For those who don’t subscribe to the newsletter, here it is in all its glory!
A new year and a renewed effort on the God Fragments.
First of all, I’m very happy to share what I believe is the final cover for The Man With One Name – my stand-alone Lynx novella. It’s set in the years after his release from prison and serves as an alternate entry point to the series, rather than a new instalment.
Now while Honour Under Moonlight has sold rather better than I’d expected, I’m hoping this benefits from the fact it’s both a Lynx story and a shorter (+cheaper) way to give the God Fragments a try. It’s published in March and hopefully lots of new people will get on board as it’s an excellent alternative entry point. Lynx is a few years younger and slimmer, but he’s recognisable as the man who’s determined to keep living despite everything that’s happened to him, so I think existing fans will be happy too.
I’ll blog about the story closer to the time perhaps, but it’s basically a Western since the God Fragments setting has always cried out for the direction. It’s not a reworking of anything, but just from the title you can tell there’s a heavy nod towards Pale Rider and there are a few more minor ones in the text itself for those who know the film really well.
As for everything else that’s going on, my side project has started to get some good feedback from beta-readers so hopefully I’ll find time to rework sections and see if it’s worth any money to anyone. With freelance work picking up however, that is firmly in the drawer for the time being because I have a deadline looming for Lynx.
I’m slowly working my way back into the writing of Knight of Stars, having put it aside for various reasons, returned and ripped up sections and now overhauled my plan for the second half for the second time. 50k in and I I might just have an idea of how it’s going to work, but don’t worry, that’s totally standard for me! We’re not going underground this time around because I really don’t want to stick to a formula like that. The reworked plot was suggesting I could wander in that direction if the book really had to be a 300k epic, but it doesn’t and there’s the normal level of magic, monsters, hangovers and trigger-happy idiots remaining.
And finally… I thought it might be interesting for some to see what I’ve been reading of late – or rather, what’s worth telling people about anyway. I’m not a rigorous book reviewer however. These days in particular I try not to look very professional when it comes to reviews because I don’t want to appear as critiquing my peers from any perceived professional standing. I do like to say what I like, as it were, because good books are always worth celebrating.
So, as it turns out I have a great run over Christmas of 5* books:
Tigerman by Nick Harkaway was as odd and charming as usual from Nick, a less-than-fantastical take on the superhero genre that was a fantastic book still.
Then The Neon Court by Kate Griffin – book 3 in an exceptional urban fantasy series that has moments of jaw-dropping writing, and a lovably shambolic main character.
Next came a first novel that I heard about because I consulted on the contract, but I expect it to make quite a splash – The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton. Agatha Christie meets Inception meets Groundhog Day meets Gosford Park. It’s brilliant and will appeal to fans across the board.
Then came The Fifth Season by NK Jemisin – a multi-award winning fantasy series that took me a while to connect to, but its quality was on show right from the start. It’s interesting, clever, different to the standard secondary world fantasy setting and more focused on personal relationships than world-changing events, but still has those too. Highly recommended.