Category: Blog Tour

Guest Post: Tortured Willows—Bent. Bowed. Unbroken Lee Murray’s Sneak Peek

  1. Guest Post: Tortured Willows—Bent. Bowed. Unbroken Lee Murray’s Sneak Peek
  2. Guest Post: Tortured Willows—Bent. Bowed. Unbroken Geneve Flynn’s Sneak Peek
  3. Guest Post: Tortured Willows—Bent. Bowed. Unbroken Christina Sng’s Sneak Peek
  4. Guest Post: Tortured Willows—Bent. Bowed. Unbroken Angela Yuriko Smith’s Sneak Peek

A preview of ‘Tortured Willows—Bent. Bowed. Unbroken’

Lee Murray


Tortured Willows—Bent. Bowed. Unbroken

Poetry by Christina Sng, Angela Yuriko Smith, Lee Murray, and Geneve Flynn


I’m delighted to join my Crane sisters—Christina Sng, Angela Yuriko Smith, and Geneve Flynn—to bring you Tortured Willows, a collaborative collection comprising 60 poems expanding on the themes of otherness, expectation, and tradition that were introduced in our multi-award-winning anthology Black Cranes: Tales of Unquiet Women (Bram Stoker and Shirley Jackson Awards). With a foreword by dark fiction writer, poet, and historian, K.P. Kulski, the author of Fairest Flesh, and a stunning cover design by Kyra Starr, Tortured Willows releases on Poetry Day, 7 October 2021, from Yuriko Publishing. Today, I’m excited to give readers of The Horror Tree an advance peek of one of my poems from the collection:


‘Traitors of the Black Crown’ Blog Tour – Finding Your Voice

Finding Your Voice by Cate Pearce


In my second year of undergrad (2006), I took a unique creative writing course. It was a night class so about half of the students were “adult learners” at midpoints in their careers. The other half were college kids like me; we fell short of the criteria for the “real” creative writing programs due to missed deadlines or less-than-impressive portfolios. It was a hodge-podge of experiences, ages, and interests. It was also the best writing course I have ever taken.


The premise of the class was simple. We had to write the entire ninety minutes. Once class started, we could not talk. If we had something to say to someone, we had to write it, and then read it aloud. The only socializing was done before, or after class.


The Left Hand of Dog Blog Tour: Clarke’s Third Law

Clarke’s third law

Blog post about The Left Hand of Dog by SI CLARKE

In October of 2020, I sat down to write an extremely silly novel – something that would take my mind off … well, off life, the universe, and everything. My first two novels were hard science fiction – anything that went in had to be scientifically sound. That series was about building a self-sufficient colony on Mars – so I had to learn about every aspect of life on Mars. 

I’m not joking when I say I did more research for those books than for my master’s degree. I learnt about travelling to Mars, the health impacts of low gravity on the human body, bees in space, ultra-efficient dead body disposal, water on Mars, closed-loop sanitation, sustainable agriculture. I have whole spreadsheets dedicated to calculating the land mass required to feed and accommodate varying numbers of humans. 

My goal in writing The Left Hand of Dog was to produce a fun book. I wanted something easy to read – but also easy to write. No more putting in hundreds of hours of research before I started writing. But how to deal with the troublesome science: faster-than-light travel, universal translators, space medicine?


Book Review: August’s Eyes by Glenn Rolfe

TW/CW: Pedophilia, child abuse, Taphephobia, kidnapping, child murder, alcoholism, homophobia, reference to miscarriage, Transphobia, Arachnophobia, Suicide, and emotional abuse.

Disclaimer: This article contains affiliate links. If you purchase something through the links in this article we may receive a small commission or referral fee. This happens without any additional cost to you.


Spears Corner, Maine may be one of the evilest places on Earth. The small town is the birthplace of the “Ghoul of Wisconsin”, a pedophilic kidnapper/serial killer who would give John Wayne Gacy a run for his money. It also has a bloody history of Native American genocide when white colonists came to take their land for settlement. Boasting twelve cemeteries, you could say that the town is well acquainted with death.

