We started 2017 hotly promoting our latest Clovenhoof novella, Clovenhoof and the Trump of Doom. This was a story, written in the days after Donald Trump’s victory in the US presidential election. We had great fun writing it and fans have taken really well to it, although some readers did object to possible political bias regarding the hot topic of Trump and the UK Brexit vote. Clovenhoof will definitely keep his nose out of international politics from now on, although it did attract the attention of MTV.
In April, we published a brand new and original novel, Disenchanted. We wanted to write a book about fairy tales but we’re not the kind of people who want a princess who’s just going to hang around the palace, waiting for her prince to come and rescue her. We decided to write about a woman who wasn’t interested in hooking up with Prince Charming or getting the Happily Ever After everyone else wants her to have. And so our heroine, Ella, has the challenge of avoiding forceful suitors, ditching seven persistent dwarfs who want to help her and generally avoiding anything that looks like it stepped out of the pages of the Brothers Grimm.
In April we also helped to celebrate the 50th birthday of Adrian Mole. Our specially commissioned Mole short Let Them Eat Custard Creams formed part of the celebrations, held at Leicester university and sponsored by Penguin.
In July, we published Oddjobs 2, sequel to the workplace comedy we published in 2016. The Oddjobs stories follow a group of office workers who have the unenviable job of making sure that the end of the world goes according to plan. Horrible monsters from another dimension are poised to devour the world and it’s our heroes’ mission to make sure the Great British public don’t panic and no one makes a great big fuss about it. By the end of Oddjobs 2 – spoilers! – the world has not yet ended so there are still further stories in the series.
Also in July, we filmed a Facebook advert to promote the book, Disenchanted. We decided that the best way to illustrate the ‘you don’t need a fairy tale wedding to be happy’ theme was to blow up a wedding cake. We had… interesting results. Here is the advert if you want to take a look (give it a like or a comment if you’re feeling generous). There was violence and fire and there were casualties. But we had a lot of fun. We ‘ve even cobbled together a Making Of video…
December saw the publication of 12 Dark Days: One Hell of a Christmas. This was an anthology project masterminded by Dean M Drinkel, where each author wrote a story for one of the twelve days of Christmas. We took “Eight Maids a-Milking” and made sure it was very, very silly.
In April Heide went to Stokercon in Long Beach, California. It was held on the Queen Mary and was a wonderful chance to meet writers from the US and beyond. Heide could not resist the opportunity to bother George RR Martin with her satanic Baby.
In July we ran a comedy writing workshop at Edgelit in Derby and popped up on a couple of panels as well.
In September we ran the comedy writing workshop at Fantasycon. We were both lucky enough to be on several panels, but we still found time for plenty of chatting in the bar with our friends as well.
We attended meetups with readers in Leeds, Birmingham and London. At these events we performed customised karaoke, led a kazoo orchestra and organised a giant pass the parcel, because we like to keep things low-key.
What we’re doing in 2018…
On 23rd February, our first book of 2018 will be published. A Spell in the Country, a comedy about three very different witches meeting up at a witching training course in the countryside, is already available for pre-order. Click here to pre-order your copy and look at Mike Watts’ stylish cover artwork.
2018 will also see the release of Oddjobs 3. We’ve had such positive feedback for Oddjobs 1 & 2 (and so much fun writing them!) that we will be pushing this forward in our schedules so that we can get it out to the reading public as soon as possible.
But we haven’t forgotten old Jeremy Clovenhoof. We’re currently partway through writing duties on not only Clovenhoof Book 7 but also Clovenhoof Book 8! Both will see publication in 2018.
We will be delivering a number of writing workshops this year. Among them will be a workshop on story structure and plot we’ll be running in Birmingham on June 16th.
We’ll also be attending various writing conventions and meetups with readers groups in Leeds, Birmingham, Derby and Chester. No trips to California this year although Heide is toying with the idea of going to Edinburgh.