Thursday, September 13, 2007

Behold! The man himself appears from behind the curtain!

I feel I have to apologise for the lag in blog posts. Legion and a few other projects are pressing on my time.

Matthew - I think a campaigning-in-parliament-square-for-a-homeworld-for-the-Tanith might be the best way to get one. You know how cruel I can be.

Philth - Yeah, I wish gencon was in Milwaukee too.

Xhalax - Yeah, I ate all the jam.

Richard - There ain't no such thing as Dan Abnett proof boxes.

Colonel Tempest - I'd be happy to do an interview for

Saberreox - No one presumed for a moment that you were abusing prescription drugs.

Laurie - The Sindemann scene rocks. I'm very impressed.

b.p. Steve - I loved Cuu too. Maybe his loss will be ameliorated by the fact that Only in Death is dedicated to you. Blood pact! Hunhh Hunhh!

Robert - Hawaii sounds nice. I just have to persuade Nik.

Jesse - I'm really pleased, in a strange way, that you appreciated the loss of Feygor. Coming from a person in your situation, that response means a lot. Your take on Feygor's demise really meshes with mine, and I'm glad that I seem to be grasping something that people who do this for real recognise. Airbourne! (Come back to us, all right?)

Jeff - Band of Brothers is one of my favourite series.

Saberrox - I often see Gaunt as Winters.

John - You said that the only people you look at as safe are Gaunt and Rawne. You'd better read Only in Death. And, even that's not the end.

Drew - Shoggy lives... or does he? I haven't been doing this for ten years without understanding the knack of titillating my audience. However, a 'save our Shoggy' campaign would be splendidly entertaining. Still, Ludd and Hark die. Or is that just a spoiler?

The enormous event that is Games Day UK looms above us like an enormous looming thing. It's a week away and I am girding my loins. When I'm not busy girding my loins, Nik is girding my loins for me. My loins are fully girded. Chicago Games Day, let me tell you, was a three pen convention. I don't know if you're accustomed to this scale of measurement, but by a three pen convention I mean a convention where I wore out three pens signing copies of my books. So, it's as well my loins are girded. I'm bringing four pens.

Legion is almost finished, but I can't believe how nefarious the characters I've created have become. Every time I look away, they backslide and cheat on one another. And the Alpha Legion are the biggest liars of all. A black dawn will come and wash everything away. I know, I was there.

I'm Alpharius!

Defend the jam!


Bodjo said...

Yes, yes, I was probably too careful in explaining that prozac comment. There's a history of depression in my family, so we joke about it. Then I type something out like that, post it, and it occurs to me that I might be offending someone and such.

In regard what you said about seeing Gaunt as Winters, I'm going to have to go with a fanboyish "that's really cool to hear that." When do we get the Gaunt's Ghosts TV series? :P

Oh, I meant to post this earlier. In the past, I have urged other family members to read the Ghosts books. Unfortunately, these family members are four younger sisters, my mom who reads detective stories all the time, and my violence-queasy father. So no matter what I say, no one ends up listening to me. They certainly are aware of my fandom of the series, as I've told my mom, whenever I make an important decision I ask myself "what would Gaunt do?" This kind of pisses mother off when the important decision is whether or not to listen to her and mow the lawn.

Anyways, I digress. I finally got one of my sisters to read the first chapter of "First and Only" when she was low on reading material. This can only end well, right? Well no, because Sister #2 isn't exactly up to speed with WH40k terminology. When the astropath dies from transmitting the vermillion-level message at the very beginning of the story. Simple, eh?

Sister #2 asks me: "Wait, the phone died?"

rfox said...

When/How will the 'paying card' short story with Rogal Dorn and the Night Haunter be released to the general public? Avaialble for download, Black Library short story collection?

Jesse said...

Hey Dan,

I'm glad I didn't strike too far off the mark on poor Feygor. Speaking of goodbyes, I just got word today that 'G', my roommate from downrange who inspired me to begin writing to you in the first place is headed back to Iraq very soon. I do hope you'll keep him in your thoughts. He's a huge fan (perhaps too much a fan as I've seen him reading Guns of Tanith IN COMBAT!!! <--100% true story. I have pics.)

As for myself, I can't WAIT for the release of 'Legion!' I know you have a ginormous fanbase, but it is especially so with military readers. Everyone I've talked to (excluding the Air Force. I don't converse with them) agrees that you write soldiers like you were one and combat like you've been there. I met one guy, a SEAL, who swears on a stack of The Imperial Infantryman's Uplifting Primer that you're ex-SAS. I'm inclined to think not. You don't strike me as a lunatic. Perhaps you could clear this up?

