Friday 27 May 2016

Darker Battlefields.

It’s with an immense feeling of pride that I can announce that DARKER BATTLEFIELDS an anthology of war/horror novellas will soon be available from The Exaggerated Press. Pride because my own story, Winter Storm is one of the six contained within.

I still can’t quite believe that this is all happening but it is – and my heartfelt thanks go to Frank Duffy for drawing me into the fold in the first place. I massively appreciated the offer at the time and even more so now that the book will soon be a reality.

Thanks also to my good friends who read the early drafts of the novella – Ross Warren and Ben Jones – whose feedback was invaluable, and which made the story so much better than my first attempt. Ben is a walking encyclopaedia of all things war related and many of our conversations tended to veer off course and become flurries of ideas, many of which will hopefully see the light of day in future publications.

As befitting a collection of war stories, a camaraderie sprung up between the authors during the process of pulling the book together with shared feedback and support flying across the virtual ether so thanks again to Mark West, Paul Edwards, Richard Farren Barber, Dean M Drinkel and Adrian Chamberlin for their encouragement and enthusiasm. I have to say I still feel a bit like the new kid in class here but am honoured to be sharing a TOC with writers whose work I’ve long admired. I'm pretty certain Terry Grimwood's initial reaction to my inclusion would have been "Who?" but I'm again deeply appreciative that he was willing to take a gamble. A special nod goes to Adrian, who took on editing duties – not just for managing to coordinate the whole process but for finding even more ways to improve the fifth draft of Winter Storm. I salute you my brothers in arms!

The story of Winter Storm straddles both world wars, with a demonic encounter on a mountain in Turkey during World War One having repercussions in the snow filled ruins of Stalingrad in the Second World War. Whilst the Great War is my burning obsession, I’ve long been fascinated by the battle of Stalingrad, a siege which lasted over five months and which killed hundreds of thousands. The imagery from photos of the battle have long lurked in the depths of my subconscious so it was great to have an opportunity to use them in a story at last. I’m humbled that that imagery has been used by Ben Baldwin to produce the absolutely stunning artwork for the cover.

Having read the other stories, and seen the quality on display, I can only reiterate how proud I am to be part of this book.  All of the authors have provided their own unique take on the subject of war and the conflicts used range from biblical times, through the Napoleonic Wars via the world wars right up to recent events in Libya. I can’t wait to see it in the flesh.

The stories are:

ODETTE by Richard Farren Barber

THE SEARING by Paul Edwards

WINTER STORM by Anthony Watson

THIS ENVIOUS SEIGE by Adrian Chamberlin





  1. Great write-up and chuffed to be sharing space with you!

  2. Thanks Mark - and the feeling's definitely mutual.