In My Lady’s Shadow, by Siobhan Daiko. Buy it now.
Siobhan Daiko is an online friend of mine – I edited a book of hers a while ago, and we’ve kept in touch since then. Today’s a great day for Siobhan, and for lovers of tightly plotted spooky supernatural time-slip novels – her new book, In My Lady’s Shadow, is out now!
What’s more, on both UK and US Amazon sites, it’s available at a positively silly price for the rest of the day. Go. Go now. Spend a pittance, read a great book. You’ll thank me.
Have rather miraculously found myself with about six days when all I have to do is the day job. Then, suddenly, things are set to get incredibly mad throughout December. So – I have the best part of a week to do the rewrite of Wonderful. No pressure there, eh?
I’ve been thinking about it since I wrote “The End” on Page 350-odd, so there are things I know I definitely need to do to the manuscript, and things that have deliciously suggested themselves to me – things like the Pencil of Ultimate Doom, for instance, things which give the piece a bit more oompf and a bit more bounce and a bit more joy.
What’s more, Ive been mainlining The West Wing recently, and that’s a) always good for dialogue, and b) the modern equivalent of Shakespeare, I swear, and I want to get more of that flavour into the work. I have the nasty suspicion that as it stands, there are funnier books with similar premises out there, and I need to really notsomuch up my game, as launch it from a cannon or strap it to a Soyuz missile or somesuch. It feels too leaden in places it should be light, too light in places it should hit hard, and too hectoring and lecturing…erm…pretty much everywhere. It’s a very odd sensation, you know, to have a novel that in itself is fairly sure it’s better than your ability to write it, but I’m an editor by trade, I know this happens. I’ve seen fantastic ideas let criminally down by the author’s inability to handle or master the potential of their imaginations.
Did I mention the six days? Seriously, no pressure.
In the meantime, here’s a treat for you – the latest in the fantastic illustrations from PS Brooks, this one showing Hell’s secret cabinet:
Top of the table – Beelzebub. Then down the left hand side: Mammon (he of the Pencil of Ultimate Doom) the Demon Builder; Lilith, Queen of the Succubi; Mephistopheles, Git, First Class and celebrity demon.
Down the right hand side: Moloch, Head of the Joint Chiefs and Warrior Demon, Cowle, Head of the new but surprisingly powerful Entertainment Division, and standing, Belial, Secretary General of the Amalgamated Union of Demons, Evildoers and Revenant Spirits, or AUDERS.
When Steven Moffat was launching Series 8, he declared that Samuel Anderson as Danny Pink would be the ‘secret weapon’ of the show in Peter Capaldi’s first year. We know of course that the first rule of modern Who is that Moffat lies. There’s something innately masochistic in fandom that actually on some level likes it that Moffat lies – it allows us to indulge in paranoia and whinging, and to spin theories out of straw and what-ifs, even when the theories have no validity, because in Moffat’s World of Who, anything is technically possible, so even the ridiculous theories are valid until proven otherwise. But fans could be forgiven for a sense of being sold a bill of goods over Danny Pink. He was a secret weapon inasmuch as he destroyed the Cybermen (thanks for that, PE), but otherwise – meh.
After Series 8 of Doctor Who had ended, Tony reflected on the Unbearable Mehness of Danny Pink.
The Brigadier – the fictional avatar of all those who stand between Earth and evil. We remember him.
Just when you thought the ‘controversy’ over a female Master was the big headline-grabber of the Series 8 finale, up popped a moment that has split fans like – well, like everything else about Series 8, to be fair: the re-animation of one of Earth’s great heroes and the Doctor’s good friend, Brigadier Alistair Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart – as a Cyberman.
On Armistice Day, Tony addressed the scene in the Series 8 finale that has split fandom more than almost anything else this season – the return of a fallen soldier and the Doctor’s friend, Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart. As a fictional avatar of all fallen soldiers, he stands as Doctor Who’s tribute to those who put themselves in harm’s way.
Never mind Iron Man – the steel giants take to the skies.
It feels almost like Steven Moffat read by Cyber-Christmas list, and wrote Death In Heaven just to shut me up. Alright, so technically he wrote the episode before I wrote the list, but don’t tell me Mr Wibbly-Wobbly-Timey-Wimey couldn’t pull off something like that. You know better than that.
As the Series 8 finale brought metal monsters from beyond the grave, Tony wrote that the show had – nearly – reached the apotheosis of the Cybermen.