Random Quote

Thorn is like an evil literary Xzibit. He heard we liked strong female characters, and fantasy, and westerns, and swearing, and violence, and knives, and puns, so he just rolled up his sleeves and started putting on inside the other until the cheering crowd gradually fell silent and one little kid in the back started to cry and another guy said ‘God, somebody make him stop’… — Edpool, Hatboy’s Hatstand

Nysta

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I had one of those insanely reclusive mostly introvert childhoods. I practically lived in my bedroom listening to music, reading, writing, drawing, and generally wishing I was somewhere else. Somewhere more adventurous. Somewhere less awful.

Tonight, I was talking with my wife about my early teenage years which were a heady mix of weirdness and angst. To say they were eccentric would be to do them a disservice. And while I was telling her about it, my eyes caught sight of this book on my bookshelf and I found myself smiling in that nostalgic way we do when we remember… Continue reading

So, you’ve got a hot new Kindle or a bunch of vouchers and you’re ready to fill it up with something exciting, but you’re not sure where to begin.

You’ve got the newest George RR Martin. You’re up to date on Sam Sykes, Paul Hoffman, Mark Lawrence, Joe Abercrombie, Steven Erikson and Scott Lynch. Everything’s bought or pre-ordered, yet you still need something to tide you over. You’ve heard about indie authors, but you’ve also read a lot of the propaganda and you’re afraid you’re about to run into a minefield of poor grammar and terrible spelling.

Yet, you’re looking… Continue reading

It’s been a while since I told you about the books I’ve been reading. So, I thought that’s what I’d talk about. It was that or give you a rant on the hypocrisy of Western governments who torture while condemning other countries for Human Rights abuses. Quite frankly, I think you’d prefer not to listen to me go on another political rant. So, reviews it is!

Firstly, I should mention my bestest friend in the whole world has a scifi book out. You may have read my dedications and constant references to him in my Author Notes (along with some… Continue reading

I listen to a lot of punk music. Growing up, I listened to a lot of metal. I wore the torn jeans. Had the long hair. I never quite grew up, in fact. I still don’t like collared shirts and I’ll never work in a job which requires a tie. I’m not sure that I ever consciously wanted to rebel against society by refusing to start wearing plain clothes and listen to Bon Jovi with a wistful nostalgia. But I’ve always had a hard time bending to the pressures of growing up and giving in.

Of getting a mortgage.

And,… Continue reading

A friend of mine is releasing a book in a few days on Amazon. It’s called Eejit.

Now, when friends ask you to have a look at their book, you normally die a little on the inside, right? That’s a normal reaction, I assure you. But I’ve been looking forward to a completed novel from Andrew Hindle for almost 20 years. Yes, you read that right. 20 years. We met at Uni doing our English degrees and created the insane Creepy and Hatboy series of which I’ve written two and a half books and he’s written, well, there’s some notes… Continue reading

Today, I had a browse to check where Nysta #1: Revenge of the Elf was sitting on Amazon, and found it perched at #23 for Fantasy > Myths & Legends > Norse & Viking. While happy to be #23 in any category, I had a bit of a chuckle to think I was now part of the the legacy of Thor, especially when you consider my recent comments on the state of Sword and Sorcery.

Nevertheless, I’ll take it. I’ll take it because I do admit to a certain bastardisation of Norse ideas when it came to plotting out the… Continue reading

The trouble with writing a tough homicidal female assassin is you often get accused of either gratuitous girl-ism or being unrealistic. Despite the fact that women serve in all manner of frontline positions in modern militaries all over the world, it’s taken as a “given” by a lot of readers that female fighters are just not tough enough to dish it out in a fight. Best to make female assassins into archers, where their toughness can be defined instead by their skills at being far from the frontline. For me, that’s not tough. That’s just a little too sensible.

Women’s… Continue reading

I’m an impatient writer, believe it or not. It’s one reason I can’t write epics. I’d love to write epics. I would give a lot to be the next George RR Martin. Or the next Brandon Sanderson. Hell, I would trade all my limbs to be Steven Erikson. All of them. Since I was a kid, I’ve loved the world-building of fantasy. I think it was because I had such an awfully empty childhood that I felt fantasy was an escape into something magnificent. Something special. I dreamt of having a wardrobe portal into another world. I guess it wasn’t… Continue reading

Many writers don’t talk about what they’re reading. Me, I can’t help it. I used to review books and even horror movies for a while at the end of the ’90s. Back when the internet was colourful and full of crazy .gifs. So, I can’t help it. I have an online mouth which can’t stay shut.

Also, because I read so many books in rushes, I can’t really do a post for each one so often I’ll select a few of the ones which made me happy and write about them.

Like this:

I recently did a re-read of the… Continue reading

When I was at uni, one of my tutors used to say the most important part of your book should be the first few pages. In fact, the first page will be the page you need to spend the most time on. I’ve tried to live by that, and I work very hard on my Introduction chapter. I always try to give it a bit of something special. Because it’s those first few pages which will either attract or repel a reader. And, if you think about the books you’ve read in your life, you’ll feel the same.

Sure, some… Continue reading

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