Saturday, May 17, 2008


New post! Zing!

I must apologise for the delay in posting. Titanicus is finished and I have been lying in a heap. A good heap, but a heap none-the-less. I had a lovely time at my library talk a couple of week backs, and I’d like to thank all concerned for their gracious and accommodating hospitality. The sugar was very welcome. Tomorrow is Black Library Day, officially. I hope you’ll all go out there and be Black Library-ish.

So, the squeaky gate. We’re having a sun room built at the back of the house, and the floor plan extends over to the wall where the squeaky gate sits. As a result, the squeaky gate had to go. Nik and her brother pulled it out of its settings and carried it up to the back of the garden, for later use. Funny thing is, it’s still squeaking, even though it is not there any more. How do you like them apples?

Andy Lanning came to visit me today and brought with him the lovely Eddie Berganza of DC fame. As we told Eddie the story of the squeaking gate his grin became more and more fixed. We went to lunch in town and as we wandered back, I pointed out the White Rabbit and the other places around my house that had once been military residences. “Your local pub is called ‘the Dragoon’,” he said. “Exactly,” I replied. “There are hussars everywhere.”

His fixed grin became even more fixed. Sorry, Eddie, didn’t mean to scare you.

Oh yeah... Titanicus is done. I think I mentioned that. One hundred and forty thousand words worth of stomping titanic chaos. I’m pretty pleased with it, but it drained the hell out of me. I hope you all like it.

And now to business...

Al - I’ve had an ‘awesome handlebar moustache’ for a very long time. The folks at BL used to refer to is as my ‘big gay moustache’. I’m comfortable with my sexuality and therefore laughed at their derision, derisively.

Ryknow041 - Welcome (ltbfth)... long time blogger first time hello. I think you’re probably right. If the hussar isn’t speaking quasi-old-english, I’d be surprised. Thanks for the Guardians of the Galaxy comment. Yes, there will be some inquisitor-related shorts soon. Eisenhorn in short pants is a vision sequestered by the Holy Ordos, as I’m sure you realise.

Sredni - Already on it.

Ashley T - Thanks. I’ll come to Bath when Bath invites me.

Leemxt - You’ll see more first person perspective on the Pact in the next book, which is, funnily enough, called Blood Pact.

Jack - Groot and Cosmo in the same book? It had to happen. Read Guardians of the Galaxy to see how cool that meeting can be.

Rob - Using the key marked ‘R. Carter’ would, of course, be a very bad idea. I’ve put that one in the bottom drawer of the bureau.

Jack - Hello. Thank you very much for the comments on the Torchwood audiobook.

Kid Dork - Thank you very much.

Bigwill - They’re called ‘auto-reactive shoulder-guards’, because that’s what Games Workshop calls them. They’re ‘auto’ and ‘reactive’, because they’re ‘auto-reactive’ shoulder-guards. Hey, I don’t make this stuff up (much).

Turain - I’ll do my best. All I can do for now, is hope.

The-seventh-son - Prophaniti would be a great name for a child, if you wanted a child that sicked up on you every five minutes and rotated its head, laughing gleefully. I’m not sure Dju wants that. Can you imagine what you’d find in a chaos nappy?

Big - Yay! Big’s back! All kinds of win! Get set to check out your ‘Big Steve’ name-check at the start of Titanicus. Thanks for the books, Big. SinDex? There’s bundles more SinDex out there, and it’s running in 2000AD right now.

Hurrah for the hussar - I’m a huge fan of the Warhammer world, I just don’t get to write it that much. Still, have you checked out Riders of the Dead, Fell Cargo, the Hammers of Ulric and Gilead? Demand them! They will be reprinted!

XHALAAAXX! - Where were you girl? Mexico? We missed you! And now the gang’s all here! Explain your strop. It’s better out than in. Do it, Blondie.

John Phillip Law just died, aged 70. Three score years and ten. Everyone go and rent ‘Barbarella’ immediately. And enjoy.


Jack said...

