Brian Ruckley's News & Views

Thursday, May 29, 2008

A Review, A Title and An Extract

There's a review of Bloodheir up at the Grasping for The Wind blog that's nice in all kinds of ways. I mention it here, though, mainly because I think it's the first time I've seen anyone specifically praise the way I write about love. I'm a big softie, really. It's a relief when something you've tried quite hard to get right has precisely the desired effect on the reader, even if it's only one reader.

(I'm similarly relieved, incidentally, whenever someone describes my battle scenes as 'cinematic' - which one or two folk have done - because believe me, pretty much from draft 1, page 1 of Winterbirth, whenever I'm writing violence I've been sitting there hunched over the keyboard all but muttering 'make it cinematic, make it cinematic', like some drooling, lunatic hermit who used to be a failed screenwriter and has gone downhill from there.)

In case anyone likes to know these things, the title for book three was agreed a little while ago, and it is: Fall of Thanes. No, it's not quite finished yet; Yes, it will be finished before too long. And yes, one or more Thanes may indeed fall, but Who? How far? And will they bounce?

And a Bloodheir Extract. Here.

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Monday, May 26, 2008

A MeTube

There's a video of me reading from Bloodheir at the Alt.Fiction event up on YouTube. I'm not, though, going to embed it here, for two reasons:

1. Like most people, I dwell in a happy little fantasy world in which I sound and appear to everyone else exactly as I sound and appear to myself within the confines of my own skull. This pleasant illusory state of mind is directly (and cruelly) contradicted every time I hear my voice as it is heard by others, and having a permanent reminder of the glaring discrepancy staring out at me from my own blog would be just too masochistic. In this case, I choose to preserve my feeble illusions, thank you very much.

2. More importantly (as if anything could actually be more important than preserving my precious self-image!) the reading contains what might well be considered SPOILERS for not entirely insignificant plot developments in Bloodheir, so a little bit of distance is probably a good thing for those who might want to consider whether they really want to watch it. If you prefer your reading experience to be entirely unsullied by advance knowledge of what's coming up, proceed no further. You Have Been Warned.

For those undeterred by these two caveats, here's the link. You will have to excuse my not exactly masterful reading technique; first time out, and all that. If I get to repeat the exercise at some point in the future, I'll try to do a bit better. There are plenty of clips of other authors showing how it should be done elsewhere on the Orbit Books YouTube channel.

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Friday, May 23, 2008

Just to say ...

... for those thousands (dozens? couple?) of folk who might have been worrying my recent lack of posting indicated some cataclysmic silence-imposing development, such as my kidnapping by the aliens recently revealed to be swarming the UK's skies, the good news is it's only because I've been busy, and keeping a low internet profile. It's actually quite refreshing to do a bit of internet detox now and again: I've been pretty much restricting my attention to e-mails and whatever my feed subscriptions harvest from the virtual ocean, and it turns out that's plenty to keep me feeling vaguely in touch with the 21st century. Probably means I've missed all types of excitements, fascinating chance discoveries, flamewars, announcements of earth-shattering importance etc. etc. Still, since I don't know about them, I can't regret missing them, can I? Ignorance is bliss.

Slightly more substantive posts should follow before too long, but in the meantime:

The succession of Steven Moffat as showrunner for Doctor Who is awesomely good news. I've actually been a bit remiss in keeping up with the current series - I've mostly liked what I've seen of it without being hugely engaged - but am now much more interested in what Mr. Moffatt may come up with in years to come. His latest Who episodes, pretty much certain to be leading candidates for the best in the series based on past form, hit the airwaves on 31st May and the week after.

Want to know if your ancestors were criminals? Maybe it's just me, but I think it's extremely cool that documents detailing something like 200,000 criminal cases tried at the Old Bailey between 1674 and 1913 are freely and easily available online. Plug in your family name (or any other keyword you want to give a run out) and start wandering through the lives of the guilty and the innocent from centuries past. There's loads of fascinating stuff in there. Could be a great resource for writers of historical fiction, alternate history, Victoriana, steampunk, whatever ...

And finally, turns out there's a Kindle edition of Bloodheir. See? I can pretty much tell just by looking at photos of the thing that the Kindle isn't the breakthrough device as far as my personal aversion to reading fiction on-screen is concerned, but there's no doubt Amazon's proactive involvement in the whole e-book adventure has livened things up a good deal. And the Kindle reader itself, despite looking over-priced to me, is still No. 1 in Amazon's own electronics sales chart, so what do I know? If anyone does buy the Kindle version of the book, let me know how the experience goes, would you?

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Friday, May 02, 2008

Interview with the Maniac and Other Stuff

In honour of the release of Winterbirth as a US mass market paperback, I have been interviewed over at mania.com. There's also a review up over there, which is generous enough in its praise to make me blush (you can't see me, but I'm blushing. Really).

Seems a bit self-indulgent to take up blog space just for that (I know, someone with a blog suddenly starts worrying about being self-indulgent. Imagine that. Next up: a politician admitting they have no clue whatsoever how to solve a problem). Anyway, since I'm here, a handful of other webby things:

The Abominable Charles Christopher. A web comic by Karl Kerschl. I enjoy it. Nicely drawn.

The Orbit Page on Facebook. You can now become a fan of an entire publishing imprint. It has cover galleries of upcoming books, news on author events etc. etc.

Golden Age Comic Book Stories. Is a torrential cornucopia of great art, not remotely limited to comic books. I was going to try and pick some favourites to link to, but it's pretty much all good.

British Fantasy Society Short Story Competition. For the aspiring authors out there, a chance to flex your genre muscles.

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