manuscripts do not burn

IRC commands for the chatrooms

Every November, I dust off my IRC server and set up some rooms for the various projects that need them – all of the Nanowrimo projects that I run get their own chatroom, plus a shared room, #coffeehouse


We recommend ICEchat for Windows, simply because it’s…well…simple.
You can get it from here –

The settings you’ll need is:

Username – whatever you’d like your nickname to be (you can register it once on, so choose whatever you’d like.  If someone else is using it, it will tell you once you’re online).
(if it asks) Port:6667

If you’re running it on Windows 7 or 8, change the compatibility of the program so that it’s running as XP.  ( – these instructions work for both 7 and 8)

once you’re connected, type /join #coffeehouse –  it is the main room on the server, so other projects will pass through there, so it might be busier in there.


Limechat is Rae’s choice for Macs, and you can grab it from:

You need:
The IRC channel:
chat room #nanoglos
username (your username)

Some useful commands.

Join lets you join a chatroom.  You need to remember the hashtag before the channel name for it to work.  If you type /join #nanoglos , you’ll be in our room.  If you type /join #(myroom) where the name of the room in brackets is a room that hasn’t been created and claimed, you’ll create the room as you enter.  Similarly, if you’re the only person in there, sometimes, you’ll ‘create’ the chatroom until a moderator joins you.  I can see a list of all rooms on the server, so please don’t spawn too many.

To register something.

Registering your nickname – the command is

/msg NickServ REGISTER password

Replace password with a secure, unguessable password that you keep secret.  I cannot see your email – it’s just to let YOU reset your password.    Using a fake email in here can compromise your access however.

Once you’ve registered your username, whenever you log into the server, you need to use the command:

/msg NickServ IDENTIFY YourNick YourPassword

If you don’t do it in a certain amount of time, you’ll have your username changed  to something.  If that happens because you weren’t fast enough.  Just run the command above and that should sort it. Any problems with nicknames and just give me a shout.

ALL Nicknames should follow basic etiquette rules.  Please don’t use rude words in your username, or I’ll have to ban you.

If you want to generally chat with people, join #coffeehouse or stay there when logged in.  You’ll also have project specific rooms to use, which you’ll have posted on the groups etc. I’m with.

Channels and nicks are deregistered after a period of inactivity (more than a month), so please be sure to keep logging in if you want to keep your username.

Please also be aware that server ops (myself and three of my friends) can message anyone on the server and you *will* get announcement messages occasionally.

The server will be up and running fully by tomorrow evening – for now we’re still doing the setup, so please be aware that if you log in/use the browser, you may or may not find that you’re removed several times as the server reboots as we update information on the project.

Questions?  I’ll see what I can do to answer you!




Sit down.
The dishes can wait.
No, the baby isn’t stirring.

That’s it.
Let me tell you a story.
It won’t take long.

Sit down.
That wasn’t the door.
You don’t need more coffee.

That’s it.
Fingers on keys.
We’re off.


A view from the beach, Traeth Trefor 2014

Ar y Traeth (on the Beach)

So, of all the stories I’m writing, I think this one is going to be the hardest.  You can follow along on Wattpad of course, but I thought I’d give you a bit more on this one before we get started.

There have been two bodies washed up, on two separate beaches on the desolate and hauntingly beautiful coastline around a small, isolated village in Wales.  They are both pointing at one another, though roughly halfway between them, a ruined laptop, phone and rucksack was found three days before.

A tale of secrets, lies and the stories we’ll tell ourselves to keep our world normal while everything around us crumbles.  
The devastating result of these murders will be felt far beyond the Welsh village, but for one girl, her sister and her beloved died after going missing a few nights before.  Was it an accident in the storm, or is there more to this than meets the eye.


And just to give you an idea of my inspiration….this is what started the story whispering.  Of course, it would be twisted and quite dark, but it’s still a story I’m looking forward to writing.


Art by

Coffin Hop 2014!

This is a sorta PSA brought to you for horror readers everywhere.
And, I’m giving away five copies of my horror novel, due out on November 29th.

(check the rafflecopter below)

Art by

Art by

What is Coffinhop?

Coffinhop is a supporitve group of horror writers who band together for a few days and share horror, stories, books, and *stuff*.
Me, I’m just boosting the signal.  I think CoffinHop is a great project, and I think I’ll be more involved next year, for now I just wanted to signpost peeps to the site, and give away some horror stories.

Oh, and recommend some other horror books too.


Consumed by Love, by Pavarti K Tyler –  an erotic tale of cannibalism

Shades by Valerie Douglas – a corporate retreat that goes horribly wrong

And, of course, there’s the Death by Drive-in book by Coffin Hoppers.  Check it out!


