A couple of weeks back I read Firelands, debut dystopian thriller by US author Piper Bayard. To call the book fantastic is an understatement. I was hooked from the first pages, dropping the book I was writing myself, despite looming contract deadline, so I could keep reading. Firelands is set in a post-apocalyptic future where the … More The science of the inevitable Taupo apocalypse
Does it bother you that Peter Jackson’s forthcoming trio of Hobbit movies probably won’t bear too much resemblance to the book. It worried me. I mean, it is obvious Jackson is telling stories that weren’t in the book – that charming, 240 page kids’ story. It didn’t feature Galadriel, Saruman, Legolas, or Frodo, or Radagast … More The Hobbit movie tipped my sacred cow. But then I got wise.
J K Rowling’s latest book – her first for adults, The Casual Vacancy, has reportedly been slammed by critics. I am intrigued at the way books are sometimes attacked by reviewers in papers and magazines. In New Zealand it happens mainly because the field is so small that reviewers are often authors themselves, or in debate with … More The dark side of the reviewing game
Is there a sci-fi short story that really hit you? Something that struck a chord? Short stories are different from novels – they’re a snapshot of a character incident, usually punchy, usually with a twist line at the end. I tend not to agree with ‘best of’ lists; everything has its merits and a lot … More What are the top SF short stories of all time?
I’ve fielded a couple of reviews of my book Convicts: New Zealand’s Hidden Criminal Past, which I’d like to share: ‘Wright has done a great job of exposing activities which society had considered best forgotten, and made it interesting reading to boot’ – Graeme Barrow, Northern Advocate, 23 July 2012. ‘…great reading, full of specific … More First reviews of ‘Convicts’ – and a couple of radio interviews
Get in quick to win Convicts – New Zealand’s Hidden Criminal Past. The contest closes at midnight 28 July NZT. Check it out. It’s been a hectic month since the book was released. I’ve had radio interviews, an interview with the national Sunday paper, a request to guest-post on a blog, and lots of visits … More Last chance to win ‘Convicts’
Those of us who write and publish books know what a lottery it is actually getting them featured in the bookstores. So it made my day when I found this in the window of Wellington’s biggest bookstore today. Kinda hidden at the bottom, behind some balloons…but yes – that’s my book Convicts – New Zealand’s … More A wonderful discovery, hidden behind balloons
I’ve been reading Hamish Clayton’s novel Wulf, which Penguin published last year. It’s his first novel, and a few weeks back won the New Zealand Society of Authors award for best first novel of 2012. I can see why. Fantastic stuff. The story pivots – creatively – around a real episode in New Zealand’s history; … More The lure of temptation and history as novel
Anybody remember Wall of Voodoo? Stannard Ridgway’s alternative early 80’s synth-pop band. ‘Mexican Radio’ is worth a listen. What’s it got in common with my book Convicts: New Zealand’s Hidden Criminal Past? The getting on the radio bit, that’s what. You’d think radio’s obsolete these days. It isn’t. In fact, I’ve learned over the years … More Radio sells books. Really.
I am often intrigued by reviewers who criticise authors – sometimes personally – for content, format, length or some other feature imposed by the publisher. I haven’t had one of those sorts of reviews for a while, partly because I make sure my books are balanced for the format and style. But it’s annoying when it … More Authors aren’t the only finger in the book pie