Its been ages since I’ve read any Black Library short stories. I used to read them quite religiously up until January of this year, but then it all just kind of fell off since I was focusing far more on reading novels, whether from Black Library or any other publisher. A couple weeks ago, I started to go through some of the recently released short stories, and by “recently released” I mean the last eight months. And I was intimidated by how many had been released in this window.
However, the ones that really caught my eye were the three short stories that featured the Eldar and told the three-stage tale of the Carnac Campaign. Written by Joe Parrino, Graeme Lyon and Rob Sanders, these short stories proved to be among the best of the format that I’ve read over the years from Black Library. Nightspear, Sky Hunter, and Spirit War each tells us a different aspect of the Carnac Campaign, and I thoroughly enjoyed each of them.
‘She had faith,’ Miriya told Verity. ‘As do we. And that will always be enough.’
– Hammer & Anvil, a Sisters of Battle novel by James Swallow
Note: I would like to point out that this is an advanced review since the novel itself will not be available to the general public until November this year, and was available only to the people who were at Games Day UK a couple weeks ago.
Hammer & Anvil continues the adventures of two of the most faithful daughters of the Emperor, the Sister of Battle Miriya and the Sister Hospitaller Verity. First seen in Faith & Fire by the same author, this time the two unlikely heroines are thrust into the mystery of Sanctuary 101, an Ecclesiarchy outpost under command of a small force of Sisters of Battle. With the outpost’s inhabitants slaughtered by the merciless Necrons, Miriya and Verity are part of a mission to reconsecrate the outpost and find out what happened.
Ah, hard to believe there has been no bloggage for ten days now! That’s a sin if there ever was one 🙂
Nothing big has really been happening around in the 40k world. Unless you count the Tomb Kings release or Dark Eldar advance orders. Or perhaps the fact that BL has finally started shipping out copies of Promethean Sun.
On the writing front, Project Hunt is still stalled, Project Honour needs only a sample and Project Salvation is currently seriously WIP.
What is Project Salvation you ask? Just a Deathwatch novel I have in the works 🙂 The breakdown for the submission required chapters plus a prologue is complete. Currently working out the remaining chapters. The prologue has been written, as has chapter 1. First drafts only though mind you. Waiting on a feedback for the breakdown/summary as well. I have found that when I get any critiques back on my work, it really spurs on my writing.
At the moment, the sample stands at nearly 4000 words for a prologue, the first chapter, and the beginnings of the second chapter. The guidelines say I need 10,000 words minimum across three chapters. The prologue obviously will not be submitted, it is mostly there in the sample for now so I can get a few details about my main character clear. And I aiming to get it done so that it kind of foreshadows later events in the novel and gives me a basis for some of the motivations for this character. My main aim is to do 500 words a day, which is really not that difficult. Considering how far along I am, it should be about another 10 days at most to get the first draft done and then back to editing and ironing out the kinks in the pitch. The first month of the window isn’t even half over and I am quite far along on my pitches. Its a really good feeling.
I wanted to tackle a novel as my fifth pitch instead of a short story. Mostly because I was completely unsure what to write about in a short story. Although even as I write this, the creative wheels are working and the output so far suggests a prologue-ish short story for this novel submission. However I find I am not keen on submitting continuous works.
It has been almost two weeks since I have even seen Project Hunt. I aim to get that done this week. Perhaps looking at it again with a fresh mind may be the spark that lets me finish the synopsis so I can move on to the sample. I have always been a fan of Space Wolves and I really really like this idea. Definitely want to see it done.
Same goes for Project Honour. However the summary and synopsis are in place, and I am just undecided about where to start the story at. There are 3-4 potential entry points for the sample to begin at, and choosing between them is a serious chore. Hopefully I can get that sorted out this week as well.
In other news, I have been prepping a Deathwatch character for the RPG I am aiming to take part in with some of the folks over at Bolthole. Rolling with a Blood Angels Assault Marine. Its a two-bit process creating a character for the RPG. On the one hand all the options and the actual creation process are quite fun but it is all also so very confusing. Work and Bolthole/Submissions stuff has really kept me busy though so my assault marine is going nowhere at the moment. We have not been able to organize a proper meeting yet either.
And our very own Pyroriffic today informed us that her novella Accursed Eternity has cleared the First Draft phase. Exciting stuff! I cannot wait for the associated anthology, Fateweaver, to come out. Or The Gildar Rift.
Let’s see what else. Umm nothing really. How are things with all you folks?