Call for Pulp Sci-Fi Submissions!

Over the last four years, the From the Rock series has become one of the preeminent anthology series’ in Atlantic Canada. We have been home to some amazing established talent and helped some new authors break through that have gone on to dominate their fields, becoming genre bestsellers in their own right. From the Rock is a title readers consistently ask for, review well, and is a great way for avid readers to get introduced to indie talent they might find interesting. In March 2018 the series’ third entry, Chillers from the Rock, went Bestseller on pre-orders alone!

We are currently accepting submissions for the sixth entry in this series: Pulp Sci-Fi from the Rock, to be available in Winter of 2020. Continue reading Call for Pulp Sci-Fi Submissions!

On to Round 2! | House Blog

I did it, everyone! I managed to wrestle my short story into a first draft!

calvin-hobbes-dance

(click here if you haven’t read my previous post)

Now, don’t get me wrong – it’s a rough first draft, but 1,645 words and a shaky ending are better than 475 words that dwindle off into nothingness. Continue reading On to Round 2! | House Blog

Got the Time? Make the Time! | Dobbin’s Blog

For a lot of us writers working a “real job”, finding the time (and motivation) to sit down to write is a chore. Real jobs are exhausting. If you’re anything like me, coming home from a day at the office leaves you wanting two things: food and sleep. That’s right, I just want to eat and go to bed. Unfortunately, I don’t have that kind of leisure time. When I come home I have three kids, a wife, a dog, and my wife’s cat. Napping has become impossible, and I’d be lucky if there was any food left in the house by the time I got home from work. Of course then there is supper time, bath time, and bed time routines. Hanging out, homework, and, if we’re lucky, a few minutes to catch up with my wife before sleep drags me down into its sweet, sweet depths. Did you notice I didn’t work in any writing time in there? Yeah, about that…

Continue reading Got the Time? Make the Time! | Dobbin’s Blog

Winner: “Head in the Clouds” by Melissa E. Wong | Kit Sora Flash Fiction Photography Contest

After much deliberation, Engen Books is proud to announce the winner of the April 2019 Kit Sora Flash Fiction Photography Contest: Melissa E. Wong with his story, Head in the Clouds!

There were two judges for this month of the contest:


Matthew LeDrewMatthew LeDrew has written twenty novels for Engen Books, Black Womb, Transformations in Pain, Smoke and Mirrors, Roulette, Ghosts of the Past, Ignorance is Bliss, Becoming, Inner Child, Gang War, Chains, The Long Road, Cinders, Sinister Intent, Faith, Family Values, Touch Your Nose, Jacobi Street, Infinity, The Tourniquet Reprisal and Exodus of Angels.


6S2A6303Kit Sora Photography. Kit Sora is an artist and photographer from St. Johns, Newfoundland. Her photography draws inspiration from fantasy, dystopia, and thrillers to create evocative imagrey that startles, inspires, and excites.Kit signed with Engen Books in 2018 as head photographer, producing the thrilling image for Chillers from the Rock and re-imagining the covers to the entire Black Womb series into the Coral Beach Casefiles series. Drew Power is a currently seated member of the Sci-Fi on the Rock committee. He was recently featured as the model on the cover of the bestselling collection Chillers from the Rock.


Runners up include Nimbus by Daniel Burton and I’m Fat by Amanda Evans. Continue reading Winner: “Head in the Clouds” by Melissa E. Wong | Kit Sora Flash Fiction Photography Contest

On projection and reading. | Sam Bauer Blog

Fantasy from the Rock

Ellen Curtis & Erin Vance (Editors) Twenty-One short stories written by an eclectic mix of some of the best fantasy authors in Atlantic Canada, some of them award-winning veterans of their field and some of them new to the craft!

C$25.00

I have an odd question for you; how much meaning can you imbue into a text? (By text, I mean any media, be it song, story, memoir, or movie.) How much can you actually insure that the reader will take the meaning you want them to? This is a question I am wholeheartedly unqualified to answer. But I do have an anecdote, about when I was reading way too much into a text.

So, I was sitting at home when my phone buzzed on the counter next to me. Upon opening it, I found that Matt had texted me, asking if I could read something and tell him if it was fantasy enough for Fantasy from the Rock, as the three judges (Matt, Ellen and Erin) were in a deadlock. Of course, my first question was how on earth three people managed to tie. He replied that there was some sort of “electoral college” system to keep him from getting too much power. Fair enough, I get to reading. As I read, I start analyzing it. Continue reading On projection and reading. | Sam Bauer Blog

Wrestling a Story into Submission | House Blog

You know what it’s like when you get an idea for a story and you’re really excited to write it down and bask in the wonder of your genius, but once you start writing you suddenly get stuck and the words don’t sound like they should and the idea’s not really coming across and it isn’t the way you thought it would be and you’re having trouble making that line sound good and you’re not even halfway through but it’s all crumbling in front of you and you don’t know what to do to make it right?

*takes a deep, calming breath*

Normally once I’ve reached this point I would put that particular story aside and work on something else, but the problem is that I don’t want to work on something else. Like a petulant child: I wanna to write this specific story and I want it to be good! Continue reading Wrestling a Story into Submission | House Blog

A Few Words on Writing Advice | Dobbin Blog

Let’s talk about writing advice. Nowadays, telling someone not to follow writing advice is as cliché as the writing advice in question. Write what you know – but you can also write what you don’t know (it’s called imagination). Don’t use adverbs – unless they work for the story you’re telling.  To make things worse, there are literally millions of “How-To” books out there (okay, not a million, but it feels that way) espousing the best way to write, most of which promise to help you write the next bestseller or be the next Stephen King. It’s all really very confusing.

It certainly doesn’t help that writers are a nervous bunch. Some might say that we lack self-esteem. Maybe we even lack basic confidence in our work. As such, we often just want someone to tell us that what we are writing is okay, that we meet the standard, that we’re not wasting our time and effort.  We want someone to tell us how to be successful. So, we search for the writing advice, but we see the contradictions. Does writing advice work or doesn’t it? Continue reading A Few Words on Writing Advice | Dobbin Blog