Allen Donnelly

Artist, Author, Whimsy Merchant

This is the official website of the artist and science-fiction/fantasy novelist, Allen Donnelly.

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Wait, where am I?

I have moved house, all is chaos and cardboard! I have no idea what's going on.
If you're at all interested, I now live in a small town in Cumbria, north west England, by the name of Kirkby Stephen. It's a nice little house with a small garden that looks out over a green hillside on which sheep wander. The dog likes to bark at them, which I'm sure my new neighbours are thrilled about.
The only downside is that the previous owner must have been on a lifelong quest to rid the world of cigarettes by smoking them all - the walls are stained a lovely shade of emphysema brown. I'm spending most of my time trying to scrub them down at the minute. I stink of cleaning fluid.
Here's a sample:


I've also just turned 39, so there's that.

There's not been a lot of writing work this last couple of weeks. Hopefully going to try and get back into it soon. Got a release to set up for the Crystal Eyes sequel and I've another story I might try sending to a publisher.

Heroes Wanted is doing okay on Amazon, had some good reviews, at least on the UK site. There's not a single one in the US! Come on, you beautiful American types, you know you want to throw me a few stars! What can I do to tempt you?

Right, I'm off to cope with the existential dread about the inexorable, pitiless march of time that I always get for my birthday (I'd rather have got a bike) by playing Heroes of the Storm.

2015, eh?

So far...could be better, could be worse. Kind of meh. Is it 2016 yet? No? Bugger.
I was holding off doing much promotion for Heroes Wanted (available at all good eBook retailers) after Christmas but I'll probably start again soon. I meant to start last week but, well, started out on Monday morning thinking "Huh, I must have been sitting funny, got a bit of an ache on the left side of my lower-back". By Monday afternoon I was lying flat on the floor gasping at the painful spasms - huzzah for kidney stones!
Middle-aged ailment - Achievement Unlocked!
Incidentally, if you hear a terrible screaming then it may be because the stone has finally worked its way through to the, er, "exit point", as it were. An experience that someone on twitter said was second only to his spine shattering in terms of pain.

On top of all that, I just dropped the last bit of my cheese pasty on the floor. Truly, this has become the year of horror.

My ageing carcass aside, I've been editing Sorrow's Herald, the sequel to Crystal Eyes, and what I'm tentatively calling Once Upon A Mech In The Desert, an entirely new sci-fi story. I might change the title though. It's a cool story but still needs some tweaking. Here's a slight spoiler: there are mechs in it. Also a desert. No desserts though.
Suddenly I want cake.

Who am I kidding, I always want cake.

I'm gonna have some cake.



So that was 2013, eh?

Greetings, one and all, on this, the final day of 2013!

Hope all of you out there have had a good year!

As for's been eventful. I've sold a house, moved to the Lake District, finished polishing up Heroes Wanted, ran a KickStarter (unsuccessfully) to get Heroes Wanted edited, started the sequel to Crystal Eyes, scrapped what I'd written and started again, finished the sequel to Crystal Eyes, started my Live Writing experiment, wrote the first 50,000 words of a new story for NaNoWriMo, and finally set up paperback versions of Crystal Eyes on Amazon's CreateSpace program. 

And for 2014...
Finally get Heroes Wanted published, either by a publisher or just by me, polish up and publish the sequel to Crystal Eyes, find somewhere else to live and a way of earning money (you could buy my books, or get your friends to, that'd help a huge amount - just saying!).
Work more on promotional type stuff because generally I have sucked at that. Going to try and build up my twitter following, "build my brand" or whatever the marketing types say.
Do more video content stuff - I've been trying to do a short, daft film but the technicalities are defeating me at the moment (lighting green screens, man, harder than you think).
More Live Writing - need to finished the steampunk story I've already got going and I'm going to try and do a live short story at least once a month, like the one I did for Halloween, with a video stream and multiple drinks! Keep an eye on my twitter feed for that!

That's it for now, hope you all have a great 2014 and that it brings you all that you could hope for.


What, Christmas time already?

I swear we just had one of those. Anyway, hello, brave traveller, and welcome to another brain splurge from the depths of my, for the want of a better word, mind.

NaNoWriMo has been and gone - this is basically all I think about during November and other stuff that would probably be a lot more useful gets shunted back. But it's done now, I got my 50,000 words done of a fantasy novel that could be pretty epic - there's a long way to go on it yet so you'll not be seeing it for a fair while.
Well done to everyone who took part in this year's NaNo, and congratulations to everyone who hit their target!

The continuing saga of Heroes Wanted. I got my report back from the editor I hired - overall they liked it, found it funny, but they had some good feedback for me as well. My current focus is polishing it up based on what they said to try and get it into a publishable state. If I can get it done by the end of December then I might take a punt at sending in to Angry Robot's open submissions. We shall see!

I've made a tentative start on going over my first draft of the sequel to Crystal Eyes but that's taking a back seat to Heroes Wanted (I will get that thing out if it bloody kills me - it's been at least a year of trying by now!).
In related news, I'm setting up Crystal Eyes on Amazon's CreateSpace print on demand service. It's not quite ready to go yet but I've got a proof copy - something very cool about seeing a physical manifestation of your work like that. As nice as an eBook is there's still something ephemeral about it.
So, if you've been thinking "Oh man, I'd love to read this cool sci-fi book but I don't have an eReader", well then I've got you covered. Or will have in the next few days...just in time for Christmas, in fact! It would make the perfect gift.

A thick, inanimate object...holding up a book!

A thick, inanimate object...holding up a book!


Happy Halloween!
That's right, it's the time of year when people can legitimately dress up in funky (and possibly sexy) costumes without people looking at them askance! Also a fine excuse to eat too many sweets, drink too much Halloween themed alcohol and watch ropey horror films.
I also made a Halloween Baking video for your delectation, in which I make pumpkin bread (see the bottom of this post for the video).

But, more important than any daft holiday, tonight is NaNoWriMo eve - tomorrow the challenge begins!
30 days. 50,000 words. An unreasonable amount of coffee...
Let's do this! 

I hope there are plenty of you joining me this year so we can encourage/mock each other - here's a link to my profile! 
I am almost totally unprepared. Again. This is becoming something of a tradition.

That's it for now. Good luck to all the other NaNoWriMoers and a happy Halloween to everyone!