Being Equal

We’re right on the edge of something particularly awesome. I know this is probably the view of anyone at any given time in history – you know, that guy who’s sitting around the first human-made fire. Screw collecting burning trees struck by lightning and trying to keep ’em burning: this dude’s rubbed some sticks together or whatever, he’s got fire on demand, he’s getting warm, and that dude’s saying, “Man, being a human is awesome, and we’re right on the fucking pinnacle of achievement here.” The more specific awesome thing I’m talking about here is equality, but we’re not quite there yet. I think we all have a part to play, through our own personal platforms. You can help. Yeah. You’ve got a platform. You might not know it, but you do. My most obvious one is books, but I Read More …

An Origin Story

I love making characters. I thought you might like to hear an aborted origin story for Carter.  In case you don’t know, she’s Mason’s handler in Upgrade.  Like many of the actors in the book, I played with a bunch of ideas for her — whether she should be human or an alien, or a machine, or a collective consciousness.  It’s this last one that I found … interesting (and I can share with you, because: no spoilers!  It’s not what she ended up being). A few years ago my Dad died.  That was a hard thing as many of you who’ve gone through similar will know, but I consider myself luckier than some: not only did we have a good relationship despite living in different countries, we communicated all the time.  I have reams of letters from before the Internet, and Read More …

Girls Who Are Girls

I was talking with a friend the other day and the topic of my characters came up. We were really talking about women and empowerment, but I’ll take it.  Anyway, what I always find interesting is that people seem to think that girls should be written differently to men.  I mean sure, I get that women tend to not call each other by nicknames like, “Bullethead,” and “Axe,” or call their friends by their surnames (unless they’re Carlisle), but why can’t they be strong, powerful, and save the world? If enough content creators decide that enough is enough and write strong women by default, maybe we’ll eventually be able to stop talking about it because they won’t be strong — they’ll be normal.    

Just a Taste

“What I’m thinking,” said Carlisle to the barman, “is that you’re a thief.” The barman blinked at her.  “Say what?” “Because I know a thief when I see one,” she said, her words slurring just a little.  She leaned forward over the bar.  “Serious…  Seriously?  Twenty bucks for a shot of Jack is theft.” “You could drink somewhere else,” said the barman.  “Free country.” Carlisle gave a long, lazy smile.  “Free country.”  Only bar in this town.  If you can call it a town.  She’d heard of three-horse towns, and this place was two horses short.  No one else was in the bar tonight, the broken down old jukebox spitting out the same two songs on repeat.  She’d had about as much Johnny Cash as she could take.  The door to the bar opened behind her, and she felt a Read More …

Meet… The Future

I’ve started a board on Pinterest to hold visual inspiration for components of Upgrade. I thought it’d be cool if I started sharing inspirations for some of the characters in the story before it hits the press.  Using visual tools like this is new to me — I didn’t do it with Night’s Favour at all, and I’m finding it fun and different at the same time. This is the kind of thing I’m talking about: Now, back to it.