Good afternoon (or evening)! Or Morning!
I'm still hoping The Lost Mask will be out soon but it might not be until late July at this stage - so in the meantime you can check out the first three chapters below :)
The Lost Mask - Chapters 1-3
Be warned however, while these late-draft versions of the chapter may have typos - they most certainly will have spoilers for City of Masks.
There are two books that always make me laugh out loud as I read.
One is I Want to Go Home by Gordon Korman and the other is Terry Pratchett's Hogfather. I'm re-reading it this year - the 6th time I've read it -and it's still hilarious (I also included it in a list a while back: 10 Books That Stayed With Me.)
The premise is unbeatable - Death has to fill-in for Santa (known as the Hogfather in in the Discworld novels.) Amazing!
The trouble he has understanding humans is ripe with opportunity for comedy and his voice is presented in a font altogether separate from the rest of the narrative, which is another superb touch. Upon this re-read I was delighted to discover that I'd forgotten about the existence of the God of Hangovers. Poor bastard.
Just over half way through and still enjoying it immensely. Reccommended - and, I think, a great starting point to the Discworld if for some reason you don't want to start at the start.
Until a few nights back, I hadn’t seen Dark City since the year of its release.
I’ve been meaning to watch it again for a long time (obviously). I wanted to see it again partly because I remember it being great and partly because I wanted to see whether I’d still think it was great over fifteen years later, as sometimes the films we watch as teenagers don’t seem the same later.
But I’m happy to report I enjoyed it – more the second time around I reckon.
Dark City wasn’t a box office smash by any stretch but it was nominated for a Hugo award (losing to another great film – The Truman Show) and it’s now seen as a cult classic.
The story opens when
“John Murdoch (Rufus Sewell) awakens in a hotel bathtub, suffering from amnesia. He receives a phone call from Dr. Daniel Schreber (Kiefer Sutherland), who urges him to flee the hotel to evade a group of men who are after him. During the phone talk, Murdoch discovers the corpse of a brutalized, ritualistically murdered woman, along with a bloody knife. He flees the scene, just as the group of men (known as the Strangers) show up.” (Thanks to wikipedia for the summary).
And the science-fiction elements are soon revealed as the story goes on. I won’t spoil them here, in case a reader who hasn’t seen the film stumbles across this post, but I will say I loved the way the film dealt with memory and identity.
Aside from enjoying Sewell’s performance, as an Australian it was fun to see a few Aussie and New Zealand actors appearing in the film; for instance, Bruce Spence as ‘Mr Wall’ who I recognised from Ace Ventura 2 – though I should have known him better from Mad Max 2 or an AFI winning film I’m now curious to see called Stork (1971).
One of the other elements I enjoyed was the setting and the sets. Something I missed as a teenager were all the fantastic noir elements present in the film. At times it feels very much like a 1940s noir, yet the sets themselves don’t necessarily speak to a single era or even country. The use of constant darkness too, was very oppressive, very effective. To my eye the special effects held up too and it was nice to see a film free of the overly-slick modern CGI.
So if you haven’t seen Dark City and you’re a fan of film noir and sci-fi then give it a shot, it’s definitely worth a look. And while you're here, check out Anita Kelsey’s version of ‘Sway’ (as mimed by Jennifer Connelly) which has the best arrangement of the song I’ve heard.
Music is another one of my passions. Once you combine that love with a love of lists - a Top Ten is invariably born.
And what's more pointless than a Top Ten, eh? :D
Nothing! But, below I've put one together nonetheless - it's not 'for 2015' or 'of 2015' or of any 'decade' today it's just my Top Ten as I'm feeling right now. The kind of list that has nothing at stake but which is hopefully a bit of fun.
Here we go, a clickable Top Ten.
A Whisper of Leaves is now available as an ebook in a few locations - AU and UK now that it's the 11th - though for the US it's still the 10th of May as I type this - so some of those links might still be 'pre-order' depending on when you click :)
And the novella will be at its $1 launch price too!
Amazon - AU
Angus & Robertson - AU
Amazon - UK
Amazon - US
B&N - US
Two copies are up for grabs - worldwide entries are most certainly welcome!
If you're on Goodreads you can enter very simply, if not you'll have to sign up first but it's still pretty straightforward.. Closer to the launch, I'll also open a comp via the blog right here, for both a print copy and an ebook :D
Very excited to announce the cover for my novella-length ghost story - A Whisper of Leaves!
As with my previous fiction title, The Fairy Wren, the cover was made by the wonderful Rebekah Haskell who also offers great pre-made covers over at Vivid Covers. Stay tuned for the release in the coming weeks :)
Suddenly it's been about a year since City of Masks was first released.
I'm thrilled with the response to the story and I'm keen to get it's sequel The Lost Mask out too. Snapping Turtle will soon have the book in the final stages of production and we're hoping for a May release.
Since I finished the very-near-to final edits on The Lost Mask a while back I started production on A Whisper of Leaves and hope to share the cover very soon. In addition, I finished the first draft of my kangaroo-themed contemporary/magic realism story Crossings and I'm aiming to release it late this year.
Book 3 of The Bone Mask Trilogy (Greatmask) is still in early stages. I'm about 20k words into the first draft and I'm finding it much more labour-intensive than writing a book 1 or 2 - which seems natural. There's a lot of threads to tie up and arcs to finish so I'm expecting it to take me longer than my usual 3 months to finish the draft. I'm really enjoying it though!
Back soon for the cover reveal for A Whisper of Leaves!
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Ashley Capes is an Australian writer of fiction, poetry and very occasional non-fiction.
Imperial Towers (Never Book 5) - draft 1
Moss Dragon - draft 1
Reed Lavender (working title) - draft 1
Unnamed Spec Fic - draft 1
Whisper of Leaves (sequel) - Outline