Speaking of lunatics, I just submitted my packet today to become a Ranger. My friends told me that "Someone done sh*t in my brain-housing unit!" I say that I'm moving up the Special Operations ladder one rung at a time. Airborne, Ranger, then (hopefully!) Special Forces within the next five years. I didn't really care for Iraq, but I loved taking the fight to the enemy in his own backyard. Wish me luck!

OH! Last thing! My nuggets (privates) asked me to thank you for Fell Cargo . I loaned my copy to one of them and now all I hear from the back of the classroom is: "I hit you on the head with a spoon, you monkey!" To which the inevitable reply is: "Go boil your arse in birdshite!" Just thought you'd like to know.


Jesse said...

@ Packmaster: I can sing that song, line for line, in my sleep! I love it! My favorite, though, begins: "We pull upon the risers! We fall upon the grass!" You can take it from there.

@ Jeff: Yeah, not much has changed. Still expecting a crap-ton of running, then three daytime jumps and two at night. I was part of an Airborne unit for years and part of the reason I left is because they kept giving away my slot to people who did them favors. I've been through the Basic Airborne Refresher course so many times it may as well count as Jump School. I'm just looking forward to getting through it and on with my career (and hopefully not getting injured).

Airborne! All the way!

marco said...


Erm, if you really do have pics of "G" reading Guns of Tanith in combat, us at the Black Library would love, love, love to see them. Email direct via the BL site, my man!

Marco @ BL

Anonymous said...

oh, very well, if we must:

no, I'M Alpharius!!

Anonymous said...


Actually, I'd rather be Carl Thonius...

Who ate all the jam?
Who ate all the jam?
You! Alpharius,
You! Alpharius;
You ate all the jam!

See you in Parliament Square. Next to the statue of Churchill.

Anonymous said...

Matthew - which begs the question... are you one of THE Churchills?

Anonymous said...

@ dan abnett.
could you register on astro and i'll start a thread so the peeps can think up some good questions?

i'll see you at gamesday where i'll hopefully be getting my hands on apocalypseand force you to sign my ghosts books!!


Anonymous said...

Nik -

Far be it from me to eschew your offer of the definite article.

Legend has it that there's a familial link to John Churchill, first Duke of Marlborough (who Winston was obviously descended from). A family member who's done the research claims that we're some sort of gnarled offshoot of the family tree.

Might explain my megalomaniacal lust for winning at Warhammer! But sadly, I don't think I'll be moving into Blenheim Palace at any time soon.


Anonymous said...

If next sunday doesn't come THIS instant I think my parental units will have to scrap my viscera off the walls as I think I will have exploded.

That's if my GD ticket EVER arrives. Damn you GW! Though I shouldn't complain since the ticket cost me no beans and no beans.

'Save our Shoggy' campaign, eh? Too many T-shirt ideas (The T-Shirt of Win! will be there again this year....but it's location has yet to be decided) that I feel need to be utilised for GD...but i'm only one person

And i hate you Mr. Abnett!
All these 'spoilers' about such horrible things as Hark (really starting to like him now) and Ludd (he's sweet) dying.....or not.

Though the scream of rage and anguish if Ban dies will be audible from space, I'll cry so badly.

My older sibling mentioned someone neferious associated with the Alpha Legion....could have throttled him when he did as it sounded like a Grade A spoiler on Legion....fortunately for him, he loves in Croydon so he's safe....for now.

I'm going to make such a fool of myself at GD, I can feel it already and I'm both amused and not at this fact.

I'm not an obsessive, weird psycho...honest!

Anonymous said...

Matthew - I only ask because my grandpa worked for Winston Churchill, and I do love a coincidence!

Anonymous said...

oh forgot somin.

you can get to me at

Anonymous said...

Nik - Well here's another coincidence for you (and a rather tedious story for uninterested parties, I'm afraid!) - My great-uncle was called Randolph Churchill which was also the name of Winston's son. During the war our Randolph was captured by the Germans. The Germans became convinced that they had THE Randolph Churchill and apparently tried to ransom him. After Randolph was freed, Clemie - Winston's wife - started a correspondence with him. Apparently, Clemie believed too that our family trees were related.

Anonymous said...

Matthew -fan-bloody-tastic!!

Everyone else - Sorry this was THE time for tmesis

Xhalax - It's okay, I put a penny in the swearbox.

Dan Abnett said...

