Tag Archives: Short Story Day Africa

Spring Water

Spring is making itself known here in Fife. First off was the snowdrops, which I knew from extensive research (reading The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe) are the first sign of spring. Now some purple and yellow flowers have started to appear. I’ve been informed these are crocuses; another plant I only know from books.

#spring is springing #scotland #flowers

A post shared by Cat Hellisen (@cat_hellisen) on

One thing there’s no shortage of here in Scotland is water (it’s coming through my roof, which is…less fun), and Water is also the wonderful anthology I am very proud to have been part of. A collection of African short stories from across the continent and diaspora, it received this lovely write up from WAWA BOOK REVIEW:

What plays out in this rich collection is a stimulating re-imagination of water: as giver and taker of life, as nourisher of life and harbinger of woe, as purifier, as an unstoppable change agent. Each of the writers featured in this anthology dares to plunge into deep water to deliver a rich serving, a robust contribution to the discourse of life (reminding us that the African story is not a single trite tale but, like water, a refreshing outlet into the intricate design of a fertile continent).

The review had kind things to say about my story and I was so happy to read this:

Perhaps the boldest in the collection, Cat Hellisen’s ‘The Worme Bridge’ captures the unsettling transformation of an entire family into scaly aquatic creatures. The gripping story almost forcefully drags the reader into the strange world of the unfortunate family, pushing the borders of imagination to the lofty realm from which the writer conceived this grim tale.

If you haven’t yet checked out the anthology, it’s available internationally via Amazon in either paperback or ebook format.

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Water and Witch Houses and More Water

One day, someone is going to notice how often I drown my characters who don’t fit in (call it metaphorical, call it symbolic, call it my last wave, whatever), but until then I’ll keep writing them.

(And occasionally selling them – another story about drowning just sold, details when I am all contracted and sorted. But it’s a biggie and I am well-chuffed *grins*)

On that note, award-winning writer Diane Awerbuck reviewed Short Story Day Africa‘s Water anthology in the Sunday Times, and said nice things.

This picture was stolen From Rachel Zadok's twitter feed

This picture was stolen From Rachel Zadok’s twitter feed

She also said my story (about drowning, kinda) The Worme Bridge had nods to Bosman and Lovecraft, which started a conversation about Boscraft, which led to her dinging me for never promoting my work after I said I had written Fake Town Lovecraftian shorts before.

So, in case you didn’t know about my ventures into the dreaming, here’s the (utterly beautiful, art-filled) anthology I’m part of: Dreams From The Witch House, edited by Lynne Jamneck, and published by Dark Regions Press.