Damnit Dan, I'd just gotten over being creeped out whenever someone said "Hello" to me and now it's back!

I'm currently recommending Guardians of the Galaxy to anyone I know, because it's that damned good. Gets better every time I read it.

Lordy said...

Woo *steals first post again. And rightfully*

"And with the big 3 (Malekith, Nagash ,Sigmar) taken I cant think of any Chaos biggies from 'that time'. Any suggestions?"

Those three aren't exactly in a similar timeframe. Sigmar was 2.5k ago, while I expect (and it'd better) Malekith to start around 7k back.

I can't look up any names for you - because my books are now at uni, and you asked on the one weekend I'm at home - but I'm sure I could find some famous names.

Lordy said...

Gahh! *shakes fist at Jack's post stealing*

I forgot to add - I just got the first issue of Boom's latest Warhammer comics. 'Condemned by Fire' However, I can't see an author's name on it anywhere. Is it still one of Dan's, like all the others have been?

Julz said...

I shall rent Barbarella at once, what a good idea. If I ever get access to time-travel technology, one of my first outings will involve a Barbarella-era Jane Fonda. And armed police, presumably.

Hrothgar said...

I will getting Guardians of the Galaxy the next time I am in a town with a comic book store. I can't wait. Also, I can't wait for Titanicus.

Maybe we'll see some Barbarella references in Guardians of the Galaxy?

George Stirling said...

Hey Dan,

Big thumbs (plasma blastguns?) up for Titanicus. I'd make a pun about how epic it was but I don't think I'd get out of the blog alive.

George (post-proofread).

Rory said...

ooh i havnt commented on here ina while.

How did the keys go? did you find any rooms? or have you not tried yet :)

Exams suck, Glad to hear titanicus if finnished. so yea, When are you coming to scotland?!

BigWill said...

I figured you were in a writing zone.
I can't wait til I get my hands on Titanicus.
I heard I rumor that Black Library is coming out with Audio Books,any chance for them doing one for your two Inquisition series?
I like your answer to the auto reactive question.
I always thought it meant they darkened like the bikes did in the old 80's movie MegaForce.

Nik said...

Bigwill - It just so happens that I was listening to the first idea for a BL audio book. It was a snippet from the beginnings of Dan' and Graham's short stories that were published as a one-off for Games Day last year. Sounds fab to me, with great reading skills from Danny Webb, and some really moody music. I think you might be able to hear the sample in your GW shop. Remember the benefits of pester power :-)

Dan Cottle said...

I'll chime in with the Titanicus anticipation, can't wait to get my mitts on it.

Xhalax said...

In as much of a nutshell as I can possibly get it (which, by now you should know is a mutant mega nut of epic propotions) strop is simply down to the fact that the universe is so big and I'm so small than everything I ever do seems trivial and of no consequence and that generally nobody cares.

I'm one amongst billions, and average at best and doomed never to shine nor to ever really achieve anything (I have so so so many things that need to be done right now and generally failing to do any of them through sheer sloth and ignorance).

So general doom and gloom from me (I really am a very morose person at heart), along heaps of guilt for my selfish nature and feeling guilty because people treat me like crap (yup, I feel very guilty for everything....even this post).

Other than pissed that we have to wait two whole weeks for Doctor Who, and it looks like a really good episode too...kinda along the lines of the Stone Angels one from last series.

Also, I'm chomping at the bit for a new 40K book. I'm reading Warhammer and finding it terribly dull. So not impressed.

On the up side...........umm.....I got the black wool for the fleece for your sheep Nik. It's not what I wanted, but it'll work all the same. If not, I've still got time to find different wool and try again.

Urk! Need to read books, write RP replies, watch stuff, draw and paint and heaps of other stuff. But it's time for Top Gear, so that's all that out the window AGAIN.


BigWill said...

I love the idea that I can listen to the books while painting.
I gotta see if the boys have a copy at GW.

Boom said...