Went on a little nostaligia riff tonight and started looking at old pop videos. Naff though they may be, Dire Straits have written the perfect Gaunt's Ghosts' song. 'Brothers in Arms', go look for it on Youtube at their live Wembly appearance, and think about Gaunt and the guys as it plays.

It was almost written for them.

Rob Rath said...

So I made an "SOS: Save Our Shoggy" poster.

It's here on my blog:

BE WARNED: I'm a bad person and use bad language on my blog, though not in the Shoggy Post. Don't visit if you'd be offended... or just don't read the other posts.

Sorry for using a Splinter Cell picture. It was that or a pic of Ghostbusters goggles that would've looked even worse.

Jesse said...

@ Nik,

Not to butt in on a standing conversation, but I was first a student, and then a teacher at The Winston School in Del Mar, California. It is a school for kids with learning disabilities, and is named for Winston Churchill. The headmaster was a rabid fan of Winston and actually convinced his grandson to speak at our commencement one year. Somewhere I have a picture of myself with him.

To anyone out there in the Dallas or San Antonio, TX or San Diego, CA areas with learning disabled children: The Winston School is definitely worth looking into.
It's a great program with a lot of tremendous success stories behind it.


I have a four day weekend in October and I'll get the photos while I'm at home. I'll contact you and get the link to send them in.

Anonymous said...

haha nice poster.
another conincedince here. my mate is called samuel fisher!

oh the jokes we make harhar!

Anonymous said...

Jesse - hey. Butt in all you like.

Winston Churchill was, himself, learning disabled. According to my mum, he couldn't even sit through one reel of a movie, let alone the whole thing. He is also said to have gained entry to his boarding school by managing to write his name at the top of the test paper - it being the most he could be expected to do. Whether either of these stories is true, I have no idea, but I've always been convinced that having a superior mind is not reliant on 'book learning.'

Anonymous said...

Robert - loving your work :-)

Anonymous said...

Jesse - I agree with Nik. Kudos to the Churchill coincidences!


Anonymous said...

Top tune Dan always a choker
Always rememberd, always celebrated,
Tiger BrunoTake ,Wayne Ryan R.I.P. my Brothers

15 sept remember "never in the field of conflict ,has so much been owed by so many to so few"

Bodjo said...

Robert - excellent work man. The SOS poster will probably be m desktop soon...

Anonymous said...

As we all know Winston Churchill was an American G.I. who not only one the war but married the Queen Mother as well!.

Just watched UB740 or whatever.
Those hollywood storytellers should be ashamed of themselves!

Anonymous said...

Awwww! Thanks Nik, you're a star!

And it'll definitely be one of those Homer Simpson Dealies with the loud obscenity....then I'll have to work at least a five syllable into a sentence to someone to even out the swearing.

It stunts your vocabulary Robert!

Anonymous said...

check that out
Iron man ftw!

The ship is sinking said...

GAHHH!!! I've just read the sample of Only in Death... GAHHH!!! Mr Abnett, you can't keep leaving us hanging like this only to put up something as tantilising as that when we've still got another two months to wait for the full novel. Longer even if we're waiting to finish off our collectors edition set!!!!!
Seriously though, where do I sign up for the SOS petition? I'll be mortified if Shoggy really does buy it. It was bad enough when he lost his eyes in the first book but to kill him off would be entirely uncalled for. All the Ghosts would die in the next mine field they came across If he wasn't about.
Now Mr Abnett. Another thing that keeps popping back in my head is the chief. Will Sgt. Soric ever make his welcome return or will he just be making a cameo in something else you have planned? His final message leads me to believe he'll be back in the pages of a GG some time in the future but having half expected him to show up fighting the enormous, flaming, daemonic, gribbly, beastie thingy that we didn't see but I presumed to be a Blood Thirster in The Armour of Contempt I fear it could be later rather than sooner... as an Inquisitorial henchman possibly? I guess we'll see.
Anyway, I guess I'll be seeing you next Sunday. Better make that forth pen a large one, I'll be bringing an arm full and I'm expecting something different in each one and I already have one "The Emperor Protects" (spelling mistakes will not count!).

Anonymous said...

you gotta sign defend the jam on one of mine!

Pack_master said...

Hey, Dan.

Friend of mine (posted here some time ago, Kampfhamster - battle hamster in english :D) is now in UK. Could you be so nice to give us an anouncement, if you're doing some signings the next weeks, and where? I'm sure he'll gonna come from suisse to me in germany after the 3 months to kill me personally, if he wasn't able to meet you and bury you under a pile of your books he brought to get'em signed ;)

Anonymous said...

I just read the extract from Only in Death...whaow.

