A SMALL CHRISTMAS SURPRISE…READ ON!
First of all, apologies to everyone who logs onto my website. I know I appear here far too infrequently. But if you took a quick look at my workload, you’d see that I’ve been horrendously busy this year. Here’s a list of the projects I’m working on right now:
DIRTY GOLD – a new eight-part series for ITV
FOYLE’S WAR – it’s not definite but we may be coming back in 2013 and I’ve already started the research
OBLIVION – the last part of the Power of Five (Gatekeeper) series
TINTIN 2 – the sequel to The Secret of the Unicorn
ARSENE LUPIN – an action film for Warner Brothers
ALEX RIDER – a short story for World Book Day
So although I know I ought to blog more often, sitting down at my computer is a bit of a strain. (Something exploded in my right eye a couple of weeks ago. I saw a doctor…well, I saw a blurry doctor. He says it’ll be fine if I rest a bit. Not easy.)
Anyway, here’s a quick Christmas update of what has been a fantastic year. And there’s a special Christmas present, as usual concealed in the text!
The big thing in 2012 was undoubtedly THE HOUSE OF SILK, my take on Sherlock Holmes. It’s my first successful adult novel – though anyone aged around 13 and over will quite possibly enjoy it. There’s nothing embarrassingly physical in it but it does have what critics might call “an adult theme” and it’s fairly violent. But I think it’s as pacey as an Alex Rider novel with plenty of action so do give it a try.
The reviews for the book were fantastic and for a brief time I was a number one bestselling author in Taiwan, which is certainly a talking point. But if you think I’m giving up writing for teens…no way! I’m about 160,000 words into OBLIVION which is the long-awaited fifth volume in my Power of Five series following RAVEN’S GATE, EVIL STAR, NIGHTRISE and NECROPOLIS.
I think it’s going to be a fantastic book though I should warn you that it has a pretty bleak conclusion…but then (like the title suggests) it is about the end of the world. It takes place in the UK, America, Egypt, Italy, Brazil and Antarctica and on January 12th I’m off to the last of these to spend a little time among the ice and the glaciers, absorbing the atmosphere. I actually hope to write the last pages of the book there for delivery to my various publishers in April. We’re looking at publication in October 2012. It will, by the way, be more than twice as long as any book I’ve ever written -but I’m confident it’s not too long.
Otherwise, 2011 saw the transmission of INJUSTICE on ITV over five nights in June. It was also well received and the audience stayed with us until the end which is the important thing.
And, of course, SCORPIA RISING was published in May. The last ever Alex Rider book (until I write YASSEN, which I hope to start next year). It was really sad to say goodbye to Alex and quite a few people were annoyed with me because of the shock ending. But I think I did the right thing. I tried to make each Alex better than the one before and hope I ended on a high note. Actually, I’ve just finished a 10,000 word short story about Alex Rider which will be available as a download on World Book Day. At the moment the title is A TASTE OF DEATH – I’m waiting to hear if my publishers like it.
This was the year that I met Steven Spielberg – which was fairly intense. I’ve been asked to work on the sequel to the extremely successful Tintin film which opened in November. A few months ago I found myself in a hotel room in Paris, talking to him and to Peter Jackson. I felt like a sheep, lost in the fog and caught between two mountains. All quite scary, really. I’m trying not to be overawed but these are probably the most successful film directors on the planet. But I read Tintin when I was eight. I know the books inside out. I even wear Tintin underpants. With a bit of luck, the collaboration will go well.
The worst thing about 2012? The departure of my chocolate Labrador who (the best way of putting it) went for a long walk. He had been credited in every one of my books but his name always changed so he appeared, variously, as: Lucky, Mucky, Plucky, Yucky, Lenny, Loony, Limpy, Louis, Lupus, Loser and Fang. By the end of his life he was hopelessly confused. In fact, if I shouted “Fire!” he’d come running. I still see his ghost from time to time, padding behind me, so I don’t need to get another dog. And he will continue to appear in the books.
But let’s end on a cheerful note. Your surprise present is the first chapter of OBLIVION. I shall ask Liam, the brilliant designer of this website,(Editors Note: Anthony’s been at the Christmas Sherry a little early!) to conceal a link somewhere on this page. This is a world exclusive. Not even my publishers have read the book yet. I’ll be interested to know what you think.
By the way, if you want to know what I’m up to – and in particular how the books are getting on – I’ve started tweeting again. If you want to follow me, you can find me @AnthonyHorowitz
That’s it. Have a great Christmas and a prosperous New Year.
Clerkenwell – December 15
PS: Anthony decided to hide the first chapter of The Power of Five: Oblivion in Charles Dickens’ house! Call that a clue if you like!