Thursday, October 21, 2010


Corto Maltese, the lighter way to enjoy piracy!

My novella, The Coandă Effect, is now available for pre-order from the Passport Levant imprint of Ex Occidente Press here.

It's a deluxe collector's edition, limited to only 100 copies.

There seems to be a lot of interest in Corto Maltese. I asked random contacts on Facebook for taglines for my new book. Bruce Sterling in his interview told me that this technique is called 'crowdsourcing'. Here are some of the (mostly bizarre) suggestions I've received in response...

* "With a Gibraltarian witch for a mother and a Welsh father with ties to sorcery, Corto Maltese was destined to be one thing, a pirate." -- Bob Lock
* "‎Not the first in a 10 book series!" -- Tony Lee
* "Corto Maltese...the lighter way to enjoy chocolate." -- Gary McMahon
* "Corto Maltese - he'll make you cross! Ooh." -- Rosie Scribbler
* "The Light Fantastic." -- Huw Rees
* "The wind in his hair, the salt on his lips, danger around every corner, and intrigue straight ahead." -- George Ibarra
* "Every moment in time has a story and every story a time..." -- Robert N. Stephenson
* "Balls out, who's publishing it?" -- Rod Heather
* "A full cast of wacky characters, including a Belgian pirate!" -- Tom Alaerts
* "Melts in your hand and not in your mouth." -- Steve Lockley
* "Do not open this book if you are in the least bit prone to incontinence, as the laundry bill will ruin your finances." -- Ian Alexander Martin

Other news: I've just finished writing my 555th story. I'm sure this number is significant, but I can't really say why! The story that falls under that number is called 'Sangria in the Sangraal' and is part of my Tucked Away in Aragon story-cycle, which is now 70% completed. When that brace of tales is ready I plan to send them to the same publisher who is issuing The Coandă Effect, even though they take place in Spain rather than Eastern Europe (the preferred location for the fiction published under the Passport Levant imprint). My justification for this is that they are mostly set in Moorish Spain, when the west was the east (long before the east became the west).

'Legends say if you enter Swansea you can never leave...'

Hotel California is the same, I'm still trying to find a way out :)
I can't afford to stay in hotels, not even ones that don't exist!
I just ordered 2 copies. Hey, I also found a first UK edition of 'The Exploits of Engelbrecht' at a bookstore in the tiny little town of Birr, Ontario. Birr literally has four corners. Upon one corner, to my good fortune, was an old church transformed into a rare and antiquarian bookshop. Not only did I find a copy of Nicholas Crabbe, I found a very nice copy of Engelbrecht. The moment I began reading about the exploits of the dwarf surrealist boxer I thought 'Rhys Hughes'...not that I'm comparing you to a dwarf surrealist boxer...but your wit certainly resembles Richardson's...
Two copies? Well, I hope you enjoy the story and your own part in it! The book is an investment, as it's a limited collector's, so you can always sell it later!

Ah... Engelbrecht! Glad to hear you managed to get a copy of Richardson's original, the one with the Boswell illustrations. Magnificent! The first edition is rather rare now, another investment!
With two copies, I don't have to wait to see what happens on the next page. I just keep one copy open to the ensuing page and voila, curiosity satisfied with but the slight turn of my head. Actually, I bought one copy for myself, and one for my sister. She became a Rhys Hughes fan after I introduced her to the Post Modern Mariner.
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