Matt Gemmell

TOLL is available now!

An action-thriller novel — book 2 in the KESTREL series.

★★★★★ — Amazon

Weekly Short Story: Retrogenesis

writing, fiction & once upon a time 5 min read

On Monday mornings, I send out a story via email: ultra-brief tales of 1,000 words or more, usually in genres including science fiction, horror, and the supernatural. Those stories collectively are called Once Upon A Time. I’ve also published four ebooks and one paperback anthology of those stories so far.

I’d love to have you as a subscriber to the weekly free story. You can subscribe via email here, or use the form below. Unsubscribe any time, from the link in every issue.

Weekly Short Story: Patrol

writing, fiction & once upon a time 4 min read

On Monday mornings, I send out a story via email: ultra-brief tales of 1,000 words or more, usually in genres including science fiction, horror, and the supernatural. Those stories collectively are called Once Upon A Time. I’ve also published four ebooks and one paperback anthology of those stories so far.

I’d love to have you as a subscriber to the weekly free story. You can subscribe via email here, or use the form below. Unsubscribe any time, from the link in every issue.

Weekly Short Story: The Tradesman

writing, fiction & once upon a time 4 min read

On Monday mornings, I send out a story via email: ultra-brief tales of 1,000 words or more, usually in genres including science fiction, horror, and the supernatural. Those stories collectively are called Once Upon A Time. I’ve also published four ebooks and one paperback anthology of those stories so far.

I’d love to have you as a subscriber to the weekly free story. You can subscribe via email here, or use the form below. Unsubscribe any time, from the link in every issue.

Compressing Your Keyboard

writing & tech 24 min read

This article is about switching to a smaller keyboard (with fewer keys), why you might want to, and how to reintroduce the functions of missing keys in a way that capitalises on your own muscle memory.

When talking about computer keyboards, there are two main ways to subdivide or categorise what’s available: layout, and size. While these are overlapping concepts, it’s easy enough to understand the differences by way of examples.

Layouts are, broadly speaking, how the keys are arranged — QWERTY being a popular layout for most people who’ll read this, whether in its US-style ANSI arrangement or the international ISO style instead. There are many more layouts, including AZERTY, DVORAK, COLEMAK, WORKMAN, and so on. These all intersect to varying degrees with the needed key layouts for languages other than English (such as JIS), creating a rich matrix of possibilities. It’s the other primary categorisation that I really want to talk about here, though; that of size.

Weekly Short Story: Beautiful Walls

writing, fiction & once upon a time 5 min read

On Monday mornings, I send out a story via email: ultra-brief tales of 1,000 words or more, usually in genres including science fiction, horror, and the supernatural. Those stories collectively are called Once Upon A Time. I’ve also published four ebooks and one paperback anthology of those stories so far.

I’d love to have you as a subscriber to the weekly free story. You can subscribe via email here, or use the form below. Unsubscribe any time, from the link in every issue.

Weekly Short Story: Undeserving

writing, fiction & once upon a time 5 min read

On Monday mornings, I send out a story via email: ultra-brief tales of 1,000 words or more, usually in genres including science fiction, horror, and the supernatural. Those stories collectively are called Once Upon A Time. I’ve also published four ebooks and one paperback anthology of those stories so far.

I’d love to have you as a subscriber to the weekly free story. You can subscribe via email here, or use the form below. Unsubscribe any time, from the link in every issue.

Weekly Short Story: Like / Follow / Kill

writing, fiction & once upon a time 4 min read

On Monday mornings, I send out a story via email: ultra-brief tales of 1,000 words or more, usually in genres including science fiction, horror, and the supernatural. Those stories collectively are called Once Upon A Time. I’ve also published four ebooks and one paperback anthology of those stories so far.

I’d love to have you as a subscriber to the weekly free story. You can subscribe via email here, or use the form below. Unsubscribe any time, from the link in every issue.

The Planck Keyboard

writing & tech 16 min read

I’ve been a user of mechanical keyboards for a few years now, and I love them. I like the semi-analogue quality of the devices, and the percussiveness, and the customisability. The one thing I haven’t always liked is the size and heft of conventional layouts like full size or TKL (ten key less, i.e. without a numpad but still with a dedicated set of cursor keys and Home/End/etc).

There are many more sizes of keyboard available, though, but the smallest I was ever comfortable with was laptop-style setups which are usually in the roughly 65% category, like on a MacBook Pro or my iPad’s Magic Keyboard, which means a keyboard with around 65% of the keys found on a full-sized one. I do have a 60% board here too (a Snowfox DK61), but the lack of arrow keys constantly tripped me up. I could configure it to have them, of course, but there’s still the issue of feeling I was reaching around too much to trigger various Fn shortcuts. What I really wanted was something contradictory: an even smaller keyboard that was easier to type on in terms of finger-stretching, but that still had all the functions I needed. Also, the aesthetic had to be impeccable, to earn a place on my minimalist desk with my iPad. White, sleek, clean, ascetic; that’s the vibe I like right now.

Sounds impossible, but it exists. Let me tell you a bit about my new daily driver, which is pictured below.

Weekly Short Story: Down Deep

writing, fiction & once upon a time 4 min read

On Monday mornings, I send out a story via email: ultra-brief tales of 1,000 words or more, usually in genres including science fiction, horror, and the supernatural. Those stories collectively are called Once Upon A Time. I’ve also published four ebooks and one paperback anthology of those stories so far.

I’d love to have you as a subscriber to the weekly free story. You can subscribe via email here, or use the form below. Unsubscribe any time, from the link in every issue.