Wow! Really‽ Thanks!

That ought to cover it.

Next week is Thanksgiving in the US and also, coincidentally, the launch day for Covenant in paperback form. As it happens, I used to commemorate Thanksgiving even after coming back to Blighty (I’m not sure how much you can celebrate an overseas festival on your own), although my form was probably a little different. No, I didn’t dwell on the plight of the First Nations over on US soil; and no, I haven’t forgotten it either. 

But what I liked to do was have a day where I switch off the inner critic, take stock and reflect upon what I ought to be grateful for. Like the scene in Scars and Stripes where protagonist Alex is living in an 8 x 8 room in Stapleton, walled behind his own resistance to life. And even though he feels he has nothing, life begs to differ when Thanksgiving comes around.

As a writer, how you feel can often depend upon where you put your focus.

Recently, I had a couple of agent rejections. It would be easy to take a one-way bus ride to mopeville, but for the following Thanksgivings:
1. I’d only found out about the open door a few days before, so it wasn’t as if I had to wait long for a decision.
2. A writer friend of mine – you know who you are! – has been offered representation by an agent, so I know it is still possible! (And, if all goes to plan, expect an interview about it here before Christmas.)
3. It’s been a great few months:
a) My short story Perfect Circle became a prizewinner.
b) Superhero Club was published by Musa.
c) Covenant came out as an ebook in the UK and beyond.
d) Covenant has now been created as a paperback and will be available shortly.
e) I learned about the interrobang – see blog post title above.
f) Interviews aplenty – here, here, here and here.

Now, I know what you’re thinking. “Hey, that was all a cunning ruse to remind us of what he’s had published.” Yep, and they’re just a few of the things that I’m thankful for.

I’m not quite done with that theme yet. Nothing happens in isolation. (Okay, parthenogenesis in lizards, or some sharks in captivity – I’ll give you that.) So my thanks go to everyone who contributes to my writing, in ways seen and unseen, writers and readers, particularly Villayat and Rebsie of late.

Thank ye kindly.


  1. Chloe says:

    I haven't been able to find an interrobang to use on the blog. HOW DID YOU DO IT?

    (Oh yeah, and congratulations for a super-productive few months and all that…)

  2. Derek says:

    Hi, Chloe. Easy peasy – I searched on the web and then copied and pasted! You can also find out the keystroke command, but that was too much like hard work. I love the interrobang. It's both enthusiastic and potentially sarcastic as well. :o)

  3. Chloe says:

    It's my favourite punctuation mark. Apparently it's part of Word 2010 but 2007 which is what I've got. Your copying and pasting tactic is sneaky and cunning and other fox-like characteristics. You will go far.

  4. Derek says:

    Apparently it's in Wingdings2 for Word 2003. Time to go through your character map. IRe: going far. I went to the Isles of Scilly – does that count‽

  5. Derek says:

    Thanks, Eleni. The cover was a gift from a former editor.

    And the latest news, just in, is that Covenant is indeed available now as a paperback – the ISBN number is 978-0-9569877-3-0.

    (Amazon links: and

    I'm also offering signed copies for sale – drop me an email and I can tell you the cost to wherever you are in the world.

    In the meantime, here's an informative post about some of the book's themes and influences, from when the ebook came out:

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