A couple of weeks ago I did an interview with Geoff and Carl at the wargaming podcast The Independent Characters. It was heaps of fun, and went up on the net earlier this week. I talk mostly about Baneblade, but within that cover my work process, what it’s like writing for The Black Library, where my ideas come from and other writing-craft related topics. Be aware, there are spoilers.
Archive for the ‘The Black Library’ Category
Tags: Baneblade, Black Library, Interview, The Independent Characters, writing
Tags: black crag, Black Library, companion story, Digital Mondays, gaming, Gorfang Rotgut, orc warlord, potential ally, Skarsnik
While Skarsnik cements his position as Warlord of the Eight Peaks, a rival broods in the nearby fortress of Black Crag. Gorfang Rotgut, the infamous Troll-Eater, sits uneasily on his throne, unsure whether the upstart night goblin is potential ally or the deadliest of foes. Desperate to discover the truth, Gorfang sets off on a quest to visit the shaman Zarrgakk, whose wisdom will decide the matter. And any dangers that lie in Gorfang’s path will just have to hope that the orc warlord is in a good mood…
The story, about Gorfang and his hapless Overrunt Gabble came out yesterday for BL’s Digital Monday. I enjoyed writing “The King of Black Crag” immensely, and so I recommend it even more than I normally would (what with me having written it and everything, you kind of have to expect that).
Tags: Baneblade, reviews
I’m very tired today, having been up in Yorkshire celebrating my 40th birthday. Yeah, FORTY. Now I feel… Not old exactly, but well on the way to it. Still, lots of fun, and my lovely family all clubbed together to buy me an iPad, so I am at least still “down” with the “kids” or whatever the youth of today say.
Reviews for Baneblade are beginning to multiply. Here’s one from The Founding Fields, and another from Grogheads. Reviews thus far have generally been positive. Apart from this one by MegaV at Imperator guides.
Now, every book gets reviewed badly by at least somebody. Reading’s a personal thing. In my time I’ve given low scores to books that thousands of others like, and vice versa. Sometimes, I’ve been quite hard on a book. Bad reviews, as I’ve said before, are as useful to a writer as good ones. More useful, if it’s a well-written, critically insightful review. I’ve learned a lot from mine.
And usually, responding to bad reviews is a bad idea, but when someone’s calling you “f*&kface” simply because they don’t like your book, well, that’s not cricket really. I was annoyed enough to mention it, let’s put it like that. Also, I’d be really excited to attend one of MegaV’s gaming sessions, as they must have really huge battles with hundreds of tanks on each side. Mine, alas, are slightly more modest.
Man, I totally forgot to tell you about “Stormlord”, it’s been a busy week what with finishing the final draft of Crash of and all.
To tie-in with the release of Baneblade, “Stormlord” is a standalone short story about another big Warhammer 40,000 tank. I decided to keep the tales quite closely linked, so although this particular battle takes place on another world, with another Imperial Guard army group, it’s set contemporaneously with Baneblade (more or less, you know what warp travel’s like). The story features another regiment of Paragon, and concerns a relative of Colaron Bannick (the protagonist of Baneblade). To whit, what happens to a young nobleman whose cousin causes a massive scandal at home? Nothing good, I assure you. Jonas Bannick didn’t even want to join the guard, let alone end up with an infantry regiment, but he had very little choice.
Who knows, maybe I’ll write a story about them meeting. I suspect Jonas Bannick might punch Colaron Bannick right on the hooter.
Anyway, the Stormlord is my favourite Imperial super-heavy tank model; a squat, bulky beast of a thing with a massive cannon on the front and a huge transport bay to get that cannon fodder… I mean, brave warriors of the Imperium, right into the fray. And that’s exactly what happens in the story, as a trio of these steel monsters storm a system of heavy defences protecting a defence laser. “Stormlord” was released on Monday as part of The Black Library’s ongoing “Digital Monday” series. It’s a mere £1.50. If you like it, hurrah! — there are more to come.
