It’s the “Summer/Winter Sale” on Smashwords!

Smashwords is hosting a massive Summer/Winter Sale for the month of July 2018 – and what that means for readers is deep discounts on awesome titles!

Manifold Press is participating, with (almost) all our titles discounted by 25%. Now is the time to stock up that TBR pile, and maybe try some new stories you’ve been pondering.

(The only exceptions to the sale are our charity anthologies, A PRIDE OF POPPIES and CALL TO ARMS – and Elin Gregory’s SHEEP’S CLOTHING, which is already a rustler’s dream at 99 cents.)

Browse the Manifold Press catalogue on Smashwords – or browse the full catalogue of all the discounted ebooks across the site. We’re 100% sure you’ll find something to love!

New review for ANH SANG

We were delighted to see a new review by Jess on the Love Bytes LGBTQ Book Reviews site, for our recently released novella ANH SANG by Barry Brennessel. It seems as if Jess was just as impressed as we were!

Brennessel’s writing is stark and neat. He never pulls his punches. He packs rage, confusion, and fear into Minh’s thoughts and dialogue, no matter how brief. I can’t believe this is only a novella-length work, because there’s so much good story in so few words. If an author manages to write historical fiction that makes you want to read a dozen more books on the subject, you know he’s passionate about his work.

The romance between Minh and Thao, a local farmer, is sweet and spare, always popping up when both Minh and the readers just need a little bit of hope and sunshine.

As Jess points out, this is a really unusual (perhaps even unique) setting for a love story, and we agree that readers will be rewarded in all kinds of ways for giving this a try.

Thank you, Jess and Love Bytes!

New review for ANH SANG

Barry Brennessel’s original story ANH SANG, which appeared in our Great War anthology A PRIDE OF POPPIES, left many of us wanting more – including reviewer Kazza K from On Top Down Under reviews. We were delighted (though we have to admit not overly surprised) to find that she was not disappointed in Barry’s novella-length development of this heart-wrenching story.

It’s sublime writing, so authentic and beautiful. … Barry Brennessel knows how to write innocent and tender love juxtaposed against a tough time, particularly first love. He has an ability to write characters that speak to me on such a visceral level, just like Minh and Thao did.

It is probably redundant to say that we are in full agreement with this 5-star review. Thank you, Kazza!

Our three new titles for May are now available!

We’re very excited by our three offerings for your spring / autumn reading pleasure! We are honoured to be publishing new work from Jay Lewis Taylor and the award-winning Barry Brennessel, as well as our new Shakespeare-inspired anthology NO HOLDS BARD. These are all available now.


We weren’t alone in wanting to know more about the fascinating characters and setting of Barry Brennessel’s short story in our Great War anthology A PRIDE OF POPPIES, so we know we won’t be the only ones thrilled to read his ANH SANG novella. This expands and significantly develops the original story, in surprising and intriguing ways.

Barry has also adapted the story into a screenplay, which has won recognition in prestigious screenwriting contests. We’re proud as punch to be playing a small role in bringing you this tale!

Buy links for ANH SANG:


From Jay Lewis Taylor we have the story WHERE ANGELS FEAR, in which Richard, invalided home from the Navy, meets Les, a Lancaster bomber pilot still serving with the RAF. This story ranges from the intimately personal to the internationally significant, in carefully considering how war affects those most closely involved.

This volume also contains another story, THE MAN WHO CAME TO DINNER.

Buy links for WHERE ANGELS FEAR:


Following up on the success of our Austen-inspired anthology, we’re delighted to bring you NO HOLDS BARD, which takes its inspiration from Shakespeare and his works – and then runs off in several directions at once. Editor Fiona Pickles is thrilled by the variety brought to you by the ten authors, some already familiar to the Press and others new to us:

  • Julie Bozza
  • Siobhan Dunlop
  • Adam Fitzroy
  • Bryn Hammond
  • Erin Horakova
  • Molly Katz
  • Vanessa Mulberry
  • Eleanor Musgrove
  • Michelle Peart
  • Jay Lewis Taylor

Buy links for NO HOLDS BARD:


Three books which are absolutely perfect to curl up with, no matter what the weather!

NO HOLDS BARD on St George’s Day!

23 April is St George’s Day, the day we celebrate the patron saint of England and the birth of Shakespeare. It’s no coincidence that Manifold Press is just about to release our Shakespeare-inspired anthology, NO HOLDS BARD.

We’re glowingly proud of how this collection of stories has come together, burgeoning with intriguing ideas both weird and wonderful – and we’re very much looking forward to knowing what you think of it all, too!

It’s only a week now until release day on May Day. In the meantime, as The Man Himself said, “Cry God for Harry, England, and Saint George!” (We’ll return to our usual, somewhat less partisan selves on the morrow, I promise.)


