Friday, January 22, 2010

Oh, let's just do another blog!

Yes, let's! I've got a drum kit, your dad's got a barn... we can put the show on right here!

Graham and I are still ruling the roost over at Borders Babel Clash, which is strengthening my blogging muscles and giving me momentum. So I’m back.

My confession about the Imperial Fists got you all over-excited, and condemned the blog forever to a very off-colour running gag. Which, BigWill and Matthew, I will make no effort to encourage (“Up the Emperor!”).

Flekkzo - thanks for the permission to keep writing ;) You put me in mind of the tone of Grand Moff Tarkin (“You may fire when ready”).

HiWayRobry - the Hawk Lords always sound to me like they’ve got a silver machine.

The SGC - As far as I’m concerned, and as far as I’ve been concerned all along, Loken is alive. (*Ming voice* “Loken’s alive!”). Plus, Aaron Dembski-Bowden’s got a cat called Loken, so I can’t let him down. Thanks for the YouTube tip, Adelie and BigWill.

Anonymous - I was wondering just how many people you were. One? Two? Three? Funnily enough, I’m writing Prospero Burns because I don’t like Russ and the Wolves much either, and I want to find out how they tick. The delay in that and the Ghosts has much more to do with my recent problems with epilepsy that have slowed everything down a bit. Sorry for the wait. Oh, I and I think I kill PLENTY of major characters in the Gaunt books. I’m infamous for it. Don’t lose anybody important in 10 books indeed! Honestly!

frieslander - the arrogance level may vary, but they’re all still seven foot high super-humans. It’s not so much a matter of lacking respect, I suppose, it’s more like different habitats, like saying Leopards have no respect for sardines, or eagles have no respect for termites. Or have I lost the plot? I don’t consciously favour Khorn, though I know I have a problem with Nurgle. I’d use Nurgle more, because the concept is the most interesting, but the name makes me laugh.

Philip - “The Space Wolves have kept their links to humanity”. Frieslander not the only one in need of special pills, I think ;)


Phillip said...

Admittedly the happy pills are my happy place :)

I'm basing some of what I said on the Bill King/Lee Lightner novels but also on the codex as well as Ben Counter's new short story Twelve Wolves where the assembled Space Wolves listen to a tale from one of the chapter serfs.

I'm in the middle of writing a short Imperial Guard story in which the Wolves...a wolf make an appearance and I'm having real fun working out the details because he's a Wolf Scout with none of the more cuddly feelings of a regular battle brother. I'm really excited to see your take on the Space Wolves!

sredni vashtar said...

primarily re: frieslander's comment on the previous entry:

feh. Nurgle is more interesting than Khorne, sure, but Slaanesh is by far the most interesting of the Chaos gods concept-wise. and Dan is one of the only authors to have bothered to begin exploring that concept in ways other than the tedious adolescent "OMG BOOBIE DAEMONS!!!" shtick it usually receives (cf. Xenos, in particular, but also a couple incidences in the GG series i can think of).

there is, however, a general Khorne + Nurgle bias in a lot of GW-published material, simply because each of those sells a lot more actual Chaos models than the two other powers combined (or at least, so I'm reliably informed).

Will Wright said...

I see quite a lot of ghosts buying the farm by the end of it.
Kind of like the end of Saving Private Ryan where the main characters drop off like flies,true to life.
I cannot wait to read your take on the Wolves.
I got chills when you said the Emperor only keeps them around if he needs to take down another Legion.
Toragoddon did say the Toughest was always the Space Wolves.

Chief - said...

Nice blog Dan. Hope you're coping with your epilepsy. I have all your books and I haven't found a bad one yet (although I still haven't found the time to read Malus Darkblade).

Many thanks!

Anonymous said...

Hey Dan, hope you're doing well after your diagnosis. MY thoughts are with you man!

Just to say that I am most displeased that I won't get to read 'Prospero Burns' till next year. Will the partner book by gragham be released on time to keep all those sub-furry, Space Wolf loving tykes placated??

I too agree with you, the WOlves are far less intriguing than the Sons, and I for one was hoping your book would reflect this, and the grand injustice done unto them. But need to wait till next year, eh? :)

All the best man!

(Dark Lord Seanron on DakkaDakka)

Moses said...

Hey Mr. Abnett,
I recently heard about your diagnosis, and I wanted to send my regards- its something that pops up with alarming frequency in my extended family. I know it can be rough, and Im glad to hear things are starting to shape up for you, I wish you the best.