‘Ink’ Blog Tour: How Does the Flash Fiction Contest Work? by J. Scott Coatsworth

How Does the Flash Fiction Contest Work?

 Q&A With Director J. Scott Coatsworth


Every year, Queer Sci Fi holds a flash fiction contest, and hundreds of writers enter their stories. Once the dust clears, a brand-new anthology magically appears, filled with flash fiction goodness. Of course, there’s no real magic involved. Just hard work and experience. So let’s pull back the curtain a little, shall we?

How do you choose the theme each year?

Each year we rotate the honor among our four admins – Scott, Angel, Ben and Ryane. That judge comes up with 3-4 options – always a single word – and we discuss it in the group and choose one of them to be that year’s theme. Generally speaking, we like themes that are topical, that are open to multiple definitions/interpretations, and that don’t favor one of the four speculative fiction genres—sci-fi, fantasy, paranormal or horror—too much over the others.

‘Ariadne, I Love You’ Blog Tour: An interview with J. Ashley-Smith

The Horror Tree Presents- an interview with J. Ashley-Smith

By Ruschelle Dillon


Ruschelle: I’m thrilled to welcome dark horror author J. Ashley-Smith to my scary little branch of the Horror Tree. His newest offering, Ariadne, I Love You, is making herself pretty for her Meerkat Press debut in July. Authors plan their upcoming works ‘coming out’ parties so it gets the recognition it deserves. What do you have planned so your newfound fan can follow the journey?

J. Ashley-Smith: Thank you, Ruschelle. I’m stoked to be here.

Ariadne, I Love You launches on 20 July, and we’ve got a whole bunch of great stuff lined up to celebrate. Meerkat Press has been working tirelessly to arrange a sweet blog tour, and I’ll be stopping by some friendly sites to say hi, answer questions, talk about the book, share a guest post or two, and for certain there will be a playlist in there as well. You can hook into the tour on the Meerkat website

I’ve got my fingers crossed that there will also be a real, live, in-person book launch at some point in the year as well (Australia only, at this stage).


‘Time Paradox’ Blog Tour: “Pillow Dance” Excerpt

Pillow Dance


Their jovial attitudes were having a positive effect on the results. They enjoyed this chapter in their psychic education, and the progress was faster than telepathy. Despite appearances, the crew had a level take on the exercise.

One day, the fun ratcheted up another notch. Larger objects were being moved when a pillow flew across the room and hit Derak in the head. He picked up Shesain’s internal laughter and shot a pillow back across the room at her, catching her off guard and knocking her back on her couch. Rising from the shock, her eyes grew wide, and she returned the favor. This time, Derak deflected the pillow, and it hit Robert in the chest, causing him to lose concentration. Someone requested more pillows from Terga and when they appeared, Shenar shot one across the room and smacked Jack in the face. Before they knew it, they were in a full-fledged pillow fight, running and dodging each other’s aims. Derak hit two targets at once, and Jack was getting good at deflection.

The raucous laughter from the room could be heard all the way on the bridge, and Qex marched back, followed by Vel. As Qex opened the door, three pillows were headed in his direction; they stopped in mid-air, inches from his face. All the pillows hung in mid-air, then dropped to the floor.

Vel countered the disgust showing on Qex’s face, trying hard not to laugh. Qex shot a look at her. The smile left her face, and he faced the crew. “You’re worse than Telaxian children. If these antics did not help you in your lessons as much as it does, I would put an immediate halt to it. I see you have moved into deflection. If you employ such childish methods, at least keep the noise down.” He turned and headed back to the bridge, followed by a grinning Vel.


‘Herald’ Blog Tour: The Cover Art in Herald

The Cover Art in Herald

The cover art for Herald beautifully depicts a battle in a medieval warehouse. This art was created by Jeff Brown in consultation with author Lee Hunt and publicist Lyda Mclallen. Their goal was to showcase some of the numerous symbols and ideas related to the story. I thought it would be fun to see how many of the symbols and images we could identify and point out their significance to the story.