Author Archive

Decisions decisions!Well, the happy little robot doorkeeper of destiny has flipped the sign on this year’s Open Door from OPEN to CLOSED. The two months for submissions are at an end.

We guess it’s human nature, but there were a hella lot of last-minute submissions. And, alas, some folk tried to submit after midnight GMT because it was a different time where they were, or were flapping around on minor details rather than submitting the darn thing. But in the main, we thought that the whole process has gone very smoothly.

The final tally was 1,118 proposals, which is more than double what I (Marc) had predicted, so thanks for making me look a fool :-) So, lots to reading in our immediate future and if there are some gems in there it will be well worth the effort. The Robot gang have already been reading and rating the earliest arrivals, but we haven’t as yet rejected anything. That will start this week. It will take a while to get through them all, however, so don’t panic.

While you are waiting, the splendidly useful Absolute Write website (full of advice for writers old and new, so you should have that bookmarked already) has a thread on its forums dedicated to this Open Door. Angry Robot author Pete McLean, discovered in the last Open Door, is a regular poster and other AR authors have been known to pop by, but note that we stay away except in an emergency. Anyway, you may find it helps ease the anxiety of waiting, just sayin’.

And finally for now… if you sent the wrong thing, spotted a spelling mistake, realised you put your one-line summary after the synopsis, don’t worry, leave it be. We will work with what you sent in. Only contact us if you change email address, sell a book for $$$s and need to withdraw it, or something equally drastic – and do that via the Contact page.

Thank you so much for taking the time to submit. We truly appreciate your effort just in getting all of that together just to get to this stage. We know the waiting is stressful, so we shall be as quick as we can, while still being thorough. Be seeing you!

Categories : Angry Robot, Open Door
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You know, sometimes we get things wrong, and we’re not too big and proud and metallic to say so.

Who Wants to be the Prince of DarknessAt the end of last week, we showed off the cover for Michael Boatman‘s dark, diabolic, deeply satirical novel Who Wants to be the Prince of Darkness?. Some peeps, bless them, went “Hooray, love it.” Mostly, though, you folks, our lovely Robot pals, kind of looked at it with your heads tilted sideways and went “Umm, is that one a YA novel? Looks kinda young for something that’s meant to be fun, but dark…”

Nobody really likes being told they kinda messed up, and sometimes one has to make certain that a bit of minor grumbling on the internet isn’t just that, but this time we knew we’d not got it right. We realised that although we’d captured the demon-stuffed fun of Michael’s novel, we’d gone too far down that line and packaged it like something Darren Shan would write. Luckily, we have an alternate version that on reflection suits the novel’s tone more than that first design, and that’s what we’re going with. Here it is.

That’s Abby D, by the way. Yes, she may look like your average African-American girl wielding a flaming sword longer than she is tall like she was born to it, but there’s a little more to her that you should really discover for yourself.

Categories : Angry Robot
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Jan
19

Upgrade your Apex audiobook

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ApexAudioOur Robot pals over at Audible have issued an update to their audiobook edition of Apex by Ramez Naam, and have asked us to pass on the news.

If you have already downloaded the audiobook of Apex from the Audible site, you can now upgrade it in the following way: delete the existing file from your library, then download Apex again from your cloud. This will provide them with the up-to-date version, for no extra charge. If you get into any difficulties, Audible’s customer service folks will assist you.

Categories : Angry Robot
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Angry Robot books on DangdangA message comes in from a distant frontier… Robot forces are advancing on all fronts. As of today, the Chinese censors has finished poring through all our files for subversive messages, and we’re very pleased to announce that the Angry Robot list is now available on the Chinese ebook platform Dangdang.

Cue a billion hats thrown into the air as one, as discordant electronic choirs lead the singing of the Angry Robot theme tune, cunningly rearranged for erhu and qinqin. Onwards, onwards!
 
 

Dec
01

The Open Door is… open

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GIF-Robot-opening-door-gone-wrong

It’s time. Yes, the Open Door period is now here, and we want you to submit your novel proposal to us. Yay!

To re-read the guidelines one last time, go here:

Open Door guidelines

And then, once you are ready, submit your book here:

https://angryrobot.submittable.com

A reminder: Closing date for submissions is 31 January 2016.

