Mr Busy Returns

Okay. So I’m back…

Followers of this blog will remember how I said right at the beginning that I am rubbish at keeping up with blog entries. I think it’s fair to say that a gap of three months is all the proof needed. Although, in my defence, I have been very busy in the interim. Thus, this entry will be a bit of an update, bringing all you lovely readers back up to speed on where things are with my various projects.

First of all, ‘The Garden’ saga begins very soon indeed. What is it? I hear you ask. Well, essentially it’s a four-book urban fantasy/horror series, and book one (‘Seeker’) is being published in print and electronic formats simultaneously by Hirst Publishing and Untreed Reads Publishing. It is a series I was ‘clearly meant to write’, according to my editor at Untreed. Here’s the blurb…

Meet Willem Townsend: London-based entrepreneur; loyal friend; loving uncle. He seems to have everything going for him, but deep down Will is trapped by work, family, and the sheer mundanity of daily routine. Stepping outside his comfort zone he begins an internet romance and, despite the reservations of his best friend Jake, Will arranges to meet his lover for a weekend getaway.

The weekend passes, and not a word is heard from Will. Jake organises a search for his friend, fearing the worst, and as Jake’s frenetic hunt progresses, he begins to realise that Will may have meant more to him than he was willing to believe.

In Southend, a naked man is found in a garden, suffering from a trauma that he cannot recall. And when the memories come flooding back, they are borne by blood. He holds the key to a secret world where the price of entry is death…

The book launches on March 20th at The King’s Cross bar in Cardiff, and will be on general release (both in print and eBook) from Monday March 21st. You can currently pre-order the book directly from the Hirst website. Those of you wishing to attend to launch, can find out more about it on this Facebook page. Everyone who attends the launch and gets a copy of the book signed automatically gets entered into the prize draw, the winners of which will be announce throughout the Vampire Themed Night bash at the King’s. One of the prizes will be a coupon for a free copy of the exclusive eBook prelude being published by Untreed Reads…


Which brings me to, ‘Serere, A Prelude’.

The novelette will be released at the beginning of March, and will only be available online (it will not be available in print – at least not in 2011, if ever), and serves as a introduction to ‘Seeker’ specifically, with a few hints of things to come in book two (the title of which will not be announced until near the end of 2011, for reasons which will become clear to those who read ‘Seeker’). And, as a taster, here’s a small excerpt from ‘Serere, A Prelude’…

Isobel Shelley waited, as she promised she would, but it was getting dark and the rain had started to fall. Not that either thing bothered her personally, but it was terribly inconvenient. She lifted her lantern, which she did not really need, of course, but appearances were important, and looked out to the northern carriage way. The Green was quiet, most people safely indoors, sheltered from the cold, but Isobel could not be sure she wasn’t being watched. Newington Green, home to the free-thinkers and dissidents, had history, and the people who tended to gravitate to this place knew better than to take things for granted. Probably one of the many reasons she loved living on the Green.

The sound of hoof beats crunching gravel drifted over to her, and she focused on the approaching shape. A gig pulled by a single horse, two people jostling about in the carriage as the wooden wheels managed to find every ditch and trough in the path. Both figures were dressed in the finest cloth, one looking down, his head bobbling about as if he were asleep, but the second, holding the reins in his hands, was looking firmly ahead, mindful of the mood of the horse. The gig slowed, and stopped right next to Isobel. She smiled, finally able to see the countenance of the young driver.

Young and as radiant as ever, Hareton Wesley smiled down at Isobel, and tipped his bicorn hat. “Miss Shelley, you are still a diamond of the first water, I see. A pleasure indeed.”

Isobel curtsied slightly, with a smile of her own. It had been some time since she had seen anything of Hareton, and was not displeased to see him once more. “Young Master Wesley, an’ you and the gentleman like to follow me?”

The gentleman in question looked up, clearly not asleep. An austere looking man of some fifty years (which certainly meant he was older), he raised an eyebrow at Isobel and edged his lip in the form of a very slight smile, which looked somewhat strange on such a Friday-faced man. Hareton looked at him, no doubt awaiting instruction, and the gentleman nodded. “As Miss Shelley says, so shall it be,” the gentleman said, in an accent that sounded almost German, although it had a cadence that Isobel could not quite place. She was not particularly well travelled, but accents did not usually stump her so. “Do lead on, dear lady.”

“As you wish,” Isobel said and tuned away, lantern still held aloft, and led the way across the Green.


Next up, although announced elsewhere, I can finally announce it to all those who read this blog; at the end of 2010, after much hard work and much discussion, Untreed Reads Publishing have secured a licence to produce original eBooks based on Frank Chadwick’s Space 1889. This steampunk series will consist of two novels which bookend four novellas, written by well-known genre authors. I am the series Commissioning Editor and Creative Consultant, which means I’m responsible for putting the whole thing together. Quite a task it’s proving to be at the moment, but amazingly good fun, too. Further information will be released over the forthcoming months, including a definite launch date.

Due to the busyness of me, this does have a knock-on effect on Legacy which was being released at one book a month. So far three volumes are available, and can be purchased here, with all proceeds going to Cancer Research UK. Volume 2.2 will be delayed a little while, but as soon as I have time in my schedule I shall get on to it. Once again, I will keep you updated on developments there.