Category Archives: Media

Nico Murray: Interview With The Author

Nico Murray has just published her first novel and novella, and I was lucky enough to design the cover for the latter. You can meet her at the BinarySoul chainmail booth in the Dealer Hall at Dragon*Con in Atlanta, GA USA over the Labor Day weekend (August 31 – September 3, 2012). In the meantime here’s a short interview with details of the books.

Can you tell us a little about yourself?

I live in Toronto, Canada, with my husband, and my strange little dog. When I’m not crafting strange tales, I work as a goldsmith by trade, while finding many ways to indulge in vodka, coffee and cupcakes.

So, what’s the deal with this series?

That’s a tricky question. I love vampires, and it’s an idea that percolated in my head for a long time.

What I wanted, and found wanting in the great heap of vampires in media was a character who was relatively angst free, and perhaps average, not powerful, rich, or angry. Someone who was going to live life on his own terms. Or his unlife, as it might be. I also wanted vampires who accepted blood drinking, and that the mortals in their life were not just food, but a connection to their own humanity. The Council that Sascha answers to is largely hands off save for big matters.

The series will go from Sascha getting his freedom, but getting saddled with a huge responsibility, but also his own research lab, to have a chance to make things right for the people who need it, while protecting his own people and dealing with the risks of modern society when it comes in the front door.I have vague ideas for books beyond 2, and largely it tends to depend on what unfolds in book 2. Turning Night revealed twists to me that I could not have ever planned. Trying to avoid being spoilery here!

Is the novella Bound Lilies different to the main novel Turning Night?
The novellas are planned as a sort of side-story to the novels, a chance to get behind the scenes, or behind closed doors, or into secondary characters stories where they might not fill a novel entirely. The first novella was created out of a bit of joking between Asher and James, and suddenly I felt I was watching these two getting up to a bit of fun. I liked the play between them, and what was a one off short story just rolled out into this interesting little tale.

The novella also presents a kink/bdsm relationship in a different light. I’m not fond of the standard “Dominant Man/Naive Girl” thing, I wanted characters who knew what they were getting into, and delving into what I think is the pull of kink to some degree, the psychological stuff, catharsis, confronting one’s boundaries, but done in a respectful, balanced and equitable way between the dominant and submissive. I mean, you can’t have one without the other.

I have some ideas for novella 2, but it likely won’t be quite so…graphic. I have no shame writing sex scenes, I think the aversion to that, but a general acceptance of all manner of full on violence seems odd to me. I also presented most of the immortals as somewhat fluid in sexual orientation, the joke being “you’re warm, you’re squishy, you’re consenting? good enough.” I sort of pictured that after 200 years you’d be pretty much down with whatever happened to stumble in to your arms.

So that’s where its at.

Where can we buy the books?

Paper books at Createspace –
Bound Lilies ($10)
Turning Night ($15)

Paper books at Amazon –
Bound Lilies ($10)
Turning Night ($15)

One of the differences between Createspace (an Amazon company) and Amazon is that shipping from Createspace is not a very friendly option for those overseas. The localized Amazon flavour is likely your best bet if you’re quoted high prices for delivery.

eBook exclusively at Amazon’s Kindle shop
Bound Lilies ($3.99)
Turning Night ($5.99)

Where else can we find you online?

I have a tumblr where I post my own pics I take for novel ideas, and random flotsam and jetsam related to the writing at nicovamp.tumblr.com (occasionally NSFW) and my author page at nicomurray.ca.

You can also find the artists who created the Turning Night artwork here- MANDEM Mythpunk Art Noir.

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Let’s Go Shopping!


To celebrate the re-opening of my Etsy store, just in time for Halloween, I thought I’d share some of my very favorite stores from both Etsy and Folksy.
This way for handmade fabulousness…

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Filed under Art, craft, Media, Nouveau, Review, Stores

Wow!

Those of you with your own WordPress site will no doubt be familiar with the stats graphs on the Dashboard page. Generally I just glance at it when I log on and for the last six months its been pottering along at about 500 views per month. But when I logged in on Wednesday I noticed that the graph looked strange. I’d gone from 67 views the day before to over 350 so far for Wednesday (ended up over 470, which was my monthly average). I’d never looked at the “Referrers” section before (I’m new to WordPress and a bit clueless) and was surprised to see both StumbleUpon and The Steampunk Tribune in the list.

So first of all,many thanks to the person who Stumbled me! Also thank you to anyone who has come here from StumbleUpon and taken the time to look around, I really appreciate it!!

Secondly, a huge amount of thanks are due to the staff at The Steampunk Tribune, both for mentioning my desktops and for the incredibly flattering article they posted about my art. Thanks also to Steampunk News for posting the same article. It means a great deal to me, I’m still blushing about being called “one of the signature artists of Steampunk”.

Ok, I’ll stop sounding like an Oscar acceptance speech now. The Airship Pirates RPG went on sale at GenCon at 1pm on friday and sold out in minutes. However, the book is still available to order from the Abney Park Marketplace (Autographed by Captain Robert too!), and for those in Europe who might not want to deal with US shipping times, it’s available from the Cubicle7 UK store. Copies bought from Cubicle7 aren’t autographed though 😦

To celebrate I’m planning a competition or giveaway of some kind in the next week or so. If you have any suggestions for how I should run it, please let me know in the comments 🙂

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Filed under Art, fan art, Magazine, Media, Nouveau, Steampunk

Wordless Wandless Wednesday

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Filed under Art, Books, fan art, Media, Text Art, Wordless Wednesday

Abney Park’s Airship Pirates RPG Pre-Sales!

It’s 2150. The Earth’s recovering from the Great Apocalypse of 1906.