Win one of five copies of my horror book, or a $10 gift voucher for Amazon.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

And of course, we’ll be around on Wilderness Apocalypse again from November 1st so come on over and say hi!

A pretty leaf

Adventures in medical stuff…(Lithium)

I don’t often talk about medical ‘stuff’ on here, but I thought it was important to post something because for the first time in a long time, my health has gotten in the way of my writing.

It started about eight weeks ago.  I couldn’t sleep – which is unusual to say the least for my usual meds.  So I upped them.
(Quetiapine) Seroquel’s primary recognised function, beyond being a mood stabiliser off label (it’s an anti-psychotic ON label) is that it acts on the histamine that makes you sleep.  So it stopped working.  And I began to get really anxious.
I spoke to the doctor.  They gave me sleeping meds.  First lot made me angry and paranoid, and the second lot sorta worked.  So they sent me to the outpatient psych team.
In Gloucester we’re fairly well provisioned for this stuff, so I spoke to a doctor and a nurse who told me I needed to up my seroquel to the max, gave me a double-up of my sleeping meds and basically gave me councelling, and told me to think about whether I’d be willing to try lithium.

wpid-wp-1413588152019.jpegBad history on other meds

I’m extremely sensitive to meds in general – Prozac made me a walking mess, and others haven’t been anywhere as helpful as we could hope, which is why I persisted with Seroquel (it worked).  But I read and thought about it and decided to give Lithium a go.  That was six weeks ago.

Four weeks ago, I started being unable to tolerate certain foods.  I sorta started sleeping better, but I could eat less and less.   And my sleep was still pretty rocky.  Three weeks and I could eat less.  Two and it narrowed further still.
All I was managing was soup (clear broth at that) and my side and stomach were killing me.  We went to talk to the doctor about it, and he suggested that my stomach pain was explainable.  He did a pregnancy test which was negative.  The pain then moved up my stomach, landing me in hospital twice in 10 days.  Between them, I had a blood test to take which showed abnormal results from liver function tests.  Before I went on holiday, they did some serious liver tests, including for hepatitis (I’ve been cleared for that).
Later today, I go speak to the doctor to find out what my calcium profile and liver function test being abnormal actually means and whether it explains the pain in my side.    The ER doc that was looking after me that though he couldn’t tell me to stop taking my lithium, I really need to stop taking my lithium.  I spoke to my own doctor and he agreed.
And, I stopped taking my lithium.  Instantly I could eat almost normally again.  I was given cyclazine tablets, and pain meds and stuff to protect my stomach, which was most welcome, and began taking a pre/probiotic.  My holiday (see the Welsh adventure post) was probably a lot easier for not taking lithium, and though I think there’s something else going on, lithium just isn’t for me.  The nausea and weakness, shaking and headaches, the inability to eat anything at all and the fact that I think it’s exacerbated underlying stomach issues that I might have avoided.  On the one hand, it’s a bad thing, but on the other, I can see why it might have been a blessing in disguise.

So, that’s my experience, for what it’s worth, with lithium.  The new stuff might be difficult, but we’ll work it out as we go.


And the winners are…(Nano 14 books)

Yeah, ok, slightly mean.
I’ve been asked so I thought I’d get the announcements over and done with.

On release this month

Delayed from last month because of the adventures in illness (another post, coming soon!), Memento Mori and 365 Blogging topics for writers are out this month.  I hope people like them because they’re really the first proper books I’ve put out in a while.  And they mark a shift in how things will be done around here, and the beginning of I hope is a regular schedule.

And this year’s Nanowrimos

Overacheiver that I tend to be, this year I’m doing three Nanowrimo books, while looking for the next job.

One has a cover, the other two don’t.

ThereAreDragons_small A week ago, Anya decided that it was time.  She made arrangements to get extra meds, and walk out into  the  sea.  The day before she planned to though, the world ended.  And she didn’t go with those that were  taken.  So, now the world has changed, and things are different, Anya and her best friend have to make  new plans.
A transgressive novel to discuss assisted suicide, apocalypse and the end of the world.


Alongside it, I’m writing a new novel called SWIM – Someone who isn’t me.
Jessica needs advice, so she goes online and posts a hypothetical.  And that hypothetical brings down a world of trouble.

And finally, I’m writing a new one that doesn’t have a name yet.
This one is going up on Wattpadd as it’s written.  It’s called “Ar y Traeth“, which translates loosely to ‘On the Beach’

And, because I’m a glutton for punishment

Black Monday Cataclysm is getting it’s redraft.
Oh, that’s four really.