Alright Dan, I check your blog regularly but I don't usually post. Anyways, a friend and I were talking. We both regularly talk about the Ghosts. He just finished the second arc. While we were talking an interesting idea came up that we hadn't thought of and that I don't think many others have thought of either. Since the Ghost supposed to get the first world they win as a conquest(we're still hoping they do) how about doing them justice and giving them a...wait for it...DEATHWORLD. It would be sweet, sweet justice. A world that most would shy away from yet would allow the Ghosts to continue to produce great recon troopers...just an idea.

Turain said...

A Deathworld for the Tanith First? Well... it would definitely continue to supply the Ghosts with great recon soldiers, and superior troops as well. But honestly, deep inside, I would like them to have a good planet. Not talking about paradise here, or a Tanith-2, but just something worth the deaths and suffering the Tanith Ghosts have gone through while battling for the God-Emperor. And, of course, for having to deal with Lijah Cuu.

Lijah Fething Cuu...

Nik said...

Xhalax - join the club. I was in my forties before I found out what I wanted to do. Fortunately, I'm now allowed to do it, and it almost pays for all the other things I want to do, to. Trust me, girl, you won't have to wait that long :-)

Black sheep - Ooh! Lovely!

Nik said...

I can't believe I just gave my age away, which, by the way, is 27.

Xhalax said...

Nik - Everyone knows that whatever number was mentioned always comes just before 27 and that counting really goes 1,2,3, whatever amount of numbers you want/feel like to put in.....,27, and then the rest if you want to carry on that far.

And I guess my mind is stuck in mortality and a 'why am I here?' sort of way. And since I have no bleedyng idea why I'm here, I seem to drift towards the negative (as I said, i'm a pretty morose person at heart....oh and bitter/resentful too).

Really need to find the 'off' switch of my brain. Too much thinking and not enough mindlessness and shiny things to stop me thinking about such things as metaphysics and such.

And yup, black sheep. Now American Dad is nearly finished I can go back to putting on DVDs for background noise rather than actually watching them so I can start knitting again (I left your sheep with only ears and a face).


Lordy said...


We have to wait two weeks for Doctor Who? Why - what's happened?

Xhalax said...

Three words Lordy.




LeeMXT said...

hey hey, new postage!

cheers for the reply dan, i must beg the question to all who visit here, as i think everyone will have read the ghosts series, or a part of it.

do any of you find a piece of any of dans books emotionally moving?

i think i said in your last post that my favourite part of any of your books is the piece in sabbat martyr where kolea takes ven into the bathing pool, it made me cry like a baby, not something i do often, but i found it really really moving!

i must come across as a scary superfanboy now but seriously, its a question ive had on my mind for a while now, and im intrigued as to whether im just a complete freak, or others feel the same way.

actually have you got a faviroute piece of one of dans books nik? (did she mention shes only 27?) :-p


Nik said...

Leemxt - My favourite bit of any of Dan's books is the chapter in Titanicus where...

...Yeah, sorry, can't tell you, but It's quite brilliant.

Rory said...

Hey Xhalax! not spoken to you ina while!

Yea, damn Eurovision. its ruined my saturday. i had a routine! instead you have to listen to terry wogan mubble over some fat scary cross dressing man sing a rediculous song that nobody cares about! well, it was last year.

WTB lordy again? they made it intresting! :)

Pack_master said...

Hmmm... Eisenhorn audio.. that sounds really great to me.

Turain said...

nik - Don't say things like that about Titanicus, you'll give us heart attacks by anxiety =D

big said...

Lordy u really did get pipped at the post there mate by just one minute!

Xhalax what no hello for me!

no no i understand no parade no titans.i suppose i will have to come to terms with the fact that im just a mere mortal and not the recreation off Russ himself!

Leemxt thats a bloody good question
for me it was when corbec bought it
and his spirit was drawn to the Nalwood in the timber yard?
i hope friends i have lost along the way are also free spirits ......

But Cuu is still a ledgend
listen to Dire straits" Brothers in Arms" and think of the ghosts,that will make u all emo.

