Archives for September 2011


One of the great pleasures of writing the Tyrion and Teclis trilogy was getting to do my take on many of the great characters of the Elvish  mythos; Aenarion, Caledor, Morathi and Malekith. I have been living with these people in my head for nearly twenty years and it was good to finally look into their’s. The four […]

Kindles, Kindles Everywhere

Amazon has just announced a raft of new Kindles, including what looks like the first serious challenger to Apple’s iPad, the Kindle Fire. Before the Apple fans start howling me down, let me point out why I think this is the case; it has nothing to do with utility or the OS or how wonderful […]

Gamesday Report

So that was my first Gamesday in eight years. It was a lot of fun and a lot of travel compressed into a very short time. We flew into Manchester and took a train to Nottingham and checked into the hotel. I dropped in to the Studio, said hello to a few people and recorded […]

The Absence Note

I set myself the goal of writing 3 posts a week when I started this blog. My initial plan was to do them on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Much to my surprise I have managed to keep this up for a few months now. Given the fact that my idea of a regular blog schedule […]

Death’s Angels: the 99 Cent Experiment

Financial alert: this post talks about money. If you are one of those people who get offended when writers talk about finances, look away now! Some of you may remember that a month ago I dropped the price of Death’s Angels to $2.99  to see if it had any effect on sales. The basic theory […]

The Queen’s Assassin

When I was about nine years old a group of local lads threw me into the deepest part of the Marine Lake, a huge man-made pool made by damming off an area of the harbour with a massive concrete breakwater. I had not yet learned to swim. It was sunny. The sky was blue. My […]

Sven Hassel and Death’s Angels

I know this is a bit late but what the hell! One of the most popular parts of this site has turned out to be the Author’s Notes for each of the stories. Somehow back in the day, I neglected to provide them for Death’s Angels. I am rectifying that omission now. If you are […]

Elves and Imagery

Your high school English classes probably left you somewhat suspicious of all talk of imagery and I don’t blame you. I have memories of having poems and stories dissected in front of my eyes by my own teachers. Often it was like being present at a surgical operation where the patient died on the table […]

The Ossuary at Sedlec

At the weekend my old friend Barry was in Prague. He wanted to see the Ossuary at Sedlec so we headed out there on what was the hottest September day I can remember. It’s been a long time since I visited the Bone Church, maybe 15 years, and I had forgotten quite how strange a […]

Writing the Tie-In Novel: Structure

So how do you go about writing a novel then? Well, I don’t know how you do it but here’s how I go about it. I start by writing a very simple synopsis. This can be anything up to 1000 words. It covers the basic flow of the action, names the main characters and settings. […]

Living In Writer’s Time

Just like deadlines some special occasions sneak up on you. It’s Gamesday in a couple of weeks and Blood of Aenarion is going to be released there and yet somehow, while wittering on about writing and Macharius and short stories, I have forgotten to talk about it. You’re probably wondering how that is possible. I […]

Revising Macharius

This is the part I always enjoy. The grunt work of writing the first draft is out of the way and I am now going through The Angel of Fire in Scrivener with an eye to improving it. I took a short break away from the book last week so I could come to it cold […]

Great Scrivener Tip From David Hewson

David talks about how to quickly mark scenes for revision here. I’ve been using this program for four years now and this has never occurred to me. While I am writing this I may as well mention that I highly recommend David’s book Writing a Novel with Scrivener available from and In it David […]

Lawrence Block on the Renaissance of the Short Story

Over on his blog the great Lawrence Block is talking about short stories. He thinks that ebooks might be the salvation of the form. If you’re interested in the short story I urge you to go ahead and read what he has to say. Block is, in my opinion, one of the greatest living writers […]

What Do Angels Have To Weep About?

Two weeping stone angels guarded the entrance to the tomb. Their features were weathered which just made them look even more mournful. I wondered what it was angels had to weep about? Priests say it’s the sins of mortals but none of the angels I ever talked to cared much about our sins. They were […]