Great way to re-use a redundant telephone kiosk – and also great to see some Terry Pratchett in there along with the Jackie Collins & Co "usual suspects."
The 48 Hour Flash Fiction Challenge: we have our shortlist
A big thank you to my fellow jury members Zoe Margolis and Robert Grant and I'm pleased to say we now have our shortlist for the SCI-FI-LONDON 48 Hour Flash Fiction Challenge 2015. The winner will be announced at 6:30pm at the Stratford Picturehouse, London E15 on Wednesday 3rd June.
Here is the shortlist (in strictly alphabetical order – I'll be emailing everyone over the next24 hours) and I'll see you in Stratford...
Atmosphere by Bjorn Engstrom (Sweden) - first encounters with alien life on a new planet
Baxter & Baxter by Neil Murton (London) - Steampunk meets time travel in a hard-boiled detective setting
Grab Hold by Daniel Noall (London) - hacking and scavenging in a post-apocalyptic world
The Awake by Adam Jackson (London) - is this a hospital or a prison and am I a war hero or a traitor
Signed & Sealed by Lars Tuck (Oxfordshire) - in a dystopian future when everyone is deaf, one man can hear Beetoven’s Ode to Joy
The Transit by Andrea Tran (London) - in the Mexico of the future, a taxi driver learns of a mathematical paradox
Wyndham finally gains his recognition!
Earlier today, the British sci-fi novelist John Wyndham finally gained some long overdue recognition when a passageway in North-West London has officially named Triffid Alley. See full story HERE.
Three inventions & a funeral
18/05/15 Time for a reminder that today is Tom Midgley Day, celebrating the 126th anniversary of the birth of Thomas Midgley Jnr, the American engineer and chemist, on 18th May 1889. Who Tom Midgley you ask? He is the man who, despite having the best intentions, unwittingly unleashed two major health hazards on an unsuspecting world. The full story is HERE
Jesus Obi-Wan ?!?
17/05/15 As it is Sunday, here is a religious story... apparently the depiction of Jesus as a white guy does cause some students a little confusion when it comes to their Bible Studies homework...
Infamy, infamy, they've all got it in for me!
Or this is what happens when you are cheeky to PRs with access to Photoshop. Of course if you are not familiar with the TV series Better Call Saul, this will mean nothing to you!
It's Not What I Say But What I Mean When I Say It!
10/04/15 I say, you there, Johnny Foreigner and that includes all you Americans. Do you ever have to deal with English people? Yes! Then perhaps you should check out our handy guide to What Brits Say - What Brits Really Mean When They Say It - And What Foreigners Think Brits Mean.
The New Star Wars teaser:
Charles Christian's Latest Books
New Book Out Now !
Just in time for the holiday season here's my new – and unusual – travel guide to that part of East Yorkshire known as the Yorkshire Wolds, a guide that pulls together the secrets of the Wold Newton Triangle – where fact is even weirder than fiction.
A travel guide to Yorkshire’s Weird Wolds: The Mysterious Wold Newton Triangle by Charles Christian is available on Amazon Kindle as an ebook for £0.99p now.
Meet, amongst other oddities, werewolves, zombies, vampires, green skinned fairy folk, headless ghosts, screaming skulls, ancient warlords, miracle-working priests, very eccentric gentry, England’s oldest buildings, disappearing rivers, a good Queen and an avaricious Queen, a black skeleton, a Parkin-eating dragon, sea serpents, shape shifters, enchanted wells, giant monoliths and a grid of ley lines, as well as a surprising amounts of Quite Interesting Facts. There is even Lawrence of Arabia in there and, for enthusiasts of American naval history, Captain John Paul Jones. And for sci-fi & fantasy fans, you'll also find the inspiration for some of Philip José Farmer's books.
Buy & Read The Best Seller Writing Guide
Only available on Amazon Kindle as an ebook from £0.99p / $1.50
Do you write genre fiction? Or love reading it? This book reveals the 12 rules that writers of science fiction, fantasy, crime and horror must never break when building believable imaginary worlds for their readers.
What the reviews say...
"What a brilliant book! Rule 13: Read this book. It can only help you write better genre stories. What's to lose?" ...Vanessa Gebbie, award-wining author and editor of Short Circuit: A Guide to the Art of the Short Story
"It's the ideal go-to source for the basic rules and principles of genre fiction writing... it's a thoroughly enjoyable read and easy to dip into in the future for recaps... best of all, it's solid, practical advice."
"In my collection, this is one of the Best writing references I have. Insightful, Detailed, Concise, and helpful writing tips. Highly recommended to all writers!"
"A quick and witty read (some great examples are given), this book is well worth returning to at greater length to savour the author's knowledge and analysis of a wide range of fiction and the spin-off films. A short book that packs a punch!"
"This great little book gives aspiring writers a dozen common sense rules for crafting fiction.. it's also well worth the attention of more experienced writers."
"If I had read this book first, maybe I would not be on my fifth rewrite!"
"It's the sort of book I wish I'd had ten years ago, when I started working on my first novel. The price is great and the advice is sound."
Latest Reviews: "If you want to be a writer, seriously consider getting this book."
Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00MELTC84
Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00MELTC84
43 weeks in the Amazon Kindle Top #20 Education/Reference and Writing Skills Bestseller Lists