Thursday, September 27, 2007

Spot the difference.

I've discovered today that the cover for the UK mass market paperback is now up on Amazon. My name got bigger I notice! Though actually I think it's just that the book got smaller.

Interesting anyhow to compare it to the original large format trade paperback.

And the American paperback.

If anyone can explain these subtle differences to me, I'd be very grateful.

Still no sign yet of a cover for this one.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Russian films at Curzon Cinemas.

Being a bit of a Russo-phile, I was very interested to discover that the Curzon chain of cinemas are screening a festival of Russian films. It so happens that my friend Ed Hughes has composed, and recorded, full scores for two of the films in the season - Strike and Battleship Potemkin both by Eisenstein.

The films, with Ed's fabulous music, are available in a boxed set of dvds from Tartan Video. But, naturally, the chance to see the films on the big screen is not to be missed. Strike will be shown on Sunday October 7 in a programme with another Eisenstein film, October, at the Curzon Mayfair from 12 to 4 pm. Battleship Potemkin will be screened the following Sunday, October 14, double-billed with Alexander Nevsky. Ed will take part in a Q&A after the screening.

I will be there!

Monday, September 10, 2007

What book are you?

Find out by doing the Book Quiz.

Here's what it came up with for me:

You're Mother Night!

by Kurt Vonnegut

Nobody knows what to believe about you, and you know least of all. You
spent most of your time convinced that the ends justify the means, but your means were,
well, downright mean! And the end is nigh. Meanwhile all you want is to travel back in
time, if not to change, then to just delight in the way it used to be. You are who you
pretend to be. Oh yes, you're the great pretender.

Take the Book Quiz
at the Blue Pyramid.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

P-day for David-I

Last week I wasn't concentrating very hard so I missed the official publication date of Shock and Awe by David Isaak. But that's okay. As David himself suggests, official publication days are fairly nominal things.

David is a special guy for many reasons, but in publishing terms he's special for being the first US-resident American author published by Macmillan New Writing (nice banner there, by the way, David). The twice published Michael Fuchs may be a yank, but lives here in London. I know because I've seen him wandering the streets.

David is a generous supporter of other authors, as well as being an extremely well-read, charming and civilised chap. He's given a lot of thought to the art and craft of writing, and regularly shares his thoughts on his blog, which I wholeheartedly recommend. I first made his acquaintance online, as so often is the way these days, at a website called Absolutewrite. I was coming under attack for signing with MNW, which was seen by most of the absolutewriters as the devil's own imprint. Single-handedly, David came to my defence. Of course, he had a ms in submission there himself, so that may have had something to do with it. But his open-mindedness, patience and good-humour were obvious.

When David was over in the UK earlier this year, he took time out to venture to the wilds of north London to come to a bookshop event I was doing. We fell into a pub afterwards and had a good old chat. It was great to meet him in person at last.

I wish him the best of luck with Shock and Awe. I'm looking forward to picking up my own copy next week, and getting stuck into it as soon as I have got the proofs for my next 'un out of the way. (Yes, that's what I should be doing instead of being here blogging.)

Friday, September 07, 2007

I heart Lorraine Kelly

Some time ago I learnt that perky GMTV presenter Lorraine Kelly studied Russian at university, and in fact listed Crime and Punishment as one of her favourite books. So I sent her, via her agent, a copy of my book, A Gentle Axe, which features Porfiry Petrovich, the magistrate from Dostoevsky's masterpiece.

I thought nothing of it. But during my extended break from blogging, a letter arrived, with the London Television Centre frank mark on it. Of course, I got wildly excited, imagining insanely, that some producer wanted to buy the TV rights. I'd completely forgotten about sending the book to Ms Kelly.

Instead, and perhaps even better, the envelope contained the following letter:

Just in case you can't read that shot, it says that Lorraine really enjoyed my book and thinks Fyodor would have approved. You'll notice she also signed off with a kiss.

My wife thinks I've gone all starstruck. Well, maybe. But I still think it was a nice thing of her to do. I mean she even wrote the envelope herself.

And I just can't help wondering if Lorraine is mates with Richard and Judy.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Bookslut! Bookslut! Bookslut!

Steady on. It's just a literary website, a rather good one, mind. And there's an interview with me in it.

My thanks to Kelly Spitzer for some brilliant questions. Mind you, if you've ever checked out her regular Writer Profiles, you'll know that Kelly has cornered the market in author interviews.

Bookslut, though. What a great name.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Podcast interview thingy on the Writing Show.

Many thanks to Paula B for inviting me on the show.