Designer and typesetter Matt ArtPix has drawn a map of Whitemoor Hall, where the action of my second novel The Book of Thoth is set. He has used my own very badly done map of the estate (I used it to write the book as the characters move around the place quite a lot!).
Also, Dimitri, the 11-year-old boy who is one of the main characters of the book, is obsessively drawing a map of the house, so we thought it would be a nice touch to insert a map in the prelims.
I think it is rather cute and clearly shows the main elements featured in the story.
I dream of having a wonderful, small but perfectly formed writer's shack (with bathroom) by the sea in my favourite county, Dorset. Unfortunately, I'm a poor writer, and cannot afford it.
As much as I love London and the cultural opportunities it offers, I find myself more and more attracted by the quietness, the emptiness, the beauty and mystery of the countryside and repulsed by the shallowness of life in urban areas (and of what passes of "urban culture" nowadays). I am not a sociable person at all.
Then I hear that my parents have gone mad and purchased a small holiday house in the mountains. Guess where I'll be writing next year? (shame it's in France and not Dorset, though).
Cute, isn't it?
So last weekend was supposed to be a very rock'n'roll weekend indeed, that of the awesome Alt-Fest festival. We were getting ready to enjoy three full days of art and music, with the most fabulous line-up. We were looking forward to seeing some of our favourite artists play there and to checking out some exciting new acts.
After a two-year wait, we were absolutely gutted when the event was cancelled barely two weeks before the festival was due to take place. [for anyone interested in the ins and outs of what has gone wrong, go HERE].
We had booked a gorgeous hotel called Hawthorn House Hotel in the town of Kettering (the festival was supposed to take place at the nearby Boughton estate).
We needed a break anyway; we are very versatile people with a wide range of interests, and so instead of cancelling the hotel, we kept the booking and spent a lovely resting weekend visiting the area. Read Matt ArtPix's blog about it HERE (and there are some great pictures too!).
We did go and have a look at Boughton House (from the road).
It was a fabulous spot for a festival, trust me...
It is so very sad to think about what could have been if things had been handled better...
Here's the official poster for the next event Arcane Publishing will be attending: The Southend Book and Arts fair at the wonderful Forum, which is Southend award-winning shiny new library and art gallery.
Arcane Publishing will have a stall next to their designer Matt ArtPix, and will be concentrating on entertainment, young readers, fantasy and sci-fi (more details about our stock will be revealed before the event!)
I will be there, selling copies of my first novel I Am a Muse at the special event price of £6 (instead of RRP of £7.99) and I will be promoting my next novel, The Book of Thoth, to be published later this autumn (unfortunately, it will be not printed on time for the fair!). I am really looking forward to it!
The British Library has an exhibition about Gothic Literature on from 6th October to 20th January 2015, Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination.
My second novel, The Book of Thoth, is a Gothic Novel, and will be published this autumn... Perfect timing, I say!
And of course, I will go to the exhibition and get some inspiration for my forthcoming books.
I cannot believe the amount of exciting exhibitions on this autumn...
I will also go to William Morris: Anarchy and Beauty at the National Portrait Gallery - I have been a fan of WM for quite a while...
I might also pay a visit to the Virginia Woolf exhibition, also at the National Portrait. I do not exactly like her writing, but she is an icon and she was a writer with an interesting life in interesting times. I always want to understand the creative process behind the person/work and see how writers live their lives and find inspiration.
We will also go to Longitude Punk'd at the Royal Observatory, an exhibition of Steampunk art!
And of course, we just cannot miss the Sherlock Holmes exhibition at the Museum of London.
And of course, there will be a few gigs and plays for us to go to... I love the autumn!
So the first proofs of The Book of Thoth are back with Matt ArtPix. I now have to wait for the corrections to be done to check them. Then we will need to finalise the cover and prepare the documents for the printers. We are still planing on sending the book to the printers in early October to have the copies of The Book of Thoth on time for our November events. I cannot wait to see the printed books.
I can now turn my attention to my third book, The Right Place.
For several reasons, I have decided against applying for an Arts Council Grant - which I probably wouldn't have obtained anyway, and will therefore have to finance the project myself.
I have done a draft publishing schedule for the book, but lack of funds might mean that this will have to be amended. As it stands, I am aiming for a pub date of November 2017 (!). This is the optimistic one, by the way...
I have given myself plenty of time to think, read and plan, with "proper writing" only supposed to start next summer - but I need to be in Dorset for that, so we will see how things pan out then.
Still, you can read the opening pages of the book HERE, written during the week-long Creative Lab: On Writing Fiction at Metal Southend. That's the first chapter done!
In September, I will read an extract of my second novel, The Book of Thoth, at a gathering of local artists and writers.
This would be the third reading I've ever done.
I have an issue with public speaking. Hell, I am a writer, after all, happy being alone in my corner. I could spend days on end not talking to anyone and it wouldn't bother me.
But these days, if you are a writer, readings are an integral part of the job, so I cannot get out of it. I will get used to it, I guess.
I always tell myself that it cannot be worse than trying to teach a class of 35 brats as I did when I was a teacher. Still. It hasn't cured me from my loathing of public speaking!
I have now selected six extracts of the book, and I will ask Matt ArtPix to help me get down to THE ONE.
Dickens was famously excellent at giving readings. I could try and emulate him, I guess...
I think therefore I write.
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