Wednesday, 28 August 2019

Semi Finalist!!!

I entered a chapbook into Black Lawrence's Black River Chapbook Competition... an American organisation  It was a long shot but I liked the stories I submitted. I called the collection 'THINGS THAT CAN BE LOST'... might even go forward and extend this into a complete collection at some point. 

Anyway, just found out that they had over 800 entries - poetry and prose - and my wee thing was a semi-finalist, which can't be at all bad. Just got an email from Kit Frick saying that all the semi-finalists and finalists were loved.

Here's the link if you want to look at the lists:

Reading 'On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous'

'On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous' by Ocean Vuong is an amazing read... so far... I am only just over 3/4 through. The language is just beautiful - poetry as prose. Just so stunningly beautiful. Anyone interested in how language can be used should read this... harrowing sometimes but never less than brilliantly written.

Here's something that caught my eye:

"I read that beauty has historically demanded replication. We make more of anything we find aesthetically pleasing, whether it's a vase, a painting, a chalice, a poem. We reproduce it in order to keep it, extend it through space and time."

Something to think on.

Wednesday, 7 August 2019


A little later than originally planned, but here it is now... available for purchase!!! So strange to hold the book in my hands... strange in a good way. Huge debt to the late Helen Lamb for this being a physical thing and no longer something lining the bottom of a drawer.

Monday, 27 May 2019

PRESS RELEASE for the novel coming late June!

TITLE:Mrs. Winchester’s Gun Club by Douglas Bruton
PUBLISHER:Scotland Street Press
PRICE£ 9.99

About the Title:Mrs. Winchester’s Gun Club is a work of literary fiction, set in San Jose, California at the turn of the 20thcentury. 

Sarah Winchester is gripped with guilt. Left a fortune by her husband’s invention of the Winchester rifle, she is haunted by those it has slain, and by her own complicity in their deaths. In an effort to ease her conscience, she begins the construction of the Winchester House, a maze of rooms meant to house the dead Sarah cannot seem to escape.

The novel masterfully handles themes of grief, responsibility, atonement and ultimately forgiveness through a multitude of vibrant voices. Based on a true story, this tale is gripping from the start, drawing readers in with elegant prose and posing questions that linger on readers’ minds long after they set the book down. While never veering into the political, the novel delves into subject matter that is all too relevant amidst the USA’s current gun crises. The Winchester House seems to be representative of an America in crisis: an America that despite change remains stagnant in its views, that is apologetic yet uncompromising. As Sarah asks,“Is it enough to be sorry, if sorry is a feeling that runs through everything that you think or do?” 

About the Author:Douglas Bruton has been writing for thirty years. He is widely published in short story anthologies and has won many prizes for his writing within the last decade, including the Neil Gunn Prize and the William Soutar Prize. He is published in literary magazines including Northwords Now, Interpreter’s House, Transmission and Bare Fiction Magazine. 

Publisher: Jean Findlay at Scotland Street Press 
Tel: 07733164142
Author: Douglas Bruton
Agent:Duncan McAra

Saturday, 25 May 2019

THE COVER!!!!!!!!

So, here's a preview of the cover for my novel coming out in June. Hope it intrigues you... I think it's slick and modern and clever. I will post the press release up when I can. Watch this space.

Thursday, 16 May 2019

UPDATE May 2019

Just thought I needed a wee update on things. First off my novel is due for publication in June now - that's next month! Cover has been sorted and I am very pleased with it. Launch details are a bit blurry just at the moment because we are looking at some pretty big options and waiting to hear back... but it will be available in June. More on this soon.

Not been doing too many competitions recently. Fewer than 1 a month and sometimes not at all. However I was commended in The Neil GunnShort Story Competition (last time was second and the time before was first - but it is still good to be commended). 

Got a story published in Lakeview International which is such a thrill.

Got nine pieces up on Visual Verse now. It's fun to be fed a monthly prompt to play with. 

Just read an article on the Holocaust exhibition in New York. Very interesting. Wish I was more jet-setting - I'd go there in heartbeat. With all the current anti-semitism and racism, it is a timely reminder of what we should never forget. I once wrote a novel with another writer that touched on this topic with particular reference to Theresienstadt (Terezin). It's a shame that we can't agree, this writer and I, because I think the novel would add to the cause in a positive way because it is filled with compassion and love. Maybe something to work on for the future.

Friday, 8 March 2019


So, having worked collaboratively with a fellow writer and done so without any agreement or contract, the collabrative work is then jointly owned. Publishing by one collaborative writer without the permission of the other is something that could happen - copyright law makes room for this. Copyright law makes sense in preventing one writer from holding another's work hostage.

But what if publishing the work would cause upset to one of the writers? Is it right then to go ahead and publish it anyway?

Copyright law makes no allowances for feelings. It tries to judge the cases generally and without sentiment. It tries to be fair - to all parties. Copyright law allows for one of the collaborative writers to publish without the other collaborative writer's permission so long as both writers have equal credit and equal division of any monies made from the publishing of the work.

However, I believe people should be people and should behave as people and show respect to each other. I have aproached a writer I collaborated with about publishing a work we both committed to. This writer's response indicates that publishing the work would be upsetting to them. It would be selfish of me then to go ahead and publish knowing that this would hurt the other writer. So I won't.

There is a cost to me in doing this - I so love the work and have invested hundreds of hours in the work and I believe others would really enjoy it and get something worthwhile out of it. It makes me sad that no one else will see the work. But there would also be a cost to publishing it - I do not like to hurt people, I am not that person, and I do not want that to be the price of publishing the work. 

So, sadly, I will not seek to publish the work.