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!

Image result for stranger things 3

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!