…working in clay. It’s from one of my favourite quotes by Arthur Machen, “I dream in fire but work in clay.” For me that sums up the creative process perfectly. The whole idea used to depress me — that my idea for a story is never done justice by the story I eventually write. But after doing this for a while now, I’ve come to learn that there’s really no such thing as perfection. A piece of fiction is never actually finished, it’s just put to one side, published (if I’m lucky), and then I move on to something else.
There’s something quite comforting in that, actually, because it means I always strive to make my next piece of writing better than the last. That’s probably why I don’t find writing particularly easy, and while I usually enjoy it, it’s challenging and demanding.
So … that’s why I’ve called my new ebook publishing venture DREAMING IN FIRE PRESS. Just because I like the quote. And I can.
Now then, I’m not the most tech-savvy bloke around. I have an iphone, yes, and I use it mainly for … well, phoning people. I text with it and check my emails, too, but that’s about it. I haven’t so much dived into the sea of apps available as dipped my toe in. In fact, the very tip of my toe (bloody Flappy Birds!). I also work on a Mac, but it’s not attached/tuned into/magicked into the whole icloud thingy. And I don’t even want to talk about the Windows laptop we bought our daughter for Christmas…
So the whole idea of ebooks has troubled me for some time. I’d think, Well, yeah, I really should. And I will. One day. But it scared me. It took some time to take the plunge, and I’d like to think Robert Swartwood for all his help and advice (and also his splendid book designs), Graeme Reynolds for advice and support, and also Kealan Patrick Burke of ElderLemon Design for his great covers.
I’ve come to realise that I have a LOT of stuff hanging around on my hard disc that really should be out there for readers to — hopefully — snap up. Novellas, several novels, short stories… For now it’s all work that’s been published before in one form or another (although there will be some rarities coming out soon), but depending on reaction to these first ebooks I’m putting out, that might change. There’s at least one novelette series I’d very much like to continue (anyone guess what it is?), and other ideas that might suit the whole ebook platform very well.
So I hope you’ll enjoy this first round of ebooks. It starts with WHITE because … well, I can’t think of a better place to begin. It won the British Fantasy Award, was optioned for movie (still alive!), was selected for the two major Year’s Best anthologies as well as the Mammoth Book of the Best of Best New Horror, and it’s one of those stories that people still want to talk to me about, even thirteen years after it was first published.
Hope you’ll pick it up. It’s March, and there’s still time for snow.