I have just sent The Angel of Fire in to Black Library. It’s my first 40K in a long time and it’s my first ever book written for Black Library in the first person singular. It was a lot of fun and a very different experience looking at the 41st Millennium from the point of view of an ordinary soldier rather than that of a Space Wolf. I am now waiting for feedback from my esteemed editor Nick Kyme at Black Library and soon, I hope I will be making the necessary revisions and pushing on to the second book in the Macharian Crusade trilogy. I won’t be idle in the meantime. I have to revise the fourth Terrarch book, Shadowblood, and prepare it for e-book release at the end of the month. I’ll also be scribbling down ideas for any changes to the outline of Book Two of the Macharian Trilogy brought about by events in Book One.
It will probably come as no surprise to most of you that things do not always go exactly according to plan when you are writing a Warhammer novel. Sometimes characters take on a life of their own, sometimes events blindside you, sometimes things that looked good in the outline turn out dead on the page and other things that were covered in a sentence in the outline grow to be major events. I’ve said it before and I’ll doubtless keep on saying it because it’s true; no plan survives contact with the enemy. No outline is ever an exact representation of the book.
In the case of The Angel of Fire one major character got killed in a way that I was not expecting but which made perfect sense and another major character refused to play his assigned role and became something altogether darker and more interesting. I also got to see Macharius in action and his relationship to the world and some of the people round about him was not quite what I was expecting it to be so I’ll need to take this into account in the second book. It’s all good because it makes the characters and the books come alive but it means there will need to be some alterations to my basic outlines. In the case of the major character who died, the fact that it came out of the blue made it a shock to me and thus hopefully to the reader as well. Such things tend to keep the writing fresh.
I’ll be taking the rest of the day off once I finish this blog post. The only other thing I need to mention is that my short story Guardian of the Dawn is currently available for free at Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, Smashwords, Barnes and Noble and iTunes. I was going to discuss the ins and outs of this in the present blog post but I am both tired and elated after completing The Angel of Fire and I feel the need for a break. Normal bloggage shall be resumed on Wednesday.