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Die Hard


After reading Nothing Lasts Forever, I thought I’d go back and watch Die Hard, the movie based on the book. It wasn’t a critical success when it came out in 1987 but it’s a cracking movie. The characters are great, the Christmas-references are entertaining, and structurally it is sweet, all the plot threads are woven into a satisfying ending.

Bruce Willis is fantastic in this movie, and though each subsequent iteration, especially beyond the 3rd one, became increasingly weaker, this, the original version of the “John McClane fights bad guys” franchise is just sooo entertaining.

A proper movie.




Being an independent writer is great.  Having had three agents and two publishers over the last twenty-odd years, the freedom I have now is tangible, and it’s liberating.

I do believe that in the long term, big-book publishing is dying out, bookshops are like living museums – the publishing industry is sustained by a tiny group of mega-successful authors – but I also think there’ll be room for low-cost, low-drag independents like me to function.




When I published Gun Jesus earlier this year, part of the premise was that there was a new Chinese Premier, with Xi having been ousted and the new leader being more of a Confucian in his approach.

Well, it looks like I got the first part of that right. We’ll see about the second.



Before I do anything else, I need to sort out the final choices on the new website.

This weekend, I think.


Harm’s Way


I’m ready to begin the first, rough draft of Harm’s Way, the third and final book in the Jago trilogy.

I’m stuffed to the gills with notes and ideas, snippets of conversation, narrative trajectories, characters. Was going to wait until the New Year – it’s not due out till Spring ’24 – but I might start soon.

I want to see how things play out.




I’m thankful for antibiotics. Saved my life when I was young. Saved me a lot of pain and illness since. And now, they’re easing me out of a throat/chest infection that was showing no signs of disappearing soon.

Still feel washed out though, like I’ve landed face-down on a beach after my ship capsized in a storm, and am barely able to crawl out of the water. But the thing is, I’m on the beach, not flailing about in choppy seas.

And on the topic of the beach, think I’ll chance a walk down there this morning, with my pooch, Angus. He hasn’t been getting his usual walks.

Angus. Always ready to walk. Or sleep.



Storytellers are Thieves. Vandals. They ransack reality to find a sliver of broken glass they can hold up and say, ‘Isn’t this pretty? See how it sparkles.’

I think I describe the selfishness of the writing process best in this imagined conversation between Odysseus and his lover, the demi-goddess Kalypso, where he tells her he is leaving her to return to his wife.


the definition



  1. A feeling of respect or reverence mixed with dread and wonder, often inspired by something majestic or powerful.




I haven’t watched Rings of Power. But I came across this from Halbrand/Sauron, and it’s manipulation 101.

  • Find out what people fear.
  • Offer them a solution.
  • Control the solution.

Halbrand/Sauron has obviously read the Fauci playbook.




When I write YA stories, I don’t really write them for young adults. I just write them. For readers. Sure, I don’t go overboard on sex scenes, but that’s because sex scenes don’t write well. Even DH Lawrence couldn’t write them, and it’s kind of what he’s known for.

When I write YA, I just tell a story in which the protagonist happens to be maybe fifteen, sixteen years old.

I think I’ve invented a new genre: Young Protagonist books.