It’s November, that time of the year which should be all about my birthday but is instead all about everybody else’s birthday, Americans playing spin-the-bottle-win-a-fuckwit, my day job providing umpty millions of opportunities for all the other writers in the region to get their wordfreak on, and me running around trying to please everybody and getting fuck all done on the personal front.

Except, of course, that I got me two weeks holidays, so suck on that, hidden Overlords of the Universe. Coz I get to stay home all day and do Nanowrimo, at least until next Wednesday.

Angry Robot duties are in abeyance for the moment– Marching Dead has been delivered and I’m quietly waiting for the edits to come back and ruin my Christmas– so I’ve turned my attention back to Father Muerte & The Divine, with a self-imposed brief to have the bastard finished by the end of the month and a synopsis package in the hands of my agent in time to ruin his Christmas by making him sell the damned thing for me.

6 days in, I’ve managed 15 000 words. Helps to have time off and a project you’re already 50 000 words into, no?

Right now it’s my usual melange of weird, unrelated shit, pummelled together without rhyme nor reason in the hope that not too many bits fall off once the editing starts: time travelling Benito Mussolinis; intelligent dinosaur ghosts; the Fall of Lucifer; the Red Baron’s previously unknown fetish for post World War I biplanes; rain cycles; pareidolia; the stone of Scone; the hive mind of children; philosopher’s stones; live human skinning; and 4 dimensional Maxwell’s Demons abound, there’s still another 30 or 40 000 word to go.

As Cupid Stunt would say, it’s all done in the best POSSible taste!

Anyway, for those who’d like to play word count progress bingo, some cute little widgets, courtesy of nano:


Okay, so you may have noticed a couple of reviews on the site in recent days. There’s a very good reason for this: I’ve discovered how to cross-post my Goodreads reviews onto Facebook and my blog.

It’s all part of that wonderful multi-platform cross-posty thousand screams into the wilderness with a single click line of bullshit that is social media. If nothing else, it’ll help to point out what shitty taste I have in books.


Review: Storm Front

Storm Front
Storm Front by Jim Butcher

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Thanks to the vagaries of the Western Australian library system, I’ve read about half a dozen of Butcher’s Dresden novels, out of order, having arrived at them via the engaging and sadly defunct television series.

They get better– a *lot* better– but this opening volume is surprisingly weak: choppy, badly balanced, written with the kind of breezy lack of depth I’d normally associate with a Star Trek or Star Wars tie-in. It pulls deus ex machina out of its backside with cheerful abandon, sketches characters in with slapdash rush, and just generally feels like a good idea the author was incapable of taming properly before it loosed its chains on him. I usually enjoy the Dresden books as good-natured sorbet between weightier tomes, but this was hard going. And that’s before you get to the jocular misogyny that litters the book: women are either hard bitches, whores, or damsels in distress– sometimes in turn, sometimes simultaneously– but they are *always* liars of one stripe or another, and always either in need of a good seeing to or engaged in doing just that without his aid, at which point they’re back to being whores again.

I’m not naive enough to confuse author with text, particularly with a narrator as obviously flawed as Harry Dresden, but it does add a rather distasteful subtext to the novel that took some swallowing, and even my best intentions barely made it through the ‘love potion as rohypnol with added rapey goodness’ scene.

Had I experience this volume first I strongly doubt I’d ever have picked up another volume in the Harry Dresden series.

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