I also heard that Prospero Burns has been pushed back again- Im a member of a large site with a strong SW presence, and I thought Id let you know the general feeling I hear from other players is "its ok, were used to waiting- atleast we know we have one of the good authors".

I hope to see alot of works coming out of you in the future, so take care of yourself,

Best Regards,

Moses Sartin.

frieslander said...

You know these last few blogs have be bringing a smile to my face you, Dan, and Phillip mentioning the happy pills (honest Phillip, I don't know any space marines, I understand it's all fiction and never going to happen) and Big describing the Blood Angels as (only) having a screw loose lol.
I agree with Sredni Vashtar's comment on you handleing of Slannesh in Xenos.
As to Nurgle, they might make a good story somewhere along the line. And it's easy to get round the name, use the same trick from Riders of the Dead, and call them something similar to Nurgle, but something slightly different.
Care to write the final corruption of the Death Guard for the Horus Heresy?

Iain said...

Dan - Just read on the Black Library site that you have found out recently you have epilepsy.

I found out I was an epileptic at 26 and it was a bloody unnerving experience. It was mostly the 'absence seizures' and one full on headbanging seizure in the loos at work! Scared the life out of the poor sod who found me. After a couple of years of medication the seizures ceased, a couple of years after that I stopped the meds and now ten years after my first wierd sensation I am completely free. Keep your chin up.

Thanks for your stonking military sci-fi. I remember the first time I read a Gaunts Ghost novel and was completely delighted to see the first 100 pages describe one battle!

However, is it heretical of me to say that my favourite novel of yours is Riders of the Dead? There is just something about Warhammer and its Renaissance Europe-era setting that will always outdo the 40K universe for me.

As Beledni would say, 'Is no matter'. I look forward to reading your books for years to come.

HiWayRobry said...

I think it's rather simple why Khorne is the most predominant of the Chaos gods. They are simply the most martial. Nurgle, Slaanesh and Tzeentch are all formidable opponents, but Khorne is more known for their strength-of-arms than the rest. Simple.
And Dan, forgive my ignorance but did your reference to s silver machine have anything to do with the 'Flash Gordon' movie? Otherwise, I'm afraid I didn't get it (which isn't unusual for me!)

Allandaros said...

@HiWayRobry - Dan's making a reference to the musical group known as Hawkwind (and sometimes the Hawklords). One of their songs is "Silver Machine." I was getting all set up to make some sort of clever reference back to Dan, in the traditional banter that goes on in this blog, but dammit it's 12:45 and I am sleepy, so Dan, you'll just have to settle for an "I see what you did there." I'll do better next time, I promise! Get some "Motorhead" or "Spirit of the Age" references in, maybe even work in a Zelazny double reference with "Damnation Alley" or something.

@BigWill: Dammit, don't encourage him to kill off more Ghosts! Look, at least get them some reinforcements and kill off the FNGs before the old guard, if there've got to be Ghosts killed off!

Allandaros said...

@sredni vashtar: I always thought Nurgle was the most interesting, because it's hardest to see what exactly you get from dealing with him. I mean, cut a deal with Khorne and you get the ability to carve up your enemies like a chainsword through butter. Deal with Slaanesh and you get oodles of pleasurable sensations. Deal with Tzeentch and you get access to the Secrets of the Universe (tm). Deal with Nurgle and you get...a bajillion illnesses which can't kill you, but you get to feel each of them? Sounds sub-par, even with all the hidden traps that the other 3 would stick into their bargains.

sredni vashtar said...

allandaros: well i think that may be a little simplistic. i don't wanna write an essay here, but the deal with Chaos isn't just a classical empowerment-via-slavery paradigm (even if it's often 'sold' that way). the warp gets into its adherents (or victims); it changes and remoulds them, fundamentally, physically and psychically and every other -ally. it 'corrupts'-- hence the name.

to take Slaanesh as an example, albeit in very crude terms: what the conception of Slaanesh does is NOT to enable you to have more, better or more intense fun as YOU understand it. it rewires you to have 'fun' as Slaanesh 'understands' it-- and Slaanesh is nothing like human, nevermind in possession of any kind of relative pleasure/pain dynamic. the closest equivalent you might find in 'popular culture' would be the cenobites from the Hellraiser movies (the first two movies anyways; all the others suck, don't watch them).

similar deal with Khorne, since we seem to be using it as a prime exemplar. dedication to Khorne doesn't simply grant you the opportunity to become a more accomplished fighter (although those may well be one external incidence of its effects). it doesn't turn you into a warrior; it turns you into the war-- or rather, the embodiment of all the hideousness of warfare and unrestrained violence.

anyways, if you keep going with this train of thought, you'll see what kinds of terms each Chaos power might be said to 'appeal'-- but more significantly, what kinds of damage and desperation might impel human minds towards Chaos in the first place.

