Sunday, 15 March 2009

Coming Out Of Isolation

Isolation Space

An Anthology Of Short Fiction By Mark Cantrell
Copyright © March 2009

ISOLATION Space is the first paperback anthology presenting 20 of Mark Cantrell’s short stories in one singular volume.

Most of the stories have appeared in small press magazines, while others have gained an airing on the author’s literary blog Tyke Script Redrafted [now defunct], but this is the first time they will have appeared together in one bound edition.



The stories presented within the covers of Isolation Space combine to make an eclectic collection of science fiction, fantasy, horror and some more esoteric works of a more literary nature. One thing is certain – you won’t be disappointed.

The 284-page paperback, perfect-bound edition is soon to be published through Lulu and Amazon priced £9.99. So, check back here for further details over the next few weeks. Meanwhile, read the blurb and taste a preview of the tales to come...


STEP outside the Hive and see the world from a new perspective. Be warned – it can be an unsettling experience, but that’s only to be expected in the Isolation Space.

Beyond the portals of the Isolation Space are found those Souls that seethe against the common flow of consciousness. Mark Cantrell has merged with the flow, listened to the echoes, and returned to tell the tales that crave life in the human mind.

Here, twenty of those stories are bound into one thrilling collection of science fiction, fantasy and horror, with a few literary twists and turns that will fertilise the mind. There is something for everyone in the Isolation Space, if you dare to open the covers, breach the event horizon, and step forth into the worlds that lie within.

Beware, you might emerge from the Isolation Space unscathed – but never untouched.


  • Blood will out, it is said; when a group of vampires go looking for their origins, they discover far more than they can stomach…
  • We all have our ups and downs, but when it came to being stuck in a rut, this old Greek legend really had it made – or so he thought…
  • These days it takes real dedication and commitment for modern authors to get themselves noticed. Reality television is all very well, but isn’t a live execution for heresy a little extreme? Still, think of the Royalties…
  • She was the one afraid of the dark, that’s why the other vamps in her gang laughingly called her Shade, but she’s still breathing – and she’s stalking the man who slaughtered them. So, he’s just a vampire-slayer, right? Think again. Shade is in for one Hell of a surprise…
  • First contact is a delicate and harrowing business, so when the aliens do drop in for lunch, be careful where you take them. The fate of the world rests on the menu…

Isolation Space, Published By Lulu and soon to be available from that publisher, as well as Amazon, for £9.99 (plus P+P). ISBN: 978-1-4092-7030-0.

Content Preview: The Full Melange

Window Gazers
There’s something fiendish outside, so are you sure you’re sitting comfortably? Then let us begin…

This story made its first appearance on the author’s website, Tyke Script Redrafted . Copyright © January 2004. All rights reserved.

Affordable Housing
An Englishman’s home is his castle, until they want the land for regeneration…

Made its first appearance on Tyke Script Redrafted. Copyright © February 2005. All rights reserved.

Brain Drain
Alcohol and brains don’t tend to mix well, unless you’re feeling peckish that is…

First appeared on Tyke Script Redrafted. Copyright © October 2002. All rights reserved.

Time Changeth The Man
Step outside the Hive and see the world from a new perspective. Be warned – it can be an unsettling experience. How can any creature possibly live like this? Find out inside…

First published in Alternaties #16 as “Time For A Change” circa 1994. Subsequently republished as a reworked form in The Asphalt Jungle (#3, Spring 1999) as “Time Changeth The Man”. It appeared again in The Doppelganger Broadsheet Vol. 13 #48 circa 2006. Copyright © May 1998. All rights reserved.

The Rise & Fall Of Sisyphus
We all have our ups and downs in life, but when it comes to being stuck in a rut, this old Greek legend really had it made – or so he thought…

This story first appeared in the Writers’ Muse, September 2007 #39. Copyright © August 2001. All rights reserved.

A Walk In The Woods
When the most beautiful woman in the world begs a humble woodcutter for her life, there’s only one way for him to fulfil her wish – he must wield the axe…

Previously published in The Pen, Winter 1996. Subsequently appeared in Sci-Fright #6 March 2000. Copyright © January 1996. All rights reserved.

To Heal The World
Only Man was able to save the world. Well naturally, since He was the one killing it – but He saved the Old Girl in the end. Pity He wasn’t around to enjoy it…

This story was first published on Tyke Script Redrafted. Copyright © March 2001. All rights reserved.

