Just checking in with a quick follow up to my recent update post and to explain the ongoing radio silence here right now. I’ve found myself buried neck deep in the HATER world once again, and man, I’m enjoying it. HATER was only ever Danny McCoyne’s story for me, but the more I’ve started to poke around that dark, brutal and relentlessly violent world again, the more the creative juices have started to flow. As soon as I can tell you what I’m dying to tell you, I will. Until then, here’s another piece of stunning artwork which Tomislav Tikulin produced to promote the release of the original novels. This one is a scene from the climax of DOG BLOOD which, incredibly, is five years old next month. Time flies. If you’re new to HATER, visit wwwhttp://davidmoody.net/books/hater/ to find out more.
I guess I could file this post under the ‘What Works For Me’ heading, but it should also be of interest to those of you who are here more for reading than writing, in particular those who’ve already read STRAIGHT TO YOU.
WARNING – MILD STRAIGHT TO YOU SPOILERS AHEAD!
I wanted to talk about locations today: how rather than finding the right scenery to fit your story, sometimes the story can be shaped by a location or, in this case, a journey. If you’ve not read STRAIGHT TO YOU yet, why not grab a low price ebook or signed paperback then come back and see how some of the scenes in the new version of the story came about.
I’ve already spoken at length about how I wanted the rewritten version of STRAIGHT TO YOU to feel more honest and emotional in comparison to the hopelessly naïve original, and I decided early on in the planning process that in order for that to happen I’d need to give the book a foothold in reality.
Here’s me pictured in the idyllic Welsh village of Criccieth last Sunday, and in the background you can see the castle which features prominently in the book. Click the link below to find out more, but please be warned – there are potentially some spoilers ahead.
I thought it was time for a quick update to bring you up to speed with a few projects I’m working on now that AUTUMN: THE HUMAN CONDITION is done and dusted. You should know me well enough by now… everything here is subject to change and nothing’s set in stone. The first part of this update will give you an indication of why that’s true.
The Ups and Downs and Ups of Writing. Weird name for a post, I guess, but I think it’s quite apt. You see, I reckon this is one of the best jobs in the world. In fact, I love it so much it feels wrong to call it a job… most of the time. Things don’t always go to plan.
You’ll probably remember me posting about this novel earlier this year – round about the time I’d put the finishing touches to it and sent it to my agent to hear his thoughts. Well, those thoughts came back, and after another couple of reads, I added a few thoughts of my own too.
The book’s not right. It needs more work. The themes are there, the story is there, but it’s not quite working. There are a couple of reasons why which I won’t go into in detail here because they wouldn’t make a whole lot of sense out of context. Suffice to say I’d made a huge character misstep along the way, and had also misjudged the tone of parts of the book.
Up. Down. Up. I was on a high when I delivered the manuscript, followed by a crushing low when I realised it hadn’t hit the mark. But now, with the benefit of discussion with my agent and a couple more months thinking about the story, I know exactly what I need to do. Up. Down. Up. Strangely enough, I’ve done this once before. The exact same thing happened when I was writing DOG BLOOD, and that turned out okay…
I remain insanely excited about 17 DAYS, more so than ever in fact, but the rework is inevitably having a knock-on effect on other projects as I’ll be giving it priority over the coming months.
I’m about 40,000 words into the third and (hopefully) final draft of this book, and hope to have it done by the end of July. I’ll then start thinking about how best to release it. Expect to hear more about STRANGERS – the closest I’ll probably ever get to a vampire novel – later this year.
STRAIGHT TO YOU
Is going really well… first draft is done, ready to start work on the second. I’d previously talked about serialising the second draft online from this month as the book was being written, but I’m putting that on hold temporarily for a couple of reasons. Firstly, because I need to work something into the second draft which I don’t want to do ‘live’, so to speak. Secondly, because the additional work on 17 DAYS means STY won’t be touched again for a while. At the moment, if I can get some work done on the second draft of the book over the summer, I’d hope to serialise the third draft online as I’m writing it from September/October onwards. I’ll tell you more about this completely new version of my debut novel in the coming weeks to whet your appetite. Incidentally, I started writing the original book on 1st January 1994 – I want to properly release the new edition in January 2014 to mark its twentieth anniversary. Bloody hell, twenty years. Now that makes me feel really old…
More news soon.
