Monday, August 19, 2019

Beyond the Altrix: Digital Monsters and Scary Stories!

Have you been enjoying our look behind the scenes at the stories of Master Pieces? There are a few more to come so keep an eye on our Facebook and Twitter accounts! In the meantime, we'd like to bring your attention to a couple of things you may enjoy from our contributors:

Firstly, if there's an anime fan in your family (and there probably is!), don't forget that this is your last day to order Gokigen na Chou! The Digimon anniversary zine features art by 44 artists, including our cover artist Ginger Hoesly. There's also an art piece by her in the zine itself.

You can select from a variety of bundles that include prints and other goodies along with the zine. It's a great gift for a family member or friend who grew up with the show; but after today, it will not be available for sale!

Secondly, our friends over at 18th Wall have released their latest anthology, Sockhopes & Seances. The book features a collection of spooky stories set in the 1950s, including works by our co-founder Kara Dennison, Unearthed artist Sophie Iles, and Spragg Memorial Competition winner Joshua Wanisko. Books are available in print or digital formats.

You can still pick up a copy of Unearthed in our shop, too — and keep an eye out for more this year!

Monday, August 12, 2019

Get a Glimpse of Our Master Pieces!

Image result for chess

Looking forward to Master Pieces and want an early taste? We're sharing some of our favorite bits of the upcoming stories on social media!

The charity anthology, currently scheduled to come out before the end of 2019, will feature new stories about Doctor Who's Master behind all the different faces you know (and a few you don't!). If you've been following our blog for a while, you probably caught our first announcement, but as we draw closer, time for a bit of a refresher.

Master Pieces was originally conceived of over at Red Ted Books (the publisher behind Scream of the Shalka Doctor anthology Nine Lives), and will now be handled by Altrix by our own Paul Driscoll. Funds raised will go to the UK's Stroke Association.

The book will feature stories from both our founders, as well as authors including Jon Arnold, Tim Gambrell, Simon A Brett, Scott Claringbold, and many more. Interested? Then keep an eye on our social media!

Over on our Facebook and Twitter accounts, we're running teasers from all the stories in the anthology. Keep an eye out for lines from the upcoming book. Can you guess what each story is about — and, in some cases, which Master it's about?

We'll be back with more news on the anthology soon!

Monday, July 22, 2019


We've still got a few Unearthed contributors reporting in with Q&As, and we'll be sharing them as they come in! This week, author I.E. Kneverday gives us a look behind the historical fiction piece "Was I A Viking Old?":

Altrix Books: What about the UNEARTHED concept made you want to pitch a story?

I.E. Kneverday: The prompt for UNEARTHED offered the perfect balance of specificity and open-endedness. It was very clear upfront that Altrix Books was looking for stories about “the contents of any coffin, sarcophagus, mausoleum, or other big mysterious tomb,” and that at some point in the story the writer had to reveal what was inside. (Reminded me of the famous — or perhaps infamous — "Mystery Box" approach that J.J. Abrams takes with his writing). But apart from that prime directive, there were no limitations on genre, setting, or time period. My mind was free to wander. And wander it did indeed.

Altrix: Tell us a little about your story,

Kneverday: My story, "Was I a Viking Old?", is a work of historical fiction set in 1840s New England. It centers around the real-life discovery of an ancient skeleton adorned in armor. The story's main protagonist, Naomi Haynes, is a (fictional) reporter on a quest for truth. After arriving in Fall River, Massachusetts, she soon uncovers conflicting stories as to the skeleton's origins. Famed poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow plays a central role as the progenitor of the most popular story, but just how accurate is his take on events? Our intrepid reporter Naomi puts herself at great peril to find out...

Altrix: What books, shows, or real life events inspired your work, if any?

Kneverday: The title of my story, "Was I a Viking Old?" is a line taken directly from Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's epic poem "The Skeleton in Armor" published in 1841. And indeed, the poem plays a key role in the story itself, with Longfellow arriving in Fall River (an actual town that Longfellow actually visited) to perform a reading.

Altrix: What was the most challenging part of creating your story?

Kneverday: The most challenging part of creating my story was pacing. As a work of historical fiction, it was tempting to go deep on all of the various historical details. But given that this story is really a mystery at heart, I had to push myself to trim the fat and keep my protagonist moving forward. Instead of describing the details of Chekhov's Gun (or in this case, Chekhov's cutlass) ad nauseam, I made a conscious effort to get to the action sooner rather than later.

Altrix: Where else can our readers find your work?

Kneverday: You can read more of my short fiction on my website, I also recently edited (and contributed to) an anthology of urban Celtic fantasy, NEON DRUID, which is available on Amazon. If you're interested in crossing over into the Celtic Otherworld, a place where the mischievous gods, monsters, and heroes of Celtic mythology intermingle among us, NEON DRUID is for you. Finally, for my latest writing updates, you can follow me on Twitter.

Pick up your copy of Unearthed!

Monday, July 8, 2019

Done Binge-Watching? Get Reading!

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While Paul has been putting the finishing touches on Master Pieces and Kara has been trying to keep up with all the new summer anime coming out, Netflix has put out the third season of Stranger Things. And if you're anything like most of the world (except Kara, who's lagging behind as usual), you're already done with the latest season of adventures.

If you're craving more... well, we can't help you there. We don't have those kinds of insider contacts. But if you're in a Stranger Things mood and feeling the urge to delve back into the very first season, let our own Paul Driscoll be your guide!

