True, all true – as hinted earlier, I am now engaged on the writing of a new Humanity’s Fire novel, a standalone volume, entitled WARCAGE which will be published both in the UK and the USA. A watershed first for myself, without a doubt. And here are the links to my publisher, Orbit, and my agents, Zeno;
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Well, yes, a jollyl jaunt it was too. Friday morn, hied myself up to Glasgow to catch an intercity train to the Smoke, arrived Euston just after 3pm and was whisked, whisked I say!, by cab to the offices of my publisher and from there to a hostelry for a drink and a gab. Staying over at a friend’s gaff in the north of the city, I rose on Saturday and headed into town for a stock signing at Forbidden Planet, in which I signed a heap of The Ascendant Stars only slightly smaller than Ben Nevis. After that, it was along the road to Caffe Milan to meet up with Phil Palmer, fellow Orbit author – we nattered, signed bookplates, and just generally set the world to rights.
After that, I met up with Chung Kuo writer/man of letters, Dave Wingrove, and we went for a scout around Chinatown and that bit of the west end, before subwaying back to base.
I got back into Glasgow by 5pm on the Sunday, and was back in Irvine by about 6.45, feeling undeniably cream crackered. It was a good break, a neat trip, although it would be have been rather more pleasant if I had not still been in the grip of an irritating cough. C’est la vie.
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Thought I would share the sheer viridian excellence of the cover for The Ascendant Stars, as created by the ever-megatalented Steve Stone. Oh, those ships!
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Bit of a languishing in the silences, my friends, but as you can guess I have been working on/scribbling/struggling/engaged in single-unarmed combat with….bk 3, The Ascendant Stars. And its turning out to be demanding in ways I hadnt expected.
Been a bit of a downer this past month – my aunt passed away, as did the mother of a friend here in Irvine. My PC packed in, as you know, but was rejigged with a new motherboard. And the Coalition government goes from guff to duff – thinking of getting caps for ma teeth to offset the grinding effect.
So, yes, anyhow – Orbit have announced at their main site address the advent of my super duper new websiteblog, wot you iz reading nah, innit. And they also have posted a minimovie Q&A done at Eastercon earlier this year. So the link is below, take a look and have a laff or two;
The honourable and upstanding Simon Appleby over at BookGeeks has posted a rather spiffing review of Seeds Of Earth at the BookGeeks website -
Influence-spotting aside (hey, coulda been a subtle homage, doncha know!)(well, okay, the unconscious wins again), Simon delivers an uplifting positive review. Just makes a body feel good while the snaw is blanketing the fields of Ayrshire outside me window….
And a tip of the hat to Darren T (the artist formerly known as Ariel), for the Orbitastic new header – thanx laddie!
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Steve Stone is The Man – it was he who created the covers for my Shadowkings books, three wonderful images that I`ll treasure forever, and now he’s done it again for my new book, SEEDS OF EARTH, due out in March next year from Orbit UK.
What you’re seeing are the three colonyships which flee from an Earth under siege, one which ends up 15,000 light years away, at a world where the human colonists finally settle. They call the planet Darien and go undiscovered for 150 years, whereupon they become the focus for all manner of high melodrama and galaxy-shattering events!
Hello, hello, come on in, take a seat while the courtesy drone takes your coats (and piles them in a heap somewhere in the hall). My name is Mike Cobley, writer, critic, micropolitician and rant technician, and this is my new home on the net. In this the new and forward-grooving world of tomorrow and the next future after that, webbification is all-important so I is getting webbified with the best of them. And for why, you may ask? Well, the unavoidable truth is that all our heads/minds/cognitive cisterns are being drawn ever further into the paradimestores of cyberspace and if you ain`t got yer stall set up in or near that glittering flowing glow….well, dude, you may as well be writing verse in dactylic hexameter in a backwoods cabin off in wildest Azerbaijan. In the 50`s.
Now, I have a new book coming out in March `09 from Orbit Books, the 1st volume of a trilogy/sequence (never too sure of the difference between those two words these days!) entitled Humanity`s Fire, being an interstellar epic chock full of the most baroque aliens and hyperspace vehicles I can think of. Volume 1 is called `Seeds Of Earth` and tells the tale of a lost human colonyworld rediscovered after 150 years. The original colonists were part of a desperate attempt by the human race to ensure its survival since at the time, a century and a half ago, Earth was under attack from a pitiless insectoid horde called the Swarm, and humanity seemed on the brink of annihilation. Several colonyships were planned but only three reached completion and were launched off into the depths of space before the Swarm could lay siege to Earth.
The lost human colonyworld is called Darien, populated by the descendants of the original colonists who comprised Scots, Scandinavians and Russians. The Darienans find that Earth survived the attack of the Swarm, and that this region of the galaxy is teeming with a plethora of alien beings, lifeforms, cultures, arguments, wars, faiths and communities and, as fate would have it, they find their world becoming the focus of savage real-politik, newborn hunger for power, and ancient longlived hate.
Before long, I hope to be able to post some extracts from the book, along with some background information, just to sharpen the anticipation!
Also, I`ll be writing posts on the likes of books, music, politics, philosophy, computer games (my own personal life-eating pandora`s box), and anything else that comes to mind.
Oh, and in case you wondered about the odd title of this here blog, well it`s a reference to an earlier persona of mine, waaaay back in the 1980`s, before I was even professionally published; back then, as an eager cyberpunk fanboy (and dementedly energetic letterwriter – oh, letters were blogs except that you wrote them on paper and posted them off? Nutty, eh?), I started a single page broadsheet in homage of sorts to Cheap Truth, the clarioncall cyberpunk pamphlet written and distroed by Vincent Omniaveritas, being the writer Bruce Sterling. So, I started my own, snarkily titled `Shark Tactics`, which ran for 6 snarling, polemic issues. Funnily enough, I unearthed the original masters for the broadsheets (which I`d laid out on A3 sheets of card – hey, none of yer desktop publishing then, matey) just last week before I headed south for the Orbital Eastercon. I have the vague idea of running off some more copies for giving away, maybe even put them together as a pdf so folks can come along and download them, look them over and laugh like drains at my/our febrile naivety!
I had thought about naming this blog Shark Tactics, but that would imply that I`m intending to perpetrate certain anonymous bombardments upon targets in the SF/fantasy field. No – this is a personal blog…with links to my past and future, and possessing inevitable connotations. Besides, I reserve my vitriol these days for those who truly deserve it, those who lied to get us into a war, who concocted immense cathedrals of deceit and ordered good people to do terrible things in Iraq and Afghanistan.