Nik u told me u were 25
tut tut !

LeeMXT said...

nice one big, thats quite the answer i was looking for!

also i do wonder whether i found a distinctively lancashire term in proto gothic from ezrah night:

sithee - seyathee

sorry, but it did strike a chord, having lived in leigh most of me life!

also something else ive noticed is everyone after the traitor general soundtrack in the previous post. i was one of the lucky 300 who got a copy of the collectors edition on games day that year, might i add my 2p's worth by saying how bloody good it is too!

@ nik - come come, now, tell me your second best then... fathers you like to keep everyone guessing about everything!

wonder whether a I Hate Lijah Cuu group could be set up on facebook...


Xhalax said...

Big - You got a Monty Pythonesque rejoicing....what more do you want?

Courtney said...

hi, my name is Courtney and my boyfriend i am convinced is the biggest fan of your writing. not one day has gone by that he does not mention a Warhammer book. he has such a passion for the books. his favorite being Horus Rising. i would love to give him a sign copy of the book for our one year (in August). i was wondering if you were going to be doing any book signings in Florida in the near future. if so, could you please post it on your blog? it would be greatly appreciated

Hurrah for the Hussar said...

''Hurrah for the hussar - I’m a huge fan of the Warhammer world, I just don’t get to write it that much. Still, have you checked out Riders of the Dead, Fell Cargo, the Hammers of Ulric and Gilead? Demand them! They will be reprinted!''

I have copies of them all :) - and Malus which you left out (for shame!). Loved them all but I think I and all in the forums prefer 40k's universe - I suspect you do to in your fusion-cardio-oscillator of a heart…its true?

Plus since 1st & Only you've been on a roll with 40k, why change that eh!

And Leemxt those sneaky authors do this all the time, one BL novel had 'Idolwhilde' as a planetoid-shameless but fun :)

Lordy said...

Xhalax, you mean it's been a whole year since the last one already? I really need to find a way to create more days in a year. And more hours in a day.

That could be tricky...

Xhalax said...

Yes Lordy, it's been a whole year!

sredni vashtar said...

nik, i'm 27 too!! it's like we're twins or something!

i still don't know what i "want to do", in a vocational manner of speaking, either. luckily i already have a pretty good idea of what i DON'T want to do, so i just avoid doing that, and rely on my native wit and devastating good looks to carry me through any tiresome subsistence difficulties. i think that might be why i'm still poor as shit.

seriously though, i do think there's a ridiculous and really rather scary amount of pressure on young people to plan out their entire lives or somehow be seen as "losers." I remember (and this is some time ago, so i doubt it's gotten any better since) when they started giving us "career planning" interviews at school. I think I was probably about 14 at the time, and i was quite nonplussed by the whole thing. it seemed pretty odd to me to expect a 14 year-old to have any real idea about what they wanted to do for a living, or to even care about it at that age. the scary part was that all the OTHER kids took it seriously ... i guess people just have different priorities. I'm not real philosophical, but i do know that since i'm alive i might as well have a good time. I personally think that worrying and trying to second-guess the world all the time makes someone a bigger "loser" than just making the best of one's brief spell of existence. YMMV.

incidentally, who has to count the words in Dan's books? is there a lobotomised clone specially adapted for the task?

Rob said...


Speaking as someone who's trying to cut a 9,000 word story down to 7,000 words, I can imagine Dan painstakingly counting like Lovecraft or Conan Doyle might have done when their stories were too long for the fiction mags.

...or he might just cheat like me, and use Microsoft Word's "word count" feature.

Nik said...

sredni and rob - select all. Go to edit, select statistics and the wp package will count the words for you, among other things :-)

Jeff said...

Well...I picked up Legion, and usually, I loathe the Alpha Legion. I figured "Well...It's a Dan Abnett book, if anyone can pull it off...he can" so I gave it a try.

