The four book year

Rob Writes:

This is a very special year for me: the 25th anniversary of the first publication of Mythago Wood, and a four book year!

The first of the four books is now out. Merlin’s Wood was first published in the mid-90s. Gollancz have brought out a new edition which includes “The Bone Forest”, a mythago novella, and three short stories that have links with the whole cycle of tales. It looks great, and the cover design is being used on the other books to come.

In July, there will a brand new edition of Mythago Wood itself, and on July 19th a direct sequel, Avilion, will be published.

Mythago WoodAvilion is a book I never thought I would be able to write. After twenty five years, however, the idea of what happened when Guiwenneth — one of my absolutely favourite characters — came back to life, suggested the story of what happens to her two children by the narrator of that first book, and a tale I felt impelled to tell. (I take some liberties with the myth of Avalon, but hope to escape the lynch mobs of Arthuriana.)

In doing so, I have become very good friends with those young adults — Yssobel and her brother Jack. I wish I could take them for a drink and a good meal (living in the wildwood, they need both.) They became very real characters, with very real obsessions, and the story suddenly flowed through them, as if two ghosts had become alive again. A great feeling.

(Yssobel’s story will be continued, by the way. I simply cannot let her go!)

Then towards the end of the year, my 1990s novel Ancient Echoes will be re-published. It has a glorious cover and will have an afterword by me. Ancient Echoes is crammed with ideas and weird encounters, and had been a joy to write over the two and half years of deep thinking. I’m delighted it will have a new look and a new presence on the shelves.

All, of course, from Gollancz, and with the encouragement and care of the Gollancz editorial and marketing team: Jo Fletcher, Gillian Redfearn, Jonathan Weir, and Malcolm Edwards.

My website, in the capable hands of the wonderful Maura McHugh, whom I first met at an Octocon, will be redesigned soon, but the site name will remain.