A Few Bits Of Good News And One Piece of Very Bad News

Solaris have just put out a press release announcing my next book, The Age of Ra. Rather than me reiterating what it says, here’s the link [www.solarisbooks.com] so you can go and see for yourself. I don’t know about you, but it sounds like a novel I’d really like to read. Now all I have to do is write the thing…!

I’m really, really, genuinely, hugely excited to be working with Solaris. They’re a relatively new concern but they have buckets of enthusiasm, shedloads of experience as part of the Black Library, and an already impressive track record. Eric Brown’s Helix, for one, has been a considerable hit for them, and they did a gorgeous packaging job on Adam Roberts’s Splinter. I’d say I’ve joined a company who know exactly what to do with my sort of fiction.

A couple of new translations of my Barrington Stoke title Ant God have just appeared. It’s now available in Swedish (as Myrguden) and Welsh (as Sbectol Y Gwirionedd). The latter’s an interesting-looking language. When I see a page of it, I’m reminded of what happens when Monty sits at my computer when Word is up and bashes the keys at random.

Speaking of translations, this Easter I’m off to France for the Paris Book Fair, where I shall be promoting Untied Kingdom in its Frenchified form, Royaume-Desuni. I’m looking forward to spending time in the French capital with the lovely people from the mighty Bragelonne, who drink champagne at the close of work every evening (of course they do). I’m dragging the family along with me too, and we’re making a holiday of it. Monty is already excited at the prospect of croissants for breakfast, and I’m wondering if he’ll pull at the Jardin du Luxembourg again, as he did last time with a sweet little French girl. Mind you, this time he’ll be facing some competition from Theo, who’s a bit of babe magnet.

Finally… My father died at the end of January, a shock from which I’m still reeling. He was 88, which is a fair old age in anyone’s book, and he died at home, from a massive heart attack, so it was reasonably quick. One can’t really ask for more than that. But it was awful nonetheless. His funeral was well attended, a none-too-solemn affair with rousing hymns, a heartfelt eulogy and well-chosen poetry readings, and the reception afterwards was lively, as he’d have wanted.

I’ll tell you, though. Six feet is a horribly long way down.

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