Tuesday, 22 May 2018

International Sherlock Holmes Day

Today is International Sherlock Holmes Day, which is celebrated on 22nd May each year, because that was the date of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's birthday.

Despite being a big influence on many things I have written, most notably the Pax Britannia series, I have only actually had one Sherlock Holmes story published, and that was last year in the anthology Further Associates of Sherlock Holmes, edited by George Mann and published by Titan Books.

If you would like to find out what happens in Sherlock Holmes and the Beast of Bodmin, a story that is narrated by Sir Henry Baskerville, you can order your copy of the anthology here.

Monday, 21 May 2018

Steampunk International

Available to pre-order now is Steampunk International, an anthology of brand-new steampunk stories with a difference.

Steampunk International is published in the UK by Newcon Press and showcases the very best steampunk stories from three different countries released by three different publishers in three different languages.

The UK contributors are George Mann, who has penned a new Newbury and Hobbes tale, Derry O’Dowd, and Yours Truly, with a new Pax Britannia story.

The three contributors from Finland are Magdalena Hai, winner of the Atorox Award and the Finnish Literary Export Prize, multiple award-winning Anne Leinonen, and J.S. Meresmaa, whose work has been shortlisted for the Anni Polva, Kuvastaja, and Atorox Awards.

There are also three contributors from Portugal - Anton Stark, Diana Pinguicha, and Pedro Cipriano, winner of Fórum Fantástico's Choice of the Year Award.

I was delighted when publisher and editor Ian Whates approached me last July about writing a tale to the anthology and saw an opportunity to move the Pax Britannia timeline on again, for the first time since the publication of the eighth Ulysses Quicksilver novel Time's Arrow in 2012.

The anthology actually launches at this year's Eurocon, but you can pre-order your copy of Steampunk International by following this link. And check back here on Thursday for the lowdown on my story Reckless Engineering.

Thought for the Day

"Why is it that when one man builds a wall, the next man immediately needs to know what's on the other side?"
~ George R. R. Martin

Tuesday, 15 May 2018

Tie-in Tuesday: Dinosaur Day

According to Twitter, today is Dinosaur Day. My working days are filled with dinosaurs at the moment, as I'm nearing the end of writing the first draft of NEVERLAND - Here Be Monsters!

But of course it's not the first book I've written that features the terrible lizards. There's Terrible Lizards for one. There are also dinosaurs in the Fighting Fantasy gamebook Bloodbones, and the Pax Britannia novels Unnatural History and Leviathan Rising.

Like many 5 and 6 year-olds, I was obsessed by dinosaurs. I would spend hours tracing the dinosaurs in the colouring book I had, and I loved films like The Land That Time Forgot, Valley of the Gwangi, and One Million Years BC, shown on TV during the afternoon at weekends. When I was a little older, by father and I would make Airfix kits of dinosaurs together, and I have very fond memories of travelling up to London on the train with him, specifically to visit The Natural History Museum and its dinosaur collection. I even remember an English lesson, early on in Secondary School, in which we studied an extract from Ray Bradbury's A Sound of Thunder, focusing on the arrival of a T-Rex.

All of this clearly had an impact on my growing up, and I still have a passion and fascination for prehistoric life today. Last year family Green visited New York and I dragged everyone to the American Museum of Natural History, just so that I could see the dinosaur exhibits, which did not disappoint! And because it had an impact on me growing up, it has also impacted upon my writing.

But I have never explored dinosaur life in so much detail as I have in NEVERLAND - Here Be Monsters! For a start, the book includes over 30 different dinosaurs, marine reptiles, flying reptiles and other prehistoric creatures. But one of the fun things about writing the book has been coming up with new names for dinosaurs, because most of the characters in the story wouldn't have known what the nascent fossil hunters had called these primeval beasts.

I'm keen for the book to be finished and out there in readers' hands for various reasons, but one of them is to see if people can work out which dinosaur is which. Maybe I'll reveal the answers next Dinosaur Day.

Friday, 11 May 2018

Gamebook Friday: Temple of the Spider God on SALE now!

Over the last few months, I have been writing an adventure set on a remote, tropical island. But a few years ago I wrote an entirely different adventure that reaches its climax on a remote, tropical island.

So, while you're waiting for NEVERLAND - Here Be Monsters! to see print later this year, why not pick up a copy of Temple of the Spider God? And there really is no better time to do so than now, since it is one of the titles included in Tin Man Games' Humble Bundle Spring Sale.

To find out more, simply click this link. And watch out for the spiders!

Wednesday, 9 May 2018

Warhammer Wednesday: War for Armageddon and the Iron Hands

It may be coming up to six years since my last Black Library book was published - the very hard to acquire Warhammer Path to Victory gamebook Shadows Over Sylvania - but its nice to see some of my old stories getting another airing.

The stories in question are my 40K short story The Relic, and my 40K novel Iron Hands. The former has been collected* as part of the new War for Armageddon: The Omnibus, which will be available from the Black Library in August.

The latter is Iron Hands, which, thanks to the wonders of ePublishing**, still garners a bit of interest. More recently, it was referenced in a post over on the Warhammer Community page.


So, if you fancy finding out what my Warhammer 40K fiction is like, you know what to do...

* For the umpteenth time.

** And the fact that it was the first novel to feature the 'Flesh is Weak' boys.