The Other Kind of Life: Pre-Release Hype!

By Shamus Posted Sunday Dec 2, 2018

Filed under: Projects 110 comments

The image at the top of this post is the planned jacket for my upcoming novel. That’s the back cover on the left, followed by the spine and the front cover. The back is still a work in progress and there’s a lot of text to add, but you get the idea. My wife finished formatting the book a couple of days ago. The only tasks left are finishing the cover and getting the print version ready. Yesterday I realized that we were nearly ready to launch the book and I’ve done nothing to market it. I haven’t even been talking about it here on the blog.

So it would be a huge help for me if everyone was willing to pretend I’ve just spent the last 3-6 months building up curiosity and engagement through previews, teasers, interviews, and giveaways. If you could act like you’re all buzzing with excitement and waiting for the release date announcement, that would really be nice.

The book takes place in a fictional city. It’s cyberpunk, but I left out a lot of the “punk” and replaced it with… sci-fi… murder mystery… kinda. Look, it’s complicated and genre boundaries are confusing to me.

Most cyberpunky stories take place in quasi-Tokyo, Neo York, PseudoLondon, or Los Angelish. I decided I wanted a bit of a different setting, so I went for a mashup of São Paulo, Monte Carlo, and Rio de Janeiro, with maybe a dash of Hong Kong. Basically, this city is not the center of the global culture or technology.

I stray pretty far from the usual formula of razer girlz, mohawks, cyber-prosthesis, mind-jacking, and casual murder. I realize that that’s the cyberpunk recipe and that it makes for a very cool world with a lot of texture. But we’ve been exploring that future dystopia for a long time. I don’t think it works as a projection of current trends here in 2018 as well as it did in 1984. Instead I tried to bring in some recent ideas about machine learning and make different projections with regards to surveillance and crime.

I’m not suggesting I’ve re-invented cyberpunk, or that the traditionalist works are somehow flawed. I just think that there’s room for a different take on the genre.

The back-of-the-book blurb:

Fresh out of jail, Max is forced to solve an impossible crime to save his life. Along the way he teams up with Jennifer Five, a robotic companion who has her own reasons for wanting the crime solved. They need to work together while staying one step ahead of the corporations, gangsters, and crooked cops that are hunting them across the city.

Anyway, just remember: If anyone asks, you’ve been hyped about this for months and you’ve already pre-ordered the Collector’s Edition with Horse Armor. Thanks!


From The Archives:

110 thoughts on “The Other Kind of Life: Pre-Release Hype!

  1. Lino says:

    This looks really interesting! I’ve been itching for a new fantasy/sci-fi to read, but my problem is that I really suck at picking a good one (I guess it’s got to do with my weird taste when it comes to this type of fiction). I haven’t read any of your books yet, but this really sounds like what I’m in the mood for at the moment.
    Can you give us an approximate release date?

  2. Math says:

    Have you thought about trying to get an excerpt published in one of the Sci-Fi magazines?

  3. Dreadjaws says:

    OHMYGODOHMYGODOHMYGOD!!!!!111 It’s finally here! I’ve been waiting for this book for months! Years, even! More hyped for it than for the next Avengers film or Half-Life 3! I have already pre-ordered six copies of the exclusive signed edition and awaiting the Sideshow release of Jennifer Five’s limited collectible statue!

    1. Geebs says:

      It turns out that we don’t have sufficient materials for the Jennnifer Five statue. You will therefore be receiving a nylon Felicity Four statue and 500 YoungYen redeemable at the in-book shop.

      We aren’t planning to do anything about this.

      1. Dreadjaws says:

        Well, at least you let me know before release date, so I have time to cancel my purchase. Unlike certain others

      2. Paul Spooner says:

        Man, now I really want to make 3d Jennifer Five and a Felicity Four statues… Did you know that nylon 3d printing is a thing?

