One of the best things about creating Firewords is the chance to work with so many wonderful writers and artists; their talent and enthusiasm for the project never cease to amaze! Click an Issue on the sidebar to meet each contributor who has been a part of Firewords.
Issue 9 Contributors
The wonderful authors and artists below are the reason Issue 9 is so great. They are listed in the order their work appears in the magazine. If you enjoyed their contribution, please reach out and let them know - or tell us and we can pass on the message. If you would like the chance to see your face here, what are you waiting for? Get submitting! Want a closer look at Issue 6?
Name: Vivian Wagner
Contribution: Author of Funny-ish
Location: Ohio, USA
Bio: Vivian Wagner lives in New Concord, Ohio, where she teaches English at Muskingum University. She’s the author of a memoir, Fiddle: One Woman, Four Strings, and 8,000 Miles of Music (Citadel-Kensington), and a poetry collection, The Village (Kelsay Books).
Name: Raff Marqs
Contribution: Artist for Funny-ish
Location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Bio: Raff is a Brazilian Creative Director and Illustrator who works mostly with animation but is still passionate about illustrations that don’t move. When he’s not eating cheese, he’s interested in printing, typography, animation, music, coffee and gin & tonic. Introspective by creation and curious by heart, he usually loses himself in his work more often than he should.
Name: William Thompson
Contribution: Author of The Water People
Location: Edmonton, Canada
Bio: William Thompson is totally blind. He teaches children’s literature for MacEwan University in Edmonton, Canada. His essays and stories have appeared in Hippocampus Magazine, Penmen Review, and Literary Orphans. He has two collections of stories—The Paper Man and Other Stories, and Fractured and Other Fairy Tales—both available on Amazon. He also maintains a blog at OfOtherWorlds.ca, and he loves to walk and read, usually at the same time.
Name: Tashi Reeve
Contribution: Artist for The Water People
Location: Sussex, UK
Bio: Tashi Reeve is an illustrator and animator from Brighton in the UK. He was born in Brighton and grew up around the rolling hills of the South Downs. He loves jamming, ramen, boardgames, exploring nature, history, sword fighting and adventures.
Name: Erich Gerner
Contribution: Author of Birds in Drawers
Location: Ontario, Canada
Bio: Erich Gerner is an English teacher from Toronto, Canada. He likes writing, reading, graphic novel art, science and the world. If he isn’t spending time with his wife and children or marking papers, he is probably watching a BBC documentary by David Attenborough or Brian Cox.
Name: Shreya Gupta
Contribution: Artist for Birds in Drawers
Location: NY, USA
Bio: Shreya Gupta is a New York based illustrator. She is originally from India but her passion for drawing and illustration brought her to States where she pursued MFA in Illustration as Visual Essay from School of Visual Arts, NY. Her intricate work always has a story to tell to its viewers. Apart from drawing, Shreya loves to travel and never holds back from trying new cuisines.
Name: Tom Antony Davies
Contribution: Author of Bonne Femme
Location: Manchester, England
Bio: Tom Antony Davies is a writer of speculative fiction and dark tales. He is based in Manchester, England.
Name: Cat Finnie
Contribution: Artist for Bonne Femme
Location: London, England
Bio: Cat Finnie is a freelance illustrator based in London, UK. The focus of her work is to try to discover the hidden and mysterious and translate this into an illustration. Cat finds inspiration in the life of the city, in nature, in art, in literature and in the mysterious process of allowing images and ideas to distill in the unconscious and resurface, transformed.
Name: Louise Mangos
Contribution: Author of Half Way to Guayaquil on the Roof of a Steam Train I Fell in Love
Bio: Louise is a writer and artist living on a Swiss Alp with her Kiwi husband and two sons. Her flash fiction has won FlashBang, AdHoc, Retreat West, and UKSSC’s Worldwide Flash Fiction competitions. Her work has been published on Spelk, Flash Flood, Loss Lit, Unbroken Journal, Ellipsis Zine, Reflex Fiction, and Brilliant Flash Fiction. You can find her on Facebook and Twitter @LouiseMangos or visit her website [louisemangos.com](louisemangos.com) for links to some of her work.
Name: Eleanor Hardiman
Contribution: Artist for Half Way to Guayaquil on the Roof of a Steam Train I Fell in Love
Location: Bath, UK
Bio: Currently based in Bath, Eleanor Hardiman creates conceptual imagery with a clean, modern and emotive style.
