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In Review: 2023’s Literary Journey – Tales, Thrills, and Mysteries

As we bid farewell to 2023 and embrace the dawn of a new year, I reflect on a year filled with creativity, mystery, and the weaving of countless tales. Join me on this journey as I recap the projects and stories that have unfolded in the tapestry of my imagination throughout the past twelve months. From enigmatic novels to suspenseful short stories, each piece invites you to step into worlds where the ordinary collides with the extraordinary.

Books

This year has seen the release of my first two books, First Name Only and One Dark Collection. The first of these to be published was First Name Only. It was initially going to be a short story; however, I started to get a little carried away while writing and didn’t want to stop!

First Name Only then came together from three short stories to create a single story in three acts. Perfect resolution. If you want to read up more about First Name Only, you can do so below.

As the first rays of dawn gently embrace Harry’s eyelids, he awakens to a world cloaked in the shroud of his own forgotten history. A dense fog of amnesia has enshrouded his past, leaving him grasping only the faint threads of his first name, Harry, like an anchor in the storm-tossed sea of his memory. The enigma of his own existence unravels before him as he wrestles with strange visions and nightmarish apparitions that haunt his every waking moment.

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As the name states, One Dark Collection is a collection of stories, all with a dark undertone. You’ll find two short stories from the Black Fern Forest collection and three separate standalone stories.

If you want to read up more about One Dark Collection, you can do so below.

In the heart of everyday life, shadows lurk, and secrets wait to be uncovered. Journey into the depths of human emotion and the mysteries that lie just beneath the surface in One Dark Collection, a gripping anthology of five captivating short stories.

One Dark Collection weaves a tapestry of suspense, mystery, and human drama to keep readers on the edge of their seats. Each story offers a glimpse into everyday life’s enigmatic and unexplored corners, inviting you to question what lies beneath the surface of the ordinary. Get ready for a journey into the darkness that conceals the extraordinary – the stories within this collection will leave you spellbound and craving more.

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Short Stories

The first short story I sat down to write this year, Goodbye Neighbour, was never intended to be published. It has been a project I worked on to get my creative juices flowing. However, this story has now driven and inspired me to work on a few short stories similar to this story in a series in the near future.

If you want to read up more about Goodbye Neighbour, you can do so below.

As the stench of death clings to every facet of Lewis’s existence, the narrative unfolds with an eerie intensity. Join Lewis on a nightmarish quest to rid himself of a toxic presence, navigating the treacherous terrain between mundane office life and the macabre depths of a forbidden secret. With each turn of the page, the tension escalates, revealing the complexities of Lewis’s character and the dark allure of his neighbour’s demise. “Goodbye Neighbour” is a chilling exploration of morality, consequences, and the haunting aftermath of choices made in the dead of night. Embark on this psychological thriller that delves into the chilling realms of a disturbed mind, where the line between sanity and madness blurs, and the echoes of “Goodbye, Frank” linger in the dark.

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There were the two Black Fern Forest stories, which also featured in the Novella First Name Only. These were Shouldn’t Have Looked Up, the retelling of George and friends’ experience delving into the Black Fern Forest. Flowers of the Forest was a continuation of this story, following Elliot as a photographer drawn by the allure of the Black Fern Forest.

If you want to read up more about Shouldn’t Have Looked Up, you can do so below.

George and his intrepid friends had huddled around campfires for years and swapped stories of their dreams and aspirations. Among their most cherished dreams was the annual summer pilgrimage into the heart of the unknown to brave their deepest fears and conquer a rite of passage-spending an entire night in the enigmatic embrace of the Black Fern Forest.

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If you want to read up more about Flowers of the Forest, you can do so below.

In the heart of the Black Fern Forest, an ordinary day took an extraordinary turn when George and his adventurous friends embarked on an expedition into the very depths of this mystical wilderness. Little did they anticipate that their journey would unravel a series of bizarre and unnatural occurrences, forever changing their perception of the world around them.

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I also worked on a Detective Mystery / Thriller called Body in the Office. Following the case of a murdered office worker, found a red flower resting on her corpse. If you want to read up more about Body in the Office, you can do so below.

Detective Christopher Watkins is called to the scene of a murder at a local building block of offices. He walks onto the scene of a murdered female with a red rose in her hand. Detective Christopher Watkins can eventually weed out the truth with the victim tangled in a web of affairs.

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What I consider my best work so far in my writing journey is the short story called Forgive Me Lord. This was initially written and published serially on Wattpad. However, with this short story finishing its run on Wattpad, you can find copies on Amazon, Apple Books and Wattpad.

If you want to read up more about Forgive Me Lord, you can do so below.

Like every other typical, mundane Thursday afternoon, Oliver stood behind the counter at his family shop. The day was slow, and the customers hardly stepped foot inside.

Normal.

At least, it was until a gentleman calling himself Theodore entered Morgan’s Fresh Essentials and Oliver’s life.

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Serialised

In the intricate tapestry of life, everyone carries secrets and weaves the occasional thread of lies into their narrative. These enigmatic strands connect the lives of four individuals, bound by the complexity of their hidden truths, and that is what I’m hoping to show you in the world of Web of Lies.

This serialised novel is currently finished part 1 on Wattpad, and parts 2 and 3 are coming early in 2024. If you want to read up more about Web of Lies, you can do so below.

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Used as an intermittently updated serial story of anthology tales, The End of Us is a dive into the post-apocalyptical world set in the beautiful country of England. If you want to read up more about The End of Us, you can do so below.

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The New Year

As I look forward to 2024, I’m excited about the creative journey that lies ahead. If you’ve enjoyed the tales spun in 2023, more will come in the upcoming year! Head over to the Upcoming page on my site for a sneak peek into what’s in store. Thank you for being a part of this journey, and I can’t wait to share more stories with you in the coming year.

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