Thought I’d share a pic of me and my brilliant editor at Simon & Schuster, Sarah Knight, taken last night after an event at the International Festival of Authors in Toronto. (We don’t smile like that when taking kicks at first drafts, I can tell you).
And another writer I think is great – Marcus Sakey in this case – has something nice to say about The Damned!
“It’s an uncommon novel that moves a reader, and a rare one that frightens them, but only the most extraordinary accomplish both at the same time. Enter The Damned, a tour de force that sinks sticky claws into the soft dark places in your psyche—and refuses to let go, no matter how you squirm.”
— Marcus Sakey, author of The Blade Itself and the Brilliance Saga
Wow. Got another recommendation for The Damned today by a writer I really admire, in this case Jennifer McMahon:
“Prepare yourself for a sleepless night or two once you’ve settled in with this smart, suspenseful and absolutely terrifying book that takes the bad seed concept to a whole new level. Pyper has the unique ability to take us to the darkest places and convince us that the things we find there are not only entirely possible and real, but that we might just take some piece of them back with us once we close the cover and turn out the lights.”
Jennifer McMahon, New York Times bestselling author of The Winter People
Got a great endorsement from author Lauren Beukes for The Damned today! (If you haven’t read Lauren’s scary, super-smart The Shining Girls or Broken Monsters, you really should. Her writing is insightful, often funny, and her scares are wonderfully weird and dark as the inside of a cow. Big fan).
“Pyper is a master architect of dread…Compulsive and nerve-jangling, The Damned is a story about personal hells and the relationships that haunt us.”
– Lauren Beukes, author of The Shining Girls and Broken Monsters
Over at the BlogTO site, I take a visiting writer on a day out in my hometown of Toronto. Plus some of my other beloved Toronto places and things to do. It’s kind of my own personal mini Lonely Planet guide.
Over at the Mulholland Books site, where they’re hosting a slew of great guest bloggers, I’ve written a thing about the differences between reading scary stories as a kid and reading them now.
The new book has a title – The Damned – and a cover too. Both took a while to get right, but I gotta say, they feel like a perfect match right now.
(The Damned is out February 2015 in the US and Canada, and March 2015 in the UK).
There’s surprises…and then there’s SURPRISES!
When The Demonologist was announced as a finalist for the International Thriller Writers Award for Best Hardcover Novel I took it as an enormous honor in itself, and never thought I stood any real chance of winning. Why would I? My fellow nominees were Lisa Gardner, Lee Child, Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child, Linda Castillo, my fellow Canuck and friend Owen Laukkanen and Stephen King. With a field like that, I was more than happy to just be a shoulder rubber.
Then, this weekend, I went down to New York for the awards banquet at ThrillerFest. Hundreds of colleagues, agents, and editors in a Manhattan hotel ballroom – many of whom I’ve read with admiration and who constitute the firmament of the world’s thriller writing. An audience I found myself addressing when I accepted the award.
It still feels a bit unreal. I feel so very privileged. It was a fun night, I tell you.
So thanks to the ITW, the judges, Jenny Milchman for being the one to say my name into the microphone, and for anyone else who may have had a hand in this. As I said at the awards banquet (and is captured here on video, even if you can’t quite hear me), it was the fifth most exciting night of my life. The others? My wedding day. The births of my two children. And one night I can’t discuss publicly.
Over at the CBC Books website, in honour of Canada Day, they’ve compiled a list of the all-time 100 Novels That Make You Proud To Be Canadian. And guess what? My first novel, Lost Girls is on it!
Aside from the terrific honour at having my book on the list with The Greats, I’m proud in a slightly different way.
It’s the feeling that my story – a made-up thing about ghosts and a cokehead lawyer and a monstrous Lady of the Lake who pulls swimmers down into a lake’s depths – has entered people’s consciousness in unexpected and reality-reshaping ways. To think that something I’ve written has changed (however slightly) the way some might see a familiar thing – a northern lake, a neglected town – is rewarding beyond description.