Standing on the brink…

OK, so not so much ‘standing’ as ‘sitting’, but ‘sitting on the brink’ doesn’t quite have the same ring to it, does it?

Yes, I know it’s been a while since I last updated this thing. So long that all the code is infested with spiders and fuzzy with dust, and the spam-posting-onanists have been merry decorating the electronic walls with their stinky urine and half-wit graffiti. Though to be fair, it must be hard to post advert-filled comments one handed. Bruising their knuckles on the underside of their desks… But I digress.

Book Number The Seventh (or Book Number The Eighth if you’re counting Halfhead) is away at the printers, ready for a publication date in early January, and that can only mean one thing: it’s time to write Book Number The Eighth (or Book Number The Ninth if you’re counting Halfhead). And that is the brink upon which I sit. Dangling my legs over the edge, and thinking, ‘Fuck… that’s a long way down.’

That’s right: tomorrow I’m going to start writing Book Number The Eighth (or Ninth) for real. No more sitting about, staring into space, pondering characters and stuff, now the actual work begins. And I don’t mind saying that it’s got me a little bit worried, because the next book is a standalone.

‘What?’ I hear you think, because you haven’t been taking your medication and your thinks are seeping out from your delicious, moist brain. ‘You’re worried because it’s a standalone? I thought you were dead keen to write one of those!’

And you’re right — though that’s no excuse for not taking your meds — I’ve been hankering after writing this particular story for about three years now. So why the worry? Because the last time I strayed off the beaten track and wrote a book about someone other than Logan, set somewhere other than Aberdeen, it got … mixed reviews.

Yes, I’m talking about Halfhead. I did a gig in Linlithgow a couple of weeks ago, and while the event itself went quite well, the topic of Halfhead didn’t. I couldn’t find a single person there who’d read it and liked it. Poor book! What did it ever do to deserve such rancour? Such vitriol? Such … stuff? Other than be not set in Aberdeen, not feature Logan, and be about things set fifty years in the future?

Which I suppose are plenty enough reasons for some people. That said, I get a couple of emails a week from people desperate for me to write a sequel, so not everyone is a member of the Halfhead Depreciation Society. Some people are desperate for me to write a sequel…

But that’s why I’m worrying about the book on the other side of the brink. Not because people want me to write a sequel to Halfhead — that would be silly — because this is going to be a book that doesn’t star Logan. That isn’t set in Aberdeen (though a couple of scenes might be). That isn’t… OK, it’s not set in the future, but still: two out of three.

But it’s a book I want to write. It’s a book I’d like to read. So fuck it. I’m going to step over the brink.

28 Responses to “Standing on the brink…”

  1. There’s a good, strong bungie cord riveted to your back. Take a deep breath and jump! {{huggs}}

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  2. Hurrah: you’re not SPAM!

    I’ve just spent bloody ages getting rid of that tit ‘http://www.blogger.com/profile/07331515482413022555’ and his titting tittitude.

    Grrr…

    But thanks for the hug ;}#

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  3. we’re not spam either and we really loved halfhead as it was still a psycho murder mystery even with semi lobotomised characters. 😡

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  4. oh and by the way collective peeing of the pants that the RSS feed actually had something from *halfhead*, as opposed to met office severe weather warnings and suchlike.

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  5. Well, I loved Halfhead! No pressure, but if you could perhaps write a sequel to Halfhead, set in Glasgow, in the future, perhaps with a future clone of Logan… 😉

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  6. Just write away Stuartthere is a legion of fans in NZ who will read anything you write (we love it all)….so get writing.

    Linda

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  7. Welcome back Stuart! Looking forward to the latest Logan episode in January. It doesn’t mention Aberdeen getting relegated does it (with your knack of predicting the future…)

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  8. I love your books, especially the ones with Logan. And especially the ones without him. As a gal from Texas (where’s it’s still 80 degrees in December), my husband and I spent August 2009-2010 living in Aberdeen. We’re home now, thoroughly defrosted and not missing the snow and freezing temps I hear y’all have at the moment. But I do miss reading your books, seeing as I flew through your entire McRae series (series, thus far, that is!) in about 3 months. I couldn’t believe there was actually something that would make me enjoy Aberdeen so much! 😉 Then I flew through Halfhead, too. Can’t wait for more…

    A faithful faraway fan,
    Amber

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  9. Agreed, really enjoyed Halfhead, very different from the Logan series (which I also enjoy) but that isn’t a bad thing! Keep up the good work, off to Amazon to see if I can pre-order the new book!

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  10. Personally, I like books that are set in the future. But only a couple of seconds into the future. Any more than that and I can’t cope. Can you bring back that nice man Mark Faulds from the dead? I thought he was VERY good…

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  11. I thought Halfhead was better than the series. I remember reading the whole book in one sitting (admittedly, that sitting was a 7 hour train and ferry ride).

