Whenever I get ‘I want to read the next part!’ in reviews, I hope that person goes on to my author profile or googles me and finds this landing page. Because I am conscious of the fact that these days, making fans wait a mere year for a book is out of the question for many authors.

Yet I stick rigidly to the idea that time is quality as well as money. I’m not overly concerned with sales for my books at all right now, just that I might hold on to some of the people who are either currently reading them or thinking about it.

So, an update on Deception Crossing – I’m just short of 60,000 words of first draft, and I’ve reached the stage where I’m thinking this project has grown legs and started to run.

I have a lot of characters in this series now, and managing their respective times in the spotlight was getting tricky. I was faced with a choice of another doorstopper like GotN but in the 3rd person instead of Shadow’s 1st narrative, where they each get long chapters, and the readability might lie in the reader driving through to get back to their favourite character (a-la Peter F Hamilton, George RR Martin or James Clavell) or perhaps go for what Lucas Bale so brilliantly does in the Beyond the Wall series, and spotlight a different group of people in each novel and eventually bring them together.

It seems that after pantsing my way through 60k, Deception Crossing has chosen the latter kind of writing for me. I’m glad. I didn’t want another book as long as GotN. I wanted one where I don’t test the reader’s patience quite so much before setting the bombs off. I wanted the tension to rise in Talent Show book 3, and although I haven’t gotten to any brutal violence yet, there’s some pretty low down and evil scheming going on that already makes it clear this series is going to have one hell of a climax. I can feel it brewing. When it starts to boil up, I have a feeling Deception Crossing will end with a bloodbath and Talent Show Book 4 will begin.

Another relatively spoiler free update: Deception Crossing is the book where two worlds,  Earth and Carnathia, finally share equal time in the spotlight. Certain characters from my two series with its interconnecting worlds finally meet, or at least hear about each other.

If you’ve read both my series and you’ve joined some of the dots, DC is the book that’s going to show you how I finally join the two.

If you’ve only read one, or neither….what are you waiting for?! =P


In fact, I can’t resist it. I’m going to give a sneak preview for those who have read everything. You won’t get any actual writing yet (although watch this space, there’s one juicy scene I can barely resist posting on here already) but if you’re ready, I’m going to give you the kind of lowdown movie magazines sometimes feature with exclusive pics before the websites get their hands on trailers.


SPOILER WARNING. Click off this page now if you haven’t read my books yet. Or if you’ve read Talent Show and don’t mind spoiling a little of Carnathia’s Underground, I’ll let you read on if you wish. But no Talent Show? No key to this door.


Still with me? Congratulations, you deserve a medal for wading through my four books with their more than extensive wordcounts. You’re a brave book-reading knight, and I thank you for your service.


And I need another paragraph just to make sure that people with big screens don’t see anything they shouldn’t.


And another.


Alright, here we go.


First of all, we now know who the supervillain is. The Wilson Fisk, the Frank Underwood, the Pablo Escobar, the child of Raz al Ghoul, The Adrian Veight / Ozymandias, The Smoking Man…you get it, my first authorial addition to the world of the chess-master villain with iniquitous plots up his sleeve whose key to victory lies in playing black and white while his opponent only believes he’s playing. He took a while to emerge, throughout ST and GotN while this author flew by the seat of his pants and left the door open for several characters to take up the helm, but he did arrive to steer the interplanetary ship, and his name is Daniel Penhallow.

Deception Crossing has been very much Daniel’s story so far. He’s a character I created in another story about…shit, I’ve really had him for nine years now, along with Cody White who was once his best friend. Events will bring them together again after thirty years of relative silence following their infamous fight.

Because the world are about to learn about who Tagren Lockyer is, against all odds. After a complete change of heart, Shadow is going to blow the lid on his uncle’s story – the murder, the survival against all odds, the thirty years of deception and cover-ups. All in the name of redemption, to win back the trust of the woman he loves. Even if it means a prison sentence for both their troubles…

…and we’ve all seen what Tagren can do, right? Does a 21 year old kid really want a hydrogen bomb given human form as his adversary? Tagren seems to be playing along with the plan, but if it doesn’t swing the way it’s supposed to, what the actual fuck could happen?

Especially if, after promising that Daniel is his enemy, Tagren suddenly decides otherwise and sets his sights on teaching his nephew a different lesson instead?

Honestly, I don’t know quite where it’s going. I’m still discovering.

Here’s what I do know. After surviving the two Carnathia’s Underground books and settling for life in the Outlands, Screft and Oscar are a little bored of late. But along comes a challenge. After Daniel pays a visit, Screft decides he really doesn’t like him. What if they could upset his apple cart, somehow? Like maybe a trip to Earth, to bring Telfen Lockyer to the Outlands?

Remember how Screft was created by his planet after a certain Lockyer left his DNA and a vast amount of Liquid Talent containing the very essence of himself? What might happen if those two ever meet?

And what if, after thirty years as someone else, Tagren decides he wants his real body back? We all know where it is, and that there’s someone else intimately familiar with it…

That’s as much as you’re getting for now. Watch this space and keep climbing.