Contracts and Interviews

16 June 2009 | Comments (0)

Signing contracts today for the project ‘Lifelines’ that Chris and I are doing for educational publisher Rising Stars.  Between now and the end of the year we are going to create nine multimedia short stories aimed at KS3 - Key Stage 3, which in plain English means the first few years of secondary school. These stories will be similar to ‘Inanimate Alice’ in that they will use images, text, music, sound, etc, but, unlike Alice, they will be directed at specific aspects of the KS3 curriculum.  They will be published on CD as part of a package that will include teacher’s notes, lesson plans, etc. There’s a demo up on the ‘Lifelines’ site, but this might be all that will be available free online.

Part of what we’ve been trying to do with ‘Inanimate Alice’ is to find a way to make money from digital fiction projects.  ‘Lifelines’ is the first fairly large commercial commission that Chris and I have taken on; though its ethos is entirely different from Alice, for us it is a big step toward finding ways to create income from this type of work.

I’ve started doing interviews for ‘The Mistress of Nothing’; I’ve been having an e-mail exchange with blogger Sarah Hymas from ‘Echo Soundings’, a wonderful blog about poetry and sailing, and tomorrow am doing an in-the-flesh interview with BookArmy.  As well as this, DMU has decided that I’m an expert on Digital Britain and are hauling me around in order to do radio interviews on the subject.

The Mistress of Nothing cover blurb

25 November 2008 | Comments (0)

Week before last Serpent’s Tail sent me the cover image they are going to adapt for my novel, ‘The Mistress of Nothing’, which will come out in the UK in July next year, Canada in the autumn.  It’s a lovely old photograph of sailing boats on the Nile.  I’ll post a preview once it is ready.  These past two days I’ve been discussing the blurb for the back of the book, the catalogue, etc with Niamh Murray from Serpent’ Tail - here’s a draft:

“Lady Duff Gordon is the toast of Victorian London.  But when her debilitating tuberculosis means exile, she sets sail for Egypt with her devoted lady’?s maid, Sally, as her sole companion.  It is Sally who describes, with a mixture of wonder and trepidation, the odd ménage marshalled by the resourceful Omar, as they travel down the Nile to a new life in Luxor.  When Lady Duff Gordon undoes her stays and takes to native dress, throwing herself into village life, language lessons, and excursions to
the tombs, Sally too adapts to a new world, gaining heady and heartfelt freedoms she has never known before.

But freedom is a luxury that a maid can ill-afford, and when Sally grasps more than her status entitles her to, she is brutally reminded that she is mistress of nothing. “

Does this make you want to read it?