If you have any questions or concerns, post them in the Comments on this page and the Robots will answer here or privately.

By the way, the Robots will be on Reddit doing an AMA (Ask Me Anything) tomorrow (Wednesday 2nd), taking your questions about the Open Door and anything else you feel like asking us about, as long as it’s Robot business.

Wishing you the very best of luck!

Yes, the announcement was true – we’re opening the doors wide for unagented submissions from 1st December. Ever since the announcement, we’ve had a steady stream of questions about what subjects will or will not be allowed, and so on.

All the details you need are here, on our bespoke Open Door Page.

And if we haven’t answered your question in the FAQ, post it in the comments box here and we’ll address it in an update. Go, go!

Confetti

Categories : Angry Robot
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The name Jen Williams may already be known to UK-based Robots, as her fabulous fantasy series that started with The Copper Promise has been published over here to great acclaim by Headline. As big fans of the Copper Cat series, we were thoroughly delighted to snap up US and Canadian rights, and now we can announce that we will be publishing The Copper Promise there next summer, with The Iron Ghost to follow soon after.

Jen WilliamsWithout even the suggestion of being introduced to a terrifying array of “devices”, Jen kindly said:

“I am thrilled and excited that Angry Robot will be publishing The Copper Promise and The Iron Ghost in the US. It’s a whole new world for my characters to explore, and I can’t wait for this new part of their journey. Of course, when it was revealed to me that as part of my contract I would have to travel into the past to prevent the human rebellion against the inevitable robot uprising, I was a little taken aback – I didn’t have anything appropriate to wear and I tend to get travel sick – but all in all I am in favor of our robotic future. It’s very tidy, very shiny, and the wi-fi is excellent. Of course, our Awesome Metallic Overlords mostly regard humans as especially squishy portable batteries, but the main thing is, I get to spread the word of Sword and Sorcery. It’s all good.”

Here’s more about The Copper Promise:

There are some tall stories about the caverns beneath the Citadel – about magic and mages and monsters and gods. Wydrin of Crosshaven, known as the Copper Cat, has heard them all, but she’s spent long enough trawling caverns and taverns with her companion Sir Sebastian to learn that there’s no money to be made in chasing rumors.

But then a crippled nobleman with a dead man’s name offers them a job: exploring the Citadel’s darkest depths. It sounds like just another quest with gold and adventure… if they’re lucky, they might even have a tale of their own to tell once it’s over. These reckless adventurers will soon learn that sometimes there is truth in rumor. Sometimes a story can save your life.

Many thanks to Jen and her agent, Juliet Mushens, for making this happen. Lots more to tell about these wonderfully entertaining books over the next few months, but for now file this one under Can’t. Bloody. Wait.

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S&Slogo

We hope you’ll forgive the slightly formal nature of this news item. In brief, we’re making some changes that will bring great benefits to readers and bookshops in Australia and New Zealand – because we have reached a deal for the mighty Simon & Schuster Australia to distribute our books in those lovely countries.

Stock of our books already there has transferred over, and the first container ship full of spanking new Angry Robot novels is steaming towards the southern oceans as we speak. We’re very grateful to everyone there who has helped set this up. This should all mean an enhanced service to bookshops, more copies out there for readers, and more regular stock for conventions and author appearances. Result!

Categories : Angry Robot, News
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Yeah, it’s Friday afternoon in the Angry Robot office (YMMV), so it was inevitable that we were going to goof about for an hour or two, and run some of our recent and upcoming book covers through Deep Dream.

Do you know it – Google’s new software algorithm that attempts to mimic what happens in the human subconscious during dream states? It’s a bit limited at the moment: it really only draws on images of dogs and eyeballs right now – but it’s still damn freaky and we had a blast revealing the Cthulhu-esque subliminals lurking just behind our cover art.

Here are some of our favourites. If you’re eating something a bit icky, or have recently ingested a heavy dose of hallucinogenic pharmaceuticals, you may care to skip this post. If you’re up for it, you can click on each to see a much larger version. What’s your favourite?

