The Veil contains two linked novellas, both previously published and now collected for the first time in a single volume by the good people at Horrific Tales Publishing.
The first story – The Kill Crew – initially appeared in 2009 as a POD paperback published by
Stonegarden.net and was later translated into Spanish (La Brigada de la Muerte, Alianza Editorial, 2014). It’s been well-received by most readers and the only complaint I seem to get is that it isn’t long enough.
Having been commissioned by an Australian publisher called Dark Prints Press, I came up with another tale set during the same cataclysm but in a different part of the world. It was called The Failing Flesh and was published as part of an anthology titled Surviving the End in 2012. Very few people have read this antho, as far as I can tell, so I can’t really say with any confidence what readers thought of the second novella.
However, I can tell you that I had a blast writing it and that my editor thinks it’s even darker than The Kill Crew.
I’ve always intended to write at least two more stories to complete the series but no one I approached liked the idea of four (or more!) linked novellas.
Trying a different tack, I pitched the idea of a complete novel set in the world of The Kill Crew to my then agent and she said ‘Go for it!’
Two weeks later she emailed telling me not to bother. A fellow agent had shown her a soon-to-be-published manuscript that explored similar territory. I didn’t start the novel. The mysterious manuscript was The Girl with all the Gifts by M. R. Carey.
By another coincidence, I later met M.R. Carey at Westminster – where we both gave presentations on the future of democracy! – and told him what had happened. He thought my take on the subject matter was different enough that I could write my version. I never did.
And then, one day, Graeme Reynolds took a look and wanted to put The Kill Crew and The Failing Flesh together in one beautiful volume. So, here we all are.
If you like it – if enough of you like it – perhaps the time will finally have arrived for me to write the rest of the story.