First Day Back

It’s going to be a quickie this morning, as I’m due to be on campus by mid-day. I  have  to register –despite already having registered on-line!- and go to an introductory lecture, and I’ll probably visit the on-site Job-Shop and raid the Fresher’s Fair for whatever goodies there are (well, I am a starving student…).

Meanwhile, I’ve posted a quick blog at suite101 as well about the curious affair of Winter Song in East Lansing, Michigan — courtesy of my friend the Black Helicopter.

More tomorrow!

• September 29th, 2010 • Posted in General • Comments: 0

Free On-line Stuff

Lots and lots of free on-line stuff happening at the moment, so I thought that I’d do a round-up. ‘Stuff’ is like London buses. You get nothing happening for months on end and then -wham!- the world goes mad.

First up on this not-so-sunny Monday morning, my publishers –Angry Robot– posted the first fifty-odd pages of Damage Time on-line over the weekend to read for free.  The whole novel is out in the UK on October on October 7th, and in the US on October 26th. Although US readers can order the electronic copy direct from the Angry Robot web shop on the earlier date.

Today my short story ‘Chameleon’ goes on-line to subscribers at Daily Science Fiction. Since subscription is free you might as well join, rather than waiting for a whole week…or you can wait a week, and it’ll be there waiting for you…

 Meanwhile the lovely Dark Fiction Review have posted a terrific review of Winter Song. It’s terrific not so much because it says nice things about the book –although that’s always nice– but because they picked up on some things that others missed.

And finally, I’ve reviewed Stephen Baxter’s Flood over at suite101.

That’s all for now!

• September 13th, 2010 • Posted in General • Comments: 0

Winter Song In Oregon

This is shameless self-indulgence, I know…but forgive me. I’ve been working for this for thirteen years and I’m going to enjoy it for a few more days. Maybe one day I’ll be completely blase about having a book actually on shelf instead of the vast virtual warehouse of Amazon, Book Depository, etc. But that day hasn’t come yet!

There’s this vast warehouse of a shop that covers three floors in Portland, Oregon. It’s a bit of a legend by all accounts — and even I’d heard of Powell’s Bookstore.

A friend of mine who was there on holiday sent me a snap of the front of it which looks pretty unprepossessing, but inside is a wonderland of books…

…and there it is — out in the wild.

Not quite next to Joe Haldeman or Harry Harrison, but close enough. 🙂

• September 9th, 2010 • Posted in General • Comments: 2

New Winter Song Reviews

I’ve been busy on admin stuff this morning, about which more tomorrow -or maybe Thursday, depending how quickly I get it done — so this morning’s blog post is a very quick one.

Quick, but nonetheless happy; the first new reviews are coming out for Winter Song, one in Sweden, where Cybermage describes it as ‘fun to read’ among other nice words. It was fun to write, too. 

The second is from the US, where Daniel Marcus says that ‘Winter Song is a great read.  Looking forward to more from Harvey and more from Angry Robot.’

So are we.

Thanks Ove and Daniel, it really is very much appreciated.

• September 7th, 2010 • Posted in General • Comments: 0

Signal to Noise Ratio

Today is the second of the five big days that I have spread over the next two months or so, and it’s great everyone is making so much noise about Angry Robot’s US launch / UK re-launch.

And to add to the fun, nine of the titles (including Winter Song) can now be bought in e-book format.  For those readers with questions about DRM, etc, check out the comments at the link.

And there’s a terrific competition for US readers being run at the moment at Robot Towers, while over at the nascent Salon Futura Cheryl Morgan interviews Lauren Beukes.  Lauren’s new novel Zoo City has been reviewed at Dark Fiction Review by Adam Christopher. They published me in an interview and will be reviewing Winter Song in the next day or so.

I have a whole host of outstanding jobs to do, but am finding (in the nicest possible way) that I’m struggling to concentrate; I’d much rather be seeing what the next event unfolding is. So maybe I’ll just accept that the transmissions from me brain are going to be jammed for the rest of the day / week.

Especially since I’ll have even more news tomorrow.

