Tag Archives: Danger Man

Project Hush-Hush – Here From Six

Prepare for one of the more odder entries, as I enter my own version of the twilight zone. Kind of.

SecretTalking to Shaun last night about the ’60s and he expressed how odd he found it that I remembered so little about that time — even though I was born in ’72, a lot of the ’60s vibe still existed during my first few years and I should, really, has some idea about that time. Some kind of memory, right? You’d think so.

Fact is I’m pretty sure I didn’t exist until I was six years old (of course, if I didn’t exist then I couldn’t be any years old, just looked like I was), like something out of a John Wyndham novel, perhaps. I have vague memories of being younger, I think, like falling down the stairs and banging my head on a hot radiator (which is funny since, according to others, I never lived anywhere with a radiator at the bottom of a staircase). But the thing that confirms it for me is that there is no photographic evidence of me any younger than six. I’m serious. Now, knowing my family, the chances of no photos being taken of this handsome little version of me would be astronomic. Yet, nothing exists. I seem to recall a picture of toddler me holding a gun and wearing a cowboy hat, sat on a furry carpet of some sort, but I’m convinced I made that up since such a picture does not exist and no-one else can remember it. So if I’m right, then I didn’t exist until 1978, which explains my complete lack of familiarity of anything pertaining to the late ’60s.

Me and my step-brother…

When the boss quizzed me on certain things, like what I do I remember of the red telephone boxes, I could only pull up a few visual memories. Peeling paint, tattered phone books hanging off hooks, felt-tip graffiti, stuff like that. But you know, I could have picked that up when I was about six or seven; such things still existed. Or kids — did I remember how grubby kids were back then? The messy streets, rubbish on the pavement? Vaguely, perhaps. Certainly I know I wasn’t a messy child (as you can see in the picture to the right). No grubbiness here. Or was I? I don’t know. I didn’t exist before I was six. Perhaps I was, until that point, the forgotten son? That would fit.

So today I’m looking up all kinds of things from the late ’60s. I’ve seen a few cars I recognise, although most of the radio shows from Radio 1 mean nothing to me at all. As for the money… Well, what can I say? I was born the year after the UK went onto the decimal system — thank god! Damn, I feel as confused as Ace did in Remembrance of the Daleks. ‘Oh this is a stupid system.’ You said it, Ace.

In terms of actual writing, I’ll be moving on to chapter two, which will involve a very strange train journey, an old woman hearing a disembodied whisper, and the discovery of a missing corpse. At the moment I seem to going for a bit of a The Midwich Cuckoos meets Danger Man feel. As I said in a previous post, I’m all about blending genres.

See y’all tomorrow.

Project Hush-Hush – How It All Began

It’s very difficult to talk about a project that isn’t allowed to be revealed in the public forum, but over the next few months, until it’s officially announced in December, I shall tell you what I can.

Secret This all came about because a rather innocent Facebook post and happening to know the right people. It’s one of those things you can’t really plan; it just sort of happened. Right time, right place kind of deal. The process of securing the rights for this project took only a matter of weeks, really, such was the level of trust between the licence owner and I (and my publisher). It took a bit longer to decide what we were going to do with it, exactly. You see, this property we now have the exclusive rights to is something very important to a lot of people, my publisher and me included, and we know how important it is to get this right. There’s no room for error.

And yet, in spite of the sheer weight of responsibility on us to get this right, we just knew we can do it. In some ways it feels like we were born to make this happen. Will it be hard work? You betcha. Will we be taking it seriously? You betcha. Will we be having fun? Abso-fracking-lutely!

There is so much to consider when planning out this project, so much to be aware of, to be extremely careful with. We simply cannot play this loose.

My first task was to assemble a team of authors. Due to the nature of the project that was a relatively easy process; and so the upshot is I get to work with some of my favourite authors (a pleasure I’ve had in various ways for the past ten years). Normally the authors would have much more freedom, but this being the opening gambit, I had to set up a very specific shopping list for each of the first four books; fortunately this list proved to be another fun enticement for the authors who have joined us at this early stage of the project. The team assembled it’s now a case of writing this first batch of books. I’m writing the first, since it makes sense for the range editor to set everything up, although that said each of the first four books will be setting up the concept of the series gradually, instead of dumping it all on the reader in one go. I can reveal the title of the first book, since it doesn’t really give away anything about the project, and that title is; The Forgotten Son.

adam-and-georginaBy the time of the official announcement the plan is to have the first three books, at least, in the bag. Including cover design. Nothing like a bit of visual stimuli to engage the interest of the public. We’ve started talking about the style of covers, and I have to say it’s going to be very exciting. We’ve talked about the tone of the series, and likened it to Adam Adamant Lives! meets The Avengers with a dash of Danger Man thrown in for good measure. We even have in mind two (maybe three) different phases for the series, three distinct periods in which to set it, utilising the same characters. What does all this mean? Well, obviously I cannot possibly explain any more than I have, but when all is revealed it will make perfect sense.

For now it’s time to start proper work on The Forgotten Son. Already Phil Raymond is feeling a chill in the air while he walks near Golitha Falls in Cornwall, and he’s not sure it’s the weather he feels…