News Round-Up

Ho-hum, things have been pretty quiet lately. I’ve been working and not much else. I’ve embarked on The Penitent and it’s taking shape nicely. I should have a first draft finished around early spring 2002. (Actually, it’ll be more like late summer, but let’s perpetuate the lie I told my editor, shall we?)

Days has now been officially sold to the Poles. I’ve signed a contract at any rate, with Warsaw-based publishers Muza.

The Foreigners paperback has appeared, looking nice and fat and lovely and sporting some embarrasingly glowing review quotes.

Short story roundup: I’ve had three short stories published this year so far. Two are in Interzone: ‘Speedstream’ in the January issue and ‘Junk Male’ in the September issue. The third, ‘Running’, is in The Third Alternative #26, alongside an in-depth interview with me by the erudite and well-read Mr David Mathew. (Said interview is also perusable now on the Infinity Plus website.) A fourth story, “Out of the Blue, Into the Red” is due to appear in a Daw anthology, Mars Probes, any time soon.

My children’s book Wings has been short-listed for the 2001 NASEN Award, which is the Special Educational Needs Children’s Book award given to “the book of any genre that most successfully provides a positive image of children or young people with special needs”. The winning title is announced in early November.

Album of the moment: Asleep in the Back by Elbow. Very prog-rocky, with time-signature changes and everything. The album Radiohead should have made if they hadn’t faffed around and wasted everyone’s time with Kid A. Lovely stuff. And Elbow’s lead singer is, vocally, a dead ringer for Peter Gabriel, which can’t be bad.

Book of the moment: Carter Beats the Devil by Glen David Gould. It’s set in San Francisco in the 1920’s. It’s got magic shows, Houdini, a president dead in mysterious circumstances, a hissable villain — everything! The best big fat American novel of the year, after Michael Chabon’s The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay.

I’m shortly off for a well-earned holiday in France — Bergerac in Burgundy, in case you’re interested. Then it’s back to the grindstone. Hurrah!

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