November 2023: Alright Then, Keep Your Secrets

November 2023: Alright Then, Keep Your Secrets

Hello pals!

“I recall late November, holding my breath” – Call It What You Want. A fun non-writing update is I’ve launched a podcast with my pal all about the life and lyrics of Taylor Swift: Swift Tea.

I’ve also been greatly enjoying excellent book events including It Came From the Closet, the Glasgow launch of The Hurricane Wars by Thea Guanzon, and a plethora of fantastic panels from Radical Book Fair. This month is also the Cymera Writers’ Conference, which is sure to be a delight.


Publishing is such a hurry-up-and-wait type of business, and the past wee while has been much waiting and anticipating and fretting. I am SO excited to be able to say vague publishing news! I can’t wait to share more details with you as soon as I can.

On Samhain, I could finally announce Haunted Hallways, a shared-world academic horror anthology by Asian authors featuring my story about female rage ‘Remain Nameless’. The cover is so eerie and evocative and I’m delighted to share a ToC with so many cool authors. It’s coming October 2024 and the Kickstarter closes at the end of November. I’m so proud of this dark cathartic story so please share and support if you can!


Really Good, Actually by Monica Heisey
I was skeptical going into this one but found it so darkly humorous! Heisey was one of the writers on the Canadian comedy show Schitt’s Creek to give you a sense of the tone, and this is an auto-fictional take on her ‘young divorce’ and the fall-out of finding yourself in your late twenties/early thirties. I thought this might be the type of ‘millennial ennui’ novel I find frustratingly navel-gazing but there’s plenty of bitterly funny moments, and refreshing self-deprecating turns of plot that make me root for the protagonist so much (even though she’s a bit of a hot mess). Made the autumnal commutes a bit less dreary.

My Phantoms by Gwendoline Riley
I picked this up thinking it was a gothic or horror novel, but it was a surprising gem of a literary novel about difficult familial relationships. We follow Bridget as she reflects on her fraught relationship with her mother throughout her life. Bridget’s father and less so her sister are in the periphery of the novel and there’s such desperation aching between the lines. This is one of the most full and complex character studies of a parent-child relationship, exploring the helplessness we feel when our loved ones become older or fall ill, our neurosis and theirs, and how we mold ourselves and our lives after we leave home. A piercing and cathartic read.

Til December stay soft, light, slow,
Kat x

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