Name: Sandrine Letellier
Contribution: Author of Springtime
Location: Montreal, Canada
Bio: Sandrine Letellier holds a BA in English and French literature. She lives in Montreal where she spends her days surrounded by books. Poetry has always been her soft spot and she tries to live by Walt Whitman’s words: “Resist much, obey little”.
Name: Linda Tyler
Contribution: Author of Mrs Menzies’ Budgie
Location: Kincardineshire, Scotland
Bio: Linda Tyler was born in London. She moved progressively north until settling with her husband in a village on the edge of the Scottish Highlands. She has kept chickens, bred dogs and raised children. Linda has been published by Ouen Press, Bards and Sages, Alliteration Ink, Thema and others in the UK and the US. A retired lecturer, she runs self-catering holiday accommodation, sings in a choir and is walked daily by her Labrador.
Name: Ruth Edgett
Contribution: Author of The Smile
Location: Ontario, Canada
Bio: Born and raised on Prince Edward Island, daughter of a third-generation farmer and granddaughter of a Nova Scotia lightkeeper, Ruth Edgett is author of “A Watch in the Night: The story of Pomquet Island’s last lightkeeping family” (Nimbus). A former print journalist turned to fiction, she enjoys the challenge of fitting a big story into a small space. Most recently, she has been named winner of the “Consequence Magazine” Women Writing War Fiction Prize.
Name: Jane Akweley Odartey
Contribution: Author of A Calling
Location: NY, USA
Bio: Jane Akweley Odartey is a Ghanaian-American writer, abstractionist and artisan. Her work has appeared in Verity La, The Indianapolis Review and elsewhere. She owns and creates for a small indie brand, works as a Teaching Artist at the Queens Museum and blogs at janethroughtheseasons.com.
Name: Suzanne Samples
Contribution: Author of The Story of Veronica
Location: North Carolina, USA
Bio: Suzanne Samples likes roller skating and baton twirling, sometimes simultaneously. She received her Ph.D. in Victorian Literature from Auburn University and now teaches at Appalachian State University in mountainous North Carolina. Suzanne has had type one diabetes for thirty years and hopes to see a cure in her lifetime. She likes sassy calico cats and thinks roller derby will change the world.
Name: Alex Reece Abbott
Contribution: Author of Auē!
Location: York, UK
Bio: Alex writes across genres, forms and hemispheres. An Irish Novel Fair winner, and Bath Novella-in-Flash Award finalist, her work is widely published and anthologised, including in the Word Factory’s Citizen season and Bonsai: The Big Book of Small Stories, the upcoming first anthology of New Zealand short-short fiction. Her short stories have shortlisted for the Bridport, Tillie Olsen, Lorian Hemingway, HG Wells, and Sunday Business Post Penguin prizes, among others, and won the Arvon, Crediton and Northern Crime prizes.
Name: Monica Dickson
Contribution: Author of The Minister's Cat
Location: Leeds, UK
Bio: Monica Dickson writes short fiction. She has recent work published in Salomé magazine and online in The Cabinet of Heed.
Name: Carole Johnston
Contribution: Author of Picture Perfect
Location: East Yorkshire, UK
Bio: Carole was born in Yorkshire and has been alive for some time now. After completing her MA in 2014 she concentrated on writing short stories, the plan being to sell the best ones to women’s magazines. Her long-term goal is to write crime/fantasy novels, and send to an agent. Her husband is waiting for her to get published so she can buy him a boat with a flying bridge; this could take some time!
Name: Neil McGowan
Contribution: Author of Soulmate Inc.
Location: Santa Monica, USA
Bio: Neil McGowan is (usually) a playwright and screenwriter living in Santa Monica, CA. Every now and then he dabbles in prose though.
Name: Denise Hermo
Contribution: Artist for Soulmate Inc.
Bio: Denise Hermo is an Argentinian designer and illustrator, currently living in Belgium. During the day she serves the advertising industry and during the night she works on side projects and experimentations with multiples forms of art. Her artwork focuses on bringing people’s emotions to the stage, proposing a view on the full package of the human experience.
Name: Anah Tillar
Contribution: Author of Backwater Gospel
Location: Colorado, USA
Bio: Anah Tillar writes mind-bending speculative fiction. Georgia born and bred, she now lives in Colorado where she works as a freelance editor and book cover designer. She studied English at the University of Northern Colorado and has work featured in The Crucible. She can be found working on yet another magical realism novel and watching reruns of Sailor Moon.
Name: Dmitry Bondarenko
Contribution: Artist for Backwater Gospel
Location: Toronto, Canada
Bio: Dmitry lives and works in Toronto. He is addicted to books, drawing, and cycling.
