The Black Hand, vol. 8
Hoisters – Shoplifting For Fun and Profit
Apparently there was an underground shoplifting culture that started in the late nineteenth century amongst women who worked in the domestic service and clothing industries (who would’ve thought that poorer women would resort to shoplifting - I’m shocked, I tell you, shocked).
The cool thing about it was that professional ‘hoisters’ often worked in girl gangs, and wore modified clothes with secret pockets and special hooks, to make shoplifting easier. One woman, apprenticed to the notorious gang Forty Thieves, said, “I saw a different way of life…it’s not a bad life, if you must be crooked.” I mean, that’s a great story right there.
None Shall Sleep US paperbacks are out!
None Shall Sleep has blasted into the stratosphere (woot!) on its US paperback release, after being selected as the October Barnes & Noble YA Monthly Pick.
I am so very thrilled to see my little murder book rocking so hard and living its best life!
Who would have thunk it? I remember being on writer’s retreat, and saying, ‘I want to write a teen serial killer thriller,’ and how all my friends enthusiastically enabled me. Now the book is rapidly overtaking Every Breath as my most popular release – far out. Thank you all so much!
You can still get the book – until the end of this month – in a special 50% deal at Barnes & Noble, if you click on this link.
I’ve veered away from my usual fiction-reading habits to do some research into weaponry – so my reading over the last few weeks has been all non-fiction. I’m reading Throwing Lead: A Writer’s Guide to Firearms by J. Daniel Sawyer and Mary Mason which has been extremely useful, as I am largely a gun novice, and I suddenly find myself writing a character who knows rifles. Sawyer and Mason are quite good at explaining guns to the uninitiated, and I’m glad I know the correct terms for everything now. I’ve also been reading Meat Eater by Steven Rinella, which is a kind of biography that details the author’s lifelong relationship with nature, the land, and hunting – it’s a fascinating read.
The Killing Code update
Edits for The Killing Code are done, which is very exciting! The next stage of the process is the copyedit – when we go through the manuscript with a fine-toothed comb, and correct my misspellings and any tricky grammar hiccups and so on. But it’s really very close to being at ARC-ready stage (and yes, there will be Advanced Reading Copies, which is fabulous). I’ve also seen some preliminary sketches for the cover - I love getting cover proofs so much!
My amazing editor is doing her darnedest to get everything sorted before the Christmas/New Year hiatus, when most publishing business goes quiet. I’m not sure when the title will be listed on GoodReads, or when the cover will be ready, or ARCs will go out, but stay tuned - I’ll pass on news and updates as the book progresses toward its publishable state.
What I’m writing
Now that I’ve finished the (bulk of) the edits for The Killing Code, I’ve moved back to the world of Emma Lewis and Travis Bell, in the sequel to None Shall Sleep. Yes, it’s definitely happening! The manuscript is about half-done, and I’m really hoping to cut a swathe through it during Nanowrimo. Either way, I’d like to have it completed by January because…(quick, read the next section!)
None Shall Sleep sequel update
…the sequel to None Shall Sleep will be arriving in its serialised form next year! And here’s the title and a short outline!
Yes, that’s right – it’s really coming! I’ll announce the title of Til Death Do Part, with the short outline, to the general public next week – so please keep the secret until then! I’ll start sharing the first free chapters early in the New Year, and hopefully some of you will like it enough enough to keep reading when it switches over to paid subscription.
You might have noticed, if you’re a recent subscriber, that there are new paid options for sign-ups. This newsletter will always be free! And you certainly don’t have to opt-in to paid subscriptions just yet (unless you’d like to support me and my writing early, which would be lovely), but after the first four chapters of Til Death Do Part go public, the ongoing chapters will only be available in a separate newsletter, for a fee.
I’ve made subscription costs as low as I can, and there are three subscription options – monthly, annual, and foundation – which will start at $5.00AU per month, with bonuses like free e-copies, plus limited-edition paperbacks at higher levels. I’ll also be running special subscription sales, when people can get a cheaper sign-up for a limited time (I’ll let you know when those sales happen). You can check out prices and bonuses etc by clicking on this button here:
I hope you like the title of Til Death Do Part (it’s nice to not be talking about ‘None Shall Sleep 2’, at last!) and this sneak peek - keep an eye out for the cover reveal and full synopsis in November’s edition of The Black Hand. I can’t wait to share it with you!
You can still get tickets for this event, whether to attend in person or online, and I’m thrilled to be ‘on stage’ with such #LoveOzYA luminaries as Michael Pryor, Meg Caddy, Barry Jonsberg, Tristan Bancks and Alice Pung!
The conference begins on Friday 29 October – and you can find tickets here.
This month we’re reading CS Pacat’s latest book (which I have been absolutely HANGING OUT TO READ, so yes, this is one of those situations where my own taste has driven the bookclub pick, soz). It’s the YA fantasy Dark Rise, and my kids and I are already fighting over my copy at home. Please do join in bookclub anytime, we love to have new friends :)
Space medicine for the Inexperienced Astronaut
This article is quite fascinating, because it suggests that ‘space tourism’ is going to become a thing (how? Who could afford it, except uber-rich people? I really don’t know) and poses some questions about how the untrained tourist might cope in the extreme hostility of space.
A group of medical professionals is already gearing up for the inevitable queries about things like ‘can I go into space if I have a hip replacement?’ and ‘what’s the longest allowable space-flight time for a person with a pacemaker?’ and then you’d have to add on some other queries related to asthma, and pregnancy, and young people…
I mean, I don’t really know about jaunting around in space – it seems a bit far off to me, especially given that there is lots to do here on Earth (*cough* climate change *cough*) that humans haven’t finished dealing with yet. But for anyone writing about the realities of civilian space travel, it’s a interesting to consider, and the article is a useful place to start research.
And that’s it for this month! Stay safe and well, fair weather to you all, and see you again soon!