Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Beginning of August

Wednesday 1st August

Okay, tomorrow Zero Point comes out. As usual Amazon has jumped the gun, though I’m pleased to see that it’s up to number three on the ‘New and Future Releases SF’ there with only some tie-in type book I have no idea about above it along with something by a guy called Iain M Banks, which I of course have no objection to. No point looking at ‘Bestsellers SF’ because all the top slots are occupied by G. R. R. Martin books and other fantasies. Funny isn’t it how on Amazon you can fine down a list so it’s maybe ‘SF, space opera, hardback’ yet on that main SF list they apparently can’t tell the difference between SF and Fantasy. Go figure.

Thursday 2nd August
Yuk, the temperature has dropped with this morning’s reading at 9.15 being 24C and in the sky those strange white fluffy things not normally seen over Crete at this time of year. Damn, while sitting outside last night I even had to put a T-shirt on. However, it’s still nice and warm down in Makrigialos and I can get into the sea without flinching. Today I’ll do so again and then we’ll have a meal at a restaurant called Golden Beach to celebrate the release of Zero Point. I wonder if there’ll be a load of single star reviews appearing on Amazon for that book. Surely not, surely those who didn’t enjoy The Departure won’t have gone out and bought Zero Point too...

I didn’t produce much fiction yesterday, instead answering email questions for SFX magazine, writing another blog post for Macmillan to use on their Tor blog, and sorting out ‘DVD extras’ for the books, these being pieces I cut out of the books and consigned to a file called bitsSF (or the cutting room floor). Penny Royal II is up to 15,780 words and I will dive back into it now.

Sunday 5th August
On Thursday afternoon I drove to Iraklion to pick up my niece Samantha and her boyfriend Dean who are now installed in our ruin. They’re finding it quite warm after escaping the lowering skies of Chester but, unfortunately for them, this looks like it’s going to be a Meltemi summer, with that wind perpetually blowing up. Matching the timing of last week it returned this Saturday and may be with us for days or weeks. Kostis, down at Revans, told me a story about a hotel further along the coast that was sued by some German holidaymakers because they turned up for a two-week holiday and had two weeks of force ten gales. Silly of them (they didn’t win), but I perfectly understand how they felt.

Monday 6th August
Yup, the wind is still here ... even as I wrote that is gusted through the doors, knocked a calendar over and nearly had a pot of flowers on the floor, almost like it was giving me the finger. This morning I was awake before 7.00 listening to it gusting and chucking things about outside and now I’m at my laptop early. The only answer to weather like this is to laugh at it and get on with other stuff, which is why I’m now diving back into Penny Royal.

Okay, that was good: 2,000 words written by 10.30 AM ... and then lots more.


Graeme Finch said...

Weather, you have to love it. The wet summer in the UK means that all the outstanding jobs that we moved into our house with three years ago are nearly done. You just have to roll on the ropes with it ... after all the climate moves within a set of parameters all of its own, and you have to find a silver lining come rain or shine.

Phil M said...

I dream of sitting outside in a t-shirt, presently developing gills and webbed feet over here.

bascule said...

Just one review so far, 5 star. I may have had a hand in that.

Ruprecht said...

Read Departure and Zero Point a few days ago, and now eagerly await Jupiter War.
Some "Departure" though...
In reading the Polity novels I hadn't really picked up on the libertarianism.
Then the Owner series kicks in with a libertarian jeremiad to top even the most paranoid ramblings of Alex Jones. All slippery slopes of totalitarian tyranny, monstrous Government conspiracies, inefficiency of market regulation, Galt's Gulch of heroic rebellion, environmentalism as anti-humanism and even a tip of the hat at gold bugs.
Still... I love my apocalytpic, dystopian sci-fi, and as a setting for heroic fiction this works just fine. I must admit that the heavy handedness, and the cliched political rhetoric, had me wondering whether this was a deliberate lampooning. Perhaps even, more cynically, an attempt to appeal to the growing, sci-fi loving, libertarian high-tech culture and American youth.
Of course as soon as I came here and saw the WUWT link, I was disabused of that notion.
So I have to add Neal Asher to a list of authors such as Orson Scott Card, Robert A Heinlein and China Mieville, whose politics I completely disagree with, but whose fiction I thoroughly enjoy. Thankfully the apocalyptic dystopian setting itself, the heroic characters and fast paced action, prevented it from joining that other list. A list populated by the likes of Aynd Rand. Whose politics I disagree with, and whose fiction I think combines the worst sort of tawdry melodrama and preachy idealism.
For me at least the Owner series hasn't crossed that line. The line where the fiction is just a crude vehicle for the politics, and so praise or criticism of the fiction is inseperable from agreement and disagreement with the political rhetoric it engages in.
Hopefully it never happens.

Xanares said...

Malta is hot and humid this summer, as usual. Not much wind here either, apart from on our wedding day of course :)
First time I ever used the AC in the summer.

Looking very much forward to be reading Zero Point; got it for the kindle in pre-order.

Wrt. politics and what not in Sci-fi, I just don't see a problem. It brings another level of believability that the narrator has opinions like we all do. And holy shi.. are there many kumbaja-singing paradises out there in Sci-fi and other, so fresh air is nice.

Neal Asher said...

Phil and Graeme, sorry, I really shouldn't mention the weather here...

Thanks Bascule - glad you liked it.

Ruprecht, The Departure was the most 'political' of the books and it gets less so as it goes on (I'm more interest in the SF & the story). As for cliched political rhetoric ... just listen to a politician.

Xanares, what's fresh air to you might choke others.

freegnu said...

When will these books reach the kindle or any other ebook vendor in the USA? Waaa! Robots can cry.

Neal Asher said...

freegnu, they'll all be coming out from Night Shade Books in 2013.