    2. Lars says:

      I don’t know. I’m interested, but with so much hype in the last 4 month I’m cautious. Don’t want another NMS. But the last book sure was good, so I am curious and will give it a try. Fingers crossed.

      Without joking:
      Shamus, are you sure about the back of the book blurb? It has nearly all the lame action tropes.
      ‘Fresh out of jail’, ‘solve an impossible crime to save his life’, ‘They need to work together’
      The same could be said about Escape Plan, if Arnie would play as a T-1000.

      Another (not necessary better) attempt:
      Who did [impossible crime]? Fingers point to Max, who was released from custody shortly before [it] happend. Hunted across the city of whats-its-name, chased by corporations, gangsters, and crooked cops, he and his robotic companion Jennifer Five need to stay one step ahead. But Jennifer Five has her own reasons for wanting the crime solved.

      1. Cilvre says:

        Actually, some of the Blurb at the back made me think of “Altered Carbon” by Richard Morgan. It’s also been turned into a Netflix series that was pretty good.

  4. Asdasd says:

    I’m excited!

    The ‘punk’ was always my least favourite part of cyberpunk anyway. As a specific aesthetic, I mean. I can certainly understand the perspective of the little guy, the rebel, the outlaw or the outsider being a very natural fit with tales of dystopian corporate power run amok. But the shades and the leathers and the day-glow hair? I’m fine with that stuff being optional.

    1. Tizzy says:

      The “punk” in cyberpunk and the “punk” in punk rock share the same etymological origin and a root meaning. But people get confused because they don’t know what “punk” means, and then they think that cyberpunk must mean mohawks and being on the street a lot. An unfortunate confusion.

      1. Asdasd says:

        Well, I’m not surprised that people don’t know what punk means. It’s a word bound up in a great multivariance of meaning, be it aesthetic, political, cultural, literary, musical, linguistic, and what have you. People have taken meaning from it in accordance with their own perception and preconception across that whole range, and in many historical/geographical contexts and moments, and have transformed its meaning further in the way that they use it. ‘Romantic’ is similar word which means a lot of different things to different people. It is what it is.

        I don’t say any of this to contest your post (which I agree with!). I think I’m just rambling. Language all gets a bit Wittgenstein if you let yourself dwell on it for too long.

        1. Geebs says:

          Also the meaning of “punk” is subject to significant regional variation; in the UK it means dressing up like a bag lady, spitting a lot, writing some decent singles, and having the decency to go away as suddenly as you arrived; in the US it means taking yourself incredibly seriously, beating each other up for no reason, and making awful -core music.

      2. Guest says:

        Yeah, people think of “Punk” as a fashion aesthetic, which it is, but it’s more than that, or a specific set of genre conventions for making music. Which isn’t helped by most people’s idea of punk being a boy band, or a British marketing campaign (Knives out for The Ramones and The Sex Pistols, y’all sucked). The reason for dressing different, like most subcultures, is about a) recognising each other b) celebrating that culture c) rejecting the standards of other cultures.

        The mohawks, jackets, the dinginess and grunginess of the thing is a rejection of everyone wearing the same damn suit to work, of their aesthetics of what is attractive. Unfortunately, all of those rejections themselves become an aesthetic, which is pretty self-defeating (But totally what The Sex Pistols management had in mind-it’s literally what they were started for-advertising and getting in on the ground floor of new fashion). And of course, that fashion is linked very heavily to the time-if your cyberpunk is too “punk” in the fashion sense, you look like a throwback, because that’s not even what punks look like anymore. It’s a bunch of kids in black t-shirts and jeans, flannies and hoodies, and mostly, band merch in general.

        Where a lot of “cyberpunk” goes wrong is adapting this, rather than the ideas, which are largely punk-it’s the future, and late-stage capitalism has run it’s course into borderline corporate statehood that inherently devalues the lives of people working under it, and the authoritarian power structures of the state are adopted by these corporations. Ideally, cyberpunk is basically speculative sci-fi written by people who are very concerned with ideas like corporate influence, militarisation, the invasion of our private lives by technology. That’s why most cyberpunk heroes are outcasts and well, punks. They’re the ones who are left out under the new system, just like how punks are people who feel left out of the current system-and the themes of cyberpunk come from using the setting to criticise the current system.

