The Grant of Christmas Present.
Thursday, 21 December 2017
I wasn’t going to post another update until the new year, but I received some novel-related good news today and I thought that sharing it would be an excellent way to round off 2017.
I’m very pleased to be able to tell you that the Society of Authors has chosen to award me an Authors' Foundation grant, to help me as I write my second novel. The Society has been an invaluable companion during…
Thursday, 7 December 2017
I thought this might be a good time to look back over the past few years, to show you the journey from my thinking “something something painting something” to the book that will shortly be in the post. The special edition of All the Perverse Angels is very close to shipping to supporters. If it’s not sent in late December, it’ll be sent in early January. (The exact date is dependent on the schedule…
Monday, 18 September 2017
People, despite all accepted wisdom, are wont to judge books by their covers, and it is time to reveal the jacket artwork for “All the Perverse Angels”.
The illustration is by Joe Wilson, under the art direction of Mark Ecob. It shows… Actually, I’m not going to tell you whom it depicts, or where, or what’s going on: you’ll have to read the book. The good news is, you’ll be able to read the…
Friday, 11 August 2017
Much as I continue to be dismayed that anyone would want to sully a perfectly good book jacket, it turns out that it's the 'done thing' to have a picture of the author troubling otherwise-contented readers. (That is to say, a troubling picture, not a picture of readers being troubled by the author.) More on that in a moment but first, a progress update.
The book cover has now been illustrated and…
Monday, 5 June 2017
It was once true, I suppose, that one couldn’t judge a book by its cover: when all the world’s stories were bound in leather or buckram, or some cheaper alternative; plain hues with gold lettering on the spine; the occasional flourish of bevelled edge or debossed curlicue. Here’s a scene from Eliot's The Mill on the Floss of 1860, in which Mr Tulliver has been listening with increasing horror…
On Copy Editing. (An author and bear meet once more.)
Thursday, 13 April 2017
Once again, in the following dialogue I play the part of Sarah, an Unbound author who remains really, truly, tremendously grateful for the support she has received over the course of the past months. Our second interlocutor is Aloysius, quondam bear of Sebastian Flyte.
Aloysius: Hello. I haven't seen you for a while.
Sarah: I've been busy. Things have been progressing apace.
Edits and Language and Agents, Oh My!
Monday, 23 January 2017
In which I fret, the novel progresses and Unbound continue to catalyse an author’s career.
There’s a line from Arthur Dent in Douglas Adams’s The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy: “As far as I can see you might as well lower haystacks off the boat deck of The Lusitania!” By the time the play was first broadcast, Adams couldn’t remember what he meant by the joke. And yet, somehow, I find…
The Joy of Hex: on Editing.
Thursday, 17 November 2016
All my edits are in blue, written with the marvellous Hex-O-Matic™ Retro 1951 propelling pencil.
I thought I’d share a quick glimpse into the dark heart of my editing process. You may ask, “What have I done to deserve this?” but, alas, your question falls on deaf ears.
I find that I can’t edit on a computer screen, certainly not when I’m dealing with more than a few pages of text. I…
What Happens Now? (An author and bear discuss.)
Monday, 3 October 2016
Now that I’ve had a chance to meet with Unbound, and collect my thoughts, I wanted to share an outline of the coming weeks and months. I’ve put links to my Twitter feed, etc. at the end of the post, so you can keep up to date with our progress.
In the following dialogue I play the part of Sarah, an Unbound author who is really, truly, tremendously grateful for the support she has received over…
Scrivener and Me.
Monday, 1 August 2016
Scrivener gave me a structured working environment which put everything I needed just a click away, and still allowed me to write without interruption or distraction.
This blog post starts with a plea: if you haven’t already, please take a moment to look at the crowdfunding page for my novel, and consider supporting the publication of its first edition. (Here, also, are direct links to the…
Pictures at an Exhibition.
Wednesday, 20 July 2016
This brief conversation, at the National Gallery in Trafalgar Square, was one of my favourite moments whilst researching the background for All the Perverse Angels. (The painting is Two Followers of Cadmus devoured by a Dragon, by Cornelis van Haarlem.)
John Mitchinson on Unbound's desire to publish "All the Perverse Angels".
Monday, 18 July 2016
When a near perfect manuscript does land, there’s always a miraculous quality about it.
The following is the text of a blog post by Unbound founder (and author, and publisher) John Mitchinson. I'm reposting it because it is an intrinsic part of my—and the novel's—relationship with Unbound. Whilst I am able to talk about my reasons for choosing Unbound as a publisher, I think it's equally important…
A half-full glass.
Monday, 18 July 2016
The first edition of "All the Perverse Angels" is now 50% funded. Thank you to everyone who has pledged for the novel over the past three weeks. I am told that it gets harder, for a while, at this point, but I am buoyed by all the support I've received, and the kindness and encouragement which have been shown so often and so freely.
Now, onwards, so I can repay you all with a collection of…
Ivory Towers for Algernon
Monday, 4 July 2016
Now we were told, first, that a volume of extraordinarily original verse was coming out; now, that it was so shocking that its publisher repented its appearance...
Algernon Charles Swinburne was an English poet, born in 1837. His “volume of extraordinarily original verse”, entitled “Poems and Ballads”, was published in July, 1866. In my novel, in those chapters set approximately twenty years…
On Sheds and Publishing with Unbound
Wednesday, 29 June 2016
So, here it is, the first post in the Unbound 'shed' for my novel. Welcome. For comparison purposes, here's a picture of the actual shed in which I wrote a great deal of the book. (And in fairness to my mother, who built it, I feel duty-bound to point out that it's more of a summer house than a shed.)
John Mitchinson has been kind enough to say a few words about why Unbound accepted "All the…
Wednesday, 29 June 2016
Digital copies of the novel are available for £10 and £15. The rewards are both identical, so some explanation of the higher-priced option is due.
Outside the UK, postage costs become a consideration when buying a small number of the hardback books. The 'book club' rewards are partly designed to overcome that problem. Another solution is to purchase a digital, rather than hardback, copy, which…
Tours and Trips
Wednesday, 29 June 2016
I thought I'd write a post about the various rewards which involve a tour, since there's not a lot of room on the rewards page to go into detail.
All of the tours are hosted by me, your author-guide for this particular adventure, and will take place after the book has been published. This is good timing, since the tours are all based around the events, locations and objects in the novel itself…