So I mentioned that I've been putting together the initial chapters and outline of a non-SF book. (I didn't mention that I did a tonne of research last summer.) I've come up with another pseudonym, because that's how the business works. This time, while I'm not going to actively keep it a secret, my real name won't be mentioned anywhere in the book. Or here on the website, unless someone guesses it. (It's not even been submitted to publishers yet, so we're a long way from having a physical book in existence. At least a year, maybe two.)
Weird process, really. We've discussed it here before, though, when I invented the Thomas Blackthorne identity.
I spent last Monday in London, in order to attend the Orion authors' party. It's an annual event, this time marking the 20th anniversary of the company's existence. Ian Rankin gave a speech, following the CEO's round-up. Everyone got to stand around a dinosaur - the venue was the Natural History Museum.
So I got to meet up with old friends: Justina Robson, Maggie Furey, Jaine Fenn, Paul McAuley, Sarah Pinsborough (don't know her well) and Joe Abercrombie, along with editors and agents you probably won't have heard of. But if it weren't for them you wouldn't have read the books those other guys wrote.
Spent yesterday sedentary - good work writing-wise, but no training due to aggravating an injury Thursday night. Feeling better now after something that was half rehab, half training: an hour's sort-of walk along the river (Yvonne called it going for a limp); then 15 minutes on the punch bags (heavy, light and speed) with no proper rounds and minimal footwork; then a 50-minute chest and back workout (9 sets of dumbbell bench presses, 2 sets of flyes, 1 set of wide-grip pushups, 9 or 10 sets each arm of one-arm rows, 5 sets of kettlebell swings, 2 sets of lat pulldowns); and 15 minutes stretching. Feeling better now.
Watched the movie Warrior yesterday. A proper fight movie with proper actors - an MMA version of Rocky, to some extent. Except the MMA is more genuine than the boxing in Rocky. Turns out (from watching the DVD extras) that Greg Jackson was hugely involved in it: he's the best known MMA trainer in the world, and the actors and director wanted everything to look as real as possible. Nice work.
For pure drama, though, I have to say I really liked The Killing. We watched the Danish original. Most excellent. In fiction, recent trends and sub-genres haven't grabbed me personally - except for Nordic crime fiction. Jo Nesbø, Stieg Larsson and Henning Mankell are great, and there must be more I haven't discovered yet.
And if Secret Squirrel doesn't ring a bell - I'm showing my age again, aren't I?