        1. Zak McKracken says:

          Pretty well said. I think I’d only add that the difference between a punk and a classical hero is that the hero has the lofty goal of changing the world for the better while the punk is more disillusioned and mostly content with not playing along with what’s expected of them and giving the establishment the finger.

          Also: I was getting quite curious between the previous mentions of a book project and this announcement, what was going to come out of it and when … thanks a lot for the update, and I’m quite curious to see in which forms it will become available (DRM-free epub, please!)

          1. Drm free epub comes last but will be available. I just don’t have time right now to format for it unless I find a converter for the new kdp create output which is a new file format but took me days less to do. Still fighting with the print cover to wrangle it into proper scale. (Kdp uploader, “Here, use this template so your book cover will fit right.””Your book cover is 60 pixels too short and 1 pixel too high.” Fix. Repeat. Make sure all letters and edges are moved so not affected by bleed. “Perfect.” Put book through final review. “Your letter are affected by bleed. Please fix.” Sigh.

            So it has to wait while I do all the actual work I need to do.

  5. Olivier FAURE says:

    Look, I’m as willing to be hyped for something I never heard of before as the next guy, but you’re doing a bad job selling your book here.

    You’ve only told us what is wasn’t about. It’s “not the center of the global culture or technology”, “not classic cyberpunk”, “not centered on cyber-prosthesis and casual murder”.

    So what is it about? I mean, you’re a pretty unconventional guy, right? Right. So where’s the special Shamus Touch that we can’t find anywhere else? Is there some concept or attitude you really wanted to see in cyberpunk stories and you never found it, so you wrote a book to explore that concept or attitude?

    1. AG says:

      Maybe also reconsider the back-of-the-book blurb. It’s just a little too vague and some of the phrases seem worn-out. After all, it is a really short text and your best way to spark my interest (apart from lengthy articles on this site), so polish the hell out of it!

      1. baud says:

        I agree the back of the book blurb is meh, just too generic, compared to the one from the Witch Watch, which had a better hook (revived against his will, hunted by everyone). If it wasn’t from a writer whose writing I appreciate, I’d drop the book.

        On the other hand I’m not bothered by the lack of hard details.

        1. Syal says:

          …I guess I’ll say I think the front of the book could use work too. The title and front cover say “hooker assassin” to me, which may or may not be accurate, but it doesn’t say cyberpunk.

          1. BlueHorus says:


            …Hey, now that the GTAV series is over I gotta put my Saints Row references somewhere.

        2. kincajou says:

          Agreed on the back blurb being too generic. If i didn’t know you or your writing, that blurb would make me steer clear. There is no intrigue there, no catch, nothing that makes me want to go “oooh…i really want to read this!”, it just reads to me as “more of the same”. Honestly in a bookshop you’d have lost me as the nth generic rehash of the genre, there is nothing there that makes me want to find out about the story.

          Knowing your writing i’m pretty sure what’s inside is pleasantly unconventional and engaging, this just doesn’t come across in the blurb…

          I’m sorry if this comes across as mean (it certainly isn’t my intention) but it feels like you may still have time to give it a redraft which would help draw in more people. As others have said, i’d recommend sprinkling in the elements that make your book stand out to you, the machine learning stuff sounds intriguing, tell us about that.

    2. Tizzy says:

      I’m psyched about the machine learning and surveillance stuff. Maybe finding a way to incorporate it into the blurb would help?

    3. Zak McKracken says:

      That’s what’s called Cyberpunkpunk: They’re the punks of cyberpunk who detest the tropes of regular cyberpunk and define themselves exactly through avoidance of those tropes :)

  6. Bubble181 says:

    Will it be out in time to put in on my Secret Santa Wishlist?
    Will it be out in time to buy it for all my friends and loved ones who can choose between getting this book or a smack around the head?