If Then (Deep Dream Dawnbreaker (deep dream) Empire Ascendant (deep dream)

Butterfly Girl (deep dream) The Ark (deep dream) The Buried Life (deep dream)

The Dragon Engine (deep dream) Unseemly Science (deep dream) Windswept (deep dream)

Want to have a go yourself? Check out the Dream Scope online app. Don’t have nightmares.

May
29

The Robots are replicating!

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Bye, lovely CarolineIt’s something of a bittersweet day here on the otherwise empty flight deck of our orbital leviathan. Our lovely colleague Caroline Lambe (right) is leaving us, if only temporarily, to have her first baby. We shall miss both her massively capable wrangling of AR’s promotions and publicity campaigns, and her occasional intimations that Ireland truly is the best country on earth, with equal sorrow. We love her and we’ll miss her.

Obviously, even at this late stage we have attempted to encourage her and Will to name their firstborn after us, and she has at least pretended that they will consider Angstrom as a middle name. We live in hope.

We did the whole lunch and pressies thing on Tuesday, as the Robot crew – including the ever-smiling Penny (left), now handling all our promotions needs – are now scattered to the four corners, but today is our Caroline’s last day for a year. So join us please as we bid her farewell, if only for a year, and wish her every happiness in the amazing adventure on which she’s about to embark.

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Apr
01

Look what we found in the AR archive

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In spring, like so many people, one’s thoughts turn to tidying up a bit, i.e. spring cleaning. Our bristling orbital death platform has been looking a bit dusty and ramshackle of late – books and body parts everywhere, of course, but also crates of a less identifiable nature.

Right at the bottom of the most distant stack, in a wooden chest marked in a font of a distinctly pre-millenial variety (how you get Comic Sans on the side of an oak case I’ve no idea), we made a delighted discovery. In short, we found mint copies of some of Angry Robot’s releases from the very earliest days of the imprint. Very collectible, and we know we aren’t the only readers who have hung onto these original editions, even though copies are very scarce out there. It’s fascinating to see how our cover design styles have changed over the decades [ click to enlarge ]:

TheLivesOfTao66 Nexus74 SevenForges76

From the left: one of our short-lived but very collectable series of AR Doubles, from 1966 (Guy Haley’s Reality 36 on the other side, as we’re sure you remember); the first appearance of that sleeper hit Nexus, from 1974; and an example of the first Jim Moore complete repackaging programme, from 1976.

Heartwood1979 Vn1985 Three1985

From left: powerful swords & sorcery imagery that screams 1979, also the inspiration behind Hawkwind’s concept album, released the following year; and a chance to compare and contrast UK and US packaging approaches, both from 1985.

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The Bullet Catcher's Daughter by Rod DuncanWe’re absolutely delighted to start 2015 with some awards news. Rod Duncan’s superlative alternate history The Bullet-Catcher’s Daughter has made the six-book shortlist for the Philip K Dick Award 2014.

When he’d come down from the ceiling, a joyous Rod Duncan said:

I had no idea that The Bullet-Catcher’s Daughter was even in the running, so discovering it on the shortlist was a complete surprise. If you’ll excuse the British slang – I was gobsmacked! To be standing alongside such wonderful writers and to be up for an award bearing the name of Philip K. Dick – it is a great honour. I feel hugely grateful.

The award’s winner will be announced at Norweson in Seattle, USA on 3 April this year. Further details of that lovely shortlist – really, you should just buy all of them! – and everything else you need to know are on the Philip K Dick Award website. Rod’s sequel Unseemly Science is fast approaching too – it hits stores in May 2015, with a third novel in the Fall of the Gas-Lit Empire series, The Custodian of Marvels, due Spring 2016.

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As we prepare for our Spring relaunch there’s one series above all that has had Angry Roboteers clamouring for information about. Today we are delighted to reveal that Ramez Naam‘s Apex, a novel that has added whole new layers of meaning to the phrase “eagerly awaited” – will be with you on May 5th next year.

