Saturday 30 October 2010

I Shall Eviscerate You In Fiction - Part 1

Here is an unpalatable truth about writers - we're not good with criticism. Or to clarify:- criticism of a writer's work drives them to an immediate and almost uncontrollable rage. Any criticism, about any aspect by anybody = psychopathic episode. Any writer who tells you differently is either lying, in denial or being ghosted by somebody else entirely.

I realise that many people are unaware of this from the blithe way that readers, critics and, occasionally, people who sit next to you on the bus flirt with death. I suppose it could be a novel form of extreme sport or TV reality programme(1). In an effort to reduce the number preventable deaths I offer the following safety advice.

If you must criticise an author to his face then be sure to do it at the end of the conversation. The killing rage begins with the first unfavourable comment, beyond that point the writer has ceased to listen to a word you're saying and is instead imagining how good it would feel to rip your arm off and beat you to death with the wet end.

When dealing with an enraged author never, ever, state that you have no intention of buying their next book. The only thing keeping you alive is the squeaky little voice in the author's head that reminds him/her that dead people don't buy books... It's a very tiny little voice at the best of times.

Before making a criticism ensure that you are not alone, standing by a ship's railing, pool of lava or acid bath or conveniently far from any CCTV coverage. Writer's are very weakly socialised and it's only fear of arrest and prison that is holding them back.

Next week - advice for writers on how to vent in safety.

(1) 'When Authors Attack' presumably.

Friday 22 October 2010

Midnight Riot Cover (US)

This is the US cover for Midnight Riot (which is what River's of London is called in the states). See him, I wouldn't mess with Constable Peter Grant if I was you!

Wednesday 20 October 2010

Moon Over Soho (UK) Cover

This is the almost finalised cover for Moon Over Soho I like the blue colour and the way it thematically matches the Rivers of London cover.

Moon Over Soho will be the second book in the continuing adventures of Peter Grant, Detective Constable and Apprentice Wizard.

Wednesday 13 October 2010

Turbulence by Samit Basu

I was first sent this novel as a very large word file and was asked to read it as a favour to my agent. I procrastinated, as I always do in these circumstances, but finally when at eleven o'clock in the evening there was nothing left to watch on telly I opened the file.

I'll just give it a quick scan, I thought to myself.

Three o'clock the next morning I finished reading with that rare sense of loss you get when you finish a book you never really wanted to end.

I'm terrible at summaries and reviews so I'll just say that it involves superpowers, politics, the limits of human responsibility and is fast paced, deep, crisply written, full of vim, vigour, wit, wisdom and zest.

Plus it's really, really funny. As the man with the long name at the bottom of the cover says...

"You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll gasp and YOU WILL demand a sequel!"