    You’ve mentioned the book in passing a few times, and while I was a bit sad/disappointed we didn’t get more articles on it, that doesn’t mean I’m any less looking forward to it! I really liked the Witch Watch (despite its flaws), and I’m looking forward to a new book from you.

    As an aside, how has *not* talking about it on here, changed your work method? Some of your projects are very much discussed here and are even undertaken specifically *to* talk about on here, others are kept private until they’re more or
    less ready for release, or only discussed here far behind the development curve. Does this change how you work and write? Do you pick up pointers or tips from here, or are the 78 different ideas and opinions on where to go or how to solve problem X just an added layer of frustration when trying to problem-solve?

    Lastly, where can we pre-order?

  7. Sean M says:

    Congratulations on finishing the book.

    I will preorder a copy when it becomes available.

  8. Lee says:

    I’m definitely waiting for this. When is it expected to come out? From your description, I’m getting a Takeshi Kovacs vibe.

  9. Kdansky says:

    I am sure a white, male protagonist with a buzz-cut is not influenced by video games at all. Especially not with a one-syllable common name like Max.

    That said, I’ll buy a kindle copy as soon as it’s available.

    1. Tizzy says:

      Now I want to write my own cyberpunk book whose protagonists are Min and Median. And the bad guy is Mean, of course.

      1. Droid says:

        Is it about a new drug ‘Exp’ (which makes people lose their memory) and its distribution? Does the plan include finding two logs which allow Median to make the connection to Mean? Is the (Mean) murder rate seen as one unchanging fact of life?

        Does the bad guy A. Mean have a little brother, G. Mean?

        I … I’ll stop now. I’m not sure all of those actually make sense, but there you go anyway.

        1. Asdasd says:

          It’ll be competing on bookstore shelves with my new title starring Moe Dal, medium for hire. His catchphrase is “Mo’ Dal, mo’.. st commonly occurring number of problems.”

        2. Mephane says:

          You’re overthinking it. Just name the main character Hiro Protagonist and be done with it.

          1. John says:

            The best thing about the nsme Hiro Protagonist, the thing that makes it both bearable and awesome, is that he picked it himself.

            1. shoeboxjeddy says:

              Hiro Protagonist
              Best sword fighter in the cyberpunk future where everyone has robots and super guns…

              Weird flex but Okay!

        3. Tizzy says:

          Oh no! You stopped right before we could start having a serious talk about inequalities in this cyberpunk world. AG inequality, for sure, but Jensen’s inequality ( “I never asked for this”) as well!

    2. Shamus says:

      He’s a middle aged, bald, black man. But you know, whatever.

      1. Mephane says:

        I find it kind of odd how people jump to conclusions before even knowing any more details.

        That said, I will from now on imagine him as Lawrence Fishburne. :)

      2. Nick Powell says:

        And I’m sure people will complain about that too

    3. Gargamel Le Noir says:

      Man must your face be red!

    4. BlueHorus says:

      What I want to know is this: Is his surname Power, or Overdrive? Maybe Velocity?

      Voltage? Force?

      I could keep going, but I probably shouldn’t…

  10. Decius says:

    Is the numbered Colecters Editionn going to be as hard to get as that of The Witch Watch was?

  11. Christopher Wolf says:

    Solve an impossible crime? Tough luck for the protagonist because impossible is impossible.

  12. Aaron Ellery Breland says:

    I am buzzing with excitement and waiting for the release date announcement!

  13. RFS-81 says:

    Are you going to sell it as a DRM-free ebook? (Pretty please?)

    1. The Kindle version is drm free. As I said above, the epub version will have to come later due to change in workflow and time constraints.

  14. Penn says:

    Is this the far future sequel to the Witch Watch?

