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ARC Competition Winner and other stuff

Many, many thanks to all who took the time and effort to enter the ARC competition give-away for A WEB OF AIR . My Amazon Wishlist is now heaving with book recommendations (for which I thank you, but my bank manager - well, not so much with the happiness).

In the end there were 10 entrants and I used this random generator to select the winner.

So without further ado, step forward:

the anonymous who posted at 02:23 UK time on 23 April 2010 with THE FOREST OF HANDS AND TEETH

:sprinkles confetti and does a pointy dance of congratulations:

If you could drop me an email at caroline_hooton AT yahoo dot com then I will arrange to get the ARC of A WEB OF AIR by Philip Reeve out to you asap.

Because I've got loads of ARCs at the moment, I was planning on doing another give-away next weekend of a trio of new YA/MG horror and dark fantasy, including the new Darren Shan fantasy THE THIN EXECUTIONER, so watch this space for more details if you're interested.

In other news, my own writing continues at a snail's pace although I did make a bit of a breatkthrough in the key scene between my hero and villain. I don't know about anyone else but a big personal meh of mine is books where the hero and villain finally meet and the villain basically says: "Now sit there while I tell you all about the terrible things in my life that have made me turn out this way, before unveiling all my nefarious plans so you can stop them in the final two chapters."

Unfortunately, I did exactly this with the first draft of my book. I know, I'm a hypocrite, I'm hanging my head in shame even as I type. So as part of the re-write I've been looking for an alternative way of trying to get certain information across about villain and plans without it being a Bond movie climax. And you know, it turns out to be bloody hard. However, having rewritten a scene 7 times in the space of a week, I think I've hit on a combination that kind of does what I need it to without being a cliche and it's boiled down to the hero just stopping the villain in his tracks mid ramble and telling him that he doesn't care, which sparks the villain into having a bit of a hissy fit.


Hopefully it'll read better on the page then that last paragraph suggests.

In other news, I'm going to plug Jon Mayhew whose fantastic gothic historical fantasy MORTLOCK came out in the UK earlier in the month. It's his debut novel and the back cover blurb reads as follows:

The sister is a knife-thrower in a magician's stage act, the brother an undertaker's assistant. Neither orphan knows of the other's existence. Until, that is, three terrible Aunts descend on the girl's house and imprison her guardian, the Great Cardamom. His dying act is to pass the girl a note with clues to the secret he carries to his grave. Cardamom was one of three explorers on an expedition to locate the legendary Amarant, a plant with power over life and death. Now, pursued by flesh-eating crow-like ghuls, brother and sister must decode the message and save themselves from its sinister legacy.

If you live in the northwest of the UK, then Jon will be doing a booksigning at Pritchard's Bookshop in Formby (54 BROWS LANE FORMBY L37 4ED) on Saturday 8th May between 1pm and 2pm. He's a smashing bloke and it's a brilliant book so if you can make it, then I'd recommend it.

I was going to conclude with a comment about the on-going UK general election campaign because I haven't really blogged about it. However all of the parties are so pathetic that it would be a bit like discussing a chimpanzee's tea party - when they're not making a lot of noise and causing a fuss, they're all throwing poo at each other.

I will be voting in the election because I think that it's a duty to do so given the struggle for voter emancipation. But no one has really inspired me yet and I suspect that it's going to be the case that I select the lesser of all evils. Which is depressing.

And on that cheery note, I shall take my leave and return to the writing cave.