Stranger Things Book Cover

Paul has penned a Silver Archive entry for the beginning of the blockbuster show, exploring both the real and fictional elements that inspired the story of the weird events happening within Hawkins, Indiana.

The Silver Archive is a sister series to the well-received Black Archive: Obverse Books' series of critical monographs on Doctor Who stories, to which both Kara and Paul have contributed installments. The new series steps outside Who and its adjacent titles, applying the same style and variety of writing to the rest of the world of television.

So if you're craving a deeper look back at where Stranger Things began, be sure to grab a copy from Obverse! There are also volumes on Sapphire & Steel so far, as well as a Christmas compendium by Paul Magrs.

Meanwhile, work continues on Master Pieces as mentioned, and we look forward to offering you some previews of that—and other upcoming projects—in the not-too-distant future.

Monday, July 1, 2019

Outside the Altrix: Black Archive Bracket and Obverse Sextet!

As we work away on our various projects here at Altrix Books, we're also working away on things outside our own venue. Fans of Doctor Who, its expanded universe, and sci-fi in general will want to take note.

First off, the Black Archive Twitter account is currently running a "World Cup" style bracket, asking fans to narrow down their favorite of the critical Doctor Who line. With 32 titles in the series, the numbers are just right. Paul Driscoll's piece on The God Complex survived the very first round, but what's to come? Kara Dennison's Heaven Sent will be up eventually. Be sure to check out the Twitter account and vote for your favorites—remember, you're voting for the book itself, not the Doctor Who story!

And of course, vote for your actual favorites in the line... but if that happens to be one of ours, we thank you very much!

Speaking of Obverse, the publisher's anniversary Sextet series is now up for pre-order! Kara is behind Vanishing Tales of the City, the sixth installment in the Sextet and the line's tribute to Philip Purser-Hallard's City of the Saved series. Head over to Obverse Books to buy one or more of the books (we personally recommend all six... just trust us on this one)!

Thanks as always for everyone's support, and we look forward to having more news on upcoming titles to deliver soon!

Monday, June 24, 2019

State of the Altrix

As promised not long ago, there's a lot on at Altrix Books! If the flurry of information over the last few weeks was a lot, we'll break it down for you.


Thanks to everyone who's bought a copy and who's spread the word about our very first anthology! We've really enjoyed bringing you Q&As from our writers and artists, and may have a few more in the wings now that Kara's back from her trip. If you haven't bought your copy yet, head over to our shop and grab one! We're available in physical and digital format, and all proceeds go to the American Research Center in Egypt.

Master Pieces

As you may have seen, our second charity anthology is gearing up for release very soon. Originally conceived by Scott Claringbold of Red Ted Books, the collection will focus on that other famous renegade Time Lord in all their forms. The cover is in the works, and we look forward to revealing it soon!

You Goes for the Remote

Paul and Kara are teaming up with Watching Books to handle one of their four upcoming essay collections. While this isn't technically an Altrix release, we'd love for our readers to have a look at the submissions page! We'll be handling You Goes for the Remote, a collection of essays on British television. There are also collections about film, literature, and music, headed up by some lovely people, so take a look!

The Chronosmith Chronicles

We know, we know. The longest tease of all. But the pieces are falling into place, and soon we'll have everything we need to tell you what's coming! Our logo will be forthcoming (with a dash of inspiration from the aforementioned trip), along with book titles and the names of the two authors who will be joining us for the Chronosmiths' first "season."

And the Rest...

Yes, believe it or not, there's still more we've not told you. But that's for a later date, once a few things have gone where they need to go. We can't wait to lift the curtain on these... it's turning out to be a packed first year for Altrix!

Monday, June 17, 2019


Artist and author Sophie Iles is one of our three contributing artists for Unearthed! A notable presence in the Doctor Who fan art scene, Sophie has turned her distinctive work to tales of ghosts, cursed urns, and gentleman thieves. Today, we talk to her about her work in the book, from ancient history to outer space.

Altrix Books: How did you choose which stories in Unearthed you wanted to do art for?

Sophie Iles: We both were given what stories were available to read and say which took our fancy the most and discussed if you had any favourites as a sort of first-come-first-serve basis. However, as both myself and Monica have our own tastes when it came to stories so it was soon really obvious that there wouldn’t be much fighting needed. So that meant I was able to draw the stories I liked the most!

Altrix: How was the subject matter compared to the sort of art you usually do?

Iles: Most of my work that’s currently out is fan related, like Doctor Who, so it was fun to plan and draw something different. This time it was either existing people from history, which I then had to research, or what characters the writers had come up with. In particular, during "Was I a Viking Old?" working out what an important building would look like within historical context, or the complexities of a spacesuit in "Quadrireme."

Altrix: What was the most challenging part of your work on the book?

Iles: With anything that’s illustrating a story it’s always hard trying to create art that is both eye catching and an extension of the story already being told, without giving the game away. It’s a difficult balance that I’m still learning to do.

Altrix: What was the most fun?

Iles: The most fun was figuring out what to draw for the "Raffles the Amateur Cracksman: An Egyptian Cameo," which was great fun because I didn’t know anything about Raffles until I read the story and compelled me to look him up and make sure I had all the correct costume and hairstyles to fit the era. 

Altrix: Where else can people find your work online? Anything else coming out soon?

Iles: I have a website where you can find my previous projects and in regards to social media I can be found most of the time on my Twitter account but I also have Facebook and Instagram.

Regarding upcoming work my first short story is due to be published in the next few weeks and some plans for more drawing projects to be announced very soon!

Order your copy of Unearthed from Altrix Books!