Monday, April 25, 2022

Thraxas Meets His Enemies – ebook now available

The ebook for Thraxas Meets His Enemies – Thraxas Book 12 – is now on sale, after a slight delay. Thraxas is back in his home city of Turai.

Amazon UK   Amazon US   Amazon DE


Apple Books   Kobo   Nook



'Sources at the Palace indicate that a very large sum of money in the form of gold bullion has disappeared from the Palace vaults. This was earmarked for the purchase of food and is a terrible loss to a city already on the brink of starvation. The whole affair smacks of corruption at the highest levels. Our revered War Leader Lisutaris, Mistress of the Sky, is of course beyond suspicion but the sad truth is she's surrounded by a coterie of very dubious characters including assassins, degenerate sorcerers, half-Orcish ruffians and several shady figures from the lower depths of Turanian society. Our readers will be amazed to learn that among these figures is Thraxas, about whom the Chronicle has had reason to warn the city before. As the food intended for our starving population disappears to the Simnian, Samsarinan and Niojan encampments, many curious glances will be cast towards the Mistress of the Sky, wondering why her most trusted companions all seem to be characters of the very lowest repute…'



Thursday, April 21, 2022

Thraxas Book 12 Ebook – Slight Delay

Some delay in the ebook of Thraxas Meets His Enemies, due to an error in the supplier's copy. They've corrected that now and it should be arriving at ebook sellers in the next few days. Meanwhile here are some notes on Thraxas.

1) I should have planned more before I started. My total thought process before writing the first Thraxas book was 'How about having a detective in some sort of Tolkien-like world?' That was my entire planning. I really should have thought about it more.
2) At first I imagined the books as more noir. I have enjoyed Raymond Chandler. That didn't last long, probably because Thraxas and Makri became quite funny together.
3) Madeline Rae Mason, photographer and model, is the model on all the covers, and went above and beyond in her efforts. The work she put in to make herself look like that and take the pics was worth more than I paid her. Thanks Madeline.
3) Thraxas is now surrounded by women, in an odd, unplanned way. Many of them giving him a hard time. Makri, savage fighter and companion, Lisutaris, most powerful sorcerer, Tanrose, valued provider of pies, Hanama, cold-hearted assassin, Tirini, fashionable sorcerer, Anumaris, eager young sorcerer, Droo, enthusiastic young Elf, and Deeziz, orcish enemy sorcerer. Even Dandelions, dolphin-friend and barmaid. He seems to have only one male friend, Gurd. I don't know why this happened.
4) Thraxas shares his impressive girth with Falstaff, and his appetites for food, drink and bragging. Importantly, however, Thraxas is brave. The underdog detective does not run away from a fight, and neither does Thraxas.
5) Orbit Publisher. They supported Thraxas for the first eight books before pulling out. Not so bad, I suppose, though they were never any good at promoting them.




Saturday, April 02, 2022

Thraxas Book 12 – Thraxas Meets His Enemies

Thraxas Book 12 – Thraxas Meets His Enemies  – has now been published as a paperback. You can order it from Amazon and also from bookshops in the UK and US. The ebook will be available in about a week.  ISBN  979-8421592259
Amazon UK  ––  Amazon US 


'Sources at the Palace indicate that a very large sum of money in the form of gold bullion has disappeared from the Palace vaults. This was earmarked for the purchase of food and is a terrible loss to a city already on the brink of starvation. The whole affair smacks of corruption at the highest levels. Our revered War Leader Lisutaris, Mistress of the Sky, is of course beyond suspicion but the sad truth is she's surrounded by a coterie of very dubious characters including assassins, degenerate sorcerers, half-Orcish ruffians and several shady figures from the lower depths of Turanian society. Our readers will be amazed to learn that among these figures is Thraxas, about whom the Chronicle has had reason to warn the city before. As the food intended for our starving population disappears to the Simnian, Samsarinan and Niojan encampments, many curious glances will be cast towards the Mistress of the Sky, wondering why her most trusted companions all seem to be characters of the very lowest repute…'

Monday, December 06, 2021

Thraxas Book 12

It's taken me longer than intended to write Thraxas book 12. I think the Covid crisis interfered with and delayed everything I've been doing. Still, I've finished a decent draft and am now revising it. I hope it will be published around March/April 2022.