So after one long night, and I got to the end of Legion, I had a bit of grudging respect for the vile Alpha Legion. You gave me some excellent surprises (I LOVE being wrong about what's coming...nothing worse than seeing it coming, and there are no surprises. I mean...what's the point?)

Well done on Legion!
Yes...there are some who are bitching about it. FOOLS I SAY!

My wife is a huge fan of your work. I got her started on BL fiction with Eisenhorn, Ravenor, and eventually Gaunt's Ghosts. She hasn't started the Horus Heresy series yet. She gets excited to start it every time I geek out over the latest installment.

I wish you were coming to Chicago Gamesday again this year.


big said...

Lordy took ur advice and waited till the credits had finished on Iron man


Xhalax Monty Python ? what scene

Whos going to games day this year !
did Dan say their gonna realease
Titanicus there?
We should all link u know.

Xhalax said...

Big - I'm not telling you, you have to work it out.

I'm going to Games Day and yes, they're releasing Titanius there (along with Elfslayer and Cain's Last Stand)

HiWayRobry said...

we must be spiritual twins. I'm a morose, self-loathing pathetic mess. But everyone else seems to love me!

there's not a GG novel that hasn't moved me to tears. Milo's demise being the one that probably affected me most.

being the busy man you are I'm sure it would be quite useless to even ask this but: Why don't YOU record the voicework for your Ghost Audio books? (Just a thought)


big said...

a few scenes do spring to mind(hee hee)
i gotta say im am really looking forward to titanicus especially since Dan told me he was setting it in the Sabbat Worlds.For some reason i thought it was set in the H.H. era .Yeh looking forward to its release.

Dukeleto said...

No Who this week, it's true! It seems to be just starting to pick up after a really wobbly start this series.(same's true of Battlestar, April was a really disappointing month for sci-fi!)

The good news is, the next 2 episodes are a 2-parter written by Stephen Moffat (as was the "stone angels" one) and that he will be taking over from Russel T Davies as lead writer!
Sorry Dan if you're a friend of Davies, and all credit to him for bringing Who back, but the clunkiest episodes all seemed to be written by him! Maybe now we can have the occasional character with unambiguous sexuality, and they'll stop using the sonic screwdriver as a deus ex machina?

Dukeleto said...

oh.. and back on topic, great news that Titanicus is finished. When can we read all about the stompy death machine?

Nik said...

Dukeleoto - we're admirers of Mr Moffat's work too, so no complaints here.

Hurrah for the Hussar said...

Absolutely Dukeleto, when when WHEN can we read it?

Dan how do you suspect the protagonist will go down?(if there is one?)

Universally praised?

Xhalax said...

hiwayrobry - I get the feeling I'm generally disliked as people tend to avoid me like the plague, tell me thing and make all manner of promises and then just don't bother their arses keeping them and don't even make up an excuse....and I generally come across as something of a know-it-all snob despite the fact I'm a Geordie and so the polar opposite of a snob, though I do absorb facts like a sponge (the latest case of 'I remember more than you do' happened about an hour ago when I told my dad the top speed of a Bugatti Veyron was 257 mph....when I check it was 253 mph (though the kph was 407...which explains the 7 at the end).

That and I give off a vague air of loathing everyone or extreme over enthusiasm that many find frightening.

Plus, I'm a female gamer and so most male gamers either are terrified, don't believe I exist, or think simply because I'm a girl I know nothing about the hobby.

Oh the joys of being me!

Oh, and the sarcasm and general and natural cynicism doesn't help either.

Pack_master said...

Xhalax: the female gamer thing reminds me of something:

(copy and fuse'em)

Aye, one of my favorite webcomics ;)

Pack_master said...

PS: DAMN! I just realised they had a Boondock Saints poster on the wall there... oh, I must be blind...

HiWayRobry said...