All very well, you shout, but what does it look like? Well for this new beast of a book as well as giving it an amazing cover, we have also redesigned the previous two novels as they are going to be reissued in handy mass-market format in North America in the run-up to Apex‘s release. So ladies, gentlemen and robots, here is the trade paperback of Apex, together with its equally smart if somewhat diminutive siblings, Nexus (March 15) and Crux (April 15):

Nexus (March 15) Crux (April 15) Apex (May 15)

{ Click each image above for a larger version. }

The unified design for all three has been created by one of our favourite designers, Steven Meyer-Rassow. And if you were wondering yes, we will switch the UK/RoW paperback editions to these new covers the next time we reprint them as well. Smart!

Nexus (US/Canada mass-market reissue) March 2015
Crux (US/Canada mass-market reissue) April 2015
Apex (trade paperback) May 2015

Categories : Angry Reboot, Cover Art, News
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Nov
27

Giving Thanks, Angry Robot Style

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Thankful little robotAs you may know, us Angry Robots are mostly a British-based concern but at least one of our number is caught up in Thanksgiving deep in the American heartland. (Waves cheerily at Mike Underwood, no doubt already buried under a prodigious heap of turkey, biscuits, trimmings, fixings, hominy grits, pop tarts, roasted possums and whatever other extraordinary foodstuffs they eat over there in the Colonies.) Regardless of our current post code, however, after the kind of year that we’ve had, all of us here have massive reasons for giving thanks about now.

Thank you to everyone at Watkins Media, who came along just when we needed you. You’ve proved in these few short months to be 100% supportive of our publishing plans, our ongoing plans for innovation, and also our commitment to openness. We took some knocks over the summer, as our previous owners made some… unusual decisions in the run-up to breaking up the group to which we belonged, so we’re doubly grateful for everyone’s support. Thanks too to our colleagues beside us on the front line at Osprey across those months.

Immense thanks to all our amazing authors, who stuck with us during those unforeseen circumstances, even when we were forbidden from talking to you about what was happening. Your loyalty and understanding have been humbling. Here’s to more amazing books in 2015 and beyond!

Thank you to our book biz partners – our salesmen and distributors at Random House and Faber, GBS and EPubDirect, audiobook teams at Brilliance and Audible, and our export friends in far-off lands. To our translation partners in many lands, who are making brilliant editions of our books in their own languages. To the gang at Gotham in LA who handle our (many) movie deals. To the freelance editors and designers, artists and tech types.

And of course, massive robot thanks to you readers, bloggers and convention runners, members of the Robot Army and the Robot Legions, all of you. A book only comes to life when it is read. Whether you collect every single Angry Robot book or have only read a handful, we give thanks on this special day to every last one of you.

Marc & Caroline & Mike & Phil
Your Robot pals

Some more Angry Robot books to give thanks for, coming very soon…

Flex by Ferrett SteinmetzUnseemly Science by Rod DuncanThe Buried Life, by Carrie PatelDream Stalkers 72dpi

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Oct
19

So, Farewell Miriam

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FarewellIf you’ve not seen the announcement elsewhere yet, the lovely Chuck Wendig has sold three new Miriam Black books to the gang over at Saga (Simon & Schuster), and the first three volumes will be joining them over there too.

This happens pretty frequently in publishing, where books change publisher, and new books in the series are released in different packaging along with the backlist, but we’ll be especially sad to see Miriam go. Back in the spring, Chuck suggested the new books for Angry Robot… just as our then-owners, Osprey Group, hit some difficulties that eventually led to the company being broken up and sold. We wanted to offer on them, oh how we pined for them, but we had strict orders from above: no new proposals could be bought at that time. Worse, the owners had also put a block on reprints of physical books, so paperback copies of Blackbirds ran out. With massive regret, and if we’re being honest deeply frustrated by the whole situation, we had to let Miriam leave the Angry Robot label that first brought her to you all.

The Miriam books remain in our catalogue until the end of the year, so obviously we’d love you to snap up copies if you haven’t yet, and do look out for those incredible new adventures from Saga – we’ve only read the synopses but they already rule. And we have to add: although we didn’t move to our fabulously supportive new owners in time to keep Miriam on our label, the dark times are now receding in our rear-view mirror. We are pressing the Big Reprint Button for those few AR books that have slipped out of stock. Just as excitingly, we are preparing offers for a delicious clutch of new books from several of our favourite Angry Robot authors, and are about to introduce you to several new writers as well… Can’t wait to tell you all about them soon.

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