But as a niggling little point, was't Trooper Tokar deafened by shellfire in Straight Silver?

I only remember that cause i read it the other day.

And he's hearing noises? Not bad for a deaf man...

Pack_master said...

Oh, I just remembered...

Dan, just thought about BotS and the story in there.... "Children of (the) K(h)orn(e)"... that's a funny one...

Anonymous said...

At the Diamond/Alliance Open House, they had a copy of the Only in Death on display.

Despite my best efforts, I was unable to distract him from his defence of it.

Anonymous said...


Thats because an Apla legion insurgency team had made the locals belive it was the very last pot of jam

if in doubt DEFEND THE JAM!

Anonymous said...

In defence of the pleasures of jam, and in defence of its single aim in life, I say EAT THE JAM!

Anonymous said...

my jam is now surrounded by highly trained members of the SAS and the lead singer of muse!

make any sudden movements and you'll be simulteniasly shot and rocked on!

who else is going to games day on sunday?

Soapy said...

I'll be there running an Age of Arthur game for Warhammer historicals. Absolutely no chance of getting away to see Dan this year so I might have to see if my Rick Priestly shaped minion can snag me the goods like he did last year (he's such a good chap).

See you all sunday.

Stay lucky,

Bodjo said...

Nik - I totally agree, except I suggest that the jam be eaten with peanut butter on pumpernickel. Actually, I just like to type pumpernickel. I don't think I've ever eaten a PBJ on pumpernickel, but gee, it's fun to type. Pumpernickel.

Anonymous said...

Saberrox - I agree, completely, so long as the peanute butter is made ONLY from peanuts and seasalt, and has bits in, and as long as the jam is bramble jelly - Meg Ryan (as Sally) eat your heart out. Oh, and the bread has to be wheat free, and the milk chillded, and on the side.

Anonymous said...

you don't like eating paints as well do you?

thats my thing!!!
foundation paints don't taste as good though.
it's there pigments i tell ya!

Anonymous said...

I really have opened up a can o worms here, haven't I?

*ducks for cover*

Anonymous said...

do you think you'd be able to help me get a copy of apocalypse before they alll sell out?
seeing as you get int here before everyome else an all?

Rob Rath said...


Of course swearing stunts your vocabulary... I will wish I had listened to you two years hence when I can only communicate through monosyllabic grunts and frantic gestures.

Why don't I pay heed to people who try to help me? I wouldn't need glasses today if I hadn't tried to read in the dark as a child!

Anonymous said...

So with Games day looming
have u asked yourself
ARE your loins well girded
mine are frequntly

@colnel t. are your loins fully girded sir!

@jesse off to airborne, are your loins girded in a proper, proficient, milatery manner
(mine were, and still on my first jump i wore a nappy/diper round my neck)

And Dan, master of the well girded loin, sunday approches and i hope that the loins will be switched into overdrive and your as busy as ever ,with ur loins of course!

@nik you have started something

with the wives and girlfriend thing.claire got youre post and says hello! (Dan have Ravenor look into this for me)

so sunday i will be kicking arse and taking skulls .My ETO GAUR is girding himself as we speak.Though with some difficulty due to his armoured codpiece.

see u all sunday hopefully fully girded

Anonymous said...

well i just done something toi my foot so i cant walk at the moment.]someone send the imperius medicae!

Pack_master said...

hehe, me again.

Dan, on a guy has interviewed Graham McNeill about coming Horus Heresy novels. He said that you'll do 2 books together, about The Fall of Prospero (working title?). You covering the first book with the Space Wolves, and him the second with the Thousand Sons.

Please, confirm this! I'm so loving the Wolves of Fenris, and if you're doing them, Heaven's gates opened for me! :)

Anonymous said...

Hey i read that to .
Dan are u feeling the call of the wild,are u ready for the wolftime brother?
are loins fully girded!


if its true may the Lord lift up his heavanly kilt upon thee and bless ur loins forever!

The ship is sinking said...

Thinking about my last comment I must ask. The BL are doing a collectors edition of Only in Death right? It's just there isn't anything listed at all on the site.
MEEP! I can't possibly miss out on the chance to part with another £30 only to find out that its dropped to £10 in the next sale (you'd think I know better after the last three books but that kind of foresight gets you taken away to the dungeons of a black ship and beaten repeatedly).

Anonymous said...

commence gird-loining.

wait a second.
i may look like a fool but what is involved in girding one's loin?

Anonymous said...

Tempy - proverbs 31:17, Girding one's loins involves wrapping one's robes around one's waist and tucking in any loose material, in preparation, no doubt, for battle.

