Sunday, 9 September 2018

The Dying Glass Published in Deep Magic Fall 2018

Hey folks,
My James White Award finalist short story, The Dying Glass is out now in Deep Magic Fall 2018



Deep Magic have posted a Feature on it to give you an idea what the story has to offer you:

This is an amazing short story! We loved so, *so* many things about this fantastic tale: the religious system based on glass, the 11-year old Cara who is deaf and uses a secret finger-talk language with her mother, and how the plot and tension build throughout. And we absolutely love the language! Here's a little sneak peek:

"The first rays of the summer solstice struck the spires of the fabled Mirror Tower, causing golden dawn light to ripple through the crystalline walls, scattering points of light, starbright, all across the nave. Cara stared in awe, nausea forgotten. The cathedral vibrated underfoot as priests and dignitaries lifted their voices in prayer.

The Dying Glass by Cameron Johnston is an amazing story of glass, a mother's love, gods, demons, recorded history, and truth.

Thursday, 23 August 2018

Fantasy Worldbuilding: From the Bottom Up

I have a new guest blog post up on the Fantasy Faction website, enticingly titled Fantasy Worldbuilding: From the Bottom Up

What does fantasy worldbuilding and magical poop have in common? More than you might think.

Thursday, 16 August 2018

Deep Magic

Hot on the heels of The Blitz of Din Barham being published, another short story will be coming out soon between the pages of Deep Magic. Look out for more details next week.

Tuesday, 7 August 2018

The Blitz of Din Barham published in heroic Fantasy Quarterly #37

My latest short story, The Blitz of Din Barham, has been published in Heroic Fantasy Quarterly #37.


HFQ has this to say about it:

You want dragons? You want sorcerers? You want sorcerous in-fighting? Oh, you get it, in abundance! Din Barham is besieged by dragons, and the squabbling sorcerers are barely able to keep them at bay. Desperate times call for desperate measures and young Kyna, apprentice to the great Magus of Din Barham, has to break ranks and find a solution.

Monday, 6 August 2018

Dragon Awards 2018 Finalists Revealed

The Dragon Awards have released their 2018 ballot and The Traitor God is a finalist for Best Fantasy Novel category alongside Brandon Sanderson, so that's pretty damn cool :) I'm stoked that people out there decided to nominate it.

If you want to sign up to vote you can do it here: http://application.dragoncon.org/dc_fan_awards_signup.php

All the finalists for the 2018 Dragon Awards are listed at the link below. Congrats to everybody nominated (especially if any are part of this group)

Wednesday, 1 August 2018

Dragon Award 2018 Finalist


So a very unexpected and wonderful thing happened at the weekend. I got an email to say that The Traitor God is a finalist in the 2018 Dragon Awards in the category of Best Fantasy Novel!! Please excuse the jaw trailing on the floor right now...

I have no expectation I will actually win of course, but I'm delighted that something I wrote was liked by enough people to get it nominated, and that's a truly wondrous thing. Thank you all, whoever you gloriously amazing people are!

If you want to take part in the final vote, anybody with an email address can sign up to receive a ballot when they are released:

God of Broken Things rough draft finished

And lo the rough draft of God of Broken Things (The Traitor God 2) was finished and sent off to his agent for comments! Next he must face the valley of the cutting edits and traverse the dark forest of rewrite...*sigh* Lucky I enjoy writing 😛

Sunday, 29 July 2018

Blacksmithing

On Friday I took my first ever lesson in blacksmithing. Now that my arm can bend again I thought I would do a little write up of the experience, because it was a damn cool one that I would recommend to everybody. There's something hugely appealing and almost magical about heating and hammering red-hot metal into shape.

For the first project I was forging an iron coat hook from a long rod of metal. We were shown the forge (a small modern gas one rather than charcoal and bellows) all the various hammers, tongs and tools and the square rods of iron we were going to be beating into shape.



The first step was getting a feel for the metal and the hammers and begin drawing the iron out (making it longer and thinner). We heated the iron until it was a hot and glorious yellow and then placed the end on the anvil, hammering it five times on one side, rotating 90 degrees and then another five, alternating back and forth in order to keep the existing shape. Rinse and repeat until the the metal turned from yellow to red and faded back to black, then it was time to re-heat and do it all over again.

Once I had it down to a thinner length of metal it was time to take off those square edges and make it round instead. More delicate work with a lighter hammer but it proved to involve just as much arm-work.

Next it was time to curl the tip round into a decorative shape. Which was much harder than it looked, involving delicate taps with a hammer to draw it towards you, and some straightening wonky bits with tongs and hammering.