NO HOLDS BARD
Modern LGBTQ+ fiction inspired by the works of William Shakespeare

Ten authors, twelve extraordinary stories. From a novel solution to the Plantagenet succession crisis to revelations about the private lives of Prince Hal and – separately! – Brutus and Cassius, plus a surprise ending for Twelfth Night, no play is safe. We have marriage proposals and murder; subtle scheming villainy; a missing manuscript; a haunting… Whether set within the framework of a play, or spotlighting actors, characters, or the Bard himself, these stories will have you viewing Shakespeare in a whole new light. It’s definitely not the kind of thing they taught us in school…

Take a deep breath. Dive in. Prepare to be astonished!

An anthology edited by Fiona Pickles and featuring authors:

  • Julie Bozza
  • Siobhan Dunlop
  • Adam Fitzroy
  • Bryn Hammond
  • Erin Horáková
  • Molly Katz
  • Vanessa Mulberry
  • Eleanor Musgrove
  • Michelle Peart
  • Jay Lewis Taylor

67000 words/262 pages
$5.95

Publication 1 May 2018

Amazon US pre-order link

Amazon UK pre-order link 

Smashwords link

Barnes & Noble pre-order link

Kobo pre-order link

THE STORIES

Couched in a Curious Bed
Erin Horáková
Having lost his youngest son, a shaken but still-living York is determined to bring the War of the Roses to a swift end – preferably one that will benefit his family. The Lancastrian queen and heir are dead, and, medieval diplomacy being what it is, the best hope for peace lies in a highly unexpected royal marriage.

The Lord and Christopher Sly
Vanessa Mulberry
Christopher Sly is a wastrel with nothing to his name but a handsome face, but he’s always intrigued the local Lord. When he finds Sly drunk outside an inn, the Lord decides to play a trick on him and give him a taste of a better life.

In Fair Verona
Julie Bozza
Adventures naturally befall Lord Byron while he travels through Europe, but all are deliciously surpassed when he is visited by an apparition in the book-lined parlour of an old palazzo in Verona.

Under the Veil of Wildness
Adam Fitzroy
It isn’t only contemplation that Hal’s obscured under the veil of wildness; also growing like the summer grass, wildest at night, is another personality – a female one, Arietta. When a French spy discovers Hal’s secret, trouble follows – but the sequence of events is not what either of them had been expecting…

Imitate The Sun
Siobhan Dunlop
Young actor Niamh Valentine is cast as Poins in an all-female production of Henry IV. The infamous Jessica Condell is playing Hal. Soon Niamh is balancing Hal and Poins’ relationship with hers and Jessica’s whilst preparing for opening night.

Lost
Michelle Peart
Jonas has given up everything in his relentless search for William Shakespeare’s lost plays. Now, in the tunnels under the Kremlin, they are within his grasp. Or are they?

But That He Sees The Romans Are But Sheep
Molly Katz
The nights Cassius and Brutus spend together as wolves have been growing fewer and farther between. Cassius is lonely for the man he’s loved since his youth – lonely and angry – and things must not continue as they are.

In A Dark House
Julie Bozza
Couples coalesce in happiness, while the lone ones are cast adrift… Feste is glad to see the back of Sir Andrew, is tempted to follow Antonio, a man of his own nature – but surprises even himself when instead he starts to search for the vengeful Malvolio.

Now You See Him, Now You Don’t
Adam Fitzroy
“You old romantic! Trust you to propose over a dead body – ” When obnoxious billionaire Duncan Moon is murdered in a Scottish country house hotel, investigating police officers Mal and Shawn find themselves curiously in sympathy with the killer… or killers…

My Mistress’ Eyes
Eleanor Musgrove
In a tender domestic moment with her high-flying girlfriend, Lexi, Jasmine reflects on their relationship. A flattering request from a local festival leads her to take inspiration from the Bard himself as she searches for the right words to ask a very important question.

After the Storm
Jay Lewis Taylor
An isolated farm in the borderlands. A circus whose horses bear the names of gods, whose chief attraction is the Aërial Curiosity. But the show is over; the showmaster is taking his daughter away to be married, and leaving the Aërial Curiosity behind – or is he?

The Last Play
Bryn Hammond
Shakespeare has written his last play – or most of it – as he faces retirement from the stage and from London. But he has one last thing to say to his public. If he has the courage.

Announcing our three new titles for 1 May!

We are very excited by our three offerings for your spring / autumn reading pleasure! We are honoured to be publishing new work from Jay Lewis Taylor and the award-winning Barry Brennessel, as well as our new Shakespeare-inspired anthology. These can all be pre-ordered now, and will be available on 1 May.


