A Cover, and an Announcement

Wednesday, November 26, 2008, 8:49 PM

Here's the jacket design for my debut novel. I just got this yesterday, and I must say I'm delighted. The eagle-eyed among you may notice something amiss, though. Have you spotted it yet?

Yes, the title for the UK edition has been changed to THE TWELVE. The title for the American edition will still be THE GHOSTS OF BELFAST, but it was felt that that title would regionalise the book within a UK market when my publisher Harvill Secker is thinking Big Bestselling Thriller. And I'm happy for my publisher to think Big Bestselling Thriller, thus the change. Outside of the UK market, specifically the USA, the original title will have more resonance, so my American friends get to keep the ghosts.

Anyway, title aside, what do you think of my cover? :)

Oh, and Happy Thanksgiving to all my American friends!

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A Sub-Genre is Born: Norn Noir

Tuesday, November 25, 2008, 9:52 PM

My blogging friend Gerard Brennan just published a short story on a new Noir fiction zine called A Twist of Noir. You can read the story here, and if you have a moment, congratulate the man himself.

In the process, I believe Gerard may have created a new sub-genre by splicing Noir with Norn Iron, a common pronunciation of my homeland. That sub-genre is Norn Noir. You heard it here first.

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The Ghosts of Belfast to be Published in the USA by Soho Press

Friday, November 21, 2008, 6:43 PM

I'm delighted to report that THE GHOSTS OF BELFAST will be published in the USA by Soho Press, the independent New York house. Laura Hruska acquired it as part of a two-book deal from my ever-excellent agent Nat Sobel, and the book has found a wonderful home. Soho Press publish a range of literary and crime fiction, often set in foreign locales, and quite a few UK authors pitch their American tents there.

I'm particularly excited to receive this news among the doom and gloom currently shrouding the publishing industry. This report at TheBookseller.com was especially discouraging. It's good to know there are still publishers like Soho Press, and indeed Harvill Secker in the UK, who are willing to take a chance on a new author even in these uncertain times.

I'm told I'll have a cover design for the UK edition very soon, and when it appears I'll share it here along with some breaking news...

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What I'm Doing on Wednesday

Monday, November 10, 2008, 9:35 PM

This Wednesday at 1:00pm I shall be in Queen's University's Seamus Heaney Centre being interrogated by Ian Sansom in front of an audience of ... oh, I'm sure it'll be thousands. It's the first time I'll have done anything like this, and as someone whom Queen's University rejected twice, albeit for music courses, I feel a little bit of a charlatan. So, if you happen to be in the Belfast area this Wednesday, do come along and throw money/rotten fruit/insults at your discretion. I believe it's open to all.

One small confession, though. The author Q&A is organised as part of NaNoWriMo, which has much to do with why I signed up. And so far, my NaNoWriMo isn't going that well. :(

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Forget the US Election, Celebrate Two Years of Moonrat!

Wednesday, November 05, 2008, 7:00 AM

Some of you may think the result of the US presidential election is the most important thing happening in the world today. Well, you're wrong. One of my very favourite bloggers, Moonrat, the anonymous New York editor, has been online two years today at editorialass.blogspot.com. Anyone who follows the Editorial Ass knows that Moonrat is one of the kindest, smartest, funniest publishing professionals online. I know her advice has helped me more than I can say, both through her blog, and through emails we have exchanged.

So, thank you, Moonrat, for taking the time to educate and entertain us. A special blog has been created to rejoice on this special anniversary at moonielove.blogspot.com. And to help celebrate, I'll be offering a signed proof of THE GHOSTS OF BELFAST to one Moonrat fan. So, for a chance to read the book a good six months before anyone else, head on over there.

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