Conwy Castle, Sunday 19th October 2014

Our adventure in North Wales :) (not much about writing)

I thought I’d share some of the pictures and information about our mini adventure.
We went to Trefor and stayed in an amazing little rented cottage as a base, and then explored a lot of the amazingly gorgeous north Welsh coastline.  If you get the chance, do it.
As for me, I spent a lot of time thinking about what the last few years have brought me – how ill I’ve been, and the reality of that, and that I need to really start working towards the things that are most important to me.  I’ve got everything I need to make my life work out the way I want it to, I just need to apply myself.  And that’s ok too.  I know what I’m doing now though – writing is something that’s really important to me, I just need to reframe this to suit what I really want.

Anyway.  Here are some of what I thought were the best photos I took while I was gone, and you’ll see more in the coming weeks and months as I sort them into galleries.
This is Traeth Trefor, Traeth Criccieth, Castle Conwy, Castle Criccieth, Nefyn, Abersoch, Trefor mine (in the background – we started referring to it as Helm’s Deep – turns out it’s a granite mine and quarry). We also went to Pwllheli several times.  And the photos don’t do the places any justice – if you get the chance, go visit.

Oh, and try not to be too shocked, but there are photos of me in here too!

(Traeth btw means beach).



All photos (c) D Kai Wilson-Viola, October 2014.

Which one’s your favourite?  I’ve got nearly 1000 of them all told, so this is just a selection, but I’d love to hear which you liked the best!

Driving to Manchester, October 2014, holiday fun!
NW WEB PROMO medium 2

Introducing Night Watch, by Linda Hall

Today, I’d like to welcome Linda Hall to my blog.  Linda’s a  member of The Alexandria Publishing Group, a group of writers who are dedicated to providing high quality books to readers everywhere.

Over to Linda….

I am pleased to announce that NIGHT WATCH, the first in my new mystery series (#emridgemysteries) is finally available. This book has been a part of my life and planning for a long, long time. Before I wrote six books for Harlequin, I wanted to write a series of mysteries which featured a female boat captain. She was in my thoughts during the first Bouchercon mystery conference I ever attended. I had the idea for Em Ridge (and her name and her backstory have gone through various permutations through the years.) The character was there in my mind, begging to come out, asking me over and over to tell her story, get it down, and out there for the readers.

But other things got in the way and it’s only now – now that I’m an author/publisher, that I am getting her story out.NW WEB PROMO medium 2

Em Ridge is a boat captain. She’s not a huge container ship captain taking goods all over the world, nor does she helm ferries or tugboats (although she could – and maybe in a future book she will.). She’s not in the military or Coast Guard. She’s not a police force boat captain. What she does is deliver boats. She’s someone who gets hired by people to take their boats (usually luxury yachts) from Point A to Point B.

Normally, a fun job. You get to spend time on other people’s fancy boats! But in Em’s life, mystery always ensues.

In Night Watch, having the billionaire’s daughter go overboard on her first captain­ing job is not a good beginning. The sailboat is new, state of the art, her crew on this trip include two close sail­ing friends. But an unknown fourth, who can’t even tie a bow­line, and the unruly owner’s daughter turn the idyllic trip into an adventure not wanted.


Two years ago Em buried her husband, her soul­mate, her sail­ing buddy, and with him she buried a secret. As hours on the open seas slide by, secrets are res­ur­rected tying Em’s past to a present, awash with mur­der and deception.

Get Night Watch at AmazonSign up for Linda’s newsletter –  Linda’s Website - Linda on FacebookLinda on Twitter

stux / Pixabay

I am what I am…linguistics, gaming and more…

stux / Pixabay

stux / Pixabay

So, for a very long time I’ve kept two separate blogs – was my personal blog, and here was where I spoke about writing.  Then the host I was helping out on went under and I lost this blog (I’m getting it back, I just need to import it first, one by one, from the way back machine), and I decided at that point that I’d keep this hobby, cryptography and linguistics light.

I’m making a new decision.  I can blog about my personal stuff on my personal blog and still talk about the same stuff from a different perspective here.

So.  Here it is.

In case you missed it.

I’m a linguistics nut.  I’m doing a bit of a DIY forensic linguistics degree because I can’t afford to pay to do my PHD yet.  I will one day, and until then, I’ll write and blog and talk about it.  That’s my academic side.  It’ll get it’s own little space at some point, but it’ll be mentioned here too occasionally.  It does after all, inform my processional life.

I work for a gaming company – we make tabletop wargames.  They’re called Mantic Games and they rock.  I’m their community manager and I love the job – and because of that, there will be some new videos popping up, because lo, I need to make some videos and have my own channel too.  It’s quite a jump.  It’ll be very rare that these vidoes will be about writing, but I might talk about books in my own ones if you listen.

And I knit.  And I love cats.  I love my cats more.

And I play computer games.   Not all of it is related to gaming, but I think, if I know my readers well enough, that y’all won’t care ;)

If you’ve got an opinion one way or another about what you’d like to see here, let me know!