  15. Some rando with questions says:

    So in terms of marketplaces and book versions, where would I buy this book I’m super excited for if I want the author to receive the largest cut of the revenue? Are some retailers better than others, or is it largely similar? Apologies if this has been covered before

    Also, are there any substantial differences for author revenue in terms of buying it in print vs. ebook?

    1. Amazon gives best cut. Everything else is expanded distribution and significantly less. Ebook on Amazon is available. Trying to find time to finish fiddly cover stuff for print.

  16. SPCTRE says:

    you had me at „horse armor“ ;>

    1. Mr. Wolf says:

      I am as hyped about this as I possibly can be. My enthusiasm cannot be measured. This news is really something. My interest is unabated. I am having difficulty conveying how excited I am.

  17. Liessa says:

    It does sound interesting. Maybe you could post a small excerpt here as a teaser?

  18. Mephane says:

    If you could act like you’re all buzzing with excitement and waiting for the release date announcement, that would really be nice.

    FYI, Amazon lists it as out since November 27, and I could purchase and download it right away.

    1. eaglewingz says:



  19. @Shamus Is it too late to alter the cover?

    That image plus the text makes it look like it’s either a Vampire romance novel, or a attempt at a 50 shades of grey thing.

    Without altering too much you could add some subtle “computer circuitry” to the letters. Which would be enough of a hint (fro the cover) that it’s about technology/computers.

    Maybe make the black text have the circuity effect, and the white text a blood’like effect? (human vs non-human contrast, plus people do die in the book too right?)

    1. Nick Powell says:

      I disagree about the romance novel interpretation. To me it seems to have a slightly dated aesthetic (maybe that’s the intention?) – it feels a lot like the books my parents had on the shelves when I was growing up in the 90’s/00’s, though I couldn’t tell you exactly why. I think maybe it’s the limited colour palette on the front cover.

      1. Cuthalion says:

        I got a Mirror’s Edge / Ghost in the Shell vibe from it. But then, I already knew the genre from the explanation. I can see vampire now that Roger mentions it, but I’m definitely not getting 50 Shades.

      2. Guest says:

        (He’s saying that because it’s a woman on the cover.)

        Vampire I get, I’ve seen that. Romance? That kind of has very specific genre conventions for covers that are really distinct-there is no way anyone who’s been to a bookstore even messes that up.

        1. “there is no way anyone who’s been to a bookstore even messes that up” personal veiled attack calling me illiterate? Or a failed attempt at being funny?

          Edge techno thriller/romance is not that rare a genre. There is also a total lack of “tech” on this book cover so cyberpunk is not portrayed.

          All I’m seeing is a cityscape at night, a sultry (right term?) looking woman either topless or naked shoulders, and the title hinting at a darker side of (her?) night life?
          It really looks like a Vampire or light S&M romance.

          This is the cover of Snow Crash.
          Just do a image search on Google with the phrase: cyberpunk cover book
          That’s what one (and especially me would) expect to see.

          1. Echo Tango says:

            The woman has cyber-eyeballs…

    2. BlueHorus says:

      Wait, what are you on abou- actually, now Roger says it, I can see it…

      Something stolen from Deus Ex HR: change her eyes to look synthetic in a more pronounced way? Like a company logo or visible circuitry? That’d say ‘cyberpunk’ very clearly.

      Anyway, awesome. Was looking for something to read.

      1. Syal says:

        Or maybe put her in a TV screen.

        1. Lino says:

          Now that you mention it, the back cover could probably use some work too – as it stands it looks too… normal. It doesn’t look sci-fi at first glance.

          1. Kestrellius says:

            Ah, the tribulations of living in the future…

  20. Moss says:

    Thank you Shamus, I’ve been waiting for a release date announcement for six months now :)

    Question: Have you been to any of the cities you mentioned? (São Paulo, Monte Carlo and Rio de Janeiro)

  21. Dev Null says:

    I can respect being more focused on production than hype. But you will, presumably, give us a heads up before it becomes available? I’m going to buy it anyways, but those early sales can be important for momentum, so it might as well be in the first 24…

  22. paercebal says:

    Will it be available only in Kindle format ? (I’m from France) only lists it as a Kindle Novel.

