Thursday, 25 May 2017

Gav Thorpe Newsletter

Gav Thorpes newsletter...there's a lot about Gav Thorpes projects in it...somewhat unsurprisingly...

Sci Fi Artwork from Gav's Website
  • Vote for Warbeast - Again!
  • Hello!
  • Jain Zar: The Storm of Silence
  • White Dwarf 127
  • Interview with Jes Goodwin
  • Blog Round-Up
  • Upcoming Events
  • Hard Drive Hot List (or, My Current Projects)
  • Kickstarter - WHISPER Mecha Miniatures
  • Submissions Alert - Podcastle
  • Bi-Monthly Competition - Winner
Gav drinking a cup of tea
Vote for Warbeast in the David Gemmell Awards
A few people have queried whether they need to vote again if they already voted on the longlist - and yes you do!
Your first vote got me through to the shortlist (thank you!) but now I need your support to actually win. Voting closes at midnight on 2nd June, takes just two clicks, and there's no need to register. If I win, I promise to Facebook Live my celebratory dancing!


Being a freelancer is a funny business.  My specialisms are writing and games design, yet as a freelancer I have to be Salesman, Project Manager, Accountant, and Marketing Manager.  I had experience of all these roles to some extent while working at Games Workshop, but the latter - Marketing Manager - particularly with the world of social media, is still a black art to me. 
I was going to e-mail Jes Goodwin to let him know that my Facebook post promoting his interview on my blog, was my most popular post this year.  But two days later, before I'd had the chance, my tongue in cheek photo of the 'new Primaris Devastator Space Marine' almost tripled that post!  Sorry Jes!
Space Marine and Lego Space Marine!
But neither of these Facebook posts were directly promoting my work, which when you're a freelancer, is really where you need to focus your efforts.  Although Black Library promote my books, they - quite rightly - don't promote me.  So if I want to build an audience that may be interested in my original fiction, my writing advice, or new games I'm writing, then I have to market myself through my website, social media, these newsletters, and interviews with podcasts and blogs.
And as a naturally introverted fellow, marketing myself does not come easy. 
I employ my partner Kez to do a lot of the marketing role - she reminds me when I have a book out and very gently suggests I should tell people about it.  She puts together the bones of these newsletters, and attempts to keep the website up-to-date with the many new releases.  She also managed to convince me that we should pro-actively ask people to vote for me in the Gemmell Awards - apparently I was being very British about the whole thing.
And despite my best efforts, it appears I can't please everyone.  In the past I've been chastised for not answering Facebook posts within an hour or two, criticised on forums for not engaging with the community, and slated for 'not being bothered' to attend every GW event.  For the record, I don't get invited to every GW event.
So back to my point.  Being a freelancer is a funny business.  You're not part of a larger machine, able to switch off at 5 o'clock and go home.  You can't close the office door and concentrate, particularly when your three-year-old son has learned how to use door handles.  And you have to accept that you're the public face of your business - giving digital smiles and handshakes, as well as real ones at events*.
Of course what I haven't talked about are the enormous benefits of working for yourself.  My commute is a short trip upstairs, if the weather is nice I can eat lunch in the garden, and the kitchen always has my favourite brand of tea bag.  And of course I get to choose the projects I want to work on.
For those just starting out on their freelance journey, or who are considering taking the plunge, there's a tag on my website called 'A Writer's life', that gives an insight into what you might expect.
*Talking of events, if you're attending ChillCon in Sheffield on Saturday, do come along and say hello - I'll be taking Big Stompy Robots to demo, but am happy to sign books and generally chat about the hobby.

Jain Zar: The Storm of Silence

Cover of Jain Zar: The Storm of Silence Limited Edition by Gav Thorpe
Jain Zar: The Storm of Silence was released this month as a swanky limited edition, hardback, MP3, and eBook.
Jain Zar, the first of the Howling Banshees, travels to Craftworld Ulthwé to help avert disaster – but Eldrad Ulthran opposes her plans. What path will guide the eldar towards victory: the way of the seer, or the way of war?
Instead of my usual Author's Notes, I threw open the doors to an Eldar Q&A. Part one was published last week, and part two went up on the blog this morning.
Samantha asked: "Call me crazy, but I could have sworn that back in the late 90’s when they first did the fall of Cadia, that Eldrad Ulthuan died… Did he actually have his backstory retconned to not die during that event?"
During the closing events of the Eye of Terror campaign, when the 13th Black crusade of Abaddon was first introduced, Eldrad did indeed ‘die’. Or rather, his spirit stone fused with a Black Fortress and he was deemed lost. That version of events was allowed to slip into memory and the 13th Black Crusade as depicted in the Gathering Storm narrative is now the One and True Account. So, Eldrad not dead, (partially) resurrected a God of the Dead instead!

White Dwarf 127

You may have seen that I dedicated Jain Zar "To Jes, Andy and Rick, for WD127".  If you don't know why, you can see the entire FORTY ONE PAGES of Eldar goodness, that has inspired every Eldar story I've ever written, over on my blog. 
Cover of White Dwarf 127
Cover of Codex: Eldar

Interview with Jes Goodwin

To delve even further into the background of the Eldar (and as mentioned in my intro), I also published an interview with Jes Goodwin.
"Btw, I had been allocated to the space elf range because I was ‘new boy’ and nobody thought they would sell as well as space soldiers or space dwarves."

Blog Round-Up

Elsewhere on the blog this month, I've got a great guest post from Andy Hall, giving advice on writing in the video games industry.  It will be really useful for anyone wanting to break into the industry.
You can also watch an interview I gave to Beasts of War at Salute, discussing Open Combat, Strontium Dog, and Big Stompy Robots

Upcoming Events

  • July 2017 (date TBC), Lorgar Book Signing, Warhammer World
  • November 2017 (date TBC), Black Library Weekender
Envelope with "Top Secret" stamped on it
One of the most common questions I get asked is "What are you working on?", so here's my (sorry, sometimes cryptic) list of works in progress, plus future releases.

Hard Drive Hot List

Kickstarter - WHISPER Mecha Miniatures

As you hopefully know, I'm developing a mech fighting game called Big Stompy Robots, because I wanted an excuse to buy some lovely looking mech minis.
In completely unrelated news, here's a Kickstarter for some lovely looking "detailed 45-60mm resin mecha miniatures for the WHISPER wargame and mecha enthusiasts of all stripes".
I *really* want these!
Sokar/Bastet Mecha Kneeling

! Submissions Alert !

Podcastle - The Fantasy Fiction Podcast Banner
Podcastle is a weekly fantasy podcast producing audio performances of short fiction (also published as text), as part of the Escape Artists network.  They are currently open to submissions for stories up to 6,000 words.
"PodCastle is looking for fantasy stories. We’re open to all the sub-genres of fantasy, from magical realism to urban fantasy to slipstream to high fantasy, and everything in between. Fantastical or non-real content should be meaningful to the story."
You can find some advice about writing for the audio format, over on my website.

Bi-Monthly Competition Winner

All subscribers to my mailing list are entered into the bi-monthly draw to win a personalised, signed copy of one of my books.  This month's winner is Mike Hollows from the UK who will receive a signed copy of Jain Zar: The Storm of Silence.  The next winner will be picked in July, and will receive a signed copy of my original fiction trilogy, Empire of the Blood.
Cover of Jain Zar: The Storm of Silence by Gav Thorpe
Cover of Eye of Night by Gav Thorpe
Cover of Scrape To Victory by Gav Thorpe

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