Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Werewolves, Pirates

Lonely Werewolf Girl now exists as a book. It's on its way to the distributor so it should be in bookshops by its publication date of June 7th.

As for internet orders, they also should be done on time, though anyone who knows me would not be astonished if something went wrong with this, like for instance I lose all the addresses they're meant to be sent to. But I'm concentrating on not being so incompetent, even if it means interrupting my normal schedule of watching Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Veronica Mars.

So, you can make your internet order from my website, and you get a nice signed copy of the book. Or, if you prefer to support the giant wheels of international capitalism over the plucky independent author, that's OK, you can order from instead.

I've been doing some publicity for Lonely Werewolf Girl, several interviews, which is good. During the course of this I met my long time friend Angus, also good. When I first met Angus, he was doing a fanzine, and now he contributes to the Times, the Telegraph, and the Guardian, so he's doing well. We had a lot to talk about, particularly football, as Angus is a Newcastle fan, and Newcastle fans have much to think about these days, what with the new manger and everything.

An email arrives from Amazon. We've noticed that customers who have expressed interest in Tomb Raider are also interested in Pirates Of The Caribbean 3 (PS2).

Look, I'm a serious author. Do I seem like the sort of person who would be interested in a child's Playstation game about pirates? Well all right, maybe. I'll think about it.

Friday, May 25, 2007

More Crumble Problems

Not really liking most food, I'm still relying heavily on rhubarb crumble to keep me going. But there have been problems recently.

for instance -

I took my normal Sainsbury rhubarb crumble out of the oven and it was burned on top! I was mystified. I am prone to careless accidents in the kitchen so I could possibly have pressed the wrong buttons on the cooker, and baked it too long, but I didn't think so.

I retrieved the packaging from the bin and examined it suspiciously. I discovered they'd changed the recipe, and the cooking time! Though the packaging looked exactly the same. It's thoughtless behaviour on the part of the manufacturers. If they secretly change the product and then sneak it into exactly the same packaging, how are people meant to cope? Finer cooks than me would be defeated by this. Now I'm upset at this interruption to my routine.

and also -

I had a frozen apple crumble in the freezer, as a sort of emergency back up. But I decided to throw it in the bin. But as it defrosted it was leaking water all over the place. The kitchen floor started to get wet. I was baffled as to what to do about this. So I decided to lay it in the bath till the water ran out. Quite rational behaviour, I'd say. But I wonder what would have happened if I'd suddenly taken ill, and collapsed, maybe? Emergency services would break down the door and find a soggy apple crumble in the bath.

''He's obviously in a poor state of mind. We'd better take him straight to the psychiatric unit."

Apart from this, my agent is in negotiations to re-publish my out-of-print back list in the USA. Six books, or something like that. Which will be good if it happens. But I'm manly concerned with these crumble problems, really.

Am recovering from life's traumas with issue three of new Buffy comic.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Defeated at breakfast

I made my way to the cereal shelf in Sainsbury to buy my customary large-size box of Shreddies. I eat Shreddies for breakfast, and have done so for some years. I completely depend on them, as previously I was unable to think of anything at all to eat for breakfast. I like having food I don't have to worry about.

To my dismay, though the shelves were bulging with various cereals, there were no Shreddies. I felt stricken, and scanned the shelves quite frantically. There were definitely no Shreddies there. I immediately felt gloomy. Other shoppers were forced to make detours around me as I stood there, shoulders drooping, faced with the prospect of trying to think of anything else to eat for breakfast, a task I knew I wasn't up to.

Eventually I settled on a packet of Malties, which are Sainsbury's own brand of Shreddies. I studied the packet very suspiciously, hunting for harmful ingredients, which I feel any unfamiliar food is bound to be full of. They hadn't actually listed anything harmful on the packet, but really I don't trust them. It was with a very heavy heart that I trudged home with the packet of Malties. Breakfast had been ruined, and everything else seemed bound to go wrong as a result.

No sooner had I arrived home with the hostile and unfamiliar breakfast cereal than news arrived that Veronica Mars had been cancelled. My favourite TV show, cut down after only three seasons. I felt a temporary rage at the TV executives who'd taken this monstrous decision, but it soon subsided into depression. No Shreddies, and no more episodes of Veronica Mars. I was defeated in life.

Have taken to lying on the couch with Buffy comics. No one can expect me to do otherwise. You can't be writing books when this sort of thing is going on.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Good Fairies, Bacchanalian orgies

The Good Fairies of New York has now made it into British Bookshops. Rather belatedly: it was meant to be here in March. It was partly with this date in mind that I set the publication date for Lonely Werewolf Girl for June, to leave a gap of a few months. Now with The Good Fairies arriving late, the two dates are almost running into each other.

I don't think this is such a good thing. It's hard enough trying to get books into bookshops, without asking them to take two different titles in a short space of time. Pleased as I am to have The Good Fairies back in print, I don't want it to harm sales of my new book.

But who knows, it's difficult to predict these things. Perhaps it won't make any difference. Perhaps it will help.

Well, I failed in my attempt to reply to all my recent email and messages. I just didn't answer everyone. Which leads to a rather familiar feeling of guilt. Ever since I made my first website, in 1997 I think, I've received quite a lot of friendly correspondence. I like this, and I always try to answer, but sometimes I don't manage. Then I feel guilty about it. I expect people hate me for not answering. Ho Hum.

Possible reasons for not answering email:

Ennui renders me unable to get off the couch

Despair at having to do stuff

Too much football on TV

Despair at Arsenal's poor form

Distracted by OCD/agoraphobia

Completely defeated by life

New Buffy comics arrive

48 hour Sabrina the Teenage Witch marathon on the Disney Channel

And then of course, since I wrote the story for Skin Two fetish magazine, there has been the almost continual stream of visitors, as the world's most glamourous and kinky women stream towards my house, eager to join in with the Bacchanalian orgies. So I have been very busy, what with all the bondage and spanking and stuff, and then making tea for everyone afterwards. I always endeavour to be a polite host. And this all takes it out of me, as I'm not as young as I was, and need a good rest after these endeavours.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Book launch, Killer insects

The launch for Lonely Werewolf Girl will be at the Boogaloo, 312 Archway Road, on the 12th June. Doors open 7.30, entry free, I'm onstage for my first reading about 8.30. I like reading onstage though it's a few years since I last did it. We'll be selling books there and I'll be signing them.

I realise a book launch may sound like rather a dull event but at my launch you can drink at the bar and listen to music. Although I should warn you that I'm selecting the music and I haven't lost my fondness for Led Zeppelin and early Deep Purple singles. But who doesn't enjoy the powerful guitar solos of Jimmy Page and Ritchie Blackmore? Almost no one, I'm sure. So my launch will be fun and I recommend you turn up.

Today, sitting at the computer, I heard a buzzing noise and looked down to find a wasp the size of a vulture about to attack my leg. I vaulted out the chair like an Olympic athlete and fled the room, not venturing back till well-armed with a rolled up magazine and a hunting net. After some fierce combat, I shuffled the killer-wasp back out the window from whence it had arrived. It was a long struggle, and it took some determination to overcome the beast. And it made me realise, once more, that the only safe thing to do is stay indoors with the windows closed. From now on, I will forgo fresh air in an effort to prevent these ravening creatures from invading my house. Otherwise it's only a matter of time before some killer insect - possibly unknown to science - stings or bites me, I plunge into immediate anaphylactic shock, and die on the way to hospital.

* looking on the bright side *

Anyway, wildlife permitting, I'll be at the Boogaloo in North London on the 12th June.