I get emails from fans all the time, it’s one of the best parts of this job. I love hearing from you guys!! But a couple of weeks ago I got a very strange message through my website. It was from somebody called Alejandro, and it simply said this:
“That’s an odd question,” I thought. “But yes, I do like chicken.”
Especially when it’s Kentucky Fried.
Anyway, I wrote back to Alejandro and, as a joke, said that one day I would write a book about chicken, just for him. I wasn’t really being serious, but the more I thought about it, the more I liked the idea of writing a novel about chicken, about monstrous chickens, about the kinds of chickens that will haunt your nightmares…
So, challenge accepted.
I have started a brand new novel, called Chicken, and I’m posting a couple of chapters a week over on Wattpad! There are four chapters up there already, and a prologue, so if you like chicken, and you like horror (and come on, who doesn’t like both of those things!) then feel free to check it out!
There is so much about being an author that is awesome, but sometimes, every now and then, something happens that is just mind-blowingly amazing. And this is one of those times! A few years back, the Escape From Furnace series sold into Brazil. This was fantastic news, because I’d heard from other writers just how many passionate and devoted readers there are in Brazil, and I couldn’t wait for them to be incarcerated inside the world of Furnace Penitentiary.
I wasn’t disappointed! It didn’t take long for Furnace to build a small but absolutely wonderful following of Brazilian fans. I was getting dozens of emails a week from people who loved the series. How cool is that! As often happens with foreign editions, though, my Brazilian publisher only bought the rights to the first three books, and then made the decision not to publish the rest!
Disaster! Outrage! I was so disappointed, because I wanted my Brazilian readers to be able to go on this journey, I wanted them to be able to see it through with the rest of us. I got so many emails from people wanting to know when Furnace 4 and 5 would be out, and the only answer I could give them was, I don’t know if they ever will be!!
Then Diegonly, Raphael and Henrique got in touch. These guys were huge Furnace fans, they loved the books, and they weren’t prepared to let the series end after Furnace 3. So they began a campaign to get the publisher to publish Fugitives and Execution. They are warriors!! They never gave up. Like Alex and Zee and Donovan they knew that if they fought hard enough, if they never lost hope, then they could do anything. They set up the brilliant Furnace BR page on Facebook, they even went to talk to the publishers in person to argue their case. Their campaign worked wonders, and after a few months I got an email from my agent saying that the publisher was so impressed with the fans that they wanted to publish the last two books in the series.
How amazing is that!! 😀
And now, thanks to these guys, FUGITIVES IS ON SALE IN BRAZIL!!!!!!
I just want to say a HUGE thanks to Diegonly, Raphael and Henrique, and everyone else who read the books in Brazil, and who fought to see this adventure through to the end. All writers rely on their fans, we write the books for you, and events like this are what make everything worthwhile. These books simply would not be available to read without you guys, and for that I owe you big time!!
So those of you who want to know what happens next, pick up a copy of the book! All for one, and let’s get the hell out of Furnace!!!!!
I recently wrote a piece for Tor.com about how horror has changed my life for the better, and how I think writing horror is good for the soul.
“Writing horror almost killed me. But it saved my life too.
It has saved my life more than once.
I’ll start with the almost-killing. Me, eleven years old and fresh from reading my first Stephen King (Pet Sematary, and even the thought of that book still brings a grin to my face). I suddenly knew what I wanted to do with my life, I wanted to be a horror writer. I wanted to tell scary stories and get paid to do it. In my eyes I was already a professional, I had five years experience under my belt after writing my first gothic masterpiece, The Little Monster Book, at six years old. I was ready to shift things up a gear, though. I wanted to write something that would terrify people.
Back then, I had a huge advantage. I believed in horror. In fact, that’s how I thought writing worked: authors didn’t just sit down and imagine things, they went out into the world and found real ghosts, and real monsters, then used those experiences as nightmare fuel. I couldn’t quite comprehend how something as good as Pet Sematary could exist without some kernel of truth at its heart, some secret, real-life horror. I was convinced that there was a conspiracy of horror authors who had witnessed the supernatural, a cabal of paranormal detectives who shared their experiences as fiction. And I wanted in. At eleven years old I didn’t just suspect that the supernatural existed, I knew that it did. I had a desperate, unshakable faith in it. That was my modus operandi, then, to find real horror and then use that experience to create a truly unforgettable story.
The other part of my plan involved a murder house, a flashlight, and my best friend Nigel.