    1. Gargamel Le Noir says:

      Tu vois ça ou? je ne vois pas son bouquin listé ou que ce soit.

    2. Will also be print. Not done with cover for print.

  23. MelfinatheBlue says:

    Ooh shiny! I totally ordered the 200 special ed with helmet and bag, and am looking forward to it! (Fallout 76 ref, Beth switched out their bags in their 200 special ed and people are pissed, so it’s a new horse armor)

    In all seriousness, sounds like the kind of thing I like, and yeah, I’d do a little reworking of the back blurb. If it wasn’t a Shamus thing, I’d dismiss it unless it was on Kindle Unlimited or a buck. Loads of free books = very discriminating customers, okay, I’m sorta discriminating, but I can finish a novel in an hour, so I can afford to be. Most people I know are getting pickier…

  24. Raion says:

    So, wait, it’s a romantic comedy like Blade Runner 2049?

    1. Duoae says:

      I am a bit asleep this morning but as I was scrolling through I read your comment as “like Barbie Runner 2049”. Which I now wish was a real thing. :D

      1. BlueHorus says:

        The question is…Do Kid’s Dolls Dream of Plastic Sheep?

  25. krellen says:

    I’ve been excited ever since Heather announced it was your best work yet and more like Free Radical. Not sure I’ll be able to afford it immediately, but hopefully early next year at the latest.

  26. Mersadeon says:

    Shamus, honestly, I don’t need to *pretend* to be hyped.

    Free Radical was actually my first exposure to Cyberpunk. That was, what , almost 10 years ago? So I was about 16. I know this might sound corny, but considering it started my obsession with the genre I wrote about most in my studies, you probably literally altered the trajectory of my life with that (not to mention the amount of useful perspective I was able to draw from “How I learned”). I’m going to enjoy this.

  27. Drathnoxis says:

    Is there going to be an audiobook? I don’t actually read books anymore, but I listen to a fair number of audiobooks when doing chores around the house.

  28. melted says:

    Sounds cool! I’m definitely going to get it when it comes out.

  29. Victor Dumitriu says:

    Looking forward to getting more pre-ordering information. Until then, consider me suitably hyped/excited/looking to buy the collector’s edition.

    In all honesty, is there a collector’s edition?

    1. Once done with cover it should be available, no pre-order necessary. (Amazon’s pre-order system is dumb. If you have it available for pre-order it has to be 100% finished. So may as well make it available asap.)

  30. Unbeliever says:

    Is *NOBODY* going to start singing “Who’s Jenny”?


    Saying “Jenny Five… is… alive…”?


    Short Circuit reference…? Anybody…?


    Well, OK then…

    1. Daimbert says:

      I understood that reference!

  31. Khizan says:

    I’m going to join in with the people who say that the cover and back of book blurb really need some work. It’s super generic and not particularly interesting. I’d still buy the book, but only because I have read and liked a lot of your writing, including Witch Watch. Without that, this wouldn’t be particularly good at getting me to part with my money.

    Here are some issues I have with it, just off the top of my head.

    What was Max in jail for? Hacking? Drug dealing? Murder? Burglary? There’s a lot of room there and just knowing the crime helps set the tone a lot. Was it a wrongful conviction? Is he guilty but had a good reason for it? This kind of stuff gives me a better mental picture of who Max is and what kind of story it’s going to be.

    Jennifer Five made the cover of the book. At least, I assume that’s her. Tell me more about her. What kind of robot is she? What are her circumstances? Is she a unique prototype? Secret government agent? Escaped prototype? Sexbot model number #4125 from SexBots Inc? Emancipated AI in a world where that’s extremely uncommon? Human personality overlaid onto a robot body?

