All posts in Shadow’s Call

2012 leftovers, Angry Robot ebook sale, and the year ahead

Hello 2013! We’re back to an odd-numbered year, during which I will turn an odd-numbered age. I like odd numbers.


There are a few leftover bits and bobs from the end of 2012:

  • At WarpCoreSF, Empire State was named the Best Superhero Noir of 2012.
  • At The Founding Fields, Seven Wonders came in at number 9 of their best books of 2012.
  • Empire State came in at number 3 on Angel of Retribution’s list of best debuts of 2012, while Seven Wonders made it to number 3 on their Best of the Best list.
  • The Eloquent Page named The Age Atomic among their top ten books to look forward to in 2013
  • The Ranting Dragon have compiled a might list of 50 titles to look forward to in 2013, with The Age Atomic at number 19. Also featuring a shout-out to Hang Wire, although I’d argue whether one book is more important than the other!

Today is the last day of Angry Robot’s ebook sale, which features 25% off all their ebooks (including, of course, Empire State and Seven Wonders). You can find details of the sale here. All Angry Robot ebooks are DRM-free too!

Couple of award things – the BSFA Award nomination period is only open until January 11th (details here), and the Hugo Awards are now open for nominations until March 10th.

New Zealand’s Sir Julius Vogel Awards are also open from now until March 31st.- notably, anyone can nominate for these, regardless of membership of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Association of New Zealand.

If anyone is so inclined, my list of eligible work is here.

And finally a quick update to my year ahead – actually, this is all likely to take me well into 2014. So my projects are: Shadow’s Call (to be renamed – now scheduled for publication in March 2014), Hang Wire (out in November 2013) Lucifer, Blackout 77, and an untitled urban fantasy project.

Um, yeah. That should keep me going! I should also have an update on my comic debut, The Sentinel, shortly. I’m looking forward to showing off some new art from that!

New interview with I Want To Be A Book and SFFWRTCHT transcript

Still editing – The Age Atomic is in the final batch of edits prior to be sent to the copyedit, and I need to hand that in next week. Once that’s done, it’s onto the next book… in fact, I’m going to be editing until June 2013, so from now on just consider my default state to be “editing” and I can cut straight to the chase.

So this week, two interviews, of sorts. A couple of weeks ago I was on the VS Comics panel at Thought Bubble, where VS Comics was launched and I talked a little about my ongoing Prohibition crime urban fantasy, The Sentinel, which is about a dead policeman, an Egyptian god of vengeance, and a secret cult of magicians who worship the New York subway system. You can see some photos from the panel here. Afterwards, I did an interview for I Want To Be A Book, which contains one or two snippets of info about The Sentinel and the two books coming out after The Age AtomicHang Wire (Angry Robot, November 2013) and Shadow’s Call (Tor, winter 2014). It’s also a good moment to mention that Shadow’s Call is going to be retitled, just as soon as I/my agent/my editor can figure out what to call it!

Also last week, I took part in #sffwrtcht, a 1-hour Twitter interview/discussion, hosted by Bryan Thomas Schmidt. A properly written-up interview will appear online soon, but in the meantime a transcript of the interview is up here. I had a blast doing it, and I look forward to making a return appearance.

Finally, The Age Atomic is starting to appear in various places for pre-order – there is a list of links here, and you can find the book on Goodreads here, if you are so inclined.

[Edit] Bonus blog content!

Someone just pointed me to a nice review of Seven Wonders that I’d missed – you can check it out over at The Oracular Beard.


Writerly update, Morley Lit Festival, and more SEVEN WONDERS reviews

And I’m back from FantasyCon, which was three super-duper days hanging out with my favourite people talking about books. I apologise for the brevity of my convention report, but when you’re on a deadline like I am, such things tend to fall by the wayside. But it was good times, trust me.

I’m still on deadline for The Age Atomic, which means I’m back in the word bunker for this month. And then after that is handed in I need to work on Shadow’s Call for Tor… which means, I suspect, another lockdown. But it’s all worth it, in the end. It’s just a rather busy last quarter of the year.

A reminder for this coming Saturday, where I’ll be appearing on the Science Fiction and Superheroes panel as part of the Morley Literature Festival, alongside Samit Basu, David Hine, and Justina Robson. Steve Morris (perhaps better known as the drummer from Joy Division and New Order) is looking forward to seeing us, which I think deserves a What In The Actual Heck (Joy Division being a favourite band of mine), and event curator Mark Johnson gives us the big ups in the Give Me Comics Or Give Me Death podcast, which you can listen to here.

The panel is this Saturday at 2pm at the Morley town hall. Tickets are £4, and full details can be found here, and after the panel there will be a book signing. I hope to see you there!

Seven Wonders reviews continue to come in-

At The Founding Fields, Shadowhawk gives the book 9.5 out of 10 and says:

Adam Christopher has struck gold, again. If any SF novel this year deserves a sequel, it’s Seven Wonders!

The Fiction Stroker gives Seven Wonders four strokes out of five and says:

A love letter to comics… Seven Wonders is another thrilling roller-coaster ride from an author who is quickly becoming a master of multi-genre adventure.

Philip Norris says:

Seven Wonders ticks all the right boxes, it is a thrilling rollercoaster ride where the reader feels the wind in their hair, and their cape flapping behind them.

At I Will Read Books, Erik Lundqvist says:

…[T]he atmosphere, and the world building, is spot on… Adam Christopher has once again brought something new to a old genre.