We weren’t alone in wanting to know more about the fascinating characters and setting of Barry Brennessel’s short story in our Great War anthology A PRIDE OF POPPIES, so we know we won’t be the only ones thrilled to read his ANH SANG novella. This expands and significantly develops the original story, in surprising and intriguing ways.

Barry has also adapted the story into a screenplay, which has won recognition in prestigious screenwriting contests. We’re proud as punch to be playing a small role in bringing you this tale!

Pre-order links for ANH SANG:


From Jay Lewis Taylor we have the story WHERE ANGELS FEAR, in which Richard, invalided home from the Navy, meets Les, a Lancaster bomber pilot still serving with the RAF. This story ranges from the intimately personal to the internationally significant, in carefully considering how war affects those most closely involved.

This volume also contains another story, THE MAN WHO CAME TO DINNER.

Pre-order links for WHERE ANGELS FEAR:


Following up on the success of our Austen-inspired anthology, we’re delighted to bring you NO HOLDS BARD, which takes its inspiration from Shakespeare and his works – and then runs off in several directions at once. Editor Fiona Pickles is thrilled by the variety brought to you by the ten authors, some already familiar to the Press and others new to us:

  • Julie Bozza
  • Siobhan Dunlop
  • Adam Fitzroy
  • Bryn Hammond
  • Erin Horakova
  • Molly Katz
  • Vanessa Mulberry
  • Eleanor Musgrove
  • Michelle Peart
  • Jay Lewis Taylor

Pre-order links for NO HOLDS BARD:


Three books which are absolutely perfect to curl up with, no matter what the weather!

It’s “Read an Ebook Week” on Smashwords!

Smashwords are celebrating Read an Ebook Week from 4 to 10 March 2018, with deep discounts on awesome titles!

Manifold Press is participating, with all of our titles, backlist and new, discounted by 25%. (The only exceptions are our charity anthologies, A Pride of Poppies and Call to Arms.) This is a great time to stock up that TBR pile, and maybe try some new stories you’ve been pondering. Whether you’re snowed in or stretched out on a beach somewhere, it’s always good weather for reading!

Browse the Manifold Press catalogue on Smashwords – or browse the full catalogue of all the discounted ebooks across the site. We’re 100% sure you’ll find something to love!

Food, glorious food!

An author blog post
by Julie Bozza

As many of you will have already realised, I am a bit of a foodie. I love food. I love eating out, I love cooking, I love eating, I love nurturing others with my food. When I travel, I love exploring the local cuisine. It seems natural to me that a home revolves around the kitchen and dining areas, that people gather together to share lunch or dinner, that birthdays, anniversaries and other events are celebrated with a special meal.

Because it’s such a central part of my life, I have quite naturally included food and all its associated circumstances in my writing. Characters plan to meet again over a meal out – or at least over coffee! One character offering to cook at home for another is a Significant Step in their relationship. The point-of-view character happily indulging in the taste, scent and texture of … let’s say pancakes … helps express their enjoyment of life in all its glories.

It was a surprise to me, early on, to be laughed at over this. Laughed at fondly, in an ‘omg only you would include pancakes in this story’ kind of way. I hadn’t realised it was an idiosyncrasy! I thought it was just life as she is lived! The laughter didn’t stop me, though, and I certainly know by now I am not the only author who explores the meanings and metaphors of food in their writing, even when food isn’t the main subject at all.

Another aspect of my writing is that I like to write about adult characters who are reasonably self-sufficient. This is often signified by the characters being ready, willing and able to cook. Whether they live alone or with others, they can manage a home and a kitchen. They also care enough about themselves to eat properly, balancing health with a happy enjoyment of indulgences.

This all goes right back to Albert, main character of my very first attempt at a professional novel, THE DEFINITIVE ALBERT J. STERNE. He’s been living alone since his mid-teens, and he’s super efficient in managing himself and his home. He’s a vegetarian – not because he’s squeamish, but for all the many logical, moral and ethical reasons there are – and he has developed his recipe repertoire accordingly. Albert is also a well-barricaded loner, so allowing Fletch into his home is a huuuge deal. Soon Albert is not only cooking for him, but also exploring and inventing vegetarian versions of the Creole and Cajun dishes that Fletch enjoys so much. To me, this all speaks volumes about their growing relationship.

My more recent novels continue to include similar tropes. As I have mentioned in other blog posts, the first building block for A THREEFOLD CORD was Ben’s huge warehouse-conversion apartment. This gave the couple and then the threesome a safe haven with plenty of room in which to grow. As well as this, Ben is a serious cook with a serious kitchen, and he quite deliberately sets out to not only nourish Grae with his food choices but to intrigue him as well.