If you want to be less literal, I'd ask Steve, since he's obviously obsessed with girding his - on the other hand, he appears to have a girlfriend, so I'm not TOO concerned :-)

Unknown said...

I'd better? I can garuntee I will be!

I just... you know, have to read AoC first.

Sadly I haven't been able to get it in store, so I'll have to order it online. Think I'll throw BotS in the order, and some of the Horus Heresy as well.

Speaking of Band of Brothers, I'd wanted to see it since it first aired, but only recently got the chance to see the first episode on the history chanel. Following that I went out with my dad and we bought the dvd set. Watching the third episode now, so far it's an amazing series, and I hear it only gets better.

Anonymous said...

oh yeah i'm joining the raf after this edumacations all done!

coming to an airstrip near you!

yes guns of tanith partially inspired me lol

Anonymous said...

not just my girlfriend my girlfriend Nik but the mother of my three children (the latter of which is due in october hurrah!)
but i think shes going to post u shortly.

As for girding loins i own a nightclub and run the Door myself so i tend to ....

you know what im absolutely pissing myself with laughter here girding loins how random was that!

Bodjo said...

@ John

Band of Brothers is probably the closest thing I've found to a TV-version of the Ghosts, with the humanizing of the characters being how they each have their own historical background--they're real--as opposed to their home planet being blown up. And yes, it only gets better. It's right up there with Only In Death on my List of Things To Buy That Are Not Food.

Winters and the gang get into some seriously heavy stuff later in the series's definitely a "war is hell" message.

Anonymous said...

I watched episodes 3 and 4 earlier today, it's got a similar feel in some aspects. I think I'd have hated, with a firey passion, watching it on TV. I'm the type of person who likes to rewind certain bits, pause and use good ol' to make sure I can put a face to the name that's just been added to the KIA list. I'm quite a bit OCD, and lists and names drive me and my ticks nuts sometimes (the worst of which was reading Battle Royale, a book with 42 Japanese students- suddenly I'm trying to make sure I know all 42 of these Japanese names off by heart, family and given names, so when one dies I know who's who!) The way this series is going, I'm probably going to end up bawling my eyes out after seeing a favourite character fall.

If I didn't have such a crazy day tomorrow with school and practices, I'd probably stay up all night watching the rest of the BoB episodes... it's addicting.

Anonymous said...

Steve - begging your pardon, and all that, but married or not that's not so much a girlfriend as a wife.

I can't talk. I met Dan in 1982 and we finally got married in 2004 - go figure :-)

Anonymous said...

@ Nik i know that feeling been together since 1995 got engaged in 2000,ive heard of long engagments but his taking the p**s excuse the french but its true!

Hope Dans not releasing a book in october ha ha

Anonymous said...

Claire - October's a great month (and I can't help thinking you had a good new years). Both of my kids are October babies, and, come to that, so was Dan. Of course, if you have it on the 12th, you'll have to name it after him - on second thought, I shouldn't be putting ideas into Seve's head, and besides, he already has a child named after him.

Anonymous said...

Claire - Dan just reminded me that not only does he have a book out in October, but it is also, by some queer stroke of fate, dedicated to the man I shall henceforth refer to as your husband.

I do love a good coincidence.

Anonymous said...

i hate coincidences!
they always involve me and pain or/and humiliation!

Anonymous said...

Octobers a great month for me then!
New baba
Dans book
my firstborns birthday
and halloween (i am a complete goof)

Dan why girded loins?

the b.p. kicked a eldar tournament players arse today im livin it an lovin it!

Anonymous said...

I take a holiday from work in October....first proper one I've had since I started my new job in March.

Other than that....October is just another month to me.

God I need a life!

Anonymous said...

i'll give you the questions at games day and you can just post em here or email em to me once you've answered em.

Anonymous said...

almost forgot but october is a great month for me too. mainly due to the release of apocalypse *even if i'll get book on sunday* and my mates bday is just after it lol

Anonymous said...

Dan - Apologies I can't make it on Sunday. I'm sending a vat-grown clone in amanuensis. He has limited brain processing functions but is motor-capable, so will hopefully reach the front of the Great Queue at some point.

Nik - Thank you for making me your friend on that other website. It's like primary school all over again!

Steve - Thanks for the girding advice. My clone's loins have been fully girded with the finest-tempered steel. I buffed them up myself to a right shiny finish. Squeaky clean!


Anonymous said...

Excellent Mr Churchill !
Nothing like the personal touch

except perhaps Napalm in the morning !

If in doubt DEFEND THE JAM!