Now Playing: Ladyhawke
Well I'm back in circulation. I've just done a massive catch-up on the Dendrocopus email account and will now move onto the comments on this page. Give me a day or two and I might actually get ahead of myself.
TERMINAL WORLD is now a finished book, barring editorial changes (I say that every year, as if the edits were a mere frippery, when in fact they can be weeks of tough work) and I'm about as happy with it as I ever am. Objectivity goes out the window when you've been doing little else than stare at a screen for the better part of three months, let alone the nine months of slog before that, lost in a world of your own creating. That's why it's good to get some distance away from the book for a few weeks, before diving back into it again.
I'm itching to post the cover, but I don't yet have an image of the final draft. Suffice to say it rocks. Really. In the meantime, here's the cover copy:
"Spearpoint, the last human city, is an atmosphere-piercing spire of vast size. Clinging to its skin are the zones, a series of semi-autonomous city-states, each of which enjoys a different - and rigidly enforced - level of technology. Horsetown is pre-industrial; in Neon Heights they have television and electric trains . . . Following an infiltration mission that went tragically wrong, Quillon has been living incognito, working as a pathologist in the district morgue. But when a near-dead angel drops onto his dissecting table, Quillon's world is wrenched apart one more time, for the angel is a winged posthuman from Spearpoint's Celestial Levels - and with the dying body comes bad news. If Quillon is to save his life, he must leave his home and journey into the cold and hostile lands beyond Spearpoint's base, starting an exile that will take him further than he could ever imagine. But there is far more at stake than just Quillon's own survival, for the limiting technologies of the zones are determined not by governments or police, but by the very nature of reality - and reality itself is showing worrying signs of instability . . ."
If you can read that in the voice of that recently deceased Hollywood trailer voiceover guy, that would be good. You know, "In a world where..." kind of thing.
I've touted it as steampunk, but - as I hope is obvious from the above - that's only part of it. It's not exactly hard SF, but - appearances to the contrary - it's not fantasy either. However, it's definitely the book of mine where I've erred on the side of explaining as little as possible.
With that off my desk for the time being, I'm working on a slew of short stories (one of which looked for a while as if it was going to be another Carrie Clay one, before I realised I couldn't make it work in Carrie's universe) and slowly beginning to get into the mindset for the new book, which is likely to be part one of the "big spacefaring" 11K trilogy. So, having taken a holiday from hard SF for at least a book or two, it's time to get back into it big-time... speaking personally, I can't wait.
Music, it's Ladyhawke for me, all the way. Oh yes.