What’s your star sign? Is our fate pre-determined by the constellations and the position of the planets? Can astrology really present an alternative vision to the apparent certainties of science, politics, religion and celebrity culture? Or should its claims of determinism, fate, fortune and personality profiling perhaps be taken with a large pinch of salt?
Alchemy Press titles are available online from Amazon and other dealers. But if you are keen to avoid Amazon and its associated companies take a look at Wordery, a UK book seller. As you can see via this link, they have a nice array of our titles all ready to purchase. (Note, the site muddles up Alchemy Press titles along with similarly named imprints.)
The Alchemy Press received a nice little write-up in the September issue of Writing Magazine — on page 93 in the news section. The piece was accompanied by a few cover reproductions; we certainly do publish some lovely books!
David Turnball’s story “Aspects of Aries” from the Alchemy Press book Astrologica: Stories of the Zodiac (edited by Allen Ashley) has been reprinted in Best British Fantasy 2014, edited by Steve Haynes. We at Alchemy Towers are very pleased for David and Allen. You can buy both books via Amazon — click on the title links.
All – or almost all – contributors to this year’s three Alchemy Press anthologies answered a few not-very probing questions about their contributions to the books. It’s now the turn for the editors to have their say. First up is Allen Ashley, editor of Astrologica: Stories of the Zodiac.
Give us a little bit of background on your writing and editing career.
I have been in and around the British fantasy and science fiction scene for a very long time now. My first real breakthrough was when Stephen Jones and David Sutton published, and later reprinted, my story “Dead to the World” in their much-missed Fantasy Tales. I suppose that I really “took off” – into a very low orbit, mind – when The Third Alternative magazine came along in the 1990s and I started writing regularly for that. This was followed by a happy association with Andrew Hook’s Elastic Press, for whom I did a debut collection of short stories – Somnambulists (2004) – and my first two full-length editing projects – The Elastic Book of Numbers (2005) and Subtle Edens (2008). I was lucky enough to win the BFS Award for Best Anthology with Numbers in 2006 and that’s given me the impetus to just keep going ever since. Don’t tell anybody but I probably enjoy editing even more than writing these days.
As well as fiction, I am also a prize-winning poet; a poetry host; a singer; and have been and continue to be a cultural commentator for places such as TTA, Midnight Street and The BFS Newsletter. I wrote for Time Out (London) for many years under a different name and also wrote extensively during the golden age of football fanzines back in the late 1980s through into the mid-late 1990s. Recently, I have been focusing on my work as a writing tutor and currently have five groups running, including the advanced group Clockhouse London Writers.
“The Yellow Fruit” (for the sign of Leo) by Ralph Robert Moore appears in Astrologica: Stories of the Zodiac.
Give us a little bit of background on your writing career.
I’ve been writing since childhood. I discovered writing was a great way to learn about the world around me, by trying to recreate it on paper, and of course over time you learn it’s also a great way to learn about yourself. I started selling stories in the mid-Eighties, but my output didn’t really take off until the mid-Nineties when word processors and the Internet came along, making everything so much easier. My fiction has since appeared in a variety of literary and genre magazines and anthologies both here in America and overseas.
What appealed to you about the Astrologica project?
I’ve worked with Allen Ashley (the editor) a number of times before and have always enjoyed the experience. So once I learned Allen would be editing Astrologica, I wanted to be part of the project. And the theme, focusing on star signs, intrigued me.