Archive for July, 2016

Brexit had me hiding from social media these last few weeks. It’s precisely the sort of complicated issue that is impossible to discuss on the confirmation bias machine that is the modern web, so I’ve steered well clear. Potted version of my opinion runs thusly – I can see both sides of the argument, and although I was shocked and very saddened by the result, it won’t be the end of the world. Life goes on.

And so moving on. Commercial necessity brought me down from my ivory tower (well, it looks like an ivory tower, but it’s constructed from papier-mache made of the torn up drafts of rejected stories and the glue of scorn) with the release of The Ghoul King last week. I thought maybe it would be a good time to talk about what’s coming soon.

Last month I went to Nottingham to visit Black Library and discuss my schedule for the next couple of years. The upshot of this is that I’ll be writing plenty for them throughout 2016-2017, including a fair bit of Horus Heresy. We made some further, tentative plans for 2018. If you like my Warhammer stuff, you should be happy. I’ve finished Dante, and am literally about to start typing my next project for them today.

Coming out from BL over the next few months are Shadowsword, the sequel to Baneblade. Crusaders of Dorn collects all my Black Templars fiction thus far except The Eternal Crusader. It includes a text version of my audio drama “The Glorious Tomb” and a brand new story, “The Uncanny Crusade”. And of course there’s The Beheading, the Terra-shaking conclusion to The Beast Arises.

In not-Games Workshop land, I’ve three short stories coming out in anthologies; one which I don’t think I can talk about yet. The second is “The Reckoning”, a mythos-slanted take on Christopher Marlowe’s death for Jonathan Green’s Shakespeare versus Cthulhu.

The third should make a few of you happy. I can reveal that I’m finally writing another Richards & Klein story (though this is more Richards than Klein), which will be actually published in an actual book. I did start a novella for self-publishing purposes, but I’ve been held back by my massively packed schedule and a narrative problem – to advance the story, I need to write about what happened to Klein’s wife, which needs a novel, and the novella wasn’t about that so there was an odd jump in the story and well, you know. Time, never enough time. The novella stalled. I will get back on it at some point.

I’m also writing another top-secret fantasy book which I can say nothing about, and finally, I’ve been working on a collaboration with a certain other SF author. We’re close to getting that to publishers, so will announce it when there’s something concrete to say.

 

ghoulking-largeOut this week is book two of the Dreaming Cities trilogy, The Ghoul King.

In a dark, post-apocalyptic future, mysterious angels rule the shattered North American continent in the name of the Lord.

The Knight, Quinn, is down on his luck, and he travels to the very edge of the civilized world – whatever that means any more – to restock his small but essential inventory.

After fighting a series of gladiatorial bouts against the dead, he finds himself in the employ of a woman on a quest to find the secret to repairing her semi-functional machine.

But the technological secret it guards may be one truth too many.

The Ghoul King is out from Tor.com Publishing, where it is available as a paperback and DRM-free ebook in all formats. You can also buy it from all your favourite vendors. Here’s the link for the first part, The Emperor’s Railroad.

The books are a novella series conceived to be akin to a TV serial, with each one being an “episode”. They’re each self-contained, but build a big story. Quinn’s reality features my characteristic deep world building. I believe a good SF/fantasy story should introduce you to a living, breathing world through its characters. I’m not a fan of worlds dominated by a big idea, which beyond being hosts for a single parasitic meme, don’t have a life of their own. I like settings that make you feel if you took a right turn off the page and wandered about, they would appear real. “Whole cloth” worlds, I call ’em. It’s what I strive for.

But good drama is powered as much by revelation as by character, so in each episode of Quinn’s adventures there’ll be some substantial information about the Dreaming Cities. I promise, eventually, you’ll know exactly why Quinn’s world is the way it is…