    I didn’t find the main character to be that different to Logan. Actually, he could’ve been Logan, a few years into the future. People are just silly about it because it’s labelled “science fiction”.

    Actually, people are just silly.

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  12. welcome back mr macbeardie! I was starting to get worried about the lack of posting on here, and not having run into you in tescos for quite some time I was wondering if grendel had gone psycho and committed some kind of catastrophic (sorry couldn’t keep me paws off that one ;o) ) human killing spree!

    I loved halfhead, and love all the logan books – less fond of the new Jan release date – what are folks going to get for my birthday in april now? lol

    Can’t wait for the new books, and look forward to the new stand alone as well.

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  13. Now, now: we’re not allowed to boo people who didn’t like Halfhead.

    It’s naughty and causes a nasty rash in the unmentionables. You don’t want a nasty rash in your unmentionables, do you?

    And yes, I’d much rather they loved the book than not, but that’s the chance you take when you write something different. As long as they still like the Logan books I can keep Grendel in mice and vodka.

    OK, maybe not vodka – she’s only six, and catnip seems to work just fine.

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  14. Damned RSS Feed didn’t tell me about this post until today. How useless is that?

    I liked Halfhead, but then I was in it, so I’m kind of biased. And if you wanted an easy way to please the sequel fans, there’s always Wonderland…

    Oh, and apparently your man-stick can make her eyes light up if you just click on this link here.

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  15. I just recently finished Halfhead (I’ve been a bit behind) and although I thought that it was hard to get into at the start, I liked it…

    can’t really understand why I keep imagining the lead characters as the same person in both though…

    Looking forward to anything that’s coming really (within reason) 😉

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  16. Halfhead got the thumbs up from me. Loved the idea and wish it could be brought in as a form of punishment. Also a good way of helping the cooncil meet their budget targets.

    Can’t wait for Logan part 7. ANy chance Santa can get a pre-release copy please?

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  17. Halfhead was the first book in years to keep me up reading ALL NIGHT LONG.

    I LOVED IT.

    I bought it for my Dad and posted it to him in South Africa. After 30 pages he pronounced it ‘quaint’. After he’d finished reading it, he phoned me in excitement saying it’s the best crime novel he’s read in a long time.

    So I’m punching the air in glee. DOOOO IIIIIIT!!!!

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  18. Mark, I’d love to bring Faulds back from the dead, but he was too damn sexy – overshadowed every other character. Can’t have him stealing all the scenes again, can I?

    Paul: I’ve actually got a reasonable amount of time to write the new one (and it’s set firmly in the here and now, well, not all of it in the ‘here’, but all of it in the ‘now’), certainly compared to the last few books.

    Which is nice.

    Gayle: tell your dad I’ve never been called ‘quaint’ before. I rather like it.

    Now I must go don my smoking jacket and chase the maid around the kitchen.

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  19. About time! Various random peoples have been shouting at me for your lack of bloggage, as if it was my fault. Psssh, I always suspected that you were the lazy, curry soaked, beard monger you always proclaim yourself to be. I mean, writing books must be a piece of piss.

    Right?

    Halfhead was awesome. Full stop. I thought so, my brother thought so, the people who made Star Wars Unleashed clearly thought so too, since they featured a Halfhead as one of Starkiller’s bonus costumes (that was also, very awesome). Maybe your initial rantings about product placement were perhaps a little… too ranty? IT SELLS FROM SCI-FI!

    Anyhow. Nice to know you have not been eaten.

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  20. I loved Halfhead, thought it was very clever.
    I particularly liked the subtle changes of everyday things like, calling disabled people ´differently abled´ genious!

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  21. I’m here purely on the strength of Halfhead… A friend was reading it whilst manning the cash desk at Classic Grand in Glasgow, recommended it to me, and I bloody loved it!

    Would love to see it adapted as a comic or TV miniseries ( The team behind The Walking Dead would be a good fit, I feel, visuals-wise 🙂 ).

    Anyway, sci-fi to me is a pretty broad term ( I’m not one of those who insists in differentiating between Sci-Fi and Science Fiction… ) and I’d place Halfhead just as much in the Sci fi category as I would in the Crime Fiction category.
    To be simplistic… If something involves technology not yet invented, it could fairly be called sci-fi.

    Semantics aside, yes, the book is excellent, and you can add my name to the list of people who would love a sequel.

    Thanks for writing it 🙂

    Steve @ scifiscotland.com

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  22. Loved your book, a sequel would be great. I really want to see what happens between hunter and westfield.

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  23. Just read halfhead in about two hours! I reeeaaaallly want a sequel!! I want to know how it ends!

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  24. You need to write a sequel to Halfheads you’ve left the way open to a sequel. I read it years ago and still remember it I read it in 9 e sitting took me 2 days. Please finish it.

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  25. Loved Halfhead and would love to see a sequel especially since you left the story (and your readers) hanging. (How dare you) Please write a follow-up and let us know what happened. Your Halfhead fan Roy T.

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