Thursday, May 31, 2007

So anyway

Taking back control of my own blog for a sec (thanks, Nik, for covering), I just wanted to remind all those who care that I'll be at Conflict:London this coming Sunday. See you there.

Kudos to all who voted 'aye' to the idea of the blogathon (yeah, THANKS, Nik), we'll have to get that sorted on a sunday soon (not that my typing fingers aren't already down to the bone - I've worn out two clones this week, and it isn't thursday yet!). Still, I'll be here if you will. Let's set a date.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Listen up...


first of all... Ohmigod, I'm not Dan!

Some of you may remember that I (that is Nik, or as many know me, "Mrs Dan") managed to talk Dan into a blogathon. We had rules and everything...

Now, some of you seemed to get on board with the idea... one or two of you even seemed quite interested, so we set the blog date for Sunday, twenty-something May, anyway... tomorrow!

I did try to whip up some semblance of a frenzy about the whole deal... I for one was looking foreward to Dan sweating for twelve hours at a stretch, and turning in 6,000 words in one day (not that he hasn't done that once or twice before, with the help of the odd clone of course). But as of right now... that is 00-50 GST, Sunday the whatever of May, we have postponed.

The man plans to give up AN ENTIRE SUNDAY for feth's sake, so, of course, he needs an incentive.

I'm still up for it, and so is Dan, so if we can get enough people involved in batting stuff back to him over the Blogathon, then he will, sooner or later, commit to it.

All those in favour say "Aye"

See you back on the other side.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Signing II: This Time It's Bromley

Well, a big thank you to everyone who came to see me at last Saturday's London signings. In the spirit of public service announcements, I'm here to tell you I'll be at the Bromley GW store this coming Saturday from 2 til 4 approx, and the following Sunday (June 3rd) I'll be a guest at Conflict London at Alexandra Palace (along with Graham and Jim - yes, it's three-for-one day at Ali Pali!). BL probably know much more about when and what the three of us will be doing on the day so, as they say, check press (or the BL site at least) for details.

Quatermouse and the Mitt made me laugh (see last thread), and I can't let it go unanswered.

Quatermouse and the Kit

"So in fact what you're saying," said Quatermouse, with a slightly crestfallen air, "is that I should have painted it before I stuck the transfers on? Bum."

Tuesday, May 15, 2007


Just a quick reminder that I'll be at Forbidden Planet this coming Saturday at 1.00 o'clock for an hour, and then at Games Workshop Oxford Street at 3.00. Hope to see some of you there.

Oh, and today's exclusive short story. It's called:

Quatermouse and the Flit

"Don't we owe them rent, professor?"

"Shut up," said Quatermouse, "and keep running."

The End

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Exclusive! Get It Here!

I took this evening off and, during the general and delicious R&R, watched Quatermass and the Pit. What a fabulous movie, and so ahead of its time. What makes it especially brilliant is the script - Nigel Kneale, of course - written in the fifties, revised in the sixties for the film, and absolutely dead on the noughties zeitgeist. As a writer of sf (albeit of the combat variety), it’s humbling to see so many relevant and oh-so contemporary themes right there, in a 1967 film. And we think the new stuff is new. There are no new ideas. Well, there are, but they’re staggeringly scarce and none of us are having any of them. I advise you all to watch it, anyway. It so shockingly prefigures Who and so many genre moments (Carrie, the Fury, Test Match Special... and I could go on). And yes, I know Who predates 1967. But not the original version of QatP. It would not be a surprise to me to learn that Russell T. and many of the writers and producers in the long legacy of Who were inspired by Quatermass in general and QatP in particular.

In tone, if nothing else.

Moving swiftly along (yes, Test Match Special WAS a joke), I have been asked a number of times to share some writing tips (of which, of course, I must have many) with the world. So here goes, the first of an occasional series of writerist observations:

Dan’s Writing Tips #1
Sometimes, a project - a novel, a story, a script - is like a piñata. The plot just hangs there and wants you to take a smack at it. A couple of solid thwacks, maybe, just to open it up. Then you have to keep on smacking it to get at all its goodies. It may resist and require a lot of smacking. Some projects are tough like that. Legion is like that.

To sum up: keep swinging. You’ll break the bastard eventually.

Today, Nik referred to Laurence Fishburne as “Loren Finchperson”. Later (during QatP, actually) she called a belisha beacon a “Beleeka Beeshon”. I don’t mean to mock. I just think that today may be National Lexical Drop-Out Day.

And now, before we drift off into sunday-land, here’s the first in a string of short short stories, exclusive to this blog. Short short story one is called..

Quatermouse and the Writ

“But I wasn’t anywhere near the Ballspond Road that night!” complained Professor Bernard Quatermouse.

“Whatever,” said the server, “you’ve just been sued.’

The End

Humm. Piñatas, like I said.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Note to self

Dear me! Some backsliding! My blog rate seems to have dropped again. I must remedy that, and you know what that means, don’t you? It means daily lumps of content-free nonsense as I hit keys at random and post the result just to say I have.

Nik’s remedy was rather different. She suggested a blog-a-thon. According to her, a blog-a-thon would involve writing five hundred words an hour every hour for twelve hours. I’d write five hundred words, take the rest of the hour off, and then write another five hundred at the start of the next hour - and so on, all the while answering posts. I think she may have bee having a laugh. I can’t even find a clone willing to volunteer for that.

In other news, they’ve found King Herod’s tomb, which is interesting because I wasn’t aware they’d lost it. And scientists have observed a ‘super’ supernova called SN2006gy. It was a massive explosion, a hundred times more energetic that a typical supernova, and was 1000,000 million times brighter than the sun. On the plus side, we can relax, because it was 240 million light years away in another galaxy. However, a Milky Way star called Eta Carinae, just 7500 light years away, look like it’s about to go supernova. If it does, it’s likely we’ll be able to see it alongside the sun in daylight. Which doesn’t happen very often.

Just as long as we don’t all go blind looking at it, thus paving the way for the Triffid conquest of the Earth...

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Pauses to blow own trumpet

This just in, and I must say I’m chuffed. Horus Rising, by yours truly, and False Gods, by Graham M, have both been nominated for Origin Awards. BL got three nominations over all. So there’s lovely. The BL website will, no doubt, have details as to when the actual awards are announced. It’s nice to be thought of.

A reminder that I’ll be at Forbidden Planet AND GW Oxford Street on the 19th to promote Brothers Of The Snake. After that, I’ll be at GW Bromley on the 26th, and Conflict London on the 3rd of June. That’s verging on the ubiquitous.

Aside from the next Horus book and Nova, I’ve been working on some ----------- for ----------, which I’m not actually allowed to talk about. This is a shame, because ------------- is quite an interesting challenge, and quite different to my usual stuff. You have to think in really different ways when you’re ---------- for a ------.

So don’t say I never tell you anything.