Later today I’ll close out the Beta of Cairo, give the manuscript a last polish, and send it off to Deonie for the full service edit. That’ll take a week or two, after which it goes to proofing and then to production in New York city. Barring problems it should be ready for download in a month.
Paris is already plotted out in Scrivener and I’ll start writing that next Monday. I had planned to do three more Hammers but as I was blocking out the chapters and projecting the story arc to its natural end I realised it was more elegant to finish up the sequence in two steps.
However, the end of Stalin’s Hammer will set up a new series of full length AoT novels. The main one will be set in the 1950s picking up the story at end of Paris, but I’m also going to go back and revise the original series by filling in some narrative gaps. The invasion of Hawaii, the death of Dan Black etc.
I’m planning long form books for all of these titles. Having written three Hoopers together I now understand what’s possible when juggling multiple novels in one story-world. There will also be a full length Dave available this year, in addition to a horde of ebooks. (See what I did there?) I have STRONGHOLD, the fourth Dave Hooper novel pencilled in for release on 19 August. I’m hoping to catch Father’s Day with that date, but if it slips, it slips. It’ll be available in both ebook and print-on-demand. The Hooper fanfic will probably be a free Christmas special.
I won’t get onto any new work in the Disappearance universe this year, but I do have at least one, long-delayed novella planned for that in 2017.
Finally, I’m not abandoning trade publication. I’ve accepted an offer from Random House in New York for The Cruel Stars, the big sci-fi epic I’ve mentioned before. I’ll start writing that in about five or six weeks, after I wrap up Stalin’s Hammer. The outline for Cruel Stars already runs to 8000 words and follows five main characters. I'm very excited to getting into space opera, something I've wanted to do for years. If nothing else, it gives me an excuse to go back and read all my Peter F. Hamiltons.
(Art: Antonio Justamante Jacobs)