Matthew Churchill said...

Dispatch Stormbird 'Ajax' to bring back his body.
Do you want to live forever?

Big said...

You know the Emperors law Loken, outside your own legion the hunter becomes the hunted....

Big said...


Xhalax said...

I'm somewhat disgruntled by the comparison.

Flash is WAY better than Loken.

frieslander said...

Ah. Every one else has taken the best lines I'm only left with one Flash Gorden line to Lokenize. I'm not going to enjoy this. Oh well here goes. Loken I (just so you know I don't and I know that he is fictional, so know need for any happy pills) Loken I love you but we only have 16 hours to save the Emperor.
(sighs, and has a lie down to clear head)

Big said...

Frieslander= lol!
Yeh i must say that i cant wait to see Dan write about Dorn again what a fantastic character,and what a great legion i feel as though i know Dorn now and i understand him.Still i like to see the Alpha and Omega again.Its all so much and i luv it!
But what news..... THE KHAN
What a Legion.I would say that i anticipate these as much as Prospero Burns........
Wolves are great to their fellow man....Fenrisians that is ,did you know that any failed asprirant stays on in the chapter to serve in the PDF ataining some glory by all acounts ...the Fang has been under siege a few times, though this story has been tampered with somewhat in the new Codex. Any normal human would have to show exceptional courage to gain their respect and or trust, thats just their Fenrisian culture,i hate to say it but the Ultramarines to so exceptional affection for Norms.

So im off to fly blind on a rocket

Will Wright said...

Are your Astartes on the right pills?
Maybe you should execute thier trainer.

Rob Rath said...

Dan and Co.-

I also have a hard time taking the name "Nurgle" seriously, especially because it's unfortunate for a god of pestilence to have a name that rhymes with "gurgle." This is heightened by the artwork of Nurgle followers in various states of decay, since you pretty much look at them and think: "Yeah, I bet they gurgle when they talk. Nurgle gurgle!"

I wish they'd just used the original Babylonian name Nergal, which is a little more dignified. (Though we still lucked out with Nurgle, since they could have named a Chaos deity after the Babylonian demon Pazuzu.)

Big said...

yeh the name "Space Wolves" never quite did it for me for me either!

Unknown said...

Hi, i'v just read the latest Gaunts Ghosts, Blood Pact and really enjoyed it and the links to the Hinzerhaus which i found quite eerie. I've read all the series and found it entertaining and interesting, do you have an end to the series as i cant quite put off a sense of impending doom. Also, i 've lately found out that a chap book called Iron Star was issued, are there any plans to incorporate this story into the next anthology as i cant afford the prices the Polish guy on Ebay is selling them for (he must have bought a suit case full :-) Sorry to hear you have been un-well, my friend suffers from this. Best wishes.

Bastiaan Vergoossen said...

Dear Dan,

I heard about your epilepsy ! I wish you all the best and I hope you recover soon and get things under controll.

It's sad we have to wait again for prospero burns, but your health is much more important !! I would wait a lifetime for this book if it means you get fully recovered !!!

Prospero can burn another time, perhaps next januari.

Always remember Dan, the Emperor protects !

JayStar said...

Dan, according to the Ancient Greeks and Romans epilepsy was a gift of the Gods. You share your affliction with no less than Alexander the Great and Julius Ceaser (to name two).

Actually not sure if that helps you feel any better but all the very best of wishes to you Dan "the Grand Master of gothic shooty kill kill" Abnett!

sredni vashtar said...

yeah; i share a name with Alexander and a birthday with Julius Caesar, but i have no immediate plans to get poisoned or stabbed to death on the steps of the Senate either

Anonymous said...

Thank you mister Abnett for your answers and good health to you!
As for your question - we are 20 clones - exectlly like in you head!

Second - okay we mad an error - you do kill many beatifful characters!

But we really wish you Good health and hope to see the new Gaunt Ghosts book - Salvation Reach in the Stores this October-November 2010!

Anonymous said...

I hope that your diagnosis does not burden you too much, know and in the future. I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis five years ago. All advise I can ever give is "just do it" (Nike was right for once)...