Bundle of fun

September 26th, 2015

PKD.2015.All Covers Large

StoryBundle’s gathered an amazing array of writers into their PKD Award Bundle – writers like Lew Shiner, Liz Hand, Walter Jon Williams, Lisa Mason – writers whose novels were either winners or finalists for the prestigious Philip K. Dick Award. I’m really pleased that my own CIPHER is part of this bundle, too.

The way StoryBundle works is, you basically pay what you want, get 11 books, and help a designated charity, too, if you choose.

And then you read. Because you want to go somewhere, see something, feel something, understand something, that you never have before: and because good writing is – along with all of the above – enormous fun. So go and have fun! As of today, you have 18 days to get your bundle on.


August 27th, 2015


The beautiful front cover . . .



. . . and the beautiful back cover. A glorious jacket created by Rick Lieder, that speaks of the road and the city, the reckless flight of rooks, the body forever in love: THE BASTARDS’ PARADISE.

Coming this fall from Roadswell Editions, in ebook, trade, and bespoke editions – the bespoke will be signed and wrapped by hand, and carry with it a small and special box of mementos, all selected by me, to echo the story of that road and that lifelong love.

These books have been a total joy to write – to everyone who joined the story of Istvan and Rupert, reading along the way from the beginning to, now, its end, so very many thanks!

“What are your books about?”

July 11th, 2015


What kind of books do you write?

Book cover illustration

I mean, what genre? Horror? Historical? YA? What?



What are they about?


About a man whose darkest art finds him.

About a boy almost a man and a girl almost a woman who talk themselves into the truth.

And two men who take on the world with a box of puppets and a concertina.

And a questing man who thinks he wants to see: and does. And then can’t stop.



All my novels (16 and counting, not counting short fiction) share one view of the world – through a crowd of  characters, situations, genres, all different lenses on that same view – that making art can be a question of life or death, of life and death, life’s laughing answer to death: and that there’s no steeper fun to be had than plunging into that making, and letting it make you who you are, always were, had to be.

And always, always, there’s the joy and play of language, the story and the words it takes to tell it as a game shared by the reader and the writer, collaborators, making our play together.

If you want to play with me, read on! Because that’s what my books are about.


In paradise with the BASTARDS

June 17th, 2015


Under the Poppy

Boys together, men together, partners and lovers and friends for a lifetime . . . It’s been a long road, and preparing to say my goodbyes to the story of Istvan and Rupert is more than a little bittersweet.

What I thought was the full story turned out to be only the first half of the first book, that grew to a second, that now includes a third. THE BASTARDS’ PARADISE, coming this fall from Roadswell Editions, completes the journey begun in UNDER THE POPPY and continued in THE MERCURY WALTZ – but journeys end in lovers meeting, so all bows taken are full of gratitude to the readers who made the journey along with these gentlemen of the road, and their puppets, friends, colleagues, enemies, and gods large and small, errant and invisible, all along the way.

Title Card MW02 - Cry the Mercury




June 4th, 2015

Selectric Artists logoWriting is a solitary task. When things go well, when they go ill, when they don’t go at all . . . It’s one person’s toil and one person’s vision.

But when the words are done, nothing gets done without the energy, encouragement, and effort of someone who believes in the worth of those words before anyone else has seen them. Christopher Schelling has been the champion and accompanist for my writing for many years, and I’m beyond grateful for them all: and for him, his guidance, his wit, and his tenacity.

This fall, Roadswell Editions will publish THE BASTARDS’ PARADISE, the final book in the UNDER THE POPPY trilogy, and it could have no better home.

Thank you, Chris, for always playing that accordion, and playing so amazingly well.






A screamingly bad review

May 15th, 2015

The goal of writing is to communicate, but the goal of communication goes beyond just being heard: it’s being understood. What the person who understands then does with the communication received, well, that’s past the writer’s purview.

Which is why bad reviews – really, scorchingly, over-the-top bad ones – interest me. Call the book names, call me names: now I know – you proved – that you heard what I had to say. Of course I’m happiest when what you heard pleased you greatly, but sometimes we scream the loudest when someone’s told us something we do not want to hear.