Katie's Stories, Katie Recommends

Katie Recommends: Novels

Novels for Days

I promise not every recommendation is going to be for my own stuff.

Honest.

But I did kind of get two books published this year 🙂

A Man in Winter

Arthur, whose life was devastated by the brutal murder of his wife, must come to terms with his diagnosis of dementia. He moves into a new home at a retirement community, and shortly after, has his life turned upside down again when his wife’s ghost visits him and sends him on a quest to find her killer so her spirit can move on. With his family and his doctor concerned that his dementia is advancing, will he be able to solve the murder before his independence is permanently restricted?

A Man in Winter examines the horrors of isolation, dementia, loss, and the ghosts that come back to haunt us.

Available Now

FireFly

My name is Rachel, and I work for the Gentleman.

The Gentleman has an interest in the paranormal, the unexplained and the bizarre. He uses his influence and power to investigate strange events and collect evidence. His collection is comprised of this evidence, as well as files and reports of the events.

My job is to build files, take deliveries and keep the place free from dust and mold.

Building files involves taking all the information and evidence the Gentleman has delivered to my door, and collating and annotating it to tell the story of what happened. Sometimes, when the Gentleman has got enough evidence, I can tell an entire story.

Two months ago, I took deliveries for an event we’re calling Firefly. It’s a very detailed case, and there’s enough evidence of a threat to warrant people being warned. This is a copy of the complete Archive report.

It all started when seven-year-old Simon Thompson vanished.

Out Now!

Blog Talk

Evolution of projects

It starts as A but becomes B.

Today I want to talk to you briefly about evolution, not of anything living, but rather of a creative project or two.

I find it both interesting and refreshing when I can finish a project and look back on it to trace the path it has come. How it started as one thing, became something else and then again sometimes became yet another thing.

My two most recent projects to see daylight went through several iterations.

A Man in Winter started as a short story that got a tad long, it became a novella. Then when I sent it round for its first round of ‘Please publish my work’ enquiries the bulk of the feedback was that it was good but novellas just aren’t an easy sell. So I kicked my backside into gear and A Man in Winter became a novel.

It was dreadful.

I’ve spoken about this before in my blog ‘You can’t turn a circle into a square

So it became a novella again, with some additions and I tried again to sell it. I was successful this time, booya.

The series of transformations or evolutions of the A Man in Winter story is interesting, at least to me, but they are hardly dramatic or unique.

Firefly however went through some intense changes.

Firefly started life as a scribbled note in my writing notebook. Hardly a unique idea either, an agency investigating supernatural events looks into a creepy town where kids go missing.

I tried to plan it as a standard novel but it didn’t excite me at all, so I put it aside. Then I got into a conversation with a friend about games, how they are made, and something they said got me thinking. They said they felt that stories, at least in games, should be built around gameplay rather than the other way around.

I don’t think this is the case in all instances, I’ve played lots of games where the story feels entirely separate from the gameplay mechanics but I’ve played some amazing ones where they tied together as well.

Anyway, this comment got me thinking, could we have a mystery game where the player has to go around a location finding clues to unearth what happened? Of course, we could, guess who had an idea that would fit with that kind of gameplay.

So I got to work.

Long story short, the project fell on its butt.

It’s disappointing but it happens sometimes, more often with collaborative work I’ve noticed. This was my second collaborative piece to kind of fizzle out. But that’s life.

However, I had done a lot of work writing and designing the documents for the game. I had all this stuff and I was itching to do something with it.

Then I read Slenderman, the novel and was reminded how much I enjoy this genre of fiction. That being epistolary fiction, found footage but with books.

So with some tweaking, a lot of editing, and a crash course in design I created something I’m pleased with.

Firefly’s evolution was far more dramatic than A Man in Winter’s was, it went from a scribbled novel idea that I kind of hated, to a potential game, to an epistolary novel.

Evolution is a funny thing, it happens organically, at least in my last two projects, and hopefully, the end result is something far better than the original concept.

Katie's Stories

Halloween Ghost story?

Who will forgive an author a shameless plug now and then?

Who doesn’t love a good ghost story around Halloween?

Oh look at that, a ghost story!

Arthur, whose life was devastated by the brutal murder of his wife, must come to terms with his diagnosis of dementia. He moves into a new home at a retirement community, and shortly after, has his life turned upside down again when his wife’s ghost visits him and sends him on a quest to find her killer so her spirit can move on. With his family and his doctor concerned that his dementia is advancing, will he be able to solve the murder before his independence is permanently restricted?

A Man in Winter examines the horrors of isolation, dementia, loss, and the ghosts that come back to haunt us.

Katie's Stories

A MAN IN WINTER REVIEWS

A Man in Winter

A Man in Winter by Katie Marie is a horror story on more than one level, weaving murder in with the tragedy of loss of oneself through dementia. My heart broke for Arthur as his mind took him away from the world, leaving him vulnerable and confused and desperate for justice for his beloved wife Molly. Treating the subject matter sensitively, this writer has created a tale whose horror lies in it’s very real possibility.

– Stephanie Ellis, author of Bottled and The Five Turns of the Wheel

Is there such a thing as tender hearted horror? Well, there is now. Katie Marie’s ghost story, A Man in Winter, connected with me on such an emotional level. In my opinion, the world of fiction needs more stories told from the POV of the elderly, and Katie Marie certainly delivers on that score.

– Catherine McCarthy, author of Immortelle and Mists and Megaliths

A Mesmerizing psychological mystery from an author who brings a refreshing new voice to horror. This is a quick read, but one that keeps the reader thoroughly intrigued and entertained from beginning to end.

– Catherine Cavendish, author of In Darkness, Shadows Breathe and Dark Observation

Katie's Stories

Man in Winter is Coming in July 2022!

My publisher Brigids Gate Press have shared the cover of my upcoming novella A Man In Winter, designed by Max Stark, @Max_Stark8.

Arthur, whose life was devastated by the brutal murder of his wife, must come to terms with his diagnosis of dementia. He moves into a new home at a retirement community, and shortly after, has his life turned upside down again when his wife’s ghost visits him and sends him on a quest to find her killer so her spirit can move on. With his family and his doctor concerned that his dementia is advancing, will he be able to solve the murder before his independence is permanently restricted?

A Man in Winter examines the horrors of isolation, dementia, loss, and the ghosts that come back to haunt us.