I'm a Yank so I have no idea what a Georie is (except that it's Brian Johnson's original band before he joined AC/DC). I think you and I would get along smashingly. I'm pretty much exactly the opposite of what you describe yourself to be. Well, except the fact that I'd love to own a Bugatti Veyron too and I'm not a snob either. And being a female gamer, you're halfway to my heart already :)

I forgot to ask. Is your Guardians of the Galaxy an ongoing or a mini-series? Also, I wasn't joking about having you do the Audio books for the Gaunts Ghost books. I mean, who knows these characters better than you? Think about it.


HiWayRobry said...

That, of course, was supposed to say "Geordie"


Al said...

^ I'm a Geordie too. It's someone who's from Newcastle (In northeast of England) Xhalax do you have a Geordie accent? I don't because I haven't lived there for years but its funny that people expect you to have one when you say your from Newcastle :D

Cant wait for Titanicus it sounds awesome!

Xhalax said...

al - I most certainly don't have a Geordie accent, despite living in the north east all of my life. I've done my best to rid myself of it as it makes me sound like a moron.

Lamentaly, I do slip into geordie when annoyed, which only makes me more annoyed and turns into a perfectly vicious little circle.

hiwayrobry - Who wouldn't want to own a Veyron?

Although if it was a choice between a Veyron and a Astin Martin DB9, I'd start to have real trouble.

HiWayRobry said...

Personally, I'd rather have a Jaguar XKE, but that's my father's fault. Forest Green preferably.

Newcastle, huh? You should be proud of your accent. And I'm positive it doesn't make you sound like a moron! Not that anyone cares but I'm for Oregon. The great Pacific Northwest. And I have no accent at all so I'm envious of you.

Nik said...

Hiwayrobry - I think you'll find that's 'British Racing Green'.

And an American without an accent... that's quite a feat :-)

Xhalax - I've never heard you sound like a moron... not once. I have heard you sound a little like a Geordie, though, and there's no shame in that. You've never thought to listen to my accent, of course, it might sound normal to you, but as a kid I was teased mercilessly.

Turain said...

Finished reading Legion today, and I lack words to describe the awe it caused in me. I believe I have not felt something like from a book since Eisenhorn, and certain Gaunt's Ghosts. Legion is one of the greatest books I have read, even by Dan Abnett standarts (and they are high in my mind). Their (Alpha Legion) nature is incredible, and reinforces the idea that they can achieve anything, no matter the obstacles or sacrifices that must be taken. Indeed...

We are all Alpharius...

PS: Felt a bit bad about John's fate, Grammaticus was a great character.

PPS: Now off to Horus Heresy

Xhalax said...

Nik - Technically there's no such thing as 'British Racing Green', it is, in fact a number of different colours depending on where in racing history you are.

But that does fill one critia of being British Racing Green at some stage.

And it's the full, broad Geordie accent that makes you sound pretty thick. We get a lot of people with north east accents in the shop where I work and they sound really quite dumb. Not helped by the fact that a lot of the time they don't even really know what they have or what they want.

Accents badly spelt out.

'Duya do spare parts for petril cars?'

'Some, yes. What make of car is it?'

'......i diven na.'

And quite a few times they've bought the cars off us in the first place and it tells them on the box the make and model....but all they know is it's a petrol car....when it is, in fact a nitro car as it doesn't actually run on petrol (although we do sell them too).

In truth, my accent changes depending on who I talk to....but I still think I sound pretty snobby.

Nik said...

Xhalax - if you sound 'snobby' god help me :-) Now that we all, including royalty and politicians, speak 'estuary', I rather like to hear a regional accent. Having said that, with my increasing deafness, I'm lucky to hear one word in three, so if I appear to do a lot of nodding and smiling, there's a reason for it :-)

HiWayRobry said...


I hope you're doing something about your increasing deafness? Your hearing is not something to be taken lightly. Get a hearing aid if you have to (and don't be too modest to wear it either!) but don't let it degenerate beyond repair. Please!

Nik said...

hiwayrobry - how very thoughtful of you, but don't worry, it's all under control.

big said...

Took me 2 hours to get a 2000 ad today

no Sin Dex


makes me wanna go get "Born to lose" Tattoed on my chest and hold up the news agents.