Aethernet 10

Just out: the 10th issue of Aethernet, the digital magazine of serial fiction.

Contents:

  • Cosmopolitan Predators! by Tony Ballantyne
  • Gela’s Ring by Chris Beckett
  • Memento by Keith Brooke
  • The Song Giveth… by Harold Gross
  • The Sugar Pill by Libby McGugan
  • Spiderlight by Adrian Tchaikovsky

Buy from Amazon UK
Buy from Amazon US

More details from www.aethernetmag.com.


Guest post: 52 Songs, 52 Stories by Iain Rowan

52 Songs, 52 StoriesIt was quite a simple idea. Every week for a year, I’d set iTunes to shuffle, let it pick the next song at random, and then I’d sit down and write a story inspired by that song and publish it on the web.

In part it was a bit of fun, but in part it was also a really useful lesson about discipline, and not waiting for inspiration. I was working on a novel at the same time, plus the usual family and day job commitments, so I didn’t have much time to spare. No time for writer’s block. No time for procrastination. No time for mulling over ideas or scrapping and starting again, no time for second or third drafts. Just listen. Write. Quick scan for typos. Publish.  Repeat.

There were times when it was hard, but I learned a lot about not waiting for inspiration, instead just writing and writing until something took shape, and I could discard what I didn’t need, and keep what felt right. Just start writing, and trust that something would come. It’s always a satisfying feeling to have written, but it’s even better when the writing process itself is enjoyable. I enjoyed writing the stories for 52 Songs most when the words and ideas just flowed, as if already shaped before I thought them. But exactly where was all this coming from?

Some of my favourite stories from the project are those that just seemed to appear from… somewhere. Re-reading the year of stories with a critical eye, I can’t see a difference in quality between the ideas I sweated over, and those which arrived, fully formed, almost before I knew it. I’ve always been cynical about the idea of waiting for the muse, as it’s an excellent excuse not to write and I really don’t need any more of those. Sometimes though, in those moments when the ideas just rush in from nowhere, I can at least imagine the muses gathered in a corner, nodding approvingly.

But that’s just an all-too human trait of ascribing outside agency, to what comes from within. I’ve always been fascinated by how we can better feed the subconscious, stoke up its fires and let it run riot with its tools: everything we have ever been, or thought, or known.

I’m also fascinated by how we listen to what it’s telling us. That’s the trick, and creative artists have found many ways to do it: long walks in the country with the dog, long walks inside their head with drugs, running (or in my case, cycling) long and hard, drinking long and hard, losing themselves in music, the shower or the bath, staring out of windows on trains. The endless chattering monkey mind settles for a moment or two, the subconscious seizes its chance, there’s a shuffling and a clicking, the puzzle pieces move a little further into place, and the words flow.

Of course, as soon as the hard work of revision starts, the muses and your subconscious all shrug, pretend to look busy, and mutter, ‘You’re on your own now, pal’. But for 52 Songs, 52 Stories, I learned better ways of getting that first part out, and onto the page.

52 Songs, 52 Stories is available now:

Nick Gifford collectibles

Working on the Amazon listings for the new editions of four Nick Gifford YA novels, I was a little surprised to find copies of the first editions on offer at Amazon for rather unbelievable prices.

How about a first edition of Erased for a mere $134.90 or Incubus at $122.32?

A bit steep? Well both are bargains compared to a first edition of Flesh and Blood, which is listed at $211.38.

I’m sure it’s some kind of scam and that these aren’t really viable prices for first edition Nicks, but Hell, it makes the new editions seem like real bargains, with paperbacks of four Nick Gifford novels at $12.99 and ebook editions a mere $3.99 each. Probably best to snap them up quickly before collectors drive the prices up!


December round-up

Just out from infinity plus:

Nocturnes and other Nocturnes by Claude Lalumière (“Claude Lalumière’s extravagant imagination is matched by only two other qualities: his compassion for his characters, and his sparkling facility with language” Paul Di Filippo), plus new editions of Stephen Palmer’s first three novels (“Palmer is a find” Time Out) and an omnibus edition of Keith Brooke’s Expatria series (“This is a marvellous book that, despite the sequel … is a complete novel in itself. Treat yourself: buy both, and read them over and over.” Nexus). And in early 2014: the extraordinary Hairy London by Stephen Palmer, plus more from our best-selling author, Eric Brown.

Details of all infinity plus books can be found at http://www.infinityplus.co.uk/

Nocturnes and other Nocturnes by Claude Lalumière

Available in paperback and ebook formats from late December
http://www.infinityplus.co.uk/book.php?book=clnoct

Twenty-five dark stories that span a daring breadth of genres. In these noir tales that unfold at the edge of realism, mythic nocturnes from impossible pasts, and disquietingly intimate stories of speculative fiction, Claude Lalumière explores our collective and intertwined obsessions with sex and death.

