Author: Alan McCluskey

/ Author
Cracks in the publishing system

Growing in the cracks in the publishing system

The opposition of French bookshops to the shortlisting of a self-published book underlines the cracks in the publishing system and the need to rethink it... Read more on Author's Notes.

/ Artworks
The Breath of Angels

The Breath of Angels

The sun seeps through tinted glass and arcs downwards causing dust motes to dance in the air only to settle softly across the aisle infusing life and light to time-worn stones (...) Click to see the photo gallery on Artworks.

/ Author
Shhhhh! Writing. New book.

Shhhhh! Writing. New book.

Shhhhh! Writing. New book. Follow-up to Stories People Tell. Annie promoting local voices. Seventy-five chapters so far. Eighty thousand words. Coming soon. Read more on Author's Notes.

/ Worlds Apart
Denouncing shocking poverty levels in the US

Denouncing shocking poverty levels in the US

A UN Human Rights Council report reveals the shocking level of poverty in the United States. In an interview on Democracy Now with Philip Alston, author of the report, it was mentioned that the US is the only country in the world where the overall life expectancy is decreasing. Read more on Worlds Apart.

/ Author
Writing a sequel to Stories People Tell

Writing a sequel to Stories People Tell

Of course, I couldn’t resist. I began a sequel to Stories People Tell. It starts in Waterloo Station, in the press of commuters under this clock where an unpleasant surprise is awaiting Annie and her girlfriend Kevin. Read more on Author's Notes.

/ Author
The art of letting a story write itself

The art of letting a story write itself

The writing of a novel brings together a wealth of experience and know-how combined with an ability to surrender to a story and let it lead you. Read more on Author's notes.

/ Author
Beyond difference, a fiery oneness

Beyond difference, a fiery oneness

What essential commonness, uniting one to all, lies beyond the differences that distinguish each from all others? ... Read more on  Author's notes.

/ Author
Coming out of the publisher’s closet

Coming out of the publisher’s closet

In Boy & Girl Peter discovers that dressing like a girl is not at all akin to being in a girl’s head. Writing the novel was a real joy. Publishing it was tedious. However, promoting it was much more of a headache. Till now... Read more on Author's Notes

/ Uncategorized
Stop the warmongering

Stop the warmongering

Bombs are never an answer to problems. No more than guns are. Repeatedly resorting to weapons as a solution to complex, conflictual situations is not a sign of strength or intelligence. It is an admission of weakness, of inability, of failure, of lack of imagination, even of insanity... Read more on Worlds Apart.

/ Author
Men Writers in Women's Shoes

Men Writers in Women’s Shoes

In response to the claims of a man on Twitter, a number of women insist male authors can’t create authentic female characters. But is their generalisation right?... Read more on Author's Notes.

/ Worlds Apart
Tribute: young people show the way

Tribute: young people show the way

An extensive tribute to the young people of Parkland and others around the US with quotes and photos including the March for Our Lives... Read more on Worlds Apart.

/ Worlds Apart
Gender transgression and the binary nature of a women’s day

Gender transgression and the binary nature of a women’s day

The fact that an International Women’s Day is eminently binary is troubling. It might just be words playing tricks on us, but it is worth exploring... There are very good grounds to celebrate and encourage those who push back the boundaries of what being a woman or girl means.... Read more on  Worlds Apart.

/ Worlds Apart
Women's Day 2018

Women’s Day 2018

A gallery of women to honour the 2018 International Women's Day.  See the gallery on Worlds Apart.

/ Worlds Apart
Trump misses his target

Trump misses his target

Not everybody, no matter how bloated their ego or how bent on destruction their followers, is suited to head a country. Read more on Worlds Apart.

/ Worlds Apart
Brexit and ensuing fantasies

Brexit and ensuing fantasies

Brexit, what better illustration of how a new word can become the vehicle for so much wishful thinking, so many fantasies and such terrible nightmares, as well as a festering breeding-ground for divisive thinking and extreme ideologies… Read more on Worlds Apart.

/ Author
Order your copy of Stories People Tell

Order your copy of Stories People Tell

You can now order your copy of Stories People Tell either in print or ebook format. Click for details including sample chapters. 

