Book title troubles and hundred quid meals.

This is the first blog update post from me for a goodly while. Sorry. Utter idleness on my part. Never one to clog your broadband unnecessarily.

Anyway, I recently returned from Norway’s capital, Oslo, visiting friends and family. Great city – truly insane prices, even self-catering. Five quid for a can of coke. Ten for a small block of cheese from the corner supermarket. Close to a hundred quid for each eat-out-meal for a family of four you’d care to mention – breakfast, lunch and dinner (that’s 200 bucks per meal in U.S. folding green). Beautiful place, but I’ll probably be taking out a second mortgage to pay for that short city break. Ouch.

Viking boat
Viking Boat Museum, Oslo – with some cracking river-mud-preserved originals!

On the writing front, I’m now about a third of a way through completing the seventh Jackelian series novel, Mission to Mightadore. There’s also a new far-future science fiction novel I’m working on – also about a third completed. I was going to call it The Dark Between the Stars, until I checked Amazon and there’re already at least six SF novels with an identical title – including novels by both Poul Anderson and Kevin J. Anderson. What’s that about? Back to the drawing board, at least as far as title is concerned.

One of the many side-effects of the indie publishing rush is that it’s getting a lot harder to generate titles that someone else hasn’t thought up first! As far as plot goes, think Dune/The Name of the Rose. It’s going to be pitched at the high-IQ end of the genre … %^&* accessibility and the mass market.

Finally, I’ve laid out the plot bones of the next novel set in the Sliding Void universe and have started writing this in parallel to the above-two books. It’s rail cannon-blasting military science fiction, so just a slight deviation from the series’ space opera roots. I do have a title, but I’m now keeping it firmly under my hat, given the Dark Between the Stars experience I mentioned above. No jinxing to be permitted.

I’ll be sure and post some photos of my Tokyo visit in November – just me and an old chum flying out, rather than the whole clan descending. Never been to Japan – and Tokyo has always been on my bucket list. I’m hoping for the full neon Bladerunner experience. Culture shock? Bring it on!


I am an author of various fantasy, science fiction, crime and other genre books from Gollancz, Hachette and HarperCollins. Some day I hope to grow up and be an astronaut. Exploring Mars would be nice.

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