And a little bonus, The Fiction Stroker also reviewed my debut novel, Empire State, giving it four strokes out of five and saying it is:

…An immersing, entertaining and atmospheric journey into another world.

Back to the editing, and see you on Saturday in Leeds!

THE AGE ATOMIC update and the beauty of forward planning

Hey, that cool thing I said would be on the blog yesterday? It’s going to be next week. So you’re stuck with me instead, which means its time for a writerly update.

The Age Atomic, the sequel to Empire State, is progressing nicely – I’ve crossed 52,000 words, which is either halfway (yay!), a third-way (um, okay) or a quarter-way (dear God no) through the first draft. I’m aiming for about 120,000 words, because while I’ve always shot for 100,000 in the past, it turns out that 120k is about my natural novel word count – Empire State is about 117,000 I think, while Seven Wonders is a whopping 128,000.

The problem at the moment is that I’m at the stage where I’m convinced that the draft is going to be 200,000 words long. I’m pretty sure I’ve felt like that at some point on every novel I’ve written, so I’m kinda ignoring it. But at the back of my mind I do have this feeling that The Age Atomic is a little different – there are a boatload of characters in it, some from Empire State, some new ones, and there are at least six or seven major plot threads chugging along concurrently. That sounds like a lot – it is a lot! – but some of them are minor subplots to the two main story lines, it’s just that as I write them they tend to loom a little larger than when a reader will read them, if that makes sense.

Anyway, I’m not averse to writing a 200,000-word novel at all… except the longer the book, the longer its going to take to write, and the longer its going to take to edit, and the longer its going to take my beta-readers to read, and the longer its going to take my agent to edit, and the longer its going to take to rewrite, and… well, you get the picture. I’m writing this to a deadline, and while it seems like that deadline is a long way away, I’m not so sure I’ll be saying that so easily this time next month. Although I do have plenty of time – I’m currently trying to hit 20,000 words a week (five days a week at 2,000 words a day, and two days at 5,000 words), and I’m writing full time through August and September. July’s word count is going to be a little low, as we’re off on a family holiday to Europe and Ireland for nearly the entire month, but I hope I can still hit 1,000 words a day, most days while away.

Plus… there’s the slight issue of my editor at Angry Robot possibly having a mild heart attack if I handed in a 200,000 word novel. If he hasn’t had one already, reading this (hi, Lee!).

But I’m fine. I overwrite the first draft anyway, so even if it did get too long I’m sure a huge chunk would be removed anyway.

So that’s The Age Atomic. Once that is submitted later this year I need to switch to edits on Shadow’s Call for Tor, which I haven’t seen yet, although I already have a deadline for them – fortunately three months after the deadline for Angry Robot! And when that’s done, its on to the rewrite of Hang Wire, my fourth Angry Robot novel, the deadline for which is currently more than a year away. But I’ve got some pretty big changes I need to make to the main storyline, plus there’s a whole bunch of new stuff to add. While I’m a long way off even thinking about this book, I am looking forward to getting back into that world. Urban fantasy is fun!

I’m a big believer in forward planning – I think you have to be in this industry, which moves so very slowly. So once Hang Wire is done, I’ve got the two next projects ready to roll, which have the working titles Lucifer, and Dreamweapon. When I will start those, I have no idea… although if I can maintain this 20k-a-week work habit, maybe a whole lot sooner than I think.

But getting back to the present – this week I’ve got two secret projects to work on as well, neither of which may come to anything but both of which are worth putting the hours in. Strange as it seems (to me, anyway), I have met people who, when faced with an opportunity that only has a certain chance of being accepted, tend to put in only a certain percentage of effort. And then, in most cases, are surprised and annoyed when the project is indeed rejected.

You gotta do the work, but you don’t need me to tell you that.

Later this week I’ll be kicking off a competition to win the 10-CD audiobook of Empire State – the competition is going to be (I hope) a big one, and is tied to Seven Wonders. Stay tuned!

SHADOW’S CALL on Publisher’s Marketplace, a Portuguese blog, and something cool coming tomorrow!

This looks to be a busy week – there is something cool coming tomorrow morning which I’ve been dying to show off, so check in around 9.10am (BST) on Thursday here and on Twitter.

Meanwhile, the official Publisher’s Marketplace announcement of my Tor deal went online:

Sir Julius Vogel award recipient and a nominee for the British Science Fiction Association, British Fantasy Society, and Parsec awards Adam Christopher’s SHADOW’S CALL, a dark space opera featuring a distant outpost, bathed in toxic radiation from a nearby star, where a washed-up Fleet commander must battle a sentient mechanical spider race and its sinister allies with the help of a long-dead Cosmonaut and a sexy but troubled celebrity asteroid-miner, to Paul Stevens at Tor, by Stacia Decker at the Donald Maass Literary Agency (NA).

Film: Luke Sandler at Gotham Group


Also, strangely enough, the announcement was covered by a Portuguese blog, who somehow think Shadow’s Call is a graphic novel set on a space station full of garbage. But hey-ho. In a slightly more expected place, the news was mentioned by SF Signal in between Stephen Fry and Stephanie Meyer.

Couple of other things too – a great review of Empire State from Sean Cummings over at A Golden Age, in which he says (well, in the comments actually) that

It’s a pretty mind bending book – a must read.

…while over at Under The Bluegums mentioned John Anaelio‘s very cool song, The Empire State.

So, see you back here tomorrow for something wondrous…