“In Nocturnes and Other Nocturnes Claude Lalumière plumbs the deep trenches of yearning, fear and the agonies of unfulfilled needs.” – from the introduction by Garry Kilworth

“Claude Lalumière’s stories are dark, mordant, precisely formed.” Lucius Shepard

   

Memory Seed, Glass and Flowercrash by Stephen Palmer

Available in ebook formats from early December

Memory Seed
http://www.infinityplus.co.uk/book.php?book=spmemsd

There is one city left, and soon that will be gone, for the streets of Kray are crumbling beneath a wave of exotic and lethal vegetation threatening to wipe out the last traces of humanity. In the desperate struggle for survival most Krayans live from day to day, awaiting salvation from their goddesses or the government. A compelling first novel set on a world both deadly and fascinating.

“Palmer’s imagination is fecund, and his city, inhabited by clashing tribes of women (men are confined to breeding houses), with exotic biotechnologies which enable computers and other machines to be grown from genetically engineered seeds, is vividly drawn… a hectic but ultimately convincing debut.” Interzone

Glass
http://www.infinityplus.co.uk/book.php?book=spglass

A plague is spreading through the city of Cray. Nobody knows its origin and nobody has discovered a cure. Cray is dying. Of glass. As the city’s ruling council resorts to increasingly desperate measures to maintain order, two people’s lives are about to change…

“This is a brilliant second novel and makes, like its predecessor, a welcome change in a genre clogged with tat.” SFX, Guy Haley’s choice as Best Original SF novel of the year

Flowercrash

http://www.infinityplus.co.uk/book.php?book=spflwr
Zaïdmouth’s five communities are intertwined by artificial flower networks so complex they combine to create the virtual realities through which Zaïdmouth is run. Yet into this vivid world a bad seed is about to be sewn.

“I would urge science fiction fans to read the novel… It’s an exciting and thought provoking story that is well worth seeking out.” Aural Innovations

Expatria: the boxed set by Keith Brooke

Available in ebook formats from early December
http://www.infinityplus.co.uk/book.php?book=kbexpbox

A lost colony, rediscovered by descendants of its original investors… When the expedition from the Holy Corporation of GenGen arrives on Expatria, for some it looks like salvation from a backward-looking, superstition-ridden society, but for others, it looks suspiciously like an invasion.

“In the recognized front ranks of SF writers.” Locus

Coming in early 2014

Hairy London mark 5Hairy London by Stephen Palmer

Available in paperback and ebook formats in early 2014

What is love?

One evening at the Suicide Club three gentlemen discuss this age old problem – and thus a wager is made. Dissolute fop Sheremy Pantomile, veteran philosopher Kornukope Wetherbee and down-on-his-luck Velvene Orchardtide all bet their fortunes on finding the answer amidst the dark alleys of a phantasmagorical Edwardian London.

But then, overnight, London Town is covered in hair. How the trio of adventurers cope with this unusual plague, and what conclusions they come to regarding love is the subject of this surreal, surprising and fast-paced novel.

And the East End threatens revolution…

Also coming in early 2014, books by Eric Brown, Jack Deighton and more.

Also of note

Published in December 2013:

   

Piggies, Flesh and Blood, Like Father and Erased by Nick Gifford

Gifford’s first four young adult novels are now available in paperback and ebook formats from our infinite press imprint.

Piggies
http://www.infinityplus.co.uk/book.php?book=ngpig&imprint=ipress

Transported to a world inhabited by vampires, Ben befriends a girl called Rachel. She takes him to her farm to prove she’s not like the other vampires, but that’s when he discovers a terrible secret. And why is the book called Piggies? That’s the worst horror of all. Optioned for film by Andy Serkis.

“Ingenious… this chilling story reads with all the power and demented logic of a thoroughly bad dream.” The Independent

Flesh and Blood
http://www.infinityplus.co.uk/book.php?book=ngfandb&imprint=ipress

Matt’s home life is falling to pieces as his mother seeks refuge from divorce by returning to the seaside town where she grew up. Separated from his friends, bored and discontented, Matt gradually becomes aware that his mother’s family are the keepers of a terrifying secret.

“Another great teen thriller.” Spot On

Like Father
http://www.infinityplus.co.uk/book.php?book=nglikef&imprint=ipress

Danny is terrified of being like his father, who ended up in prison after a night of savage violence. But then he finds his father’s diary and uncovers his dark thoughts – and even darker secrets. Who was whispering to his father, goading him, leading him on? And what if they are coming back for Danny?