Of Unicorns & Vampyres
Blood will out, it is said; when a group of vampires go looking for their origins, what they discover is more than they can stomach…

Originally written in 1991, this story remained unpublished until a significantly improved version was produced last year. The latter version gained its first airing on Tyke Script Redrafted. Copyright © July 1991/ November 2007. All rights reserved.

Sinners In Streaming Video
These days it takes real dedication and commitment for a modern author to get themselves noticed, but maybe the publicity stunts can be taken too far. Reality television is all very well, after all, but isn’t a live execution for heresy a little extreme? Still, think of the Royalties…

First appeared in The Writers Compass, winter 2007/2008 edition. Copyright © November 1998. All rights reserved.

At Death’s Door
There’s a door in the mind that keeps the ghosts of the past firmly locked at bay, but that door can be forced open – and when it does…

Gained its first appearance on Tyke Script Redrafted, following a reworking of an earlier unpublished version of the story. Copyright © November 1990/ September 2007. All rights reserved.

Ghost Of Sarajevo
Another time, another war, but either this correspondent is going nuts or the city is haunted…

First published in Writers’ Own Magazine, Autumn 1995 #55. Subsequently appeared in Wrightlines #16 August 2000; then Love, Sex, Death & Carrots, anthology of Interchange (Bradford Writers’ Network), December 2000. ISBN: 0-9521295-1-5. Copyright © November 1993. All rights reserved.

There Is No Sanctuary Here
Pity the strangers among us, for there is little mercy in the world we made for them – but is it possible their presence hints that some ember of hope still smoulders in our hearts? Hear their call…

First published on Tyke Script Redrafted. Copyright © December 2003. All rights reserved.

One For The Road
The perils of hitch-hiking pale against experience when Sarah finds herself picked up by a vampire with the hots for her. She can run but she can’t hide – especially from her true self…

A reworking of an earlier unpublished short story called “Bullets Can’t Kill Me”. The later version gained its first publication on Tyke Script Redrafted. Copyright © October 1991/ September 2007. All rights reserved.

Shopping For Katie
For the modern consumer planning that perfect baby, it pays to shop around – and read the small print in the warranty too…

First appeared in the Clover Books anthology Spirit of Darkness (ISBN: 0-9534290-0-8), 1998. Copyright © July 1996. All rights reserved.

One Way Trip
When a salvage crew scavenging the outer rings of Saturn turns up the long-lost hulk of a generation ship, it seems like an easy fortune – but deep inside ancient evil thirsts. In space nobody can hear the children of the night howl…

This story first appeared on Tyke Script Redrafted. Copyright © July 1992. All rights reserved.

Nathan’s Friend
Tonight’s the night – that Nathan cuts loose a close and personal friend. They’ve been a team since adolescence, but enough is enough, he’s got Nathan into trouble once too often – so it’s time for some blood and retribution…

First appeared in the Clover Books anthology Spirit of Darkness (ISBN: 0-9534290-0-8), 1998. Copyright © September 1996. All rights reserved.

Deadly Night Shade
She was the one who was afraid of the dark, that’s why the other vamps in her gang laughingly called her Shade, but she’s the one still breathing – and she’s stalking the man who slaughtered them. So, he’s just another vampire-slayer – right? Think again. Shade is in for one hell of a surprise…

First appeared in The Velvet Vampyre #23 circa 1994 under the title “Blood Feud”. It subsequently reappeared in a reworked form under the current title in Monomyth Vol. 6.4 #40 in 2006. Copyright © February 1999. All rights reserved.

Joe’s Last Meal
First contact is a delicate and harrowing business, so when the aliens do drop in for lunch, be careful where you take them. The fate of the world rests on the menu…

First appeared on Tyke Script Redrafted. Copyright © November 2001. All rights reserved.

An Englishman’s Home Is A…
Can’t afford to buy or rent a home – then this is the ideal solution to solve the housing crisis…

First appeared in the Writers’ Muse #45 October 2008 under the title “Coming Home To Roost”. Copyright © September 2006. All rights reserved.

Taste Of The Night Life
A night on the town is all very well, but maybe a date with the city’s pre-eminent vampire slayer isn’t exactly a long-term prospect. It’s not what you think – and he sure as hell ain’t Buffy…

Made its first appearance on Tyke Script Redrafted. Copyright © September 2005. All rights reserved.


Mark Cantrell,
Stoke-on-Trent,
15 March 2009


Copyright © March 2009. All Rights Reserved.

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