Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Good ideas at bad moments

So there I was, sitting at my desk, Gaunting busily away, aware that BL is awaiting delivery, and I had this idea. After weeks - months, maybe - of background thinking, I suddenly and unexpectedly got the plot structure of my next Horus book, in full detail, ping!

I knew roughly what I wanted to do, but - when I wasn't looking, as it were - it suddenly popped into sharp focus.

Thanks, brain. What am I going to do with that? It's pushing all the Gaunt stuff out of my ear, and the Gaunt stuff is good. AND ON A DEADLINE!

Next time on Whiney Writers And Their Pathetic Problems, Dan loses his pen.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Is it Monday already?

Just coming up for air from the throes of Gaunt long enough to direct your attention to such sites as Newsarama, Comic Book Resources and Marvel's own news page where all sorts of Nova-related fun and games have been officially announced this weekend.

And, chuffed as I am for Helen Mirren and the long-overlooked Martin Scorcese, the Oscar that really made me happy was Alan Arkin's. He's missed out twice before (1967 and 1969, I believe) so this definitely falls in the 'about bloody time' catagory. I mean, has the world forgotten Freebie And The Bean?

Saturday, February 24, 2007

The Doctor is out

Well, what a gratifyingly broad response my needy whining produced. Well done, everyone. May I compliment Xhalax in particular for her wonderful remark about unresponded blogging and quality conversations. Also, Sredni - Gadget Gaunt made me laugh.

I just got back from the signing event at Tenth Planet, and I'd like to say thank you to every one who came along to see us. Apart from the Torchwood books (my fellow "best-selling Torchwood authors" Peter and Andy were there), we were promoting the new Dr Who audio production, Nocturne. Written by yours truly, it features Sylvester McCoy, Ace and Hex, and guest stars Trevor Banister, an actor probably best remembered as Mr Lucas in Are You Being Served? Trevor had come along to the event, and it was real pleasure to meet him.

Also a pleasure was actually listening to Nocturne for the first time. I hadn't yet heard it (my copies arrived in the mail only yesterday) so I made use of the journey to and from Tenth Planet to play it in the car. I'm very pleased with the results, and I hope you like it too. Compliments to all actors and technical personnel involved, especially director John Ainsworth.

As we chatted aimlessly during the signing, Peter and Andy reflected (don't ask me how we got onto this topic) that as the slogan for Highlander was "There can be only one", surely the slogan for Highlander 2 should have been "There can be only another one." Or possibly "It appears we may have miscounted."

On the subject of movie slogans and tag-lines, I mentioned the poster tag from the new Hannibal Lector flick, which wins the prize for ultimate stupidity. It reads "It started with revenge".

Think about it...

Friday, February 23, 2007


You see? This is what I was afraid of (the vain, self-obsessed funtwit that I am).

I start blogging on a regular, daily basis, and everyone goes "Oh, look! Dan's blogging!" And then the novelty wears off and I'm left here all alone.

Hello? Your comments are far more interesting than my bloggage.

BTW - thanks and re-hellos to all the folks who came to the Grinning Demon re-opening today and asked me to deface their books and comics. Especially, Matt, Dean and Alan. Let's get a game going... with Necrons, please?

(For purely research purposes, you understand?)

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

A clarification and a 'huh?'

Just thought I'd clarify, in light of the recent 'to kill or not to kill' opinions voiced in your posts (thanks to all, what a lovely range of comments, keep them coming), that Only In Death is the last book in this arc, The Lost, but it is not the last Ghosts novel (although there may be a short hiatus while I work on some other juicy books for BL). Just thought I'd say.

Came across this great 1:32 ready made scale model of a German eight ton troop carrier the other day, very detailed and beautifully finished, but eight inches long and made of lightweight plastic. On the carton it said "this model is not designed to carry heavy loads, so please do to attempt to sit or ride on it".


See you tomorrow... literally, if you're coming to the Grinning Demon re-opening.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Would I lie to you?


Well, I'm not sure if I WAS fibbing the other post or not. Like I'm going to give stuff away just like that. But I know what the rumours have been, and it's fascinating to hear your various comments, suggestions and reactions to the possibility. Keep 'em coming. They feed the brain (that's the brain of number 4 clone, who's on duty this week).

If you're attending the comic con in New York this weekend, please be sure and say hi to my partner in crime, Andy Lanning, the A of DnA, who's over there to appear. The Marvel panel on Saturday night is sure to bring some interesting announcements from the House of Ideas.

Meanwhile, the second issue of the Warhammer 40k comic from Boom! is due to ship this week. Look out for it at all good comic retailers, including the Grinning Demon in Maidstone. See what I did, there?

Monday, February 19, 2007

The long dark night time of the guilty

Couldn't sleep (too much Gaunt, been writing all evening). Decided to blog instead. Seems I'm not able to do that either.

Checked out Graham M's site and blog. Go over and see it (link provided). Graham does blogging properly, oh yeah. Puts me to shame. And he goes to the gym too. Puts me to shame (again). I know where the gym is, does that help?

Thanks for all the suggestions about books. There's a couple I intend to try. Keep the ideas coming, readers.

Looking back on what I've written tonight, it appears I might have just killed Gaunt. Hmm. Was that wrong of me?

Oh well, the book finds its own way...

Of course, he smiled, I could be lying.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Of books, variously

Today's twenty or so words of drivel...

Working on Only In Death, a feverish pace to get in finished. It's officially the creepiest Gaunt book ever (lots of action in it too, mind, fight fans). Nik read the first few chapters and remarked that it had a really chilling, menacing undertone. In a good way. You have been warned.

Saw my first printed copies of Ravenor Rogue. It looks gorgeous. Can't wait to hear what the Ravenor/Eisenhorn readership thinks.

Speaking of books, I need something good to read. Any suggestions? What was the last good book you read?

Friday, February 16, 2007

Grinning Demon

Further to yesterday's bits and bobs, let me add that the Tenth Planet do is from 12 to 2 next Saturday. And I completely forgot to mention that Maidstone's fine comic and card shop, the Grinning Demon, is having a grand reopening this Thursday (22nd Feb) and I'll be along there in the afternoon, around 2.30, to show my support.

In longer range news, and for the benefit of my friends in the US, it looks like I will be a guest at Games Day in Chicago this July.

Several people have emailed the blog with questions about getting started as a writer and getting published and submitting etc. I'll talk about that in detail soon, maybe with the help of some proper editor type folks.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Note to self... more!

Sorry, after a good show of regular bloggery at the back end of last year, the wheels have really come off. I will make amends, mainly by following Marc Gascoigne's advice and trying to blog a little every day (yeah, that'll happen). So please get ready to excuse what may be twenty or so words of pure drivel every day from now until I hone my blogging muscles.

What's new? I'll be joining in the Dr Who/Torchwood signing at Tenth Planet in Barking next Saturday (24th of Feb), and the following Saturday I'll be at GW in Epsom from 2 - 3, signing copies of Ravenor Rogue (yes,the third one is now here!). I'll also be doing an online chat on Xfire at 9pm GMT on Thursday 8th of March.

Thanks to all of you who've been buying the Torchwood novels, by the way. There must be an awful lot of you, because Andy, Peter and I have spent five weeks in the top ten hardback fiction list.

Just finished redecorating the bathroom (like you need to know that, just hang on, there's a joke coming) and I had to get rid of the rubbish, so I rang up a local builder and said 'I want a skip outside my house'. He said 'I'm not stopping you'. (copyright Tommy Cooper, 1803).