November action!

Happy November!

I like November. Back in New Zealand, it’s heading towards summer and great weather. Here in the UK, autumn is in full swing and the countryside is an amazing collection of colours. Plus November is nicely ushered in by Halloween, my favourite holiday, and last night was celebrated with friends with a viewing of the chilling 1968 BBC production of Whistle and I’ll Come To You, followed by my favourite Hammer horror film, 1970’s The Vampire Lovers. The day before was spent mostly at the Lowry theatre in Salford, where we saw a double-bill of M. R. James stories performed by R. M. Lloyd Parry. If you ever get a chance to see these productions, I can heartily recommend them.

This November is likely to be a busy one for me. Last month I locked the final edit of my detective noir fantasy, Empire State, which means I can finally move onto some new projects. This year I’ve signed up for Nanowrimo again to give my fifth novel a bit of a kick-start. It’s modern day superhero story set in San Francisco, and while I quite like the work-in-progress title of The Cosmic Fortune Cookie, it’s now officially called Hang Wire. And yes, that’s part of my ongoing quest to drop names and titles of/from Pixies songs into all my books.

Hang Wire features a newspaper reporter with a drinking problem, a sentient fairground, a fire-worshipping cult, a man who never sleeps, and a mysterious spandex-clad crime fighter chasing a serial killer. And explosions. And, erm, ballroom dancing. If you want to add me as a buddy on the Nano website, you can find me under ghostfinder.

But that, as the breathless narrators of TV informercials would say, is not all. As well as Hang Wire, I’m starting properly on The Gospel of the Godless Stars, the weird Western collaboration with Kate Sherrod. Writing two novels at once sounds like possibly a bad idea, but I’m just trying to be practical. Kate and I are alternating chapters, and neither of us expect an overnight turnaround on materials. As a consequence, work on this will be constant but sporadic, and as I need to write something every day, Hang Wire will fill the gaps nicely. Plus, Hang Wire and Gospel are completely different genres and styles, so separating the two shouldn’t be a problem.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have at least 1,667 words to write.