The title is merely following the modern political and commercial impulse to generate words which imply but simultaneously evacuate meaning. So …
Four excuses for the gap since the last post:
- Family visits.
- I’m doing another ‘Brilliant’ book for Pearson Education. This time it’s Academic Writing, so it’ll simply be borrowings from a couple of the other books and writing new introduction, conclusion and linking materials.
- Under the usual, generous direction of Anneke Klein, I’m making a new website, partly to use the header above instead of having the current looming head at the top of each page, but also to make it easier for me to add and delete stuff when I want without having to impose on Anneke every time. It'll also mean migrating this blog to the new site and (doubtless), losing both my followers in the process.
- My perennial laziness (and, speaking of laziness, whatever happened to my brother Ron?).
Of course, there’s also the fact that I have nothing much to say. I’ve just done a highly enjoyable, very interesting interview with Sara Bain. You can see it here. Sara is a journalist who gives so much time to others that she doesn’t leave enough for her own writing. She also has a way of framing questions that produces answers which take you into areas you hadn’t anticipated. If you want to learn about your characters (and yourself) a Sara Bain interview is the route to take.
What else? Well, the interview was timed to coincide with the release of the fifth Jack Carston novel, Unsafe Acts, and Sara’s questions about how I ‘met’ Carston and how he’d developed made me focus on something I already knew – he’s changed quite a lot. Or maybe he’s allowed more aspects of his personality to appear. I spoke about this in the interview so I won’t go over the ground again here, but my suspicion is that the next in the series will be the last and I’m toying with the idea of it being narrated by Carston himself.
And one final thing to confirm forever my bafflement at the whole world of publishing (as if such confirmation were needed). This is for those of you who seek value in books. You’ll remember that The Sparrow Conundrum won an award, but maybe there are two versions of it in circulation because I notice that, while the paperback still costs $10.99 on Amazon
you can actually buy – from the same site, 12 new copies priced from $9.15 to
The same division between cheap crap and quality literature is evident on the Amazon UK site too, where The Figurehead, new from Amazon, will set you back £8.88 but its obviously far superior used doppelganger will cost you £39.92.
Best of all, though, are the two versions of The Darkness. Now I think it’s pretty good – but then I wrote it, so I would, wouldn’t I? But I obviously didn’t realise just how good it was. Amazon seems to have been priced out of the market because, on its site, used copies are available at prices ranging from $98.53 (yes, almost the magic $100) to (and I swear this is true because I checked it again and again) $250.80.
So if anyone reading this was thinking of buying the $250.80 copy, I have few here I’d happily let you have for just $250 each, with free postage.