Just prior to the release of DOG BLOOD back in June 2010, I released EVERYTHING AND NOTHING, a free HATER short story which takes place just prior to the events of the second book in the series. It goes without saying, if you haven’t yet read HATER, read that first. It also goes without saying, it’s a HATER story, so expect copious amounts of violence.
“The world has fallen apart with incredible speed and brutality. Your only choice now is how hard you fight – hate or be hated, kill or be killed.
With the war between the Haters and Unchanged increasing in intensity, Danny McCoyne drifts from fight to fight, from battle to battle. His old life is over. This is all he has now. But a chance incident on the battlefield changes everything, bringing him back into contact with everything he thought he’d lost forever.”
I’m pleased to make EVERYTHING AND NOTHING available as a free download in all the usual eBook formats. You can download it from Smashwords here. You can also read the story online via Wattpad. I’ve just got involved with the folks at Wattpad and I’m interested to see what the site has to offer. If you’re a user, please follow me. I’ll have a Wattpad exclusive coming up in the next couple of weeks…
Can it be almost a year since THEM OR US was released? Incredibly it is, and today Gollancz are releasing a mass market paperback edition of the book.
I always knew the final HATER novel would be a divisive book. After the maelstrom and fury of DOG BLOOD, the violence couldn’t just keep increasing exponentially, and so I took the decision to follow Danny McCoyne’s story in the radioactive, rubble-strewn aftermath of the war between the Haters and Unchanged. It’s a grim and uncompromising conclusion, I think, and to my mind it’s the only way Danny’s story could have ended.
I’m insanely proud of the trilogy as a whole, and will be putting together a brief retrospective in the coming months. If you haven’t yet read them, please do grab hold of HATER, DOG BLOOD and THEM OR US and enjoy (though I’m still not sure if enjoy is really the right word to use…). And don’t forget EVERYTHING AND NOTHING – the free short which takes place between the first two books – available here.
And before you ask (because lots of people do every week), I don’t have any more news on the HATER movie just yet. But I will go digging for updates now…
It’s been far too long since I recommended any films on this site. Here then is another classic up for consideration as part of my Post-Apocalyptic Movie Club. I’m going to try and post these with much more regularity throughout 2012.
The film I’ve chosen today is one of my all time favourite movies, and one of those rare instances when a film adaptation clearly surpasses the source material. I’m talking about CHILDREN OF MEN, directed in 2006 by Alfonso Cuaron, and starring Clive Owen, Michael Caine and Julianne Moore.
Where do you begin with a film like this? It’s a matter of personal tastes of course but, for me, Children of Men is almost note perfect.
Okay, maybe that headline’s a little unfair on Lowestoft: it’s not really the end of the world, but it is the east coast town where much of THEM OR US takes place, and it’s where I was last Thursday evening to mark the UK release of the final book in the HATER trilogy.
I’m going to post again later this week and explain more about why and how Lowestoft was the perfect setting for the book, but for now I just wanted to report back on the launch event and thank a few folks for their help in making it a success.
We kicked off with a well-supported Waterstone’s signing, before moving on to Lowestoft Library (a location referenced in THEM OR US) for more signing, followed by an illustrated talk and a question and answer session. Thanks are due to David Naughton-Shires for producing some great post-apocalyptic artwork (an example of which is below, you’ll see more in my next post), and to Iain McKinnon and the cast and crew of Projekt for the video clips I used. You’ll probably not have heard of Projekt before… in early 2010 we produced a series of HATER viral videos which were designed to tell the story of the first book, and set the scene for DOG BLOOD. Unfortunately rights issues prevented us from releasing the footage (and the position’s still the same), but it was great to finally be able to show a few brief snippets.
