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A dark, funny and feminist debut short story collection

Bad Romance is a collection of 19 short stories and a novella which are sharp as shots of vodka and poignant as your worst hangover. They tell of defiant single women in all shapes and sizes - of career girls, sisters, mothers and lovers, battling through sleepless nights, never-ending parties, grotesque flat shares and office nightmares.

These are super-short stories, ideal for anyone on the run who wants to be distracted from the daily commute by plunging into a vivid fictional world. This is a collection made for snatched moments – to be flicked through between deadlines, scrolled through in the bus queue on the screen of a smartphone, devoured along with lunch. Or, like a classic bedtime story, finished in that precious time between putting on pyjamas and collapsing into sleep. Each comic vignette may be read fast but will linger long in the mind.

Not for these heroines esprit d’escalier, recriminations and regrets: when one is left by her fiancé, she attends his wedding to her best friend, destroying the big day; when another is ostracised at a fancy dress party at a zoo, she gets drunk, absolutely determined to find a mate…

This is a book for fans of Roald Dahl, Saki, Fleabag and Sex in the City (when it was good and Mr Big was bad).

"Bad Romance is a collection of beautifully crafted short stories, a kind of Tales of the Unexpected for the modern single woman. Dark, hilarious and moving by turns, with wonderful twists, its vignettes will appeal to any woman who has ever had her heart broken. Emily is very funny but there is also an elegance and poignancy to her writing that renders this book both unforgettable and unputdownable.”

- Ariane Sherine, comedian and writer of BBC1’s My Family, BBC2 and BBC3’s Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps and Children’s BBC’s The Story of Tracy Beaker.

Emily Hill is 33 years old and wakes up alone. She lives in London and works as a journalist. In 2016, she was the commissioning editor at The Spectator, where many great writers have started out, including Anne Applebaum (who used to be deputy editor), Graham Greene (who was once literary editor) and Hilary Mantel (who was its film critic.) Last August, she was responsible for the magazine’s first ever all-female cover. Her interview with the feminist Camille Paglia was the most read article of the year (and – with half a million hits and counting - one of the most read articles in Spectator history.) Previously, she has written comment for The Guardian, books reviews for the New Statesman and features for the Mail on Sunday, as well as gathering gossip for the Evening Standard and profiling cult figures for Dazed & Confused. Emily is also a collage artist.

Julia's Baby

Julia should not have come to the wedding. That much was clear as soon as she arrived. Late, she was, and massive in belly. Her hat festooned with tropical fruit; her dress — hideously colourful. She made the hinges shriek on the great church door and winced, as it slammed shut, with a shudder. Puffing out her cheeks, she waddled slowly towards the nearest pew. She had a fist jammed into the small of her back, as if she were expecting to give birth at any moment.

Everyone turned round to stare. The vicar got confused, forgot his lines, began to stammer. The bride stood at the altar, in an ill-advised orgy of organza and tulle, said something no one heard. The groom started coughing and the best man also. A hissing came from the bridesmaids, taffeta skirts bristling, as they squirmed to get a better view. Someone, somewhere, committed a laugh.

(You cannot remove heavily pregnant people from weddings, as a general rule.)

Flushed, Julia did not appear to notice. She settled in at the back, stared up at the angels in the eaves. Felt her hat, caressed her bump, sang the hymns over-loudly.

The wedding passed off as weddings usually do. Julia did not interrupt. If there were any just cause or impediment, Julia declined to mention it. The bride threw up her ornate veil, the groom seized and kissed her. The organ struck up in triumph. The wedding party swept down the aisle, plump in love, flawless with smiles. Everybody cried. Just as you’d expect.


We're very nearly at 50% with our book Bad Romance!

Thursday, 16 March 2017

Hello my dear ones,

So, last Sunday I was hopelessly miserable for reasons I shan't bother you with but then Ben Elton popped up on my supporters page and utterly revolutionised my Bad Romance life and now I'm so grateful to him - and you - for helping I'm not quite sure how to thank you all properly... 

I was very excited to see all the new names that appeared straight afterwards (this means…

Thanks to all of you amazing peeps - Bad Romance is 16% funded!

Thursday, 16 February 2017

Party with frances and ariane

So it's been a really exciting few days. Unbound's Katy Guest has been tweeting like mad - explaining that she loves my book so much she even let me set fire to a wedding dress in her own garden... Ariane Sherine - the musical comedian who also contributed the music to my video (wearing a veil below) - has been promising to take her fans out for coffee if they pledge for Bad Romance. Her best friend…

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