• September 2nd, 2010 • Posted in General • Comments: 0

Red Letter Day

Well, here we are and it’s the 31st of August.

To celebrate the official US release of Winter Song (yes, really! Have I mentioned it already?) the lovely, intelligent and charming Sharon Reamer has updated an interview with me that orinally ran in Allegory magazine a full twelve months ago.  There’s plenty more where that one came from!

In fact, I’m not quite sure whether it’s actually in the shops, or just means that it’s officially in a warehouse in Omaha, or Oregon, or…

And this morning I finished the wip. 613 words over, but that’s not bad for a 105,000 word novel. It’ll be put to one side now, while I think about re-writes for a month.

Finally, but equally importantly, I wrapped the last of Kate’s presents yesterday.

All done and on target — a nice red letter day!

• August 31st, 2010 • Posted in General • Comments: 0

Winter Song Update

I’ve been concentrating lately on ticking off the multiple deadlines falling on August 31st.

It’s starting to come together, and to celebrate Winter Song‘s realease into the wild in the US with a series of links and teasers over at Suite101.

More tomorrow, this time on Dark Spires.

• August 24th, 2010 • Posted in General • Comments: 0

The Power of 31

It’s now 14 days until August 31st, a date which grows increasingly significant with every day. That’s because organizations and individuals target the first and last days of the month, so the 31st is always busy with some deadline or other.

It’s also the day before Kate’s birthday, by which time I need to have sneaked any goodies into the house and wrapped them. So usually in August I’m getting a little stressy. Although this year, I no longer have the annual influx of applications for the SLF‘s Annual Travel Grant.

Still, when I planned my summer workload it seemed to be against a view of one looooong siesta as I dozed beneath the apple tree from the end of the 1st year in May, to the 2nd year in early October.  I calculated that if I could finish the draft of Ultramassive by August 31st, I could take a month off before going back to uni. So far, so good; I’m 80% of the way through, and if I can keep producing my target wordage, I’ll make it, bang on schedule.

And although Dark Spires is to be launched at Bristolcon, the printers only need a couple of weeks, so I figured that with any luck I could even write the story for it in early October — at least, if I was lucky… if not, then late September. 

Ah, I thought smugly. A plan is hatched…

The first flaw came at the end of May. Angry Robot announced that they were gearing up the US launch to start with Winter Song. They are launching in September, but monthly deliveries go out on the last Tuesday of the previous month, which is….de de de de de de de…August 31st. (It’s actually great news, but it was about two or three months earlier than I’d expected, and Leeee keeps shouting at me for more interviews and more blog material!!!!)

Now, having thought that I could get away with a gap before turning my full attention to Dark Spires, it transpires that WTP’s lovely copy editor is expecting her first child soon, and we need to get all the editing done soonest. Last Friday I learned that it’s due…August 31. 

And that first annual deadline hasn’t gone away — at some point I need to get Kate’s birthday presents before she returns from holiday on…August 31st. (Can anyone recommend a mains-operated DAB radio that also picks up FM?) 

I know, I know. I could be writing, blogging, editing or…ew, shopping…instead of whinging about it. But hey, my therapist tells me it’s good to share.

But if anyone else has any deadlines for this date, keep them to yourself — at least until September the 1st.

Please? Pretty please?

• August 17th, 2010 • Posted in General • Comments: 1

More Robot Love

Over at Suite101.

• July 7th, 2010 • Posted in General • Comments: 0

Books in the Wild

It’s been a pretty damn fine morning so far.

Outlined a novelette for a forthcoming anthology; afterwards wrote the daily 1400 words of the wip. As twittered earlier, managed to read the first chapter of each of the Angry Robot novels without Tourette’s Dog taking off vertically with nil warning (as she often does and) unleashing an unprovoked barrage of canine abuse at the world in general. Then -best of all- got the release dates for the books.

Winter Song will be out on August 31st, which is terrific since I can start book-specific rather than general blathering. And it’s only eight weeks away.  There’ll be more news on books in the wild in the next few weeks, but I’m going to eke out every nugget like a miser.

Let’s see if this afternoon can be as good!

• July 5th, 2010 • Posted in General • Comments: 0