The Week Reviewed

A package arrived in the post this week, and inside I found this:

Yes, it’s the actual paper version of the cover of Version 43.   I’m currently working on some tweaks and cuts on the maunscript, and then the book goes into proof stage.  It’s a bit of a shock looking at it again – it’s a while since I delivered it to Orbit – because it’s a time capsule of the person I was when I wrote it.  And it’s not, by any means, your usual cybernetic cop in a universe founded by renegades and outlaws kicking ass in a Beckettian nihilistic universe pulp thriller science fiction fantasy horror novel – nope, it’s even stranger than that.

Last week I went to see a highly enjoyable fantasy epic – Solomon Kane, based on the stories by Conan creator Robert E. Howard. And that gives me an excuse to show the poster:

 The movie was, I noticed, co-produced by Davis Entertainment who made Predator, and it’s written and directed by Michael J. Bassett, a Brit who has been able to steer a path through the studio system to create a movie that is commercial, kick ass, and wonderfully visual; but also full of heart and moral intelligence.  I met Michael some years back when I was a development executive at Scottish Television, so I dropped him a line to say how much I enjoyed his movie.  And I’m glad to say he has now spent a little time lurking on Debatable Spaces.

Also this week, I got an email from some friends of mine with THIS image:

Fabulous isn’t it?  It’s a kid’s book but I’m a big kid at heart, so I’ve ordered it at Amazon.  The story appears to be what the title says – a Quest for Warrior Sheep.  Author Christopher Russell is a hugely successful TV writer, who’s written for major crime series like The Bill (where we met), A Touch of Frost and Midsomer Murders, and he is now an award winning children’s writer, and he’s cowritten Warrior Sheep with his wife Christine.  Chris and Christine are a class act and it’s lovely to see them writing a novel that is even more ridiculous than, um, the ones I write.

It’s felt like a major week for me in terms of my Welsh film noir, but nothing is definite yet so I’ll just keep fingers crossed for now.  And I’m continuing to explore art stories for my radio drama which records in November. 

Debatable Spaces meanwhile has been as busy as ever…Mike Cobley popped in with an SFF Song of the Week with what I think must be the most hilarious intro to date.  If you’ve not listened to any of these, explore – they’re in the Category on the left – because I really feel it’s an amazing way to a) waste time and b) really get to know what inspires talented SFF writers like Lilith Saintcrow, Nicole Peeler, Al Reynolds, Tony Ballantyne and a fair host of others. (I’ve scheduled Mike Carey in for next week.)  Where else would you meet these guys and learn the secrets of their souls! (Unless you resort to stalking and the use of covert surveillance equipment.)

Also, I’ve been writing some rather forthright opinion pieces recently – like, Why John Scalzi is Wrong, and Is James Cameron a Traitor to His Own Species? And I’ll be writing a few more of these in months to come, though that’ll depend on how fast the novel is progressing.   

And treats in store include (I hope!) a guest blog about graphic novels writer Warren Ellis whose books I just LOVE.  And also a guest blog about telly drama and why it should be RUDER.

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