“The king of children’s horror…” Sunday Express 

Erased
http://www.infinityplus.co.uk/book.php?book=ngerased&imprint=ipress

You’re not paranoid if they really are after you. Someone is messing with Liam’s world. All the rules have changed and his life has unravelled completely. What he does know is that someone is watching him. There are no bystanders in this terrifying game.

“An exciting, fast paced book that will have you on the edge of your seat until the last page.” Word Up

And due in early 2014, Gifford’s new YA thriller, Tomorrow:

tomorrow_cover

When fifteen-year-old Luke’s father dies, his eccentric family threatens to descend into chaos. Luke distracts himself by helping to sort through his father’s belongings, a painful process which takes on an entirely new dimension when he discovers that his father had somehow had knowledge of events in his own future. This prescience is connected in some way to a recent spate of terrorist attacks, which would explain why security forces – and others – start to take an interest in Luke’s discovery. Just what had his father known, and why are Luke and his friends suddenly at the centre of it all?

Tomorrow: an emotion- and time-tangled thriller set in the War Against Chronological Terror.

Tomorrow: when three teenagers may have the power to save or destroy a world that is yet to be.

infinity plus in print

An increasing number of our titles are also published in paperback and all of these are available to booksellers. If you’re a bookseller and would like to stock any of our books, have a look at our titles in print for details. All print titles are available via Ingrams, but if you’d prefer to deal directly with us just get in touch and we’ll work it out.

infinity plus print titles: http://www.infinityplus.co.uk/format.php?format=p

infinite press print titles: http://www.infinityplus.co.uk/infinitepress.php

Details of all infinity plus books can be found at http://www.infinityplus.co.uk/


New: Nocturnes and Other Nocturnes by Claude Lalumière

Nocturnes and Other Nocturnes by Claude Lalumière

Cover by Marc Tessier

Just out in paperback and ebook formats, a collection of dark and sensuous fiction from “Montreal’s own master of fantastic fiction” (RoverArts.com).

Nocturnes and Other Nocturnes: Twenty-five dark stories that span a daring breadth of genres. In these noir tales that unfold at the edge of realism, mythic nocturnes from impossible pasts, and disquietingly intimate stories of speculative fiction, Claude Lalumière explores our collective and intertwined obsessions with sex and death.

“In Nocturnes and Other Nocturnes Claude Lalumière plumbs the deep trenches of yearning, fear and the agonies of unfulfilled needs.” – from the introduction by Garry Kilworth

“Claude Lalumière’s stories are dark, mordant, precisely formed.” Lucius Shepard

“Lalumière’s protagonists exhibit the sorts of yearnings and proclivities that our most respected social institutions teach us to mistrust: erotic energy, artistic mania, idiosyncratic mysticism, impassioned empathy with the natural world.” James Morrow

“Claude Lalumière’s extravagant imagination is matched by only two other qualities: his compassion for his characters, and his sparkling facility with language.” Paul Di Filippo

“Claude Lalumière has a poet’s sensibility. He suggests; never overstates.” Richard Calder

“Claude Lalumière’s stories are delicious.” Anna Tambour

“Lalumière’s fiction is indeed fueled by a rich inner psychology … it is potent, memorable stuff.” The New York Review of Science Fiction

Buy this ebook from: Amazon US - Amazon UK - Barnes and Noble - Smashwords

Buy this book in print: Amazon US - Amazon UK - CreateSpace

New: four young adult novels from Nick Gifford

“The king of children’s horror…” Sunday Express

A set of handsome new paperbacks, plus the first ever ebook editions of Nick Gifford’s first four novels: young adult fiction with a dark, paranoid edge, first published in the UK by Penguin.

Piggies by Nick GiffordFlesh and Blood by Nick GiffordLike Father by Nick GiffordErased by Nick Gifford

Piggies
Transported to a world inhabited by vampires, Ben befriends a girl called Rachel. She takes him to her farm to prove she’s not like the other vampires, but that’s when he discovers a terrible secret. And why is the book called Piggies? That’s the worst horror of all. Optioned for film by Jonathan Cavendish and Andy Serkis.

“Ingenious… this chilling story reads with all the power and demented logic of a thoroughly bad dream.” The Independent

Buy this ebook from: Amazon US - Amazon UK
Buy this book in print: Amazon US - Amazon UK - CreateSpace

Flesh and Blood
Matt’s home life is falling to pieces as his mother seeks refuge from divorce by returning to the seaside town where she grew up. Separated from his friends, bored and discontented, Matt gradually becomes aware that his mother’s family are the keepers of a terrifying secret.

