Thursday, 2 July 2015

Steampunk Thursday: 2 days to go until Alice's Nightmare in Wonderland goes live!

Alice's Nightmare in Wonderland is a brand new adventure gamebook with a dark Steampunk twist. To give you an idea of just what that means, here's the first draft of the introduction to the adventure...

“You’re late! Wake up!”
                Alice woke with a start and sat up, blinking in surprise and looking about her in bewilderment. It was a balmy summer’s afternoon and she was sitting beside a river, the long grass that had formed her bed dotted with daisies. The waters gurgled softly as they passed by on their way downstream.
Something about the scene seemed very familiar.
                “Don’t just sit there! Get up! You’re late!” came the shrill voice again.
                The hot weather making her feel sleepy and dull-witted, Alice’s gaze followed the sound to its source. There, standing in the shade of a chestnut tree, was a white rabbit.
But this wasn’t just any white rabbit. This particular rabbit was dressed in the manner of an English gentleman – jacket, waistcoat and all. The rabbit’s ears were a little threadbare, the stuffing poking out through holes worn in the skin, and as it tilted its head to one side to observe her with its glassy pink eyes, Alice thought she heard a grating of gears.
Alice started to her feet, as it flashed through her mind that, once upon a time, she has seen something like this rabbit, wearing a waistcoat and carrying a pocket-watch, on some previous occasion. But there was no timepiece clutched in the rabbit’s paws this time.
“Who are you to say I’m late when you are not even carrying a pocket-watch?” Alice asked, not one to be outdone by an animal that looked like nothing more than a taxidermist’s test subject.
The rabbit said nothing, but simply unbuttoned its waistcoat, and Alice gasped as her former cockiness was consumed by gut-wrenching terror. Where the rabbit’s stomach should have been, a huge watch ticked – a clock large enough to fill the cavity from ribcage to pelvis – raw and ragged scrags of meat poking between the wire stitches that bound watch and rabbit together.
“How can I be late,” Alice asked the rabbit, “when I don’t even know what it is I’m late for?”
She was suddenly aware of the wind having picked up, as scuds of cloud raced each other across the sky, a sky which had changed from sapphire blue to a seething, bloody claret colour.
“You are needed in Wonderland,” the White Rabbit informed her, the twitching of its nose accompanied by a mechanical whirring sound.
“Wonderland?” There was something familiar about that name, Alice was sure of it, but she couldn’t quite put her finger on what it was.
“It’s the Queen of Hearts. The whole realm has suffered the ravages of her tyrannical reign, and if you thought things were bad before, they are considerably worse now. It’s a miracle I managed to escape her Tick-Tock Men.”
“Before?” Alice whispered in a daze. “Tick-Tock Men?”
“Yes, Tick-Tock Men! How else do you think I ended up like this?” the rabbit said, looking down at his stomach and the ticking timepiece embedded within what little flesh remained there.
Alice stared at the creature in dumfounded amazement before finally finding her voice again. “Why are you telling me this? What do you expect me to do about it?”
“Why?” gasped the rabbit, in incredulity. “We need you, Alice. Wonderland needs you.”
“But what do you need me to do?”
“We need you to kill the Queen, of course.”
“Kill the Queen?” Alice echoed. “But why me?”
The White Rabbit gave an exasperated sigh and took a deep breath, in an attempt to compose itself, before speaking again.

“Because it’s your nightmare!”

If that sounds like your sort of thing (and if you're a fan of my Ulysses Quicksilver Pax Britannia novels then, let's face it, it probably is) you should definitely check out the Kickstarter page and plan your pledge.

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

3 days left until the Alice's Nightmare in Wonderland Kickstarter launches...

... so here's a preview of the Kickstarter page.

You won't be able to pledge to support the project until it goes live at 1.00pm BST on Saturday 4th July, but you can have a thorough look at what's on offer to backers and see what fits within your budget accordingly.

And please tell all your friends and link to the page via all the social media networks at your disposal. As with all Kickstarters, the more people who hear about it, the more likely it is to succeed. So even if you decide it's not for you, someone you know might be just the sort of person who would want to back it.

Thank you.

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

4 days and counting until The Alice's Nightmare in Wonderland launches on Kickstarter

It's quite common for Kickstarter projects to come with rewards for Early Bird backers. Alice's Nightmare in Wonderland doesn't have that, but it does have some very limited rewards that fans of gamebooks in particular are sure to want to grab before anyone else does.

For example, fans of vampires or Warhammer should check out the RED QUEEN reward (limited to 10 backers):

And then there's the MAD HATTER reward for all the Alice fans and cosplayers out there (also limited to 10 backers):

But possibly most exciting of all for gamebook fans, there's the DODO (not quite an Early Bird) pledge level (limited to 20 backers):

Well, I say most exciting, but there are a couple more... But you'll just have to wait until the Kickstarter launches on Saturday to find out what they are*. ;-)

So remember to set your alarm for 1.00pm BST on Saturday 4th July.

* Just like you'll have to wait a little longer to find out what a QUEEN OF HEARTS pledge gets you.

Monday, 29 June 2015

The Alice's Nightmare in Wonderland launches in 5 days

The Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign for Alice's Nightmare in Wonderland launches in 5 days' time. The countdown has begun...

Whether you're a fan of the works of Lewis Carroll, a Steampunk fanatic, or a gamebook aficionado, then Alice's Nightmare in Wonderland is for you! Click on the image below to read the book's blurb.

Check back tomorrow for another blog post with more information about the gamebook everyone is going to be talking about this year.

Thought for the Day

"There are two types of writers. There are the writers that get up every day and say, ‘I’m going to write for two hours, and then I’m going to go to work at Kinkos, where I have a job.’ And I was that guy. I had a real job while I managed to make a feature. So in the morning, I would write for two hours and then go to the bank and work in real estate. For that type of writer, it’s so precious those two hours that you do. 

"The other type of writer is, most of the time you say, ‘I’m gonna take Saturday and Sunday.’ And you end up surfing the web for 80% of your time; 10% of the time you write something what you hate; and then you don’t come back the next day. You come back a week later. You have to do it every day. Whether you do it in a notebook or a computer, you have to put your thoughts on paper."

~ Guillermo Del Toro, film director

Saturday, 27 June 2015

The Alice's Nightmare in Wonderland Kickstarter launches on Alice's Day one week today!

It's the news you've been waiting for...

My latest Kickstarter project, Alice's Nightmare in Wonderland, launches one week today at 1.00pm BST here in the UK (which is 8.00am New York time and 10.00pm in Melbourne, Australia) on Saturday 4th July - a.k.a. Alice's Day!

So set your alarm (there are some limited rewards that gamebook fans and Alice aficionados are going to want to get their hands on before anyone else does) and keep checking out my blog this week for more updates about the rewards that are going to be on offer.

Join the Facebook group for the book and watch this space...

Coming to

at 1.00pm BST on Saturday 4th July 2015