Monday, 11 November 2019

Thought for the Day

“There are some temptations that cannot be resisted, some lessons we never learn.”

~ Susan Hill, author of The Woman in Black

Friday, 8 November 2019

Gamebook Friday: Dracula - Curse of the Vampire

November 8th is Bram Stoker's birthday, which means he would have been 172 years old today, if he were still alive. Or undead.

I am currently turning the Irishman's classic Gothic horror novel Dracula into an adventure gamebook, which the reader can play as either solicitor Jonathan Harker, his fiancĂ©e Mina Murray, or Doctor John Seward. I have taken this approach with other titles in the ACE Gamebooks series, but what makes Dracula - Curse of the Vampire different, is that you will be able to change which character you are playing as, during the course of the adventure. However, you will also be able to tackle the adventure as Count Dracula himself, who has an entirely unique mission to complete.

The book is going to be illustrated by my sometime collaborator Martin McKenna*, and the intention is that I will crowdfund it via Kickstarter during the Spring of 2020. This is the first time I have written such a book before running the crowdfunding campaign, so fingers crossed it does actually fund!

If you would like to be kept up to date with information about the forthcoming Kickstarter, please join the ACE Gamebooks Facebook group, or sign up to my monthly Newsletter, so that you don't miss the launch of the crowdfunding campaign. And you really won't want to miss the launch, as I have some unique rewards planned for those people who back within the first day, or even the first hour.

To help me crack on with the first draft of  Dracula - Curse of the Vampire, I have signed up to NaNoWriMo** again. I had a few issues to begin with*** but I'm back on track now.


* Martin illustrated three of my Fighting Fantasy gamebooks - Curse of the Mummy, Howl of the Werewolf, and Night of the Necromancer - and actually ended up producing covers for five of my books in total. Of course, he also painted the cover for YOU ARE THE HERO - A History of Fighting Fantasy Gamebooks.

** Which my wife thinks sounds like somewhere in Canada.

*** If you're using an existing project you can input the word count at the beginning of November, which I thought the website would then deduct from your NaNoWriMo word count, but it doesn't, so it looks like I'm doing better than I am. I tried to compensate for this by then deducting the original word count myself, but it just got confusing, so what you see on the Dracula - Curse of the Vampire page is the progress on the project to date.

Monday, 4 November 2019

Thought for the Day

“To be haunted is to glimpse a truth that might best be hidden.”

Friday, 1 November 2019

NaNoWriMo 2019

I've attempted NaNoWriMo several times in the past - some times more successfully than others - but I'm giving it another go this year. The trouble is, I've been umm-ing and ahh-ing right up until today about what to write.

Maybe I should focus on something I'm re-writing. But then does that count? It's not National Novel Re-Writing Month!

How about my next ACE Gamebook? But I already have 10,000 words of that down.

How about a completely different ACE Gamebook - one that I haven't even announced yet?

My wife thinks I should write a children's book, while I'm almost tempted to write a horror novel without having any kind of plan*.

So, in the end, what have I gone with?

You'll just have to follow my progress on NaNoWriMo to find out...



* This is most definitely not how I normally write.

Thursday, 31 October 2019

Happy Halloween!

Tonight, people up and down the country will be donning their Halloween costumes - turning themselves into witches, vampires, werewolves, mummies, demons, and zombies - for the duration of the dark celebrations.

If you're planning on staying in tonight, hopefully avoiding the trick or treaters, and you're looking for a creepy story to curl up with before the witching hour, you might want to try one of these...

Witches and demons abound in my first published Fighting Fantasy adventure.

My third FF adventure, heavily-inspired by Mummy movies from right across the cinematic era.

My first Warhammer novel, which features all manner of daemons, not to mention the shambling ranks of the undead.

The tale of one man's fall from grace and the corrupting power of necromancy.

More zombie pirates and voodoo curses than you can shake a cutlass at.

In my fifth FF adventure, you must stopped yourself turning into a werewolf before the next full moon by hunting down and killing the Arch-Lycanthrope.

Human Nature (2008) and Evolution Expects (2009)
A couple of body horror classics from my Pax Britannia steampunk series of novels.

Death is not the end... Murdered on your way home, you rise from the dead to avenge your own murder.

Blood Royal (2010) and Anno Frankenstein (2011)
Two more Pax Britannia novels, inspired by classic horror movies of yesteryear.

Shadows Over Sylvania (2013)
YOU are a vampire in my one and only Warhammer gamebook, which remains one of the best I have ever written, and probably the hardest to get hold of too.

Game Over (2015)
A collection of techno-chillers, ghost stories inspired by classic video games, edited by Yours Truly.

A dark tale of the Cthulhu Mythos, inspired by the legend of the Lambton Worm.

And coming in 2020...


Join the ACE Gamebooks Facebook group to be kept up to date with developments...

Wednesday, 30 October 2019

Warhammer Wednesday: Inferno! Volume 4

Inferno! Volume 4 is published tomorrow, on 31st October.


Volume 4 is the biggest yet and contains 12 tales in total, include my own Thousand Sons story, Journey of the Magi.


Monday, 28 October 2019

Thought for the Day

“Books help to form us. If you cut me open, you will find volume after volume, page after page, the contents of every one I have ever read, somehow transmuted and transformed into me. Alice in Wonderland. The Magic Faraway Tree. The Hound of the Baskervilles. The Book of Job. Bleak House. Wuthering Heights. The Complete Poems of W H Auden. The Tale of Mr Tod. Howard''s End. What a strange person I must be. But if the books I have read have helped to form me, then probably nobody else who ever lived has read exactly the same books, all the same books and only the same books as me. So just as my genes and the soul within me make me uniquely me, so I am the unique sum of the books I have read. I am my literary DNA.”


~ Susan Hill, author of The Woman in Black