Well, let’s face it; 2020 really didn’t work out the way anyone thought it would. Here’s hoping for a return to sanity in 2021. Not least because…
A Bridge to TV
Red Planet Pictures, the people behind Hustle and Death in Paradise (and founded by one of the co-creators of Life on Mars) have optioned THE EXPHORIA CODE for TV.
Red Planet is a great production house, with the experience and chops to bring Brigitte & Co to life in a way that will hopefully make readers happy. I’ll also be involved as a producer, so of course will try to help steer things along the right path. But RP presented us with a great creative pitch as part of the option process, which showed they get the book and characters, so we’re off to a good start.
Of course, something being optioned is not the same as it being made, and in the current climate there isn’t a whole lot of production going on. But here’s hoping we can get underway soon enough.
Agent Writing in the Field
John Le Carré died last week. He was a titan of literature, and sui generis in spy fiction.
Of course I’m a fan – what espionage author isn’t? – but more than you may even realise. THE COLDEST CITY, the graphic novel which became ATOMIC BLONDE, was an intentional homage to Le Carré’s work.
There’s a fair amount of spy fiction in the comic form, and some of it is truly great work. But – for perfectly understandable reasons, mainly that it doesn’t make for particularly energetic artwork – little is from the bleak, grey Cold War school of tradecraft in which Le Carré wrote so deftly. THE COLDEST CITY (along with its follow-up THE COLDEST WINTER) was my attempt to do so, with the help of artists Sam Hart and Steven Perkins, who understood the desired flavour. Hell, my original draft of the back cover blurb for CC actually namechecked Le Carré, but we ultimately removed it so as not to seem like we were riding his coattails.
We were, though. Just about every espionage writer of the past half-century was.
I never met him, though I was amazed to learn he was somehow aware of me and my work. He was apparently researching his next novel even as he was taken ill. We can only hope that we all remain as vital, curious, and skilful as he while the years wear on. RIP, maestro.
“A Decent Country” Free Online
I recently wrote a new short story, A Decent Country, and made it free to read online.
It’s a quiet sci-fi satire on our current parlous state of politics and voter apathy, with a (small) glimmer of hope on the horizon. As a no-deal Brexit thunders down the tracks towards the UK, it felt like the right time to make it available.
Antony on “Monocle Reads”
I appeared on the Monocle Reads podcast to talk about THE ORGANISED WRITER. It’s a fairly short segment (I could have talked for a lot longer!) but nevertheless insightful:
7 OR C?
Finally, if you’re looking for some amusement over the holidays, I was roped in to the unexpected second episode of Tony Sindelar’s bizarre (and thankfully hilarious 😂) game show 7 OR C, in which all the questions are about… well, no points for guessing that.
2020 really has been terrible for many of us, and I hope wherever you are that you’re able to find some way to celebrate the holidays and relax a little. Fingers crossed for the coming year, and a return to something resembling normality.