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Updates & Upcoming Events…

Hi all! Long time no post! It’s been a tremendously busy year, and I hope you’re all staying warm and well approaching the holiday season; I just wanted to let you know about a couple of updates and upcoming events in my schedule.

Writer’s Digest Historical Fiction Conference

Sun Dec 10th, 1:00pm • Online

I’m thrilled to announce that I’m going to be speaking at Writer’s Digest University’s Virtual Historical Fiction Conference! This is an awesome 3-day event that includes lectures on a variety of topics specific to writing historical fiction, including query letters, research tips, plotting and outlining, and (from yours truly!) how to incorporate queer characters into your historical writing. Plus, everything’s on demand to watch later, too!

My own lecture will be on the topic of Incorporating Queer Characters into Historical Fiction. Join me for this awesome experience and buy your conference tickets now!

Arvon Historical Writing Course: Guest Reader

Wed Mar 13th, 2024 • The Hurst Writing Retreat, Shropshire

I’m very pleased to announce that I’m going to be a guest tutor for one of Arvon’s residential writing courses: Historical Writing in Fiction and Poetry!

This course is going to be held at the beautiful Hurst retreat in Shropshire from Mar 11-16 2024, with amazing tutors Sean Lusk and Jo Bell. I’ll be coming in as a guest on Wed evening to speak about Our Hideous Progeny and historical writing. 

To find out more about this wonderful program and reserve your spot, visit their website!

Updates & News

Firstly… the Our Hideous Progeny paperback is coming out in February! If you were waiting to buy it in PB, keep an eye out on your local bookstore shelves come Feb 1st… 🙂

Also, some fun media mentions:

OHP was named as one of Waterstones’ Best Books of 2023 in the category of Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror!

OHP was also discussed in a fascinating article from the New Yorker on queerness and Frankenstein – and featured as one of their Best Books of the Year!

Lastly, OHP was *also* picked as one of NPR’s Best Books of 2023!

Wahoo! 🥳🎉

Upcoming Events!

Hi all! Breaking news: OUR HIDEOUS PROGENY is out TODAY! 🥳 I have some awesome events coming up to promote it – don’t miss them on my new Events page!

Tue May 9th: Instagram Live w/Katy Hays

Tue May 9 at 5:30pm BST
On @doubledayukbooks

Super excited to announce that next Tuesday evening, I’ll be doing an Instagram Live with Katy Hays, author of The Cloisters! Join me and Katy for a chat about OHP, The Cloisters, & all things Gothic!

Waterstones Falkirk Table Signing  •  Sat May 13th, 12-1pm

Join me at Waterstones Falkirk to celebrate the release of ‘Our Hideous Progeny’! I’ll be signing copies in the bookstore on Saturday May 13th from 12-1pm.

This event is not ticketed – it’s first come first serve, so get here early to get yourself a copy of OHP!

Cymera Festival Panel: Life or Death with Angie Spoto & Melinda Salisbury

I’m going to be on a panel at Cymera Festival, Scotland’s festival of Scifi, Fantasy, and Horror writing, with Angie Spoto & Melinda Salisbury! This panel promises to be an amazing and Gothic time – learn more and buy tickets here!

An Evening with C. E. McGill: Waterstones Sauchiehall St., Glasgow  •  Thu Jun 8th, 7pm

Join me at Waterstones Sauchiehall Street in Glasgow for an evening to celebrate the launch of Our Hideous Progeny! I’ll be in conversation with fellow author Louise Welsh about literary influences, the draw of gothic fiction, history as a setting, and more! Purchase tickets here.

OHP’s First Starred Review!

Fabulous news: Our Hideous Progeny has just received its first starred review! 🤩

You can read the full thing at Publishers Weekly; I’m so thrilled to be the recipient of such a lovely review (and also giggling at the quote they pulled – “Frankenstein, but, like, with dinosaurs” indeed!). Thanks so much to the reviewers of PW!


2021 Reading Challenge: DONE!

PHEW! Happy New Year, all! This past year, I’m proud to announce, I set myself a goal of reading 100 books — and on Dec 30, I hit that goal!

I was initially inspired to set this goal a few years ago, when I read an interview with V. E. Schwab (the link to which I have sadly long since list) in which she said that she reads at least 100 books a year, and has done since 2016. (In fact, according to Goodreads, she read 159 books in 2021 — good God!!) She said that the improvement she noticed in her writing skills was simply too great to ignore, and she’s made a yearly habit ever since.

When I initially read this interview, I was — like most people, I would bet — utterly flabbergasted. Plus, a little bit insecure; I didn’t even read a dozen books this year, how the hell did she manage ten times that! etc. At the time, I was still at college, and such a goal would have been a pure impossibility. This year, however, was my first settled year as an (almost) full-time writer, and thus I finally had the time to set and achieve this same goal myself. I’m also lucky enough to have access to a fantastic library with a wide selection of audiobooks, which probably comprised about 75% of the books I read (i.e. listened to at 1.25x speed) this year. If not for this, and my ADHD Need to listen to audio content At All Times (literally. Even in the bath), then I would never have hit my goal.

I can’t speak yet as to whether this endeavour has improved my writing skills as it did for Schwab, as I’ve largely been in the editing trenches this past year, but I can say that the number and breadth of books I’ve read this year has definitely filled me with motivation and inspiration! I’ve always found reading a good way to get myself out of a writing slump — it’s as if my brain simply ‘runs out of words,’ until I fill it up again with someone else’s and shake it all about like a snow globe until my own sentences come tumbling out. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the experience this year, and I plan to set the same goal for myself next year.


Awards Eligibility 2021

So, after several years spent watching ‘awards eligibility posts’ pop up every year on social media and wondering ‘What’s that about? Ah well, doesn’t concern me anyway,’ I was finally forced to put on my Big Writer Hat and learn — because I had a short story published this year!

TtBTtBTBLB (as I lovingly call it) is a story of gods and sacrifices, mountains and mental illness — and what happens when the person picked as sacrifice is unfortunately all-too-willing to go. (Content warning below if you need them.) It’s weird, queer, and dear to my heart, and if you have a moment and/or you’re currently considering nominations for awards, I’d be thrilled if you gave it a read.

P. S.: Content warnings for “Things to Bring, Things to Burn, Things Best Left Behind”: a (non-graphic) near-suicide-attempt on the first page, suicidal ideation throughout, and several brief, implied mentions of transphobia and an emotionally abusive parent.


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