Wednesday, 17 December 2008

January's Publication

That's right, it's our blog founder, MNW Curran himself!

The Secret War continues . . .

Prepare to confront the incarnation of evil. It is 1820 and the world is on the brink.

A fearless cohort of soldier-monks, led by Lieutenant William Saxon, has been dispatched to Egypt on the most important mission in history. For thousands of years a great secret has been kept: a stockpile of appalling malevolence, which, if let loose, will plunge the world into eternal damnation. This is the Hoard of Mhorrer. The soldiers must find and destroy the Hoard before the daemonic agents of the evil Count Ordrane of Draak locate it.

In a heart-stopping race against time, ranging from Papal Rome to the desolate heart of Egypt’s Sinai peninsula, the soldiers must battle murderous militiamen and pitiless daemons, and finally, terrifyingly, the bloodthirsty Guardians of the Horde.

If William and his men succeed, the clandestine war between Heaven and Hell will at last begin to favour the forces of light. But if they fail, and the agents of Hell claim the Hoard, then they will unleash an army of invincible daemons, and humankind – what is left of it – will come to know the true meaning of evil.

1)Tell us a little about your novel, The Hoard of Mhorrer.
The Hoard of Mhorrer kicks off several years after the events of The Secret War. It starts in familiar territory with a daemon-hunt through the streets of 19th century Prague, and the adventures progress to the Sinai after the main character, Captain William Saxon, is despatched there on a perilous mission to find the greatest threat to mankind: a hoard of artefacts capable of unleashing an army of daemons upon an unsuspecting world. It's a bloody, exciting adventure story of treachery, revelation and heroism.

(The plan was to write something that surpassed The Secret War in many ways, and judging by the feedback I've had from readers and the publisher, I've achieved that - I just hope everyone else agrees!)

2) The Hoard of Mhorrer is your second book published by Macmillan New Writing. How has your life changed since they published The Secret War in 2007?

My life hasn't changed that much - not in a world breaking-way. I still have a day job, I'm not stopped in the streets or mobbed by fans. And you know, I'm happy about that. I just want to get on with the writing, and that hasn't changed either - my writing-energy feels boundless. I suppose the 'little things' have changed, for example the money I've got from rights and royalties have cleared a few household debts so we're quite comfortable at the moment. It also means I can go part time (which I will be doing in January) to concentrate on the writing. So I suppose if anything has changed, my writing has become more serious because there is a bit of cash rolling in from it.

Oh, and I've fallen in with an amazing group of authors who have been a guidance and an inspiration. You might know them...

3)What is your typical writing day?
I used to be a fiend for writing during my lunch breaks at work, but now I spend most of my writing-time in the evenings or weekends. On a typical weekend of writing (if Sarah's working) I'll get up about 8am and be at the PC by 9am. I'll then write my way through to lunch, go for a walk, and come back to do "bonus writing" - the writing that's over and above anything I aimed to do in the morning. Weekdays it's a bit different. I'll be on the PC for about 7pm and write through to 9pm. On average, I tend to write about 2-3000 words in two hours, so I'm quite prolific during the first couple of drafts.

4) Four random facts:

  • Do you have a writing mantra?:

I have two. The first is "write for yourself". The second is the spark itself: "what if..?"

  • By pen or by keyboard, and why?:

Keyboard. I can't read my own handwriting. It's appalling. And I can type quick than I can write illegibly.

  • Greatest influences on your writing:

Clive Barker, Lovercraft, Steven Pressfield, my dad, a childhood love for the Napoleonic era and too many films to mention.

  • Most ludicrous moment in your life:

Being struck by lightning. Twice. So don't stand near me during a storm. Perhaps someone up there is a critic.


Doug Worgul said...

Congratulations, Matt. Sounds like a great story. I especially like the notion of soldier-monks. Way cool.

Best wishes for the book's success.


Matt Curran said...

Thanks, Doug...

...and a "thank you" to Tim for posting this.

Also, just a quick update: Macmillan contacted me yesterday to say they've just sold the German rights to Hoard of Mhorrer to Goldmann (part of Random House) for a tidy advance. Goldmann bought the rights to The Secret War way back in 2006, so it looks like they have a lot of faith in the series.

Needless to say I'm very, very happy with this!! (Dave Budd says I'll be the next Hasselhoff - though my singing voice is worse than his).

Brian McGilloway said...

Congrats and very best wishes Matt for your new release. And well done on Germany too. May the first of the Curran productions this year enjoy much success. As for the second, in April... It'll be a blast!

Frances said...

That's great news, Matt. Very well done indeed, and a nice Christmas present!

David Isaak said...

Sold in Germany ALREADY, you f...f...fine, fine fellow, you?

Seriously, that's spectacular. And German-speaking folks seem to have a real taste for fantasy. Jonathan Carroll eventually relocated from the US to Vienna, Austria, where people know he's a major author. (The Germans were the first bunch to understand Frank Zappa, too.)

Aliya Whiteley said...

Oooh! Huge congrats!

Ann Weisgarber said...

Matt, congratulations all the way around. The UK and Germany -- excellent.

Any idea when it will come out in Germany?

This is very exciting. Job well done.

Matt Curran said...

Thanks everyone

(I've been rushing about a bit during Christmas so I've neglected visiting here for a couple of weeks. Glad to see everyone is well...)

Ann: I don't have an exact date yet, but the rights dept. says it should see publication in 2010.

Brian: The second arrival in April is why we've been running around so much (that and the day-job). We've inherited an enormous amount of baby things, yet still there's a shopping list the length of an elephant's trunk. Still, better to be prepared...

David: Random House have a huge amount of faith in the books, apparently. They think they'll take off in a big way, especially with number two. I'm trying not to think about it, really, but for another publisher to say this about Mhorrer is a great confidence-injection. Though I'm not sure I like the idea of being misunderstood by my own country of birth!

Anonymous said...

I would like to know if you intend to post an excerpt at the MNW site so we potential new recuits can sample your fare.

Matt Curran said...

Hi Anon (or Greg_Ski),

Macmillan decided to sanction an extract appearing on an unrelated blog-site, Bookspot Central, instead of publishing an excerpt themselves.

To view the first chapter of The Hoard of Mhorrer, just click here.