Author and Scriptwriter

'Among the most important writers of contemporary British horror.' -Ramsey Campbell

Thursday 12 February 2009

That Tide Just Keeps On Rising...

...but in a good way.

You may remember, a few posts back, me saying that my first novel, Tide Of Souls, is coming out in November.

Well- um- it's not.

It's actually coming out in July instead!

A surprise to discover, but a very nice one. The deadline for the MS is the beginning of March, so it doesn't affect me in terms of workload (phew!) Rewrites are going swimmingly and I think I'll have a novel I'll be very pleased with come the end of the month. As long as the edtor likes it. And the general public, of course...

I've no idea how I managed to get the wrong end of that particular stick, but like I said, I'm not complaining.

Tuesday 10 February 2009

Loathsome Scumbag Gets Dismantled...

...although sadly not literally.

The scumbag in question is my local MP, Hazel Blears. This dishonest, swivel-eyed, platitude-mouthing little apparatchik basically embodies the vileness that is 'NuLabour'- the pathetic travesty of the Labour Party that Tony Blair created.

Thatcherites dressed in left-liberal costumes, they've made out like bandits for the last 12 years, and Hazel's been right in the front of them. God knows how she keeps getting back in. Probably because, in Central Salford, you could put a fucking turnip up on the Labour ticket and it would get in. Understandably. Voting Conservative is right up there with unanaesthetised tooth extraction on the list of 'things I would willingly undergo.' Central Salford is one of the most impoverished areas in the country. A lot of questions have been raised about its so-called 'redevelopment', and just what benefits the local population are supposed to derive from it, but from Hazel, we hear not a peep. Not even when the Salford Star, a local mag with integrity and balls, is being deliberately run down and nobbled to silence it.

Anyway, George Monbiot of the Guardian has taken her to task here. Read and rejoice. It ain't stringing these crooked, warmongering, freedom-eroding bastards up from the lampposts they all belong on- together with Cameron and his fucking Tories, who are just the same old wolves in different sheep's clothing. But it'll do for a start.

Monday 9 February 2009

The Tide Is High, But I'm Holding On...

My wonderful publisher, Abaddon Books, has now listed my novel Tide Of Souls on Amazon so you can pre-order it- pre-order it, kids, as it doesn't actually come out on the bookshelves until November. I know, I know- I'm a bloody tease.

Still, at least you can sneak a preview of the cover. To do so, or to actually pre-order my tale of Biblical-scale flooding, flesh-eating zombies and big fucking guns, just click here.

I'm currently hard at work (following my birthday celebrations) to finalise the manuscript, paring down the word count, honing the language, and fact-checking to make sure I haven't fucked up too cataclysmically and made myself look like the biggest arse alive.

Meanwhile, I also have work to do on my short story collection, Pictures Of The Dark. The Table of Contents has been decided, so all I have to do is work out the running order while waiting for Gary Fry at Gray Friar Press to send over a list of edits, alterations and editorial suggestions (as long as none of them involving giving all the stories happy endings and a Cliff Richard soundtrack, we should be OK.) Meanwhile, a cover design bounces back and forth between us, developing slowly but surely.

Two covers and two different approaches. Abaddon's artist, Mark Harrison, had a brief conflab with myself and their Editor, Jon Oliver, then cried 'Eureka! I've got just the idea!' And a month or so later the cover arrives.

Gary Fry first asks 'what would you like to see?' God! Like picking the title for the collection- by far the biggest arseache- this sounds incredibly easy until you actually have to decide. A tentative design appears in the inbox. And the fun begins.

Particularly enjoyable when I went out with a digital camera to get some images for the cover. Most of images needed for the cover are of bleak, urban settings, decaying and rundown. Living around Salford, they were just waiting for me to snap them.

All great, until those occasions when you find yourself thinking 'So here I am, on a deserted industrial estate/the outskirts of a fairly rough council estate, all on my own and brandishing a hundred quid's worth of brand-new digital camera... hm.'

Still, maybe there is a higher, benevolent power that watches over writers as it does the drunken and insane. Or it could be I was just wildly overestimating the dangers. Probably the latter. Although some of my friends based locally don't seem to think so.

Ah well. Point is, those shots are in the bag and there should be more news on that front before much longer. In the meantime, have fun previewing the zombies. And I'll get back to the work I should be doing this after, which the blog has been helping me avoid....