Magpie’s Ladder Audiobook

I am very fortunate to be able to offer all three of my books to date in audiobook format. Late this summer, my collection, Magpie’s Ladder was produced as an audiobook by Encyclopocalypse Publications. It joins The Lost Machine and Necessary Monsters on Audible. If you go to Audible, you can hear a sample of Jake Ruddle’s excellent narration.

Endpaper Illustration from the Signed Edition from PS Publishing

I hope you enjoy this look at the endpaper illustration from the print edition from PS Publishing. This particular illustration was reserved for the signed edition.

Almost October

An illustrated edition of my novel Tailor of Echoes will be published sometime in the spring by PS Publishing in the UK. I’m really pleased about this as they did such a great job on my collection Magpie’s Ladder. Over the winter, I will be drawing the illustrations, and I’ll post a few teasers here.

I let this blog rest over the summer while I adjusted to all things Covid along with the rest of the world. But, autumn is almost here, a time when I always feel particularly connected to all things book related. I’ll be posting about my work, my current reads, interesting covers and illustrations and so on. I hope the blog will pick up some new readers along the way.

Beyond the Reach, Richard A. Kirk, 2020, ink on paper, 14” x 18”

Excerpt from Lint

This is an excerpt from Lint, a short story in my forthcoming collection Magpie’s Ladder.

“A pale giant sat in the middle of a small boat, nine fingers whitening on the gunwale. His nickname was Crane, given for his slender limbs and long neck. Crane feared any expanse of water, and had a prickling acquaintance with finned fish anaphylaxis. The lake was a fogged mirror with silvering marred by innumerable darting pumpkinseeds. He hummed “Jelly Roll Blues” to calm himself. The vintage outboard motor, which looked like some kind of reeking steampunk beetle, seemed about to rattle the boat to pieces. Crane only loosened his grip when the island, for so long a scribble on the horizon, began to fill his field of vision. The pilot, a desiccated man who’d offered Crane a bump of meth off the back of a freckled hand before setting out, let the boat drift toward the shore. They said goodbye, in a haze of pale gasoline exhaust.”

Magpie’s Ladder

Magpie’s Ladder, my first collection of short stories is set to be published next month by PS Publishing in the UK. It contains 5 illustrated stories and a wrap-around cover featuring my art. These are weird tales with elements of fantasy and horror. The stories are,

  • Magpie’s Ladder: A researcher’s curiosity draws her to the dream realm of the Darkling Lands.
  • The Engrosser: Condemned by his own crime, an engrosser plumbs the labyrinthine depths of his firm’s building to find that he is not alone.
  • Lint: A giant searches for his missing brother.
  • The Elephant Bridge: A young woman opens a sealed house atop a crumbling bridge.
  • Thin Skin: A young academic moves into the house of a dead professor and finds himself trapped in a dark fairy-tale.

In past years PS has used my artwork for a series of Caitlin R. Kiernan reissues, and a novel by Kim Wilkins called Odin’s Girl. I’m very pleased that they are now publishing my stories.

– Richard