Tags: Baneblade, Black Library
Baneblade, my first Black Library novel, is out today! Hoorah! Or I think it is, anyway. You can buy it on Amazon at any rate, although the Black Library’s own site still has it down as a preorder. As I’m cut off from the real world, alone in my garret (an actual garret), and have no clue as to the doings of planet Earth beyond what Twitter and Doctor Magnus the dog tell me, I am taking the unilateral step of officially declaring today Official Baneblade Birthday day, and that’s official. In the kingdom of Guy and the goblins, if nowhere else. (It’s a bit like North Korea up here, but smellier, and without the thermonuclear posturing).
It’s a funny thing, publishing. Baneblade is actually only the second book I wrote — a long time ago it feels like too — but the fourth to be released. However, the loosening of this one particular scheduling stone precipitates an avalanche of Black Library stories and novels from me this year. Watch out!
During my obsessive checking of Amazon sales ranks (I have an app on my iPhone. Now that’s tragic), I have been well pleased with Baneblade‘s performance thus far, so thanks to everyone who has bought it already.
Here’s the art again. It depicts awesome tanks. Nuff said.
Tags: Baneblade, Skarsnik, The Black Library, tie-in fiction, Warhammer, Warhammer 40000, writing
Here’s a guest post I wrote for The Black Library Blog, about why I enjoy writing for the Black Library (in case the title didn’t give it away). Click on the link or scroll down to read it.
I’d like to add some more regarding the writing of tie-in fiction rather than the consumption and validity of it as a literary form (for this, dear readers, is the underlying topic of my BL blog). (more…)
Tags: Blood Drinkers, book art, cover art, gaming, Genestealers, Jon Sullivan, Space Hulk, The Death of Integrity, Warhammer 40000
At the beginning of December, I posted the cover to The Death of Integrity. The art, by Jon Sullivan, turned out to be only a placeholder. I was surprised, as I thought it grand. But then I saw the actual artwork. Oh boy. Here it is.
This is one of the best Warhammer 40,000 covers I’ve ever seen. BL have been spoiling me with book art, and this is another magnificent treat.
Tags: Blood Drinkers, Events, Genestealers, Horus Heresy, Novamarines, Real life, Skarsnik, Solaris, Space Marines, The Black Library, The Death of Integrity, Warhammer, Warhammer 40000
Yesterday I posted a calendar of the coming year. It was quite woefully wrong, a consequence of working on my own and never speaking to anyone. Chief among its errors was mention of a couple of short stories that will appear in Hammer and Bolter. They won’t, as the ezine is now defunct, a fact that was revealed at the Black Library Weekender. In its stead, new stories will be available every Monday, to buy individually. My stories, very loosely connected to Skarsnik and Baneblade, will be two of those. When, I dunno, although if I were a betting man I’d say around the time of the books’ releases.
Here’s an updated version of the calendar.
My first story for Interzone will be published in issue 243 (not 244).
I am going to be at Salute with BL, on 20th April in London.
Out this month is the Mark of Calth anthology, in which is my second Horus Heresy story, “The Shards of Erebus”, and this opens the collection. Cool, eh? I was wrong about the date originally as I got it from Amazon. Lesson for the future, always check the BL website first… Mark of Calth will first be released as a BL/GW exclusive.
Baneblade, my first published novel for The Black Library (and the first one I wrote), is out on 7th May.
The Crash is out on 25th June. My second original novel for Solaris, it’s about a colony expedition that goes horribly wrong. Published this same month is The Best of Hammer and Bolter II, included therein is my story, “The Rite of Holos”, originally published in Hammer and Bolter 24, and a direct prequel to The Death of Integrity.
Skarsnik is out, my second BL book. This hits the shelves on 19th July.
My third novel for The Black Library/Games Workshop is released 3rd September. Space Marines galore, Genestealers, and a twist.
I’ll be at the Black Library Weekender II.
As I said yesterday, there’s a few more appearances I’ll be making for BL, but they’re yet to be finalised. Other than that, I better sort some more work out, or I’ll be on the street…