Long pause since I last blogged, which was on the Clarkes shortlist, the suspense of which will be resolved at Foyles in London this 27th July, where I will have the honour of handing out this year’s award to one of those six worthies. As previously gushed, it’s a hell of a shortlist this year. I’m excited to tear open the envelope and promise not to make any “needs more spiders” jokes.

nineworldsShortly thereafter I will be at Nine Worlds in London Hammersmith, one of my favourite conventions. My schedule for this includes the following three panels:

Saturday 3.15pm Redemption in SF

Saturday 5pm writing Dystopias in a world that’s actually going to crap about our ears (I play fast and loose with the title, but, y’know)

Sunday 3.15 Edit as you go or blast on through.

That gives me a nice range of topics to show my ignorance on. I will also generally be Around and please feel free to say hi, get me to sign anything non-contractual or buy me a drink.

worldconAlmost immediately after that, God help me, I will be boarding a plane for Helsinki to hit up Worldcon 75. My schedule for that is:

Saturday 11am signing slot

Saturday 3pm panel: portrayal of the scientist

Sunday 11am panel: magical healing (panel with Robin Hobb!)

And after that I will probably drop dead of exhaustion and jetlag.

COT coverHowever, before I go spend my poor mortal body on such pursuits, let me tell you the grand news, if you haven’t picked it up from FB or Twitter, the big old movie studio Lionsgate has picked up the option to turn Children of Time into a film. This is something you see happening when you’re connected with enough authors, but it’s most certainly the first time it’s happened to me and it’s enormously exciting. As well as providing potential employment for hundreds of under-utilised arachnid actors.

Along with the above, I have made the momentous decision to write a sequel to Children of Time. The original novel was pitched as a standalone, but I’ve never written anything entirely cut off from a successor, and if you’ve read it, you’ll see that the final lines certainly prop the door open. Since writing it, I’ve been percolating through ideas to give CoT a worthy follow-up, and those ideas have finally come together in a sufficiently coherent form. I’ll probably be waiting until after August to actually break ground on the project, given how all-over-the-place I am, so I’ll polishing off a few small projects in the interim, but that’s the Next Big Thing.

dogsofwarironcladsIn actual publishing terms, of course, the next big things include Dogs of War from Head of Zeus, a novel about engineered animal soldiers and what happens when they get off the leash (and, because it’s me, you know most of it will be animal POV), and Ironclads from Solaris, a near-future military SF novella about a world where the spoiled brat sons of corporate dynasties get to stomp around in invincible mech suits like the brutal nobility of old, and just what your regular GI thinks about that. Both of these are coming out in November this year (with The Hyena and the Hawk, the final volume of Echoes of the Fall, in February 2018).

Finally, I am filled with further delight that The Tiger and the Wolf itself has made the shortlist of the Robert Holdstock award, the British Fantasy Award for best fantasy novel. On the list I’m joined by Jen Williams (the Silver Tide), Joanne Hall (The Summer Goddess) and Steven Poore (The High King’s Vengeance). All the shortlists can be found here at the BFS sight and it looks like a good year.

And breathe…


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