/ Author
Hymn to the power of girls

Hymn to the Power of Girls

Why is this performance of Karl Jenkins’ Adiemus by the Carmina Slovenica girls choir so deeply moving? ... Read more and watch the video on Author’s Notes.

/ Author
Stories People Tell

The galley proof arrives

Just received the galley proof of Stories People Tell. Details can be found here: stories-people-tell.com

/ Author
I'm an alien

Thoughts: I’m an alien and proud to be one

(...) Rather than berating ourselves for our foreignness and suffering at being different or worrying we are going crazy, why not relish the strength and the heightened discernment that feeling alien brings... Read more on Author's Notes.

/ Author
Short story: Being English

Short story: Being English

As I finish the layout of my new book, Stories People Tell and embark on the final re-read before sending the book to the printers, I wrote a new short piece entitled Being English.

/ Secret Paths
Noémi Lapzeson has left us

Noémi Lapzeson has left us

Sad news indeed. Noémi Lapzeson has left us. Although she moved on from dance at the end of her life, she will no doubt be remembered most for her contributions to contemporary dance... Read more on  Secret Paths.

/ Author
Stories People Tell front cover

The Politics of Elimination

A systematic striving to eliminate as a solution to problems is a self-defeating, reckless if not unhinged way of behaving… Read more about the politics of elimination and its depiction in Stories People Tell in Author’s Notes

/ Author
Stories People Tell

Stories People Tell – Cover and sample chapters

A sneak peek at the cover of Stories People Tell a new novel by Alan McCluskey is now available as well as four sample chapters.

/ Author
Stories to make sense of the world

Stories to make sense of the world

We make sense of the world by continually spinning stories about it. Stories? They are not the kind you would necessarily tell someone. Unvoiced, they are very often little more than fragments but are generally in tune with a larger personal narrative... Read more on Author's Notes.

/ Story fragments
Blinking Hell!

Blinking Hell!

When an old woman claims to be only eighteen, the local doctor is perplexed. Blinking Hell! is a flash fiction written in 2011 and updated today for a new audio version read by the author. Listen on Story Fragments:   Blinking Hell! 

/ Story fragments
A War on Dots and Dashes

A War on Dots and Dashes

Story Fragments: Just wrote a short story, A War on Dots and Dashes, one of those annoying tales that comes in the middle of the night and refuses to let you sleep till you've finished writing it. The story relates the demise of a teacher whose delight in correcting spelling and punctuation
/ Worlds Apart
COP23: We the People protest

COP23: We the People protest

Worlds Apart: Democracy Now! broadcasting from the Bonn COP talks to climate activists from the US, We the People movement protesting against the one and only session organised at the summit by the Tr*ump administration involving advocates of fossil fuels and nuclear energy... We the People at Bonn COP
/ Story fragments
The Blinkin' Box

New flash soundscape. The Blinkin’ Box

Story Fragments: I have created a new flash soundscape using the flash fiction, The Blinkin' Box. It tells the sad but poetic tale of an old man holed up in a pillar box the day progress comes knocking at his refuge.  The Blinkin’ Box [460 words, June 4, 2014/Nov. 14 2017]
/ Secret Paths
New header art

New header art

Secret Paths: The header artwork of a number of Secret Paths' sites has been changed and simplified navigation has been added. The photo for Story Fragments was taken at Bow Cemetry during research for my new book, Stories People Tell. A major scene takes places in and near the cemetery, a
/ Story fragments
Three new flash soundscapes

Three new flash soundscapes

Story Fragments: I have published the first three flash soundscapes based on my short stories. I was inspired in doing so by the work of Dirk Maggs who, amongst many other productions, directed and was the sound master of Neil Gaiman's Neverwhere and Douglas Adam's Hitch Hiker's Guide to the
/ Secret Paths
The Secret Paths Constellation

The Secret Paths Constellation

Secret Paths: This site is a news source and the gateway to a constellation of other sites presenting the writings and artwork of Alan McCluskey (see photo). There are currently six sites: Author's Notes  ... about Alan McCluskey's novels and writing in general Story Fragments ... flash fiction and flash soundscapes