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I've signed up for this year's National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), and have decided to write the first of the stories in the Unity Chronicles canon, Ex Nihilo.  So I'll be aiming to get 50,000 words done in just 30 days - should be interesting to say the least!

Follow my efforts here:…
  • Listening to: Offspring - Rise and Fall
  • Reading: This page
  • Watching: This page
  • Playing: With words on this page
  • Eating: Nowt
  • Drinking: Nowt
Well the "new project" has now been alive and kicking for over a year, so I thought it was about time for an update.

The Unity Chronicles is set to be a collection of at least four - possibly as many as six - short to medium-length stories taking place in the same universe at relatively proximate times (the last story chronologically takes place around 160 years after the first).  I've got a lot of background notes written, fleshing out and populating the universe, addressing matters of politics, economics and culture.  There's a lot going on.

To stay updated with the progress of this little project, point your browsing device at… - this is the Ex Nihilo blog, containing everything from historical notes and biographies to abstract thoughts on themes and the issues arising from writing a novel.

So until my next half-arsed DA journal entry, fare thee well.
  • Listening to: John Barleycorn Reborn
Circa 1996, I discovered a game.  This game is called Escape Velocity, and the general concept was a space-based adventure in which the player could do whatever the hell they wished, with various storylines open to them against the backdrop of a galactic civil war.

Circa 1997-8, I began writing a story based on this game, and over the next 9-10 years would return - sporadically at best - to add to and modify this story.  When The Maker's Mark was published, I decided I'd like to revisit this story with a view to eventually getting it published too.  To do this, I decided it would need to be rebuilt from the ground up - to move it away from the realm of fanfiction and give it a consistent style (I'd like to think my writing has improved substantially over the last 10 years or so).

Thus, the new project is born.  The book is currently being planned under the working title "Blind Obedience", and while it's still in the very early stages, I'm starting to write some background pieces for it which will often be popping up here.  Everything I write that is set in this world/galaxy/whatever will be uploaded under the heading "The Unity Chronicles", as I'm considering writing more than one novel set there, and it strikes me as a good name for the series (if series it becomes).

That's it.
  • Listening to: My Dying Bride - A Line of Deathless Kings
So I'm officially a published author.  How about that?

My short story, "Legacy of Life" has been published as part of an anthology called The Maker's Mark: Remnants, which is set in a surreal mechanical reality comparable to a western, but with droids instead of organic life.  The website for the book can be found here:

This is something of an experiment in world creation.  Instead of creating a world in detail and then briefing authors to write stories set within it, the authors were given the broadest of briefs and the world has taken shape through their stories.  Now the experiment is continuing, with the opening of the fanworks section (follow the links on the site, or simply add "fanworks" to the end of the above URL).  This is an open invitation to anybody and everybody to submit their own art to this project (literary, visual art or absolutely anything else) and thus contribute to the ongoing creation and shaping of this reality.

Personally, I'm already working on a couple of pieces based on my own story.  One regarding the Vault, in search of which the archaeologist meets her end; and a prequel to the account of the Reaver, telling the story of how he came to rely upon near-constant replacements which led to so many atrocities.

Watch this space.

  • Listening to: Savatage - When the Crowds are Gone
First off, this is likely to be one of my very few forays into the world of DA journals; I have a journal already (

You may have noticed a load of new updates here today - snaps from my Lake District trip last year.  While not strictly in-keeping with my general theme of prose and poetry, they are tangetially related in that these are the sort of sights that truly inspire much of my literary work.

Anyway, that's it from me.

Fare thee well, all.

  • Listening to: Skyclad - Sins of Emission