Once that was done it was time to fashion the flat plate where we would be putting in the screw/nail hole. Mostly that involved a heavier hammer and beating merry hells out of it until it was flat enough. Then it was time to use a punch to make the hole and a chisel to hammer a line into the metal above the hole, so we could snap off the unused length of iron rod. Some grinding and cleaning up with power tools and the coat hook was a splendid silver colour.  

Then I decided to heat temper the iron to give it some lovely colour. Basically, to heat it up in the forge again, with different time and temperatures granting different oxide effects, going from deepening shades of gold through purple and blue and back to silver. At this point even a single extra second under intense heat can mean blue instead of gold - which you can hopefully see from the top and bottom and the slight golden colour in the centre.


It was hard, hot and sweaty work, but oh so satisfying!

Thursday, 12 July 2018

The Traitor God returns!

My good friends at Angry Robot have announced the sequel to The Traitor God. Colour me excited with a proper party hat on!

Tentatively titled, God of Broken Things, the novel will be dropping in June next year and sees your favourite antihero Edrin Walker back in the midst of all that terrible, beautiful action.

Here’s the synopsis:

Tyrant magus Edrin Walker destroyed the monster sent by the Skallgrim, but not before it laid waste to Setharis, and infested its magical elite with mind-controlling parasites. Edrin’s own Gift to seize the minds of others was cracked by the strain of battle, and he barely survives the interrogation of a captured magus. There’s no time for recovery though: a Skallgrim army is marching on the mountain passes of the Clanhold. Edrin and a coterie of villains race to stop them, but the mountains are filled with daemons and magic, and Walker must stop at nothing to win, even if that means losing his mind. Or worse…

For those of you who’ve yet to have read The Traitor God, called this year’s best and most brutal grimdark (by Angry Robot no less!), then you can get a sneak peek of the first chapter right here.

Saturday, 30 June 2018

Head Games reprinted in Mirror Dance

I've been asked a few times where the idea of the character of Edrin Walker and the city of Setharis came from - and here it is, the short story that spun off and exploded into becoming The Traitor God: Head Games has been reprinted in Mirror Dance.

If you want to see a slightly earlier version of Edrin Walker taking place before he went into exile, you should probably read this.

Seven corpses lined the side of the alley, heaped atop pig shit and kitchen slops. Stained blankets did little to conceal the lumps of butchered human meat beneath. A black-clad warden wearing the red sash of a captain stood in the middle of the bloody mess, his back to me, hand resting on the pommel of the sword at his waist. I pried the bent rollup from my lips and yawned tabac smoke, scratching at my chin, bristles rasping. They had hauled me out of a warm bed and sent me trudging halfway across the bloody city for this? ...

Thursday, 21 June 2018

The Traitor God In Translation

If you haven't already seen the news posted on Angry Robot's website then let me enlighten you by repeating it below:

We’ve got some great news for our buddies over in Europe! Excellent grimdark novel The Traitor God by Cameron Johnston is going to be translated into both Hungarian and Czech!

In Hungary the translation rights have been acquired by Főnix Könyvműhely, with the book being published sometime within the next year. Czech folks will see the translation published by Euromedia Group sometime within the next two.

We told Cameron, and once he’d woken up from his dead faint asked him to give us a couple of words on the deals. Here he is:

“When my book was published several people said they were going to borrow it through their local library – whoa, my book being in a library gives me all the feels. As a kid I spent so much in mine time picking out and reading armloads of books. It is a wonderful feeling that mine has now joined the others on those hallowed shelves.

But wait, what is happening now? People want to translate The Traitor God? *stares* How AWESOME is that! It’s such a strange but similarly heartwarming feeling to know that something I have created will be published in other languages (that I can’t read) for people to enjoy. I wish them the best of luck translating all those unusual sweary words!”

Massive thanks to the Watkins Media rights team, who broker our translation deals. You guys are the best! *blows kisses*

Now to wait for the incoming covers, which we’re sure will be totally kickass. You’ll see them here as soon as our optical orbs get to process them.

Wednesday, 6 June 2018

Newcastle event with RJ Barker

I will be in Newcastle's Forbidden Planet on June 14th, up to no good with that master of assassins, RJ Barker.

Join CAMERON JOHNSTON and R J BARKER, in conversation, at the Forbidden Planet Newcastle Megastore on Thursday 14th June from 6 - 7pm!

Spend an evening with two of Grimdark’s most exciting new authors, Cameron Johnston (The Traitor God) and RJ Barker (Blood of Assassins). The pair will interview each other on their writing processes and what makes great fantasy in 2018. Books will be available for signing post-event!

All the details are on the Forbidden Planet page.



Tuesday, 5 June 2018

The Traitor God is here!

The Traitor God has been unleashed upon the world!


A city threatened by unimaginable horrors must trust their most hated outcast, or lose everything, in this crushing epic fantasy debut.

