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2009: A Very Good Year

The first week of December.

The days are getting darker, our in-trays are beginning to empty (we wish), the communal surfaces are beginning to grow fat with baked goods and illicit seasonal beverages . . .

As we hurtle towards the New Year (at FTL travel inducing velocity and with a blood-biscuit level that would make even Alexia Tarabotti proud) the Orbit UK Team has banded together to bring you a retrospective on what made 2009 another great year. The short answer of course is great authors, Global Vision, plenty of awards and um, you.  But humour us, read on below the cut, you’ll like it (or at least learn something) we promise! Read the rest of this entry »

Lili Saintcrow – NYT Bestseller!

Yeah Lili!

lili_stcrow-betrayalsLili hit the New York Times’ Children’s Paperback Bestseller list at #5, kicking ass with her YA novel, Betrayals.  I am very proud to work with her and I’m SUPER  excited for her.  Now I can introduce her to you as NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER, Lili Saintcrow!! Yeah!!!Saintcrow_Flesh Circus (MM)

We also have the newest Jill Kismet from Lili out this week – FLESH CIRCUS.  The Cirque de Charnu has arrived – and they’re ready for fresh meat.  Jill Kismet can’t do anything without destroying a fragile truce that has existed between the hellbreed, the hunters, and the Circus.  But when circus performers start dying grotesquely, it’s all Jill can do to keep her head in the game – and out of the lion’s mouth.

Author post

How to Write a Story

Someone asked me today how I write stories, or where I get the ideas for stories. I told them it was quite simple, really, and decided it’d be best if I shared it with you, as well.

The first step is waking up. Your body will take care of this, usually. Sometimes a passing stranger will also help, nudging you with their toe and trying to force you out from underneath the bus bench where you’ve been sleeping. It just depends on the day, really.

Once you are awake, examine the palms of your hands. The tattoos that you have upon them will have changed in the night, as they always do. Don’t worry about the tattoos – they’re very clearly written in Bookman Old Style and are easily readable, and you never feel them changing in the night.

On the left palm will be a time and a date, and upon the right will be an address. I suggest you familiarize yourself with a variety of postal codes so you can identify which state or country the address is in. This will save a lot of time down the road. Read the rest of this entry »

Tart Talk with Alexia and Jane (Vol.1)

Nicole Peeler’s character Jane True thought it might be a good idea to get some pointers on being an urban fantasy heroine from Gail Carriger’s character Alexia Tarabotti.

They met. They talked. See for yourself.

Selkies and the soulless have an awful lot to talk about, don’t you know, so this is but part one — their lively repartee regarding tea, underclothes, those remarks involving “doggies” that tend to leave Alexia baffled etc. will continue, here.

Author post

Faster Than the Speed of Light

In the last blog I wrote, as promised a little while ago, I offered a detailed mathematical explanation of the principles of faster than light space travel, and added an appendix containing blueprints for an FTL vessel that can be built out of computer components, and a 3D map of the hyperburrows of space, including directions to the planet where sexy aliens can be found in abundance. (You see! I really am a man of my word!)

However, in an appalling breach of professional etiquette, my editor DongWon Song intercepted my blog and proceeded to build and then use his own spaceship. He has now departed New York for the Planet of the Sexy Aliens, leaving behind him a virtual avatar who (via a doppelganger connection) will continue to perform his editorial duties for Orbit.

The avatar is indistinguishable from the real DongWon save for one telling feature; when it rains, he does not get wet.

Chastened by this experience, I am now writing a much more general blog, without any maths or blueprints, to explain how you (or rather HE!!!) can travel through space. Read the rest of this entry »

The Week That Was, As It Was

As we here in the US continue to recover from turkey overload, let’s take a quick look at what went up on the Orbit blog while the ingredients were still being prepared.

The sad news arrived only this morning of the passing of World Fantasy Award-winning author Robert Holdstock.

Orbit was happy to announce that international bestseller Kim Stanley Robinson would be doing three books with us, beginning with the novel 2312.

A.Lee Martinez told us why comedy is not only harder than tragedy — it’s a lot harder.

And, Lauren Panepinto, Orbit Creative Director, noted that the odds were good for one of Orbit’s covers winning the latest SFSignal book cover smackdown. Very good.

Robert Holdstock, 1948 – 2009

The very sad news broke over the weekend that Robert Holdstock, much-loved author of the World Fantasy Award-winner Mythago Wood, among many other works, passed away early Sunday morning. The SFF community has lost a wonderful writer and Rob’s family and friends have lost a wonderful man.  The wild wood seems a little less magical this morning.

I Like These Odds…

Print VS. ts1 = good odds for me!


Orbit Welcomes Kim Stanley Robinson

Photo Credit: Catriona Sparks

Photo Credit: Catriona Sparks

We are very pleased to announce that Orbit has agreed to a three-book deal with internationally bestselling author Kim Stanley Robinson. The first novel, scheduled for publication in 2012, has the working title 2312.

Tim Holman, Orbit VP and Publisher, says: “Kim Stanley Robinson is a writer who can make the future credible, no matter how incredible it might seem. 2312 will be set in our solar system three hundred years from now; a solar system in which mankind has left Earth and found new habitats. This will be a novel for anyone curious to see what our future looks like – a grand science-fictional adventure in every sense – and I’m thrilled that Orbit will be publishing it in both the US and the UK.”

Robinson, best known for his critically acclaimed Mars Trilogy, is a winner of the Hugo, Nebula, Locus, Campbell, World Fantasy, and BSFA Awards, and in 2008 was named a Hero of the Environment by Time magazine. He says: “It’s a real pleasure to join Orbit and their ambitious program to extend the reach of science fiction to the entire reading public.”

Stan — welcome aboard!

Author post


I am a funny guy.  I don’t like admitting this, even if it’s true.  Our society has a dismissive view of comedy.  Comedy is silly.  Comedy is slight.  Certainly, comedy is a frivolous, unimportant thing.  Especially compared to tragedy.  Comedy might make you laugh, but it can’t make you feel.  It can’t make you think.

“Balderdash!!” I shout.  I shout it so loudly that it does indeed require two exclamation marks. Read the rest of this entry »

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