Category Archives: Uncategorized


I drink coffee before mid-day, and tea after; so let’s have a rumination on coffee, shall we?

For me, coffee is best out of a pour-over set-up. I use Melitta filters in a generic cup-top holder usually, although we do have a French press. I tend to find that a French press is extra fiddly for an extra value I’m not really sure is worth the extra effort.

We have a Brita water filter that we run tap water through before it goes into the electric kettle.

By the by: why don’t more Americans have an electric kettle? They’re all sorts of useful.

Seeing as how we’re doing an anthology with King Harv’s Imperial Coffees in 2024, and since they have a blend specifically for us, I feel I should do a plug for them, but truth be told they make damned fine coffee, and I’d recommend them even if we didn’t have a connection.

If King Harv’s is out of your budget, Wide Awake Coffee Company and Community Coffee are my go-tos for good, inexpensive coffee.

Since I am diabetic, I put one packet of Splenda stevia sweetener and one packet of Splenda monk fruit sweetener in my mug, then I wet the filter at the faucet and put it in the holder on top of the mug.

My Rule of Thumb is one tablespoon of ground coffee for each person drinking, and one for the pot; so two tablespoons of ground coffee in the filter, and a gentle pour once the water is just off the boil.

For those Gentle Readers not familiar with that phrase, when the water hits a rolling boil, turn off the heat, wait about 15-20 seconds after the bubbles have stopped, and you have water “just off the boil”.

The “one per cup and one for the pot” can vary. King Harv’s Geisha blend doesn’t require that much grounds, so trial and error is your friend here.

Pour the water into the filter, making sure all of the grounds are well wetted, and continue to pour until you have the amount of coffee you are looking for.

I prefer evaporated milk for my coffee and tea — my African childhood coming through — but half-and-half is perfectly ok.

As an aside: half-and-half is closer to what I remember milk in Europe as being. I don’t know what Americans do to their milk, but it isn’t as rich as I remember it from other places.

Then I sip gently on the back steps, watching the dogs snuffle around the backyard, and mentally preparing for the day.

Voila! Coffee.


Pinup Noir 2

Anthology #15 is out!

Pinup Noir 2, the second of our series inspired by Greg Hildebrandt’s stunning ‘Saturday Night Special‘ painting is now — after some hiccoughs — live!

(Have I mentioned that Amazon makes my eye twitch?)

Support starving authors — buy this book.

Direct link is here.

I’m so proud of all the authors that submitted stories for this series — picking the best of all of them was agonizing.



… Oh, wow.

So, I was banging around Amazon just now, when I found this:

Being ever-so-slightly curious, I decided to see how many Raconteur Press books were in the “Top 100 Paid” “Best Sellers in Science Fiction Anthologies”, that being a very competitive area.

Would you believe we currently hold 8% of the Top 100?

Not bad for a nothing little press out in the middle of fly-over country, hey?

*suppressed inner squee*


Moggies! Back in space!

Well, that went live a day early, but — cats. What can you do?

It’s a fantastic problem to experience when you have so many wonderful authors submitting so many outstanding stories that your one-off anthology has to have a Part 2.

Thank y’all from the bottoms of our hearts. Thank you.

So. Cats! Space! Possible hairballs!

Direct link is here.


Due diligence, and you

Dear authors,

Every one of you who has submitted a story to us — CHECK YOUR AUTHOR EMAIL ADDRESS, PLEASE.

If you have an e-mail address set up for your author account/author business, and you’re sending stories out, do me a solid and check that email address regularly. And by “regularly” I mean “at least once a day”.

We’ve had a previous story that we really, really liked; that we wanted to publish; and that we wanted to see that young author GET PAID FOR.

However, said author didn’t respond to the contract we sent out until a month after we sent them the contract. We had to pull that very excellent story from an anthology.

You’d think this would be a one-off event, but we’re having to do it again. We have a wonderful story submitted, but the author that submitted it isn’t checking his/her e-mail address, and we’re coming up to the launch point for the anthology.

We’re on a tight deadline. I’m not holding up a release for one person, because I don’t want to deal with a failure cascade on our very tight production schedule.

Jonna is about to send a 5th email to this latest example. Five. Trust me – any other publishing house would yank your story after the first one, and I (as the publisher) am seriously considering pulling rank and pinching this sort of thing off.

Which makes me sad, truth be told.

So. If you want to make money writing, treat it like a business. Follow up. Check your author email address regularly — like every day — because if you’re not going to treat your craft seriously … why should we?

Frustrated, I remain:


Or All Will Burn

The latest release from Raconteur Press is another one of our collaborations with established authors.

This one was suggested by Kacey Ezell, and is centred around what someone would do to keep their child safe. The stories we got are just fantastic.

We also managed to snag Marisa Wolf for this one, and I’m tickled pink about that.

Cedar’s cover is just … wow.

Direct link is here.

As usual, our authors went above and beyond, so there will be a second edition of Or All Will Burn, but I would take it as a kindness if you would spread the news about this one far and wide. 


I have a story!

And now you need to know how to get it to us.

No problem.

First thing to know is we don’t require a cover letter, a synopsis, or begging of permission. Just send your story to the following email address:

Use the following format:

One of our rules at Raconteur Press is: “The story must be entertaining. All else is negotiable.” That goes within reason — our upper limit for short stories is usually 8,000 words, but if you go over to 10,000 and it’s an entertaining story, we’re ok with that. If you head off into novelette or novella territory, we’re probably going to suggest that you publish on your own and keep all the money for yourself.

You’re going to need a free account at PubShare. Since we use PubShare to pay our authors, do the tax stuff and the accounting; this is a requirement. Be sure when you sign up with your free PubShare account that you specify whether you want to be paid via paper cheque each quarter, or PayPal disbursement each month.

Part of the publishing process is that each author has to sign off in PubShare on the volume their story is in, and we can’t proceed until everyone has signed off on their story. When we’re at that stage, PubShare will email a notice to you that you need to authorise your inclusion. If you take more than a couple of days to do this, Jonna will start raising her eyebrow at you.

There are several times in 2024 when we’re working on a compressed two-week timetable, and an author taking a week to log-in and authorise their story will throw a considerable amount of sand into the gears of a well-oiled machine (with a great big sign saying ‘DO NOT OIL’ on the side). Authorise your story.

If you have any questions our emails are on this blog, and we hang out on the Raconteur Press Facebook page, and the North Texas Troublemakers Facebook group.

Come write for us. Have fun. Get paid.