Tales From The Spired Inn

by stephenpalmersf

I’m delighted to announce that a volume of collected and new short stories set in the Memory Seed world (the doomed city of Kray) has been acquired by Newcon Press, and will be published later in the year.


Last year, Ian Whates, editor and head of Newcon, approached me regarding the possibility of this volume. I had many years before written and had published three short stories set in Kray, so with the addition of two brand new tales, each venturing into territory I wasn’t able to visit in the novel, the collection was formed.

Here’s what Ian says in his recent Newcon Press newsletter:

At the end of days stands Kray, “a coastal city surrounded by, and then invaded by rampant vegetation”, where the last humans on Earth struggle to survive in the face of nature striking back.

 I first encountered Kray in the novels Memory Seed and Glass (both from Orbit) and recall being blown away by the setting and the concept. Author Stephen Palmer has subsequently spoken of his love for the writing of Gene Wolfe and Jack Vance helping to shape his vision, and who could ask for better influences?

 Not until last year did I realise that Stephen had written three short stories in the same milieu, tales linked by association with the Spired Inn, an establishment considered neutral territory by the warring factions of Kray, where the word of landlady Dhow-lin is law, and where dark schemes are often plotted and set in motion…

 I contacted Stephen and asked whether he’d ever considered revisiting Kray and writing a new story or two. Thankfully, he loved the idea, and Tales from the Spired Inn was born. Contracts are signed; the deed is done; there’s no escape now…

The book’s cover design has been agreed; it has rather an Art Nouveau feel, which I thought appropriate to the setting.

I was really thrilled to be writing in the city of Kray again after so long (thirty years since the original inspiration and first draft), so many thanks to Ian for giving me this opportunity.

Memory Seed ebook cover

Memory Seed