“Another great teen thriller.” Spot On

Buy this ebook from: Amazon US - Amazon UK
Buy this book in print: Amazon US - Amazon UK - CreateSpace

Like Father
Danny is terrified of being like his father, who ended up in prison after a night of savage violence. But then he finds his father’s diary and uncovers his dark thoughts – and even darker secrets. Who was whispering to his father, goading him, leading him on? And what if they are coming back for Danny?
*Originally published by Penguin as Incubus, this edition reverts to the author’s preferred title.

“Incubus is a chilling psychological drama, a supernatural horror story and, somewhere on the edge, is a political thriller: the episodes in East Germany are as tense and unusual as the rest … a dark story that will chill the reader … Teenage readers should find this gripping: a cut above the usual horror tale.” School Librarian

Buy this ebook from: Amazon US - Amazon UK
Buy this book in print: Amazon US - Amazon UK - CreateSpace

Erased
You’re not paranoid if they really are after you. Someone is messing with Liam’s world. All the rules have changed and his life has unravelled completely. What he does know is that someone is watching him. There are no bystanders in this terrifying game.

“An exciting, fast paced book that will have you on the edge of your seat until the last page.” Word Up

Buy this ebook from: Amazon US - Amazon UK
Buy this book in print: Amazon US - Amazon UK - CreateSpace


New: Expatria – the boxed set, by Keith Brooke

Available for the first time in a single volume: the Expatria duology.

Expatria: the boxed setBook one:
The descendants of Expatria’s first colonists from Earth have rejected technology. When Mathias Hanrahan, heir to the primacy of Newest Delhi, wants to reintroduce the old ways he is framed for his father’s murder and forced to flee.

Recruited by a research team which is trying to relearn the ancient technologies, he goes to work for them, and against a background of impending war, Mathias discovers that strange messages are coming from space.

Book two:
For Katya Tatin, a passionate believer in and employee of the Holy Corporation of GenGen, the opportunity to join the mission to the recently rediscovered colony of Expatria is much more than a chance to spread the gospel. For her, it represents a break with the past on Earth, with the Consumer Wars and the subversives who seek to undermine the standing of the Holy Corporation itself. It offers a chance to reconfirm her faith.

On Expatria itself, and on the ancient arkships that orbit it, the news of the impending arrival of a mission from Earth further complicates an already murderously complex web of religious and political intrigue. For some, it looks like salvation from a backward-looking, superstition-ridden society; for others, it looks suspiciously like an invasion.

Amazon US - Amazon UK

Keith Brooke at infinity plus

On Expatria:

“Its carefully measured, consciously understated prose eschews any of the customary cheap stunts used by genre authors in an attempt to keep the reader whizzing through the pages … To describe it as gripping would be accurate but would at the same time mislead: it grips because of the reader’s absorption in the characters and the significance of the events rather than through any nonstop pulse-racing action. It introduces you to a world which, without your perhaps consciously realizing it, comes to permeate your mind, so that you have to shake your head to return yourself to 21st-century Earth … Brooke’s tale-telling is superb … a completely absorbing novel.” Hugo and World Fantasy Award winner John Grant

“Book of the Month … The mix of semi-pastoral life and scientific research is convincingly handled … The underlying conflict between religion and science is finely wrought … an absorbing piece of fiction. Highly recommended.”Gamesmaster International

“Books like this are proving that the British can write SF as good as any American… This is a marvellous book that, despite the sequel … is a complete novel in itself. Treat yourself: buy both, and read them over and over.” Nexus

“Brooke lies somewhere between Peter Dickinson and Barrington J Bayley in his novels: he tells one story, concentrating on one set of characters, while great events go on around them that are almost peripheral to their lives, but he does it with intense concentration and understanding … Brooke is an author well worth reading … I hope some publisher over here makes him available to American audiences.” Locus

“…brought beautifully to life … I enjoyed this book a great deal and will definitely buy the sequel.” Critical Wave

On Expatria Incorporated:

“For Katya, a devout apparatchik of the Holy Corporation of GenGen, her voyage to newly colonised Expatria is a chance to confirm a faith that has been undermined by her rebellious brother. That subversion, though, has only just begun in a story that brilliantly shows a world in which religious belief is used to secular advantage—where creeds are implanted along with genes.” The Times

“I have to admit to being truly astonished that this book, which is a direct sequel to Expatria, is neither simply the second half of one long story nor is it a lazy reworking of the first in a slightly different form. What we have here is a first-class novel of character that just happens to be set on the same world and use some of the same characters as the first novel. Keith Brooke has achieved something quite rare, in that the characters who we first met and saw grow and change in the first novel we now encounter and, knowing where they are coming from, can watch and enjoy and see them grow and change anew when their society changes due to new and different pressures. The first novel was of pressures from within, this one is of pressure from without, and both explore the effects superbly.” Nexus


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