Why, yes, I was brought up with the notion that the way to a loved one’s heart was via their stomach! But seeing as my stomach also benefited from such efforts, I figured it was a win-win situation.

When Ben and Grae are finally invited to Chris’s place for a meal, they realise he is also house-proud (if in a more modest way), and he is also a serious cook. This gives Chris and Ben something to bond over (other than Grae himself!) but also drops a few clues about Chris’s true nature that neither Ben nor Grae pick up on right away.

Apart from my love of food, there’s no hiding the fact that I’m a coffeeholic. I always know what my characters drink by way of coffee (or tea); their preferences in milk, sugar, lemon, and so on; and their choices of mugs or cups. Coffee provides the rhythm of my own day, so I tend to conceive of my characters in the same way. Unlike me, some of them are tea-drinkers instead, but I figure that similar concerns apply.

So far so good, but there’s no denying that this focus on food and drink can go wrong sometimes! There’s many a slip ‘twixt the cup and the lip, as they say!

As with any trope or subject matter, readers’ tastes will vary from the author’s, often significantly. My focus on food and cookery (and coffee!) will work for some readers but not for others. I guess that must be true for just about any subject you care to name…

I’d love to hear from you in turn! What are your thoughts on defining and exploring characters via food? What other subjects are you interested in reading and writing about? The books the characters read; the locations in which they live; the way they decorate their room(s); the music they listen to; the social media they use? What helps truly define a character for you…?

Three new titles available today!

Our three latest titles from Manifold Press stalwarts are released today!

[Details of one book removed retrospectively.]


We’re also delighted to be hosting a new, slightly revised edition of Elin Gregory’s popular short novel A TASTE OF COPPER – a tale of mediaeval France, of jousting knights, of hopeless quests, and of Olivier’s selfless unrequited love for his stubborn and inflexible master. When all Olivier cares about is Maheris, and all Maheris cares about is his duty, it takes something quite out of the ordinary to bring them together at last.

Buy links for A TASTE OF COPPER:

Last but certainly not least is another revised, pre-loved story from Elin Gregory: SHEEP’S CLOTHING. Whether or not you’re into shifters, we’re sure you’ll love this tale of Darren Murchison, reluctant werewolf. He moves to Welsh sheep country in the hopes of simplifying his life – but of course such intentions are always doomed to go awry. Combining Elin’s emotional insight with her clever sense of humour and terrific storytelling, SHEEP’S CLOTHING will delight anyone who loves a good yarn.

Buy links for SHEEP’S CLOTHING:

ESPRESSO SHOTS is an informal imprint which features long stories and short novellas. If you want to read more about this imprint, please check out our blog post. The cover image is the same for all titles, so we chose an image that evokes the comforts – and the stimulations – of the reading experience itself.


We are absolutely sure you’ll find plenty here for your reading pleasure!

New titles for 1 February announced today!

We’re proud to announce three wonderful titles from Manifold Press stalwarts – available for pre-order now, and released on 1 February!


From Jay Lewis Taylor we have an anthology of short stories, APPOINTED LIMITS, following the unpredictable love-life of Naval surgeon John Amery throughout the dramatic early years of the twentieth century. An earthquake and the run-up to and aftermath of war profoundly affect not only his life but also those of his friends and acquaintances – and fans of Jay’s writing will notice some characters familiar from other books making ‘guest appearances’ along the way.

Pre-order links for APPOINTED LIMITS:


We’re also delighted to be hosting a new, slightly revised edition of Elin Gregory’s popular short novel A TASTE OF COPPER – a tale of mediaeval France, of jousting knights, of hopeless quests, and of Olivier’s selfless unrequited love for his stubborn and inflexible master. When all Olivier cares about is Maheris, and all Maheris cares about is his duty, it takes something quite out of the ordinary to bring them together at last.

Pre-order links for A TASTE OF COPPER:

Last but certainly not least is another revised, pre-loved story from Elin Gregory: SHEEP’S CLOTHING. Whether or not you’re into shifters, we’re sure you’ll love this tale of Darren Murchison, reluctant werewolf. He moves to Welsh sheep country in the hopes of simplifying his life – but of course such intentions are always doomed to go awry. Combining Elin’s emotional insight with her clever sense of humour and terrific storytelling, SHEEP’S CLOTHING will delight anyone who loves a good yarn.

Pre-order links for SHEEP’S CLOTHING:

ESPRESSO SHOTS is an informal imprint which features long stories and novellas. If you want to read more about this imprint, please check out our blog post. The cover image is the same for all titles, so we chose an image that evokes the comforts – and the stimulations – of the reading experience itself.


We are absolutely sure you’ll find plenty here for your reading pleasure!