First Past The Post...
Work, books, food, and/or Mr Brenchley
In a rather charming feedback loop, a deliberate act of recursivity, the first item of news to report in my new newsletter is that I have started a new newsletter, and this is it.
It’s going to take me a while to sort my way through all the smart & fancy features that Substack offers, so at the time of writing this is going to be very basic for a while. It’ll get prettier later. There’ll be a freebie version which I hope will go out more often than I think it will, and a paid subscription version which will be more frequent than that. (Of course I have dreams of regularity—every week! twice a month! whatever!—but I am somewhat familiar with myself and my habits, and I don’t tend to do well on a calendrical schedule, so no promises are being made at this time.)
As is traditional at this time of year (it’s January, if you’re catching up later), I am full of good intentions and high hopes: I will work harder! I will do more! I will get my professional life, my study and my kitchen organised! Everything will be better, by golly!
[By the way, if you don’t know me from Adam and are wondering why in the world you ever signed up for this, here’s a helpful link to my website, where you will find all my books and stories itemised, and plenty of other material besides. A person can write a lot of words in forty-five years, I find.]
Currently I’m working on the third book—MARY ELLEN, CRATEREAN!—in the Crater School series. English girls’ boarding-school adventures, on Mars: how can you conceivably resist? The first two, THREE TWINS AT THE CRATER SCHOOL and DUST UP AT THE CRATER SCHOOL, are out now from the rather wonderful Wizard’s Tower Press. You can keep up with the harum-scarum Lower Fourth, the mighty and irreproachable head girl Rowany de Vere and many more chapter by chapter if you sign up for my Patreon, where you will also find a great many other things ongoing, mostly on Mars—this is Old Mars, with an atmosphere and canals and aliens and everything—including a couple of other novels that I haven’t finished yet.
Next up, also from Wizard’s Tower Press, is the re-release of my first fantasy series, The Books of Outremer, in the author’s-cut six-volume preferred edition, newly tidied up and ready for anything. Essentially, this is the mediaeval Crusader Kingdoms recast with magic. War and mystery; knights and pages and castles; camels and tents and desert folk—and djinni, ’ifrit and more. Fey boys and sensible girls, as is traditional in my oeuvre. The first volume, THE DEVIL IN THE DUST, will be coming shortly, with the rest to follow at regular intervals.
One of the many things I want to tackle this year is bringing the rest of my long-lost backlist into print again and ebook too, as all the early stuff predates that particular revolution. Mostly I’ll be doing this through Book View Café, the authors’ collective I’ve been a delighted member of for the last ten years or so.
Anyway, there you have it: current work, hopes and dreams, somewhat discursively. That’s pretty much what you’ve signed up for here, so I hope you’re going to enjoy it, and maybe even find it useful now and then. Well, the recipes, at any rate. I’m making a fennel, shrimp and mushroom risotto this evening; that might find itself written down and posted here.
Oh, and as I’ve never kept a book journal of any kind, I thought I’d just make note here of what I’m reading, too. Currently that’s A Pale Light in the Black by K B Wagers. I do love me some space opera, so I do, and we are living through a brilliant resurgence of the form.
Seek me elsewhere: I am @ChazBrenchley on Twitter, Chaz Brenchley on Facebook, and as noted above, my website may be found at http://chazbrenchley.co.uk/ and my Patreon at https://www.patreon.com/user?u=1002984