Archive for the ‘Fiction’ Category


This is a golden age for reading. Book lovers have access to masses of stories in multiple formats at excellent prices, instantly available upon purchase more often than not.

Is it a great time to be a writer though? There are those who say it is, and there are those who say that it is certainly not. As I’ve said before, the truth of it is somewhere in the middle –  easier than ever to become a writer, harder once you are to be successful. In real terms I don’t suppose the odds have changed much.

A common conception is that once you have that publishing deal, that’s that. Win! A Malibu beachhouse awaits! In reality it’s just the beginning. The hard part is getting noticed, and that is where I’ve been struggling. My original fiction has not sold satisfactorily, despite being well received. Is it my name, which is all at once weak sounding, all vowels and soft consonants, too masculine (Guy) but also confusingly feminine (Haley)? Do I choose subjects that don’t appeal? Are the plots too complex, too simple, too dull? Are the covers bad? Are the books indeed just rubbish? This latter tortures many a writer in the night, believe me.

I have a sneaking hunch it might have something to do with the fact that in the course of one month dozens of genre books are published in English alone. Your precious novel is an ant in a giant tsunami of ants bearing down on a solitary aardvark who has only recently eaten.

I try not to dwell on this too negatively, but examine what meagre information I have to plot how I can do better. That is, after all, the only way to succeed. To that end I’d like to draw your attention to the reissue of Champion of Mars, out on Kindle with a brand new cover shamelessly designed to appeal to fans of The Martian, and I have no problem with that. The unsuccessful John Carter of Mars movie probably didn’t help this book, perhaps the surefire hit The Martian will?

Better than the cover is the price, for Champion of Mars is currently available for a mere 99p, or equivalent, from Amazon (UK, US and others). If you’ve not read my original fiction Champion of Mars gives good flavour of it. I like to think it’s a pretty good novel, and I offer these reviews on Goodreads in support of my claim. There’s more about the book on this page.

If you do enjoy it, do me a favour, tell your friends and rate it online. Word of mouth remains the single best way to get noticed. If you don’t like it, I invite you to do the same. Fair’s fair.

SolaceofRageI have a new story out today. “The Solace of Rage” is the next installment of GW’s eight-episode Realmgate Wars: The Call of Archaon series. A bargain at £2.49. Roll up! Get your skulls and blood right here.


Yeah, it’s a bit over used, but you’ll let me get away with the Hammer Time! headline once, won’t you? Thanks.

I’ve been away for a couple of weeks. More on that later. But the summer holidays are nearly done, Benny’s back off to school tomorrow and work once again beckons. To warm up for the traditional Haley, end of year typing marathon, here’s notice of Realmgate Wars: Ghal Maraz, which snuck out while I was gone.

RealmgateWars1GhalMarazContained inside its sturdy covers is my next Warhammer: Age of Sigmar story, cosying up close to one by the inestimable Josh Reynolds. My offering, “The Eldritch Fortress” has a big magic castle in it, and a big magic hammer. Josh’s has plague daemons running amok in the verdant realm of life. If either/both tickle your fancy, check it out for the next installment of Age of Sigmar’s unfolding narrative.

Available to order today is The Eternal Crusader. Taking place during the Third War for Armageddon, the novella is set aboard the titular flagship of the Black Templars, and details High Marshal Helbrecht’s role in the conflict. Expect lots of void battles, and plenty of orks. Click here to order it!

If you’ve been following this blog, you’ll know that I’ve been working away on an army of my own. I always do something with the miniatures when I’m writing for Games Workshop, whether it’s just assembling a few or painting an entire army. Here’s my progress so far collected together in one place.

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WarstormStdI had a new book out last week – War Storm. Okay, strictly speaking only a third of it was penned by your humble scrivener. My story, ‘Storm of Blades’ is one of three contained therein. The others were written by gentlemen wordsmiths Josh Reynolds and Nick Kyme. Tardy mention, but tempus fugit and all that.

‘Storm of Blades’ follows Thostos Bladestorm, the leader of a warrior chamber of the Stormcast Eternals Celestial Vindicators host. He’s been charged with attacking The Realm of Chamon, his mission to find Sigmar’s ancient duardin allies who once dwelled in the mysterious Hanging Valleys of Anvrok. What he finds instead could change the course of the war…

It was quite the ride writing this story. The Warhammer World had just been destroyed (in real life, not in-universe, it’s long gone there), and the Realms were still rather embryonic, but in general playing in a brand new shared world like this is great fun. I love the Age of Sigmar setting – it’s old school-sword and sorcery bonkersness turned up to the max, and it’s a privilege to be involved in its creation from a point so close to its birth. It’s like showing up just after the Big Bang and helping to switch the stars on. Watching it grow in complexity and depth, some of my own ideas entwined within, is very satisfying.

You can get War Storm at the Black Library website.

On Thursday I announced the acquisition by of “The Dreaming Cities”. Today I’ll tell you a little about it. Here’s an excerpt from my actual pitch:

A thousand years in the future, the Earth is a different place. Our civilisation crumbled in the face of a zombie plague and global war. After a prolonged Dark Age, the people of North America live in small, independent countries. Outbreaks of the living dead are not uncommon. Technology is held at an early modern level. Conflict between states is constant. Superstition is rife. Whole regions are blasted wilderness. Machine relics, mutant creatures and resurrected prehistoric beasts trouble the land.

Watching over all are the silent Dreaming Cities. Home of the angels, bastion outposts of heaven on Earth. Or so the church says. Very few go in, and nobody ever comes out. Until now…

So, it’s a post-apocalyptic zombie setting, but with several new twists. I can’t say much more about it than that for the time being, but as ever, keep popping back for more news.