Friday, November 12, 2021

Suzy, led Zeppelin and Me

 My novel Suzy, led Zeppelin and Me, 2002, reprinted in 2019.

Amazon

'You know Manx, if anyone had said to me when I was at school 'Led Zeppelin are terrible, you should listen to Elvis Presley instead', I would have mocked them. So I'd never try and tell anyone that Led Zeppelin were better than their favourite band of the moment. You can't go around listening to music that your parents liked. Anyway, I like to hear new music myself. But I must admit there have been times when I've been watching some bunch of fumbling indie kids droning on about nothing very much on stage when I'd have been pleased if a huge time warp had opened up and the mighty Led Zeppelin had marched into the auditorium.

'That's what a fucking guitar is meant to sound like,' I'd say, and dare anyone to contradict me.




Monday, October 11, 2021

Simulation Bleed, Collected Serial

Simulation Bleed. My published version of a serial I wrote on my website. Recently corrected of various typos, my arch nemesis.
When writing this serial I had several topics in mind. Things from my life that I wanted to write about but not in an autobiographical way. Memories, some good, some nagging. Good memories about all the gigs I saw, late 70s and into the 80s, punk and post-punk. And not so good memories about therapy on the NHS, sitting in some uncomfortable classroom with a therapist whom I knew was never going to help me with my agoraphobia.
So I folded these memories all into the story, not making it about myself. I took inspiration for this from Kurt Vonnegut's Slaughterhouse 5, in which Vonnegut dealt with his experiences during the firebombing of Dresden by writing about it in a rather oblique manner. Admittedly that was a far weightier topic than my experiences at punk gigs but still, I did take inspiration from that book. And then I added fairies, which does seem to happen in my writing quite a lot.

Paperback and ebook –– Amazon UKAmazon US



Friday, February 12, 2021

First edition of my first book, Milk, Sulphate and Alby Starvation, from 1987. This copy's looking very worn now. I wrote it on an old orange Olivetti portable typewriter with a broken carriage return. After typing each full line, I had to manually push the carriage back to the left side of the page. It took me four and a half weeks to write the book and it was never revised much after that. It was the third novel I'd completed but the first one that was any good. I posted it off to a literary agent I picked at random from the Writer's and Artist's yearbook and surprisingly she accepted it right away. However, it took her three and a half years to find a publisher. I never liked the cover very much but I was so pleased to be published I didn't care at the time.



Tuesday, September 08, 2020

Introduction to my new edition of Simulation Bleed

I wrote Simulation Bleed as a weekly serial on my website. There were three parts made up of 211 short chapters. I always enjoyed writing it. I'm fond of the main characters: Rainith, Mixt and Nakishdan. Rainith the Red is a particularly bad-tempered and anti-social fairy. Mixt and Nakishdan are two people with many problems who'd much rather be left alone to play video games. None of them are suited to working as government agents. But it happens, and they're stuck with it.
Because it's a serial, it is slightly rambling. I couldn't say it was tightly plotted. Several threads are not pursued and some occurrences are not resolved. However, I did resolve the main events, and as the story involved various timelines, I could claim that any sub-plot that wasn't resolved simply disappeared when history was changed.
When I started Simulation Bleed I planned to write about things I knew about. Firstly, early punk gigs in London. I went to a lot of these, and most of the gigs in the serial are based on concerts I was at. I've seen most of the bands whose records are mentioned. The video game that Nakishdan and Mixt play in the book is mostly based on Mass Effect. I played that trilogy a lot, with great enjoyment. As it turned out, there's a lot of therapy in Simulation Bleed as well. That's not what I'd call a favourite topic of mine but I do know quite a lot about it, from experience.
Several elements of the book such as the gaming, and Nakishdan's liking for all things kawaii, did go on to feature more in the next novel I wrote, Supercute Futures. That's fine, I find both topics very interesting. Despite the occasional loose ends, and some small overlap with a later novel, I haven't revised the serial, preferring to publish it as it was originally written. So here it, Simulation Bleed.