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Progress Report August ’19

Oooh, A Little Hatred is out in the US and UK in less than three weeks and my palms are getting tingly.

Final copies of the UK hardcover and trade paperback have arrived and they look seriously beautiful. I mean I always loved the parchment covers but time moves on and these have a real depth and richness and feel great in the hand. If you should need your appetite whetted for what’s inside the first chapter’s up at io9, featuring the Dogman’s daughter Rikke, blessed or cursed with the Long Eye, while you can hear the incomparable Steven Pacey read an extract from the second chapter over here, introducing the Young Lion, Leo dan Brock.  There’ll be a few more extracts with a few more characters popping up over the next week or two.

Been pretty busy with all the stuff that goes on prior to publication.  I was at the Celsius festival in Spain, then the Worldcon in Dublin, and then I’ve been getting the old signing hand back into training…

These 1,500 were mostly the Waterstones special edition, which includes an exclusive short story, and is available for pre-order here. Then next week I’ll be signing a special limited edition for Goldsboro books with these sumptuous sprayed edges, which was available for pre-order over here except it looks like they’ve already sold out.  Of course collectors in the US will not be ignored – you can get signed copies of the US hardcover via Barnes and Noble, or via the Signed Page, and work is starting up on the art for some seriously impressive lettered and numbered Subterranean Press limited editions, though those won’t be with us for some time yet.

As if I don’t talk about myself enough already I’ve got a few interviews coming up over the next week or two which I’ll link as and when they appear, and then of course I’m touring in the UK around the week of release.  Details of the events over here. although I can also reveal that I’m going to be joined by a few friends/arch enemies at some of the evening sessions: In Bath on Sunday 15th I’ll be joined by my editor and the Publishing Director of Gollancz, Gillian Redfearn.  In Birmingham on Monday 16th I’ll be in conversation with no. 1 bestselling author (curse her) Sarah Pinborough.  In Glasgow on Thursday 19th I’ll be joined by fantasy and crime writer (and farmer) James Oswald.  In London on sept 7th I’ll be in conversation with horror writer Joe Hill.  Lunchtime events tend to be just turn up and sign but most of the evening ones are ticketed so it’s worth booking in advance to avoid disappointment…

Translations are well underway and I’m told the first edition to appear will be the Russian in October, closely followed by the Polish and Italian editions in November (The Italian release will be alongside a new omnibus edition of The First Law trilogy), the German in February and the Spanish in February/March.  Others will certainly follow but not sure when as yet.

All that means work on the books does not exactly fly, but it does move.  Book 3, The Beautiful Machine, is now in decent 2nd draft shape and has gone back to my editors  for, you know, editing.  Seeing the final destinations and overall arcs they may well have some comments that bear on book 2, The Trouble With Peace,  but that one’s otherwise getting close to done, now, and I’m in the midst of the final couple of rounds of revision before the detailed edit.  First off comes a pass through focussing on setting, where I’m trying to use up any nice nuggets of research I may not have found a place for in the past, but mostly thinking about season, time of day, weather, and details of internal spaces that – without necessarily having cumbersome chunks of actual description – can give some texture to every scene, make every location feel distinct and meaningful, and in an ideal world strike some interesting thoughts, feelings, memories or conversation from the characters.  This is often a relatively swift read-through – many scenes won’t really need much – so it’s also maybe a first opportunity for me to just read the thing in order and get a sense of how it feels and flows.  From that point of view I’m detecting a bit of a lag in a few chapters around the middle (middle part of the middle book, you know) which may mean a little go over that part with an eye to some heavy cutting.

Still work to do, as I always say, but it’s great to have the next two books in the series close to done as this first one comes out.  Discussion already underway on the covers, copy, and other bits and pieces for the second.  I would say it’s now almost certain that The Trouble With Peace will come in Sept 2020 and The Beautiful Machine in Sept 2021.  But we’ll see…


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Worldcon 2019

I shall be at the World Science Fiction Convention in Dublin for a few days in August and have quite the packed schedule of panels, readings, signings, and generally talking nonsense in various contexts.  Some details:   Writing beyond king and colony Format: Panel 16 Aug 2019, Friday 10:00 – 10:50, Wicklow Hall-1 (CCD) Fantasy novels often […]

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A Little Hatred UK Tour

I’ll be touring the UK for the release of A Little Hatred between 15th and 21st September, and the dates and locations are now out there…   Typically the lunchtime events are just a signing, the evening ones are reading, talk, questions then signing. There’ll be copies of A Little Hatred available at all these events, of […]

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The All New Joe

The new website (as you will probably have noticed) is now live! Thanks first of all to Darren Turpin, who set up and managed the old site, which served me well for the best part of a decade.  But Darren has drifted away from the web design business (and into gardening), and the internet is […]

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Progress Report June ’19

There have been various distractions over the last couple of months as we ramp up towards release of A Little Hatred in September.  The slow cycle of publicity beginning, some interviews to do, a tour to think about, and 5500 signature sheets to sign for US editions, among other things.  We’re also nearing the end […]

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Progress Report April ’19

April comes, the buds open, my garden is filled with green, etc. etc. Had a lot of bits and pieces going on over this most recent period – spent most of march working on an unrelated project, plus we had easter holidays, and I’m going through a major upgrade and redesign of the website (which […]

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A Little Hatred UK Cover

Time to reveal the new cover direction for A Little Hatred in the UK… Design by Tomás Almeida.  The familiar parchment covers of The First Law and standalone books had served us extremely well, but we really couldn’t see any way to develop it further, and didn’t want to take a step backwards, so time […]

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Progress Report February ’19

Two months into the new year already and the new trilogy is rapidly coming together… A Little Hatred is now copy-edited, so finished apart from the final proof-read, and some advance copies are already in the hands of authors, reviewers and other lucky persons, including translators in a few languages. The book will be out […]

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2018 in Review

And so I find myself writing another new year’s eve review. What is it, my ninth, maybe? Which means another year must have sped by. Furthermore, it must be my birthday, and I must be 44 years old today. I know, I know, before you say anything, I don’t look it, but that’s really just […]

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A Little Hatred Cover Copy

Looks like the cover copy (what some call the blurb) for A Little Hatred is now out there: “The chimneys of industry rise over Adua and the world seethes with new opportunities. But old scores run deep as ever. On the blood-soaked borders of Angland, Leo dan Brock struggles to win fame on the battlefield, […]

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