Author Archives: Peter Darbyshire (Roman)

An update on my Cross series of books

By now some of you will be aware of the controversy surrounding ChiZine Publications, the publishers of my Cross series of supernatural thrillers under the pen name Peter Roman. In light of all the information that has come out, I requested the rights back to my Cross series through Cooke McDermid and CZP agreed, so the rights have now reverted back to me. It’s a difficult situation for many reasons, not the least of which is I had a new Cross book ready to go in the series. I love Cross’s world and I do want to keep writing those stories, but I’ll have to figure out a new way to do that now.

My heart goes out to all the other writers and the readers affected by this situation. CZP published and employed many amazing, incredibly talented creators, so it’s a really heartbreaking time. I sincerely hope everyone lands in a good place for them and are able to keep following their passions. I urge you all to check out their works now if you haven’t already done so. (You should be able to do so by searching ChiZine on Google or your relevant social media networks.

Thanks to everyone who has supported me and read the Cross books to date. At the end of the day, you are why I write and will continue to do so.

Much love.

Peter

ChiZine news update

For those who have been asking, yes, I am one of those authors affected by the ChiZine news. (ChiZine published my Cross series of supernatural thrillers under the pen name Peter Roman.)

I don’t want to speak about the situation publicly at the moment as I’m consulting with various people about my options. I’ll have more to say in the future. I’ll just say I’m heartbroken about it all and had no idea of the scale of complaints. I recently finished the fourth Cross book in the series, so this certainly isn’t the news I wanted to see.

You can find summaries of the situation at File 770. I can’t really speak to their accuracy, as I wasn’t personally involved in any of these cases.

(Photo from Pixabay.)

Has the World Ended Yet? – now in ebook!

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My latest book, Has the World Ended Yet?, is now available in ebook format — Kindle, Kobo, Nook, iTunes, the usual suspects. Now it’s simple as opening an app on your phone to bring about the apocalypse!

Buy Has the World Ended Yet? (ebook)

You can also buy the ancient, bound physical tome if that’s more your thing. Probably makes better kindling for cooking fires after the collapse of civilization anyway.

Buy Has the World Ended Yet? (paperback)

“And of course it’s full of angels”

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I was surprised and delighted to see my latest book, Has the World Ended Yet?, mentioned over at Shawna Lemay’s Transactions With Beauty. Lemay is one of my favourite writers and Transactions With Beauty is one of my few must-read sites, so this is a great honour for me. And I love the photographs!

Plus, it’s probably the only time in my life I will ever be included with Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Radiohead and the Rolling Stones.

Starseed: Or, The Strange Transformation of Archimedes Death, now online at Taddle Creek

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A mysterious and dark superhero! A super scientist determined to learn the truth! Mechanical alien spiders! Trench warfare! My latest story, “Starseed: Or, The Strange Transformation of Archimedes Death,” is now live at Taddle Creek!

Previous: Pulp Spectacular

Bookninja strikes again

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If you like your daily literary and culture news with a twist of the knife, Bookninja is back.

Some of you may remember when George Murray and I started up Bookninja many years ago to talk books on a more or less daily basis. I eventually left to focus on my own writing and because I had kids. Who has the time to do anything on a daily basis when you’re a parent? George grew Bookninja to global infamy on his own before he shut it down himself to also concentrate on his own life. His kids must be grown up now or something, because he’s started up Bookninja again.

Here are George’s comments on the resurrection of the ninja:

Over the last couple years, though, I realized that the unmitigated dumpster-fire known as “The Literary World” had driven me completely underground. I could barely read the news, much less comment on it. I hate living like that.

Recently I realized that when my kids ask me what to do when they feel out of place or under siege by life, I say things like: “Well, then create your own space” and “Time to sally forth with your troops and break the siege.” Which kind of makes me a hypocrite for hiding for seven years.

Further, I feel like I was always out of the loop in terms of what’s happening in the world. Bookninja gave me a chance to go out and seek out daily news that I was interested in.

So, this is me not being a hypocrite anymore. And me trying to “get out” more.

Give Bookninja a follow if you haven’t already. I think you’ll like it. Maybe if enough people start reading it George will make more comics.

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Pulp spectacular!

UPDATED: “Starseed” is now live at Taddle Creek’s online emporium of wonders!

I’m thrilled to announce I’ve got a shiny new story in Taddle Creek’s “pulp spectacular” issue. Taddle Creek has always been one of my favourite mags – and not just because they’ve published a few stories of mine, like “Neighbours” and “The Code” (from my first book, Please), as well as “If You Lived Here” (from my second book, The Warhol Gang). They even published one of the stories that wound in my latest book, Has the World Ended Yet?

That last bit actually brings us around to my new story, “Starseed (Or, The Strange Transformation of Archimedes Death”). The story is my take on a Superman kind of story, where I imagined what would happen if someone like Superman found himself on Earth with no formidable enemies and the conscience of a man who realized no one could stop him, no matter what he did. No one, that is, except for perhaps a reluctant scientist hero by the name of Archimedes….

I’d originally considered including the story in Has the World Ended Yet? because it was a good fit for the collection in terms of content and tone. But my editor, Paul Vermeersch, felt it wasn’t quite ready when it came time for the book to go to print, and he was right. We kept it out and I worked on it for a few more drafts, until I got it to the point where I’d truly captured that pulp feel. Then Taddle Creek editor Conan Tobias asked me if I had anything for a special pulp issue he was planning and here we are.

Anyway, check out the issue if you can. It’s done up in true pulp form specially for the issue, with more wild and crazy authors than you can shake a tentacle at. Check out the table of contents if you don’t believe me!

And, as always, thanks for reading.

Related: Beautiful Books: Has the World Ended Yet?

So many gods, such little time

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Neil Gaiman’s American Gods seems to be getting a lot of attention these days, which makes me happy. I had the chance to interview him over sushi many years ago, when I still worked in the media, and he was one of the nicest and most honest writers I’d ever met. Plus there’s all that creative stuff. He’s the kind of writer you really like to see succeed and blow up in mainstream popularity, especially given all the work he does on behalf of others.

I also like seeing American Gods get lots of attention because of that time Robert J. Wiersema went on the CBC’s Next Chapter and suggested readers of American Gods may also like my first Cross book, The Mona Lisa Sacrifice. Check it out if you haven’t heard it already – the segment starts around the 41 minute mark.

The Bad Fairy StoryBundle

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My first Cross book, The Mona Lisa Sacrifice, is included in The Bad Fairy StoryBundle. Pay what you want for 10 books! Find out why The Mona Lisa Sacrifice is “like if Quentin Tarantino made Howl’s Moving Castle”!

My book aside, it’s a pretty good deal. 10 books for less than the price of a coffee each – and no DRM! It’s almost too good to be true, like some sort of fairy trick….

We all want to visit impossible cities

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“Give me the impossible city, the perfect Paris,
its people wearing shoes made of saltwater,
its streets full of whipped cream and opera,
its fire-breathing street vendors selling
both balloons and bourbon bottles.
Give me books written on illuminated
garlic skin by domesticated foxes;
the cloud-breaking Eiffel Tower
afloat on the buttery backs of croissants.”

I love the poem “Trips to Impossible Cities” by , and not just because of the nod to The Mona Lisa Sacrifice!

(Photo is of me in a gallery in Paris, many ages ago. Long before I’d dreamed up Cross and The Mona Lisa Sacrifice!)