December 2018 Archives

So, 2018 is nearly over, at last. It was an absolute shit-show of a year for numerous reasons. On a personal level, I'll be remembering it primarily as the year I hit a personal wall, flaming out and delivering a novel six months late (for the first time in my career). In reaction to which, I decided to take a six month sabbatical (my first break from writing in a decade) ... then had the sabbatical interrupted by a family medical crisis, of the "an immediate relative spends three months on a stroke ward and will never recover" variety.

In comparison with the global political picture, my personal 2018 was all butterflies and rainbows. 2018 was the year that the global climate change alarm sirens began to sound continuously, with wildfires and heat emergencies and melting icecaps. 2018 was also, by no coincidence whatsoever, the year in which the global neo-Nazi movement made considerable headway, with neo-fascist demagogues grabbing power in Brazil, tightening their stranglehold in India, the Philippines, Turkey, the USA, Italy, and elsewhere. The UK was, for a third consecutive year, paralyzed by the utter shit-show that is Brexit, with the deadline now looming less than 100 days ahead of us. It was the year in which it became glaringly clear that the 2016 US election was rigged by a combination of election fraud and AI-controlled targeting of individual voters by state-level propaganda systems in order to amplify internal hatred and dissent: and that the same people and tools used in the US campaign had also driven the Brexit referendum result, and were in use elsewhere around the world.

I am looking for any silver linings to 2018 and coming up blank.

So, can you help me? What was the good side of 2018, the things we should remember this year for happily rather than with a curse?

It's that time of year again, when some authors remind everyone that they're eligible for various awards for fiction published in 2018.

My total publications for 2018 consisted of: two novels and one novelette.

You probably haven't read the novelette because it's published in an anthology— Knaves over Queens, the first British-set collection in the Wild Cards series, a sequence of shared-universe stories edited by George R. R. Martin and Melinda Snodgrass. My story, "Police on my Back", is published in Knaves over Queens, which is currently only available in the UK (first US publication isn't until next year). (Amazon.co.uk link.)

As for the novels, these are Dark State (Tor, UK and USA: January 2018), the second Empire Games book (or eighth Merchant Princes novel, depending on how you count them), and "The Labyrinth Index" (US Amazon link, UK Amazon link), published by Tor.com Publishing (in the USA) and Orbit (in the UK). And that's the ninth book in the Laundry Files, or maybe the tenth (if you count "Equoid" as a really short novel rather than a novella) or eleventh (if you also factor in the really short short story collection Tor.com published as an ebook).

Just popping in to note that, in the wake of the failed ERG leadership challenge against Theresa May, Brexit hysteria has escalated so far that mainstream political pundits in major newspapers are invoking Cthulhu in print. Words fail me. I really, truly, cannot cope with this shit: the Laundry Files are satire, dammit, not a political documentary!

(Normal blogging might resume whenever I manage to stop gibbering in a closet.)

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