Friday, 17 May 2013

May News (Or the Lack Thereof)

Yes, the news at the middle of the month is that I don't have much news.  However, I'm off to Malta tomorrow (for more retrospective novel research, you understand) and I fear I'm not likely to find time to be writing any blog posts while I'm there, so I figured I should stop by here to set down just how little I have to talk about right now.

Well, perhaps that's not entirely true ... it's just that a lot of things are in progress and nothing is quite there yet.  I'm most of the way through my first standalone graphic novel script, the long-gestating C21st Gods, and enjoying the change of direction; Prince Thief is with its copy editor, and I just finished my own final check-through; and Bob and I are putting the last touches to the trade of Endangered Weapon B, ready for it's July release, while - touch wood! - one of my all-time favourite comic creators is in the process of writing us a glowing introduction.

I suppose, then, that finishing off two books while writing a third can't really be described as nothing happening.  Still, in comparison to recent months, I've been taking it relatively easy all told.  What a shame then that all that peace and quiet's going to be interrupted by the hardships of an exhausting retrospective research trip in the punishing Mediterranean heat. 

No, don't pity me gentle reader!  It wouldn't be art if I didn't suffer horribly for it.

Wednesday, 8 May 2013

Free Comic Book Day Fun

Free!  All free!
I'd had fairly high hopes for my Free Comic Book Day signing at Forbidden Planet on Saturday, what with that combination of a great venue on a great occasion and the fact that I was there - thanks to Mr Bob Molesworth - with a marvelous-looking book that I was confident people would be eager to get their hands on once they got a look at that lovely, betentacled, Indy-pastiching cover.

But honestly, I hadn't the faintest idea what I was getting myself in for.  If I'd known, I probably wouldn't have dared go.

It was the queue that gave it away.  It appeared out of nowhere, just after I sat down, as I was getting my own first look at what can only be abbreviated as FCBD:EWB - atToD.  It reached the length of the room - and not long after that, half the way back again.  And it was made up entirely of people holding copies of Endangered Weapon B that they wanted me to sign.

Fortunately, I did at least manage to spell Jobeda's name right.
Everything after that was a bit of blur - mostly consisting of me asking people to spell their names (even when their names where things like Ed and Joe) and then, on at least one occasion, spelling them wrong anyway.  In just under 40 minutes, I signed 98 comic books and chatted with somewhere in the region of 80 people.  By the end of it, my wrist was aching, my throat was sore, and I felt like some kind of superstar writer.  It was, frankly, an awesome experience ... the sort of thing you dream about when you start writing, while secretly having to admit to yourself that it's never likely to happen.

After I was done, me and Jobeda and our friend Liam skipped out for a bit of lunch, and then had to hurry back for the second Free Comic Book Day Forbidden Planet signing of the day, which consisted of a rather impressive bunch of 2000AD folks: Al Ewing, who I happen to know from way back in my days at York, Dan Abnett, Ben Wilsher and lengendary Judge Dredd artist Mr Ron Smith.  Which was great in itself, but then top author type and official nicest man in publishing Jonathan Green turned up and kept us company in the queue (for a whole bloody hour ... damn those impressive 2000AD folks and their huge fan following!)
Note the now much emptier table.

All in all then, an amazing day.  Massive thanks to Jon Harrison, who did a splendid job on the organization front, and to Harry Markos and Bob for making the whole thing possible ... but mainly to all the people who turned out to get my name scribbled over a copy of Endangered Weapon B.  I can honestly say I've never scrawled all over the property of a nicer bunch of people.

Friday, 3 May 2013

Endangered Weapon B ... Signing Tomorrow!

If you happen to be near a comic shop tomorrow - that would be Saturday the 4th of May - you might want to think about popping inside and loading up with a great big heap of free comic books, including the premier issue of mine and Bob Molesworth's Endangered Weapon B.  It won't even be stealing, because May 4th is Free Comic Book Day.*

And if the comic shop you happen to be near is the Covent Garden branch of Forbidden Planet in London, and the time you're there happens to be somewhere between eleven and twelve in the morning, then you should definitely nip inside and come to my Endangered Weapon B signing.  You'll receive a free issue of what will almost certainly be the year's best comic to include a grizzly bear punching ninja squid, and my illegible squiggle as well, all for the grand price of absolutely nothing. Or, if you're in Brighton from 10:30 onwards, why not nip into Dave's Comics and say hello to Bob?  He's a top artist type, so his signature is probably much more readable than mine.

I don't think there's much I can add to that, is there?  Saturday, May the fourth.  Free Endangered Weapon B, and a whole lot of other free stuff too.  If it was any more exciting, they'd probably have to name a day after it.

* Although, if you try and take off with any comics that aren't in Free Comic Book Day then that will be stealing, so you should probably not do that.

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Im Schatten der Giganten Out

Giant Thief - or rather Im Schatten der Giganten - is now out in Germany.  And it's lovely.  German books are really nice!  It's a paperback that looks like a hardback, with good quality paper stock, high quality printing, a solid, embossed cover ... none of which is terribly interesting, I guess, unless you happen to be the author of the book in question.  Which, wait, I am!
Or, "In the Shadow of Giants"

Oh, but you're not.  Shall we talk about something else?  Because I could probably manage a couple of paragraph's about how elegantly sculpted the spine is and ... no?

Okay.  Well, perhaps more interesting to people who aren't me is the promotional stuff that we put together for the German launch. There's an in-depth interview (I can't find it on the Piper site, but it's up here - in German, admittedly) and, a first for me, a brief video introduction.  This was filmed (by my lovely partner Jobeda, who just so happens to list editor and director amongst her cornucopia of skills) about a week after I finished Prince Thief, and I was pretty exhausted - which shows a bit, I think - but it was a fun new experience for all that, and something I'd like to try again.

But more exciting than either of those, at least for me, is the trailer that we've spent about the last six months putting together. The one with art by that Endangered Weapon B guy, Bob Molesworth. The one with the most outrageously catchy music ever, which I guarantee you're going to spend the rest of the day trying to get out of your head (I say this from experience as somebody who's currently poking a screwdriver into their ear in a bid to do that exact thing.)  I'm really proud of this, which is why I'm mentioning it now, but it's worth pointing out that there'll be an English version up in due course, and hopefully a post explaining what went into it - all of which will probably make a little more sense if you don't speak happen to speak German.