Sunday, 18 November 2012

In the Grim Darkness of the Far Future...

So, whilst my various projects are in the works, I've been writing short stories. This is a medium that I've actually struggled with, as it's much harder to control the pacing and characterisation in a tale when you're limited to a low word count.

However, on saying that, my first Warhammer 40,000 short story, Kovos Falls, is published this month in the Black Library Publishing eBook Hammer and Bolter. It's a tale about a group of Storm Troopers (40K special forces) sent into hostile territory to extract an item of great import... only things don't quite go according to plan. Go check it out!

An Englishman in Nevada

Recently, I took a little trip abroad to the old colonies, and visited that most unusual of cities: Las Vegas (which, apparently, has to be pronounced loudly and proudly as "Vegas, Baby!"). Now, I'm sure you'll agree that this is no prime holiday destination for a gentleman of distinction and, indeed, you would be right. Between scorching heat, thronging crowds and garish lights, a chap would do well to find any sanctuary of peace and quiet.

But I found one.

In the Palazzo Shoppes was a book store. And not just any book store, but one of the leading retailers of collectible and rare books in the United States. Bauman Rare Books is a shining gem of a shop, and I spent a lengthy amount of time in there. They had early editions of the Canterbury Tales to view, a first edition manuscript of the Lewis and Clarke expedition notes, and many other books of rarity both ancient and modern. I was also pleased to find that the man behind the counter, a Mr Samuels, was a fellow Englishman and most knowledgeable about rare manuscripts from both sides of the Atlantic.

I came away empty handed that day, as the one book I wouldn't have been able to resist (a first edition Hound of the Baskervilles) was at their Philadelphia store. Mr Samuels did, however, email detail of another book that took my fancy, which I'm still thinking about to this day. It's a set of books detailing the ill-fated Franklin expedition to the Arctic, which I'm still considering turning into a short story at some point in the future. Now, if only I could lay my hands on a spare $9000...

That Difficult First Post

As a writer with very little material actually published yet, this blog is perhaps a tad pre-emptive. However, with so many projects on the go and irons in even more fires, it seemed like the time was ripe to set up an area of this here internet thingy to talk to people about my work, interests and loves.

First up: Who the devil am I? As a quick overview, I'm a lover of Victorian and Edwardian literature, which I studied at university many moons ago, a full-time editor for fantasy miniatures company Games Workshop, freelance games designer, and aspiring author of novels and short stories. My first book is nearing completion, and is a Victorian science-fiction/ horror mash-up; more on that at a later date. This blog is, first and foremost, dedicated to my works of fiction, although shameless plugs for my other pursuits will inevitably end up here too!

More to the point, between now and the publication of that elusive first book, what's this blog all about? Well, I intend to use this web space as a platform to talk about the writing process, and things that interest me, such as antiquarian books and miscellaneous Victoriana, and my thoughts on the great writers and novels - past and present - that continue to inspire me.

As I (hopefully) build a body of work, I do hope that you will follow me on my literary odyssey, with a style and elan befitting the great Victorian adventurers. It all starts here.