From the steampunk sky-cities of Isla Aether and High Tortuga come the airship pirates.You hoist the Jolly Roger, spin your propellers and take to the skies. Yours is a life of adventure, plunder and infamy.

The American wilderness lies below. Beast-haunted wastelands are criss-crossed by the tracks of the freedom-loving Neobedouins. Armoured railroads connect the Emperor’s widely scattered domains.

In the walled, fog-shrouded cities, people huddle in forced Victorian squalor, lorded over by the upper classes. The Emperor’s clockwork policemen patrol the streets and the ultimate threat of the Change Cage hangs over those who would rebel. Rising from the dockyards, the frigates of the Imperial Air Navy patrol the clouds, hunting pirates and threatening the sky-cities.

You’ve got an airship. You’ve got a crew. You’ve got one of Doctor Calgori’s fancy chronominautilus devices. All you need now is a good swig of rum (trust us, you’ll need it), and you’re ready to set sail on the winds of time and plunder history itself!

Who knows, maybe you’ll even screw up the timeline some more?


Abney Park’s eagerly anticipated Airship Pirates RPG is almost here!
Pre-orders started yesterday with the first 300 being numbered and signed by Captain Robert himself. The book is due to arrive in August, no details of the exact date yet, but I’ll let you know when I know. Previews of some of the art can be found at the Cakebread and Walton site

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“A Tear, Sarah Jane?” RIP Lis Sladen

With only four days left until the premiere of the new season of Doctor Who, it was a huge shock to read of the death of Lis Sladen. Better known as Sarah Jane Smith, Lis was originally a companion of the Third and Fourth Doctors, but more recently appeared in several Tenth Doctor episodes, as well as in her own spin off series The Sarah Jane Adventures.

I didn’t watch the Third and Fourth Doctor episodes when they first came out, due to not having been born, and I have to admit to not watching them on repeat because…. I’m terrified of Tom Baker *ahem* So my first real encounter with Sarah Jane was in School Reunion with David Tennant and a guest appearance from the deliciously evil Anthony Head (Repoman, yum!). Even though I wasn’t that familiar with the character, her performance as the abandoned companion was absolutely perfect, I even cried when the stupid robot dog died! The strength of her performance has actually encouraged me to try to get over my fear of Tom Baker and revisit the earlier series. I’m glad I did.

Along with the recent death of Nicholas Courtney (who played The Brigadier) this is a sad loss for the Doctor Who fandom, its just fortunate that the new series continues to introduce fresh awesome talent that might eventually fill the gaps.

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Good News Everyone!

I bet you read that in Professor Farnsworth’s voice. If you didn’t, you need to watch more TV. If you’re still reading in his voice, you need to watch less TV. Nah, not really, no such thing as too much Futurama. Anyway, to business….

The new issue of Irregular Magazine is here!!! Hoorah! This issue, entitled BEASTS OF WAR, is packed full of RPG and wargaming articles, painting tutorials, gorgeous art and a plethora of reviews (one of which is by yours truly).

Download the new issue here!

In terms of art, I recently completed an album cover and I’m now working on contributions for a steampunk RPG project. I can’t say much just yet, but I’ll be posting more when I can.

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Obligatory Sales Pitch

Did you know that as well as getting your own specific commission it’s also possible to buy prints of some of my previous work, as well as greetings cards and other fun things?

I now have an ArtFire Artisan Studio! A selection of individual postcards, notecards and greetings cards, as well as larger packs, will be listed here over the next few weeks. And the great thing about this site is that you don’t have to make an account in order to make a purchase!

I also have an Etsy Store including a few more knitting/craft focused items, there are a selection of Christmas cards still in my Folksy Shop and for prints of more or less everything (framed or not, on canvas or just on photographic paper) as well as mousemats, coasters, mugs, calendars (and even a jigsaw puzzle) take a look at the DeviantArt Store.

Ok, enough of that, we’ll get back to our regularly scheduled programming shortly….

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Powered By Audio

It’s exceedingly rare for me to buy an album as soon as it comes out. I have to be really devoted to a band to go to that kind of effort. Usually I stumble across albums a few years (or decades) after their release. I also have odd musical tastes. I love musicals and I adore concept albums. I like electro, goth and steampunk all at once. I enjoy classic metal and comedy covers.

Take that as a warning that some of the albums I review here might be a bit weird or not to your taste. I’m not going to apologise for that, as Tenacious D once said, “it only matters if it rocks”.

These are the albums I currently have on repeat. Surprisingly three of them I bought the day they were released, so I guess this also classes as my best-albums-of-2010 list too. Wind up the gramophone, music this way

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Currently Reading, Or 5 Books You Need To Devour

I read. A lot. Constantly in fact. I’m more than a little picky in my tastes. I don’t generally read women’s fiction or chick lit, and I rarely read straight contemporary fiction. I’m the kind of person who walks straight through the fiction section to that lovely little corner of the book store labeled “Sci-Fi and Fantasy”, from that haven of printed glory I’ll read more or less anything- space opera, steampunk, alternate history, sword&sorcery, time travel, dragons, werewolves, zombies, seamonsters… I’ll even venture into the vampire section, though I draw the line at (and through) Stephanie Meyers and I swear I only read Charlaine Harris as the equivalent of reading the funny pages. That isn’t to say that I don’t read the classics, I fact my favorite book of all time is Jane Eyre, but usually I’ve have to hear a lot of good things about a non-scifi book before I’ll spend my hard earned cash on it. Even then I might not finish it, Catch 22 has been serving as a door stop for a few years now. So beware, my tastes may not be yours, but I think the following will appeal to a lot of different people on a variety of levels.

Onwards to the Librarium…

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Filed under Books, Essay, Horror, Media, Review, Steampunk