After ten years on the run, dodging daemons and debt, reviled magus Edrin Walker returns home to avenge the brutal murder of his friend. Lynas had uncovered a terrible secret, something that threatened to devour the entire city. He tried to warn the Arcanum, the mageocracy who rule the city. He failed.

Lynas was skinned alive and Walker felt every cut. Now nothing will stop him from finding the murderer. Magi, mortals, daemons, and even the gods – Walker will burn them all if he has to.

After all, it wouldn’t be the first time he’s killed a god...

Available now from:

Thursday, 31 May 2018

Mysterious Box

So, so, so...yesterday this mysterious box arrived while I was out.



What could it be? I certainly couldn't find out for the next ten hours. NGHHHhhhhh! So frustrating.

Of course I did have a pretty good idea what would be inside. *had fingers crossed they hadn't sent me somebody else's books*.


OH! Look at that. It's my book. It's really real. Such a surreal but wonderful feeling to see a box -a whole box!- of my own books, then to pick one up and feel its weight in my hand, turn it over and read the back as if I was browsing the shelves of a book shop.
What a wonderful moment :)


Friday, 11 May 2018

It's Alive. ALIVE!


It's Alive. ALIVE!

Thanks to Angry Robot for teasing us all with a little preview of The Traitor God in actual real-life 3D paper book format.

Behold!


Feel the grimdark terror and lust for swords and sorcery seeping into your bones. Witness the fearsome might of my national animal! (The unicorn is Scotland's national animal. Really. How cool is that :D )

Monday, 7 May 2018

Interview by Anna Stephens

That wonderful writer and all-round fantastic person, Anna Stephens, has interviewed me on her website. If you want some sneak peeks at what you will find within the pages of The Traitor God then you are in luck - go here and have a read!

You might also want to consider buying her excellent novel, Godblind, while you are at it ;)

Thursday, 5 April 2018

Out for Review

The Traitor God is now available on NetGalley for reviewers - if you fancy reviewing something part noirish magical investigation and part grimdark lovecraftian apocalypse - you are in luck!  Off to Angry Robot on NetGalley with you!

*slides a plate of bribery-biscuits across the table*

I will just leave these delicious treats here shall I? *knowing wink*

Monday, 19 March 2018

Panel at Follycon

I will be at Follycon, the 68th British National Science Fiction Convention, or Eastercon, to be held over the Easter weekend, 30th March - 2nd April 2018.

You can come and see me on the 'Horrible Heroes' panel at 8pm on Friday the 30th in the Reading Room where we will be discussing heroes that are anything but good.

Thursday, 15 February 2018

First Interview as an Author

I answered cunning questions from Hippogriff's Aerie for my first ever interview as an author.
Featuring: stop-motion skeletons, video nasties of the 80s, mysterious statues and the beauty of swords. Oh, and The Traitor God, better mention that too!

You can read it HERE.

Thursday, 8 February 2018

The Traitor God Pre-Orders


The Traitor God is now available for pre-order by all super-awesome people wanting to get their hands on it as soon as humanly possible in June. It is available dressed in your choice of handsome paperback or snazzy ebook attire!



For us UK-types it's not available to pre-order on Amazon Kindle until March, but it IS for users of Amazon.com. Go figure, that's their KDP for you.

Angry Robot - for UK ebooks

Amazon.com

Amazon UK - No UK Kindle pre-orders available until March.

Waterstones

Barnes and Noble

Book Depository

The wonderful author Brian McClellan has an excellent post on his website about why pre-orders matter.

Wednesday, 31 January 2018

Love in the Age of Grimdark

I have a guest post up on the Fantasy Hive site, this time talking about grimdark fiction and my need for a little love and light amidst all that relentless, crushing darkness.

Tuesday, 23 January 2018

The Traitor God Cover Reveal

And it's out - The Fantasy Hive have posted The Traitor God Cover Reveal with a fantastic write up and a host of detail, including a larger cover image.

Thanks to Angry Robot and the artist Jan Weßbecher for an amazing cover!





Most Anticipated Fantasy Books of 2018 redux

So The Traitor God has been noticed by a few people - it's appeared on no less that three 'most anticipated in 2018' lists.

New York Public Library

Fantasy Hive

Barnes and Noble

I am blown away!

Thursday, 4 January 2018

Most Anticipated Fantasy Books of 2018

Those fantastic people over at The Fantasy Hive have released their Most Anticipated Fantasy Books of 2018 and... I'm on it with The Traitor God!

As a debut novelist this is both totally unexpected and gives me ALL the good feels. 

I think all novelists have the same worries: that your book will be released and sink without a trace, that nobody will read it, like it, review it or even notice it. It comes with putting your work out into the public sphere, but I reckon it has to be worse with your first word-baby. Mostly, I just hope people will enjoy it.

Interesting times are ahead, and the game is afoot!
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