At this point I need to mention the audience – many of whom had travelled considerable distances to be there (but let’s be honest, you have to travel a considerable distance from anywhere to get to Lowestoft – that’s why it made such a perfect location for THEM OR US!). There were plenty of Survivors there, and huge thanks to them for their ongoing, yet vaguely stalker-ish support. More about that in another post which is coming shortly…
Thanks also to Jane Rothon and the staff of the library for being so accommodating, to Ivan Bunn for the technical support, to Jo and the staff at Waterstone’s for actively supporting the event with real enthusiasm, to the staff at the Chinese restaurant most of us ended up in for the most bizarre dining experience I can remember in a long time, and finally to Emma Bunn for being the glue which held it all together. Emma – if you hadn’t spotted my wife and I out drinking in a Lowestoft pub last summer, the event would never have happened!
Time for a quick competition I think! Up for grabs is the following:
One first prize consisting of:
- the entire HATER trilogy – either UK hardcovers, US hardcovers or US advance copies (or a mix of all three if you’re so inclined)
- a HATER T-shirt and mousemat
- a small piece of the original HATER blood-splatter (the cover was a composite of several individual ‘splatters’ – click here for the story of the original cover for those who don’t remember)
- follow me on Twitter (@davidjmoody) and Tweet about THEM OR US (remember to include the hashtag #themorus)
- become a fan on Facebook (www.facebook.com/davidmoodyauthor) and post about THEM OR US on your wall (remember to tag me so I know you’ve entered)
- join the mailing list (click here for form)
- write a review of one of my books and send me the link
If you’re already a Twitter follower or Facebook fan, just tweet/post about the book and remember to include the appropriate tag.
Good luck! Remember – as always – the competition is open worldwide, and my decision is final. Only one tweet and one Facebook post per person please. The winners will be chosen at random and announced by Saturday 19th November.
The human race has been torn apart, and now the war is reaching its end. There is only one question: will it be THEM OR US? The concluding book in the HATER trilogy is released in the US today through Thomas Dunne Books.
BloodyDisgusting.com said: “Like the two previous entries, THEM OR US flaunts a blistering pace and riveting dialogue… If HATER is Anarchy and DOG BLOOD is War, THEM OR US is a straight-up Holocaust, a hugely satisfying finale that really hits the post-apocalyptic sweet spot.”
Fangoria said: “As much an allegory for today’s frightening climate of terrorism, controversial wars and us-versus-them mentality as it is a horror/”zombie” yarn, the HATER trilogy has worked best when it is most human, and Danny’s struggle to remain that is the heart of this series. By the time all hell breaks loose in THEM OR US‘s finale, it’s easy to see parallels to our world’s current crises and conflicts.”
The book is out in the UK on 17 November from Gollancz. In the meantime, check back here tomorrow for an exclusive giveaway. And UK readers, don’t forget to book your tickets for the unique launch event in Lowestoft on November 24th.
Just a couple of weeks now until THEM OR US is released (my author copies arrived today and they’re beautiful) and I’m very excited to announce a unique event to mark the launch of the UK edition of the book.
THEM OR US is the first of my books to heavily utilise existing real-world locations. Although I’ve always been inspired by places I’ve known and visited, in the past the settings for my novels have been fictitious. I’ve enjoyed being deliberately vague, and I haven’t wanted to tie my stories down to actual places and landmarks. But this book is different. After the events of HATER and DOG BLOOD, the population (what’s left of it) has been scattered to the UK’s extremes, away from major cities. Danny McCoyne ends up in Lowestoft – the UK’s most easterly point.
On Thursday November 24th I’ll be appearing in Lowestoft to launch the book. Following a signing at Waterstone’s (5pm – 6:30pm), I’ll then be at Lowestoft Library from 7pm where I’ll be using specially commissioned videos and artwork to tell the HATER story and show how and why the town features so prominently in the new book.
Tickets are free, but there are only 60 available so get in quick if you want to come along. Click this link to email the library and book your place. Remember to include your full name and address and the number of tickets you require.
It promises to be a great night, and I’m looking forward to seeing you there!