So there I was, standing in the queue in the staff restaurant, thinking about my blog. The effortlessly lovely Nik Vincent-Abnett said to me on Twitter earlier today that she wishes I’d get round to posting something up on my blog. And she’s been so very good to me over the last couple of years, that I feel a blog entry is the very least I can do.
Nik is just one of the many friends I’ve made since the whole writing roller coaster began in 2011. One of the first people to come up to me and introduce herself and invite me into the circle of people sitting and laughing in a hotel bar somewhere in Birmingham, right before the first Games Day I ever went to. An ear when I need to offload, a voice of reason when I’m acting like a muppet, Nik has become very much a very much more stylish and classy sister figure.
So, because I love to bring forth the smiles, I am dusting off the blog and writing an entry.
You’d better duck. I’m blowing off the dust now.
OK, it’s safe to stand again.
This last few weeks have been fairly hectic. Not all with writing, although there’s certainly been enough of that. I finished the manuscript for Heirs of the Demon King: Uprising and have been working on the (thankfully minimal!) edits this week. I’ve enjoyed going back over the story and remembering what actually happens at the beginning.
As well as the writing, the house has been in utter chaos. ‘Wouldn’t it be amazing,’ I said to the Husband, ‘if we went away for the week whilst the roof is being replaced?’
Well, that didn’t work out as planned. But then, so few things in life ever do. Wouldn’t it be chronically boring if they did? Here was the plan:-
1) Scaffolders arrive Saturday 1st February. Put up scaffolding front and back.
2) We go away on Monday 3rd February when roofers come. They will be done by Thursday.
3) We come back on Friday 7th February to a completed, new roof with a deficit of holes letting water in.
4) The scaffolders take their scaffolding away.
5) Much rejoicing.
Here’s what happened.
1) Scaffolders arrive Saturday. Put up scaffolding at the back, but can’t do the front because of proximity to power cables. Email Northern Power Grid to ask them to come do shrouding on house. NPG are closed until Monday.
2) We go away on Monday when roofers come. They do the back of the house. They are done by Wednesday.
3) NPG get back to me and schedule shrouding for Thursday 13th February – the week after we come back from our holiday.
4) Wednesday 12th February – shrouding is done. Scaffolders due the coming weekend.
5) Scaffolders don’t come.
6) Tentatively ask when scaffolders will be coming. ‘Some time in the week.’
7) Front scaffold is finally put up on 19th February. House now half re-roofed and looking like is held together by Meccano.
8) Roofers finally return Tuesday 25th February and should be finished by tonight.
9) Much rejoicing.
You can imagine what it’s like having half a roof re-done with no ridge tiles and tarpaulin flapping like a manic ostrich in high winds, I’m sure.
The stress of writing is a blessed release from the real world.
Heirs will be my fourth completed novel manuscript, which by itself is something to be proud of – but there’s something more to it than that. Heirs is, in a strange sort of a way, my first novel.
But what about The Gildar Rift and Valkia the Bloody? I can hear you asking that very question and you’re right. Those two books have certainly been written, published and existed Out There in the Big Wide World since 2011 and 2012 respectively. Heirs of the Demon King: Uprising is, however, my first original, non tie-in work and that means a remarkable amount to me.
Writing a novel was on my so-called ‘bucket’ list for years. Now I’ve written four. I feel immensely proud of that fact. I don’t care one little bit that three of those four novels are written for a particular subsection of genre fiction – fans of the Warhammer and 40,000 universes – in fact, I’m delighted to be able to contribute to the ongoing development of those universes.
I am not saying a lot about Heirs at the moment, because I’m not entirely sure how much I can talk about it and I love my editor to bits. I have no desire to invoke his antipodean wrath. When he tells me I can Say Stuff, I will say more.
In the meantime, the general blurb from the publishing catalogue in order to give you a feel for what it’s all about can be seen on page 34 here.
Also, look at all the lovely things! LOOK AT THEM!