There’s so much more to tell you about this book but in terms of cover art, it’s a case of…well, judge for yourself… Continue reading
Well, folks, it’s time for Jeremy and I to launch the print version of Clown Wars: Blood & Aspic!
We’re going to do that very thing on the evening of November 17th at the Big Green Bookshop – further event details will follow closer to the time.
Meanwhile, current events being what they are clownwise, we’ve had to adjust our plans for the evening somewhat and we’re asking for a little cooperation from those of you planning to attend.
- Please do not dress up as a clown – clowns will be refused entry to the event
- A bag search will be in operation on the door to prevent clown ‘paraphernalia’ being brought in
- Real clowns are welcome but must be dressed like humans
- Red noses – real or detachable – will not be permitted inside the building
- Any inappropriate remarks or jokes concerning clown security may result in your arrest
- Do show your support for recently unemployed clowns by leaving donations in the Hobo charity box
- Custard pies will be served throughout the evening, however the police have insisted we remove the custard for security reasons
- Spoken passages from Clown Wars: Blood & Aspic have been ‘modified’ to remove all reference to clowns, clown activities and anything that might be construed as silly, farcical or humorous
- Nevertheless, trigger warnings will be issued on the night to prevent audience discomfort during the author readings
- Whilst the organisers appreciate that book launches are intended to be fun, we ask that attendees stick to sensible topics when in conversation with each other, the shop owners or the authors
- For safety reasons, we ask that levity of any kind be avoided. Attendees ignoring this stipulation will be asked to leave
Most importantly, we hope you’ll have an entertaining, enriching and completely clown-free evening.
We look forward to seeing you there – it’s going to be a great night!
In the light of recent events concerning incidents of stalking, threats of assault, harassment, breach of the peace and other nuisance-making – all allegedly perpetrated by people dressed as clowns – the authors of Clown Wars: Blood & Aspic wish to make the following statement:
“We do not condone, nor have we ever, clown impersonators and/or clown-associated accoutrements, disguises or paraphernalia for the purpose of causing intimidation, harm or unrest. Nor do we find the global spate of such ‘attacks’ in any way amusing.
Clown Wars: Blood & Aspic is a work of pure fiction written, like any other novel, as entertainment. It was never intended to inspire idiots to dress up as clowns and run around terrifying innocent people.
We now feel it is time to distance ourselves from any and all such activities by saying loud and clear: this has nothing whatsoever to do with us.
This is our final comment on the matter and we do not wish to hear from reporters – or members of the public pretending to be ‘real’ clowns. Nor will we field any further complaints about the contents of the book. None of this is our responsibility. It’s just a story.”
Joseph D’Lacey and Jeremy Drysdale
Oct 10th, 2016
NB: All comments will be strictly moderated.
I’m delighted to see this novel make it into print after such a long time. We wouldn’t have planned it this way but steep learning curves aren’t such a bad thing. Besides, getting everything wrong is a defining clown trait and we’re proud to posses it in spades.
What underpins this post, though, on the day that Clown Wars finally becomes a real book, is a feeling of gratitude to my co-author, Jeremy Drysdale. This whole nonsensical shebang was his idea. More ridiculous still, I actually agreed to help him turn it from a spec script treatment into a novel.
This resulted in a cascade of preposterous absurdities, all of which revolved around one central irony:
Commissioning editors loved it but not one of them had any idea who the readership might be or how to market such a galactic genre anomaly. We came tantalisingly close to that ‘traditional’ publishing route several times, yet the final answer was always no.
Not everyone loved the book, of course. A few had a fear of clowns and couldn’t stand it. Frustratingly, they were all industry gatekeepers – among them, the producer at Aardman who first saw the idea and politely told Jeremy to get lost. A few agents and editors had similar feelings.
We had to accept the facts: if we didn’t publish it ourselves, the readership would remain steady at zero and all marketing would remain hypothetical, a realisation that took five years to sink in (clowns don’t take hints too well, either).
I know I speak for Jeremy when I say that believing in a book this…leftfield…has been trying, especially after so many extremely positive knockbacks. But that’s another thing about clowns; every time you knock ’em down, they bounce back up again. Kinda creepy, actually.
So, back to that feeling of gratitude:
Jeremy Drysdale brought me this curiosity. We’ve had no end of fun and heartache developing it but a worthwhile existence is full of fun and heartache, I think – it lets you know you’ve lived. Bringing Clown Wars into the world has informed us, loud and clear, that we’re very much not quite dead yet.
If you feel any of the same kind of gratitude after reading the book, you can help us.
Tell someone about the book. Tell your therapist; you never know. If you can’t think what to get for a weird relative this Christmas, buy them a copy of Clown Wars – it’s a steal at £7.99 and guaranteed to be unique. Get on Amazon and leave us a rating and review – it really does make a difference – and do something similar on Goodreads and Librarything or your blog.
And here’s why we need your help:
We have no marketing budget. We have no publicist. We’ll never have a poster campaign or be in a well-known book club. We won’t be reviewed in papers or magazines. There’s only you, our readers, and what you say about the book. So, if you love it, we hope you’ll share that love.
Six years ago, screenwriter Jeremy Drysdale asked if I would novelise a movie treatment for him. He’d read my debut novel MEAT and loved it. Nevertheless, it struck me as an odd request – films from original scripts are often turned into novels after they’re successful but Jeremy’s idea was basically still in note form.Read More
This is how CLOWN WARS kick off:
A man is knocked unconscious by a circus clown in a stunt gone wrong.