Name: Lorna Malone
Contribution: Author of The Cut
Location: Edinburgh, Scotland
Bio: Lorna Malone penned her first poem, ‘I’m a Volcano’, aged 10, when the words literally erupted on the page. She’s been waging a creative ‘30 years’ war’ ever since, with a smattering of publishing success. From her home in Edinburgh, she writes in any nooks and crannies of time she finds between juggling the demands of a busy family and her job as a copywriter. Her favourite distractions are people-watching, wishful thinking and trashy TV.
Name: Mary Kirkpatrick
Contribution: Artist for The Cut
Location: Toronto, Canada
Bio: Mary Kirkpatrick is a student and illustrator living in Toronto, Canada. Her work has appeared in Applied Arts Magazine, Humming Magazine, Childish Zine and on sukeban.com.
Name: Samuel Best
Contribution: Author of The Burning
Location: Glasgow, Scotland
Bio: Samuel Best has been published in magazines in Britain, North America, and Scandinavia. His début novel Shop Front has been described as “A howl and a sigh from Generation Austerity” and he founded literary magazine Octavius.
Name: Jude Labuca
Contribution: Artist for The Burning
Location: Toronto, Canada
Bio: Jude grew up in Manila but now works as an illustrator and graphic artist based in Toronto. When he’s not busy doing client work, he tries to be preoccupied doing creative work for himself. He is fond of collecting vintage matchbox labels and enjoys watching neo-noir and foreign type films.
Name: Craig Cormick
Contribution: Author of Napoleon Misses an Opportunity
Location: Holt, Australia
Bio: Craig Cormick is an award-winning Australian author of fiction and non-fiction. He has published over 25 books and has been a writer in residence at the University of Science in Penang, Malaysia, and an Antarctic Arts Fellow in Antarctica. He enjoys messing with history as much as it seems to enjoy messing with him.
Links: craigcormick.com | #craigcormick
Name: Eli Hughes
Contribution: Artist for Napoleon Misses an Opportunity
Location: London, UK
Bio: Elliot Hughes was raised in London. Growing up as a child, the cartoons he watched and the stories he was told filled his mind with imaginary worlds. Brought back to reality some years later, he’d spend 6 years being traditionally trained as an Architect- only to realise that really, all he actually wants is to do two things: 1. To draw and 2. To tell stories. Sometimes, life can be so simple. Living it, though?
Name: Toby Buckley
Contribution: Author of Nostos and [Bee emoji]
Location: Belfast, Northern Ireland
Bio: Toby Buckley recently completed his MA in the Seamus Heaney Centre in Belfast. His work has previously been published in The Tangerine, HCE Review and The Rose Magazine, as well as a number of different independent zines. He received the first Ruth West Award for Poetry in 2016. He currently washes dishes in a small sandwich deli and runs an even smaller arts zine called Bombinate.
Name: Andrea Dalla Barba
Contribution: Artist for Nostos and [Bee emoji]
Location: Vicenza, Italy
Bio: Andrea Dalla Barba has always loved drawings and mixing colours since he was a child. After his diploma from the Liceo Artistico in Valdagno, he specialised in illustration at the International Comics School in Padua. He works for many different magazines, including the Austrian Datum. He took part in the Treviso Comic Book festival and was shortlisted for several national contests. He has recently won second prize at Eurhope “I porti del mare” in Genoa and first prixe at Talent on the Rocks in Chiampo. He has experimented with virtually every painting technique, and now favours acrylics, sprays and digital drawing.
Name: A M Howcroft
Contribution: Author of Time Travel for 11-Year Olds
Location: California, USA
Bio: Anthony’s stories have been published in a variety of periodicals including The Writers Magazine USA, The London Magazine, and Words with Jam. His work has also appeared in collections by Momaya, Cinnamon Press and the Waterstones / Bristol Short Story Prize Anthology, and he has won the H E Bates Award, and the Big Issue in the North short story contest. His first collection, ‘Nobody Will Ever Love You’ was published by InkTears in 2015.
Name: Daria Skrybchenko
Contribution: Artist for Time Travel for 11-Year Olds
Bio: Daria Skrybchenko is an editorial illustrator living in Kyiv, Ukraine. She is fond of telling stories through intriguing artworks.
Name: Rondie LI
Contribution: Artist for Eurasian Makes Okonomiyaki
Location: Toronto, Canada
Bio: Rondie has been on this planet (in Hong Kong, to be exact, and now in Canada) since 1985. After working in law, trading, printing, marketing, advertising, and writing. He is happiest working in illustration. He also plays mahjong (just for fun.)