Cover reveal, Shadeward Enervation

Posted by on May 2, 2019 in Announcements

It always an exciting moment when you get to reveal the cover of a book. Whilst we’re always exhorted not to judge a book by its cover, if we’re honest, many of us do. There’s a balance to be found in advertising what kind of book it is, following the tone of the times and coming up with something eye-catching that will work at different levels, both as a cover, but also as a thumbnail for the inevitable listings online. The 3rd book in a series is also a bit… tricky. You’re not at the point where you are tying things up, but nor are you introducing too many new things to be resolved. You still have to keep the story moving along at pace, in order to ensure that the overall plot doesn’t ‘sag’ in the middle. Despite all this, there’s still plenty going on! I’ve also had the challenge that the characters are growing up, and (in most cases) maturing a bit. This implies various things about their relationships and where they go. It’s been a challenge to balance that and move the characters on in a realistic fashion. Enervation is now being finalised, and with no further ado, here is the cover. I hope you like it! There are various elements of the series included here, which fans of the series should be able to pick out. Let me know what you think. Book 3 is coming soon....

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Soliloquy

Posted by on Apr 29, 2019 in Progress Report

This tapestry holds a secret. Palimpsests and blueprints While a universe unfolds. An axis of dying light That spins in the black. But alas I can see Its stars are locked. For me, Dihya, I fear my script is lost. “In quoting others, we cite ourselves.” — Julio Cortázar

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Shadeward Enervation is with the publisher

Posted by on Apr 24, 2019 in Progress Report

Placeholder cover for Shadeward Enervation As of a couple of days ago I finished all the edits for my latest book, Shadeward Enervation, book 3 of my ongoing SF saga. This was a combination of my wife’s notes, a professional editor and 3 ‘beta-readers’ who give me advice on various aspects of the story. This has taken a month or so to sort and means I’m technically on the 5th draft – which has now back sent to the publisher to be turned into a book. At the same time we’ll start collaborating on the cover design and get that prepped. Won’t be long now! That rather clears the decks for other projects, not least the short story I have to contribute to the Twitch Anthology I’m working on. You can watch us working on this on Monday’s on my twitch stream. After that, there are two more novels in the works. First up is Doomdark’s Revenge, sequel to the Lords of Midnight. I’m happy to say that the plot for this has been ‘signed off’ (i.e. Chris and I have agreed the high level detail). This means I can crack on with writing it now. The second is the final book in the Shadeward Saga, called ‘Expiation’ (you can look that up at your leisure – each Shadeward title has a very specific meaning). This will conclude the Shadeward Saga, leaving me to consider what else to do next with this universe. There may be other stuff too, there are a few ‘irons in the fire’, so we’ll see what comes along. Stay tuned, folks!...

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Shadeward 3 is complete!

Posted by on Mar 5, 2019 in Progress Report

Today I passed another writing milestone. I finished the ‘author edit’ of my latest book – Shadeward Enervation. This is nothing more than me going through the first draft and re-reading it, often shaking my head at bits of bad writing, fixing it, finding erroneous adverbs, deleting them, zapping bad grammar and poor word choices… rinse and repeat. Compared to the actual writing of a story, it’s not much fun. But it’s a major marker on the journey to producing a book. It’s the point where I have to hand it over to someone else. In this case my publisher’s editor. And she’s pretty brutal to be honest. The draft will come back with a lot of red ink all over it. Then I need to fix it all over again. But, at this point, I can sit back a bit and leave the book for a while. I’m very happy with the story now. It’s upped the ante over the second book a lot. The characters are maturing, becoming both more powerful, more informed and more dangerous. Their actions have bigger and more dramatic outcomes. This third book takes the threads of the first and second and winds them up tighter – with everything to be resolved, one way or the other, in the fourth and final book. Yes, the Shadeward Saga will conclude in the next book. All your favourites are here. The driven Kiri, the inquisitive Meru and the troubled Zoella. The crew of the Mobilis, the priestesses, and the strange intelligence of Caesar from long ago. High above, Lacaille shines down upon all. Strange and wonderful secrets are, at least partially, revealed… Hope you’re looking forward to...

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Doomdark’s Revenge: The Official Novel

Posted by on Dec 21, 2018 in Announcements

“From the ruins of blasted Ushgarak, she pledged that the Moonprince’s triumph would be short lived!” Here, in the depths of the cold, at the Winter Solstice itself, it gives me great pleasure to announce another book! I will be writing an official book based on the second of Mike Singleton’s epic games – “Doomdark’s Revenge.” Once again, Chris Wild and I will be collaborating on the story. Cover design will be by the same artist as before (the hugely talented Jurij Rogelj) with the book being published by Fantastic Books Publishing, initially in ebook and paperback, with an audible conversion following on afterwards. The current plan is to have the draft completed by the end of July 2019, with the book available in early autumn of the same year. To introduce it, here is the trailer. This is a direct sequel to “Lords of Midnight” and, just like as in the original game, will pick up the story immediately after the point at which Lords of Midnight finishes. Doomdark has indeed been defeated, but his daughter, Shareth the Heartstealer, vows a terrible revenge… Back in 1985, Doomdark’s Revenge swiftly followed the success of Lords of Midnight on the ZX Spectrum, introducing new innovations such as multiple races and characters who had their own agendas and wandered about the map. Despite all this, the map of the ‘Icemark’ (the land in which the adventure takes place) was even bigger than before. Doomdark’s Revenge is quite a different proposition to Lords of Midnight. Firstly, there are even more characters than before – a total of 128 compared with the 32 in Lords of Midnight! Now, each character has traits, behaviours, loyalties and hatreds, meaning politics will play a huge role in this story. Both Luxor and Shareth vie to recruit armies to their banner. Figuring out how to portray all this in a book will be one of the early challenges. Next, Lords of Midnight (the game) was entirely a male domain. We reviewed this as part of constructing the novel and introduced Shareth into Lords of Midnight from the second game (so readers would be aware she was there). Shareth is the daughter of Doomdark himself and is the main antagonist of this second story. Tarithel (who wasn’t mentioned in the original game either, but would have been around at the time) is the daughter of the Lord of Dreams. We gave her a bigger role in Lords of Midnight, but she has a central role in the second book and becomes one of the major protagonists. Morkin and Rorthron also reprise their roles, though Corleth is a noticeable absentee from the second game. The book will, once again, be faithful to a play through of the game itself. I’ll admit, right now, I’m not as familiar with the game as I was with Lords of Midnight, so I’ll...

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