April 2019 Archives

It's April 2019, and to my surprise I find I haven't been to any SF conventions so far this year. But that's going to change. Here's my (abbreviated) calendar:

18-22 April: Ytterbium, the UK eastercon, Heathrow, London. No, I'm not a guest of honour (for which I'm kinda thankful--I've been an eastercon GoH before, it's hard work), but I'll be on a few program items and hanging out in the hotel bar.

7-9 June: Cymera SF Festival, Edinburgh: not an SF convention so much as a literary festival specializing in SF/F; in particular I'm part of a double-header dialog with Jonathan Whitelaw on Saturday, June 8, 7:00 PM-8:00 PM.

5-7 July: Finncon, Jyväskylä, Finland: it's Finland's national SF convention, and I'm one of the guests of honour this year.

15-19 August: Dublin 2019, the 77th world science fiction convention, is held in Dublin, and I'm going to be there.

23-25 August: Titancon, the Eurocon (European SF convention) is in Belfast, and as I'm driving/taking the car ferry to Dublin 2019 and Belfast is on the road home ... nope, not even slightly kidding! (Doing conventions on consecutive weekends is normally one of my no-nos these days--it's exhausting--but I can hardly say no.) Program not finalized, but I hope to be on it.

I don't have any definite plans after Titancon, other than a provisional "let's go to the worldcon in New Zealand in 2020 (I have air miles to spend)", but doubtless stuff will come up.

Finally: no book launches this year, because 2019 is a gap in my publishing schedule. But that's going to be fixed in 2020, which should see the publication of both "Invisible Sun" and "Lost Boys", both of which will hopefully get launch events.

(Because the previous one passed 1200 comments and is getting a bit cumbersome ...)

So the Article 50 deadline has passed and we're now in penalty time. The British team is still arguing violently with itself while water pours through the changing room ceiling and the EU team looks on, bemused. 75% of the UK fans don't understand why they're playing this match and don't want to be there but the gates are locked until someone wins, and because nobody on the UK side read the rules their team is outnumbered 27 to 1 on the football pitch. The British team all hate their manager and want to sack her but they can't agree on a replacement; meanwhile the defenders are antsy because they placed bets on the outcome (they bet heavily that the other side would win) and they want to get to the betting shop. It turns out that most of them don't understand the rules of the game; some of them thought it was a cricket match, and two of them are playing bowls.

In other news, Serbian foreign minister advises citizens not to travel to the UK due to political chaos. I suppose he'd know the signs ...

So, I have some news to announce this week. Three pieces of it, in fact. All of them have been embargoed for sometime, but I'm finally clear to talk about it—just not all at once. So I'm going to update this announcement a couple of times between now and next Wednesday.

Firstly—I've been sitting on this for ages—but I'm now allowed to admit in public that THE LAUNDRY FILES has been optioned for TV by 42 (producers of Watership Down and Traitors (among other things). This has been grinding through the works for over a year. It's an option deal, meaning the production company are looking at writing a pitch and maybe a pilot script and seeing if they can get a network interested, so it's early days. It doesn't mean that a series has been commissioned or that anything is going to happen. (We've been here before, circa 2006-08, with an American outfit, and in the end nothing came of it.) However: it's a British production company, so anything that emerges this time round is likely to have a British feel to it, and they have a great track record.

Additionally: I'm pleased to announce the sale of the next Laundry Files novel, titled "Lost Boys", to be published by the usual suspects some time in 2020.

You might notice something odd about the title; it lacks a reference to any kind of document or archival storage medium. That's because "Lost Boys" isn't about the Laundry at all: it's a side-quest set in London under the reign of the New Management, and the only familiar character from previous stories is the Prime Minister (who appears briefly).

"Lost Boys" does for "Peter Pan" what "Equoid" did for unicorns. And that's all I'm going to say about it for now!

Finally: It has just been announced that The Laundry Files as a whole is shortlisted for the 2019 Hugo award for best series! And that's the third and final piece of news about the Laundry Files that I've been sitting on for a couple of weeks.)

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