    The cover, when taken along with the blurb, gives me a big “sexbot assassin” kind of vibe. Knowing more about Jennifer Five could help with that problem, if it is in fact a problem.

    Why does he have to solve the crime? Is he framed for it and has to find the real culprit? Is he being forced to solve it by somebody on grounds of punishment if he fails? Why are they being hunted by so many people? Do they know something? Do they have something?

    Set the story a bit more. Give me a better idea of what you’re selling.

    1. Syal says:

      Why does he have to solve the crime?

      It’s not a particular crime, you see. He has to solve any impossible crime. Presumably he made a drunken boast with very dangerous people and they told him he needed to back that up and pull it off or they’ll lay him out and put him away.

      …and then he picks an unsolvable case at random and whoops, turns out the guys he bet are actually responsible for that one. Rock, Hard Place, meet Max, he’ll be bunking with you for the foreseeable future.

      1. Duoae says:

        I keep seeing this interpretation in the comments. However, I’m pretty sure that the blurb is meant to indicate that “it’s a situation that was thought to be impossible” rather than “the crime is unsolvable”.

        E.g. like in that surprisingly good film starring Bruce Willis, Surrogates you’re not supposed to be able to die or be harmed when your surrogate is .

        1. Syal says:

          Could be, but if a crime is impossible to commit, it’s impossible to prove someone committed it.

          1. Duoae says:

            Eh, maybe? I mean, say you thought your encryption system was good, only someone installed a back door and that led to information being stolen.

            You think the system is secure and therefore breaking the encryption is impossible (within the time frame for the heat death of the universe). But then information is stolen and an audit of the encryption software results in finding the injected malicious code….

  32. Jack V says:

    Oh, well done! I am excited and will do my best to shill :)

    I think the cover looks very cyberpunk, but I do agree with other people, if other people have a different reaction to the one you want, it may be worth brainstorming it with someone else, to find the parts of what you think are cool, that are cool to someone who doesn’t already know how they fit into the book.

    And — who are the characters? How did they get into this? What’s distinctive about the VR or other cyberpunk technology? That might not be right for the blurb, but that’s what I want to share to get people excited :)

  33. Son of Valhalla says:

    Yes, horse armor was an extra $5! Darn you hype train for ridiculous overpriced DLC (at leasts it’s not $18 to change the color of your power armor).

    Looking forward to release.

  34. chiefsheep says:

    Grabbed the preview off of Amazon and its right up my street – definitely a purchase here.

    Serious question – given how “helpfully pedantic” an audience you have, where do you want any feedback in terms of proofing/typos?

    1. Save them as notes in ebook then send them in email (when you open notes there is a share button. Email them to [email protected] and [email protected] please.) Thank you. (This is how I do it for my favorite authors and apparently it works very well.)

      1. chiefsheep says:

        Will do – I know how hard it is to spot these things, especially when you have been writing/reading it for months on end.

  35. Leonardo Herrera says:

    That’s an awful cover. I mean, it’s pretty, but it doesn’t seem to have meaning nor purpose. It doesn’t tells me what the book is about, it’s too generic, it’s not even trying to sell anything. It’s just clip-art.

    The lettering is good, thought.

    1. Mistwraithe says:

      The cover looks fine to me. Maybe I just don’t have my super-critical hat on?

      I do agree with others though that the proposed back cover blurb could use some work.

  36. Jamey says:

    If you put up a kickstarter or gofundme or a whatever-the-kids-are-into-these-days page, I *will* give you money for the collector’s edition with the horse armor.

    1. Duoae says:

      The only question I have is – does the horse armour go *on* the book or is it horse-shaped and just an accoutrement?

  37. Blackbird71 says:

    I know that it’s a difficult thing in writing any piece of fiction to completely avoid anything that is a reference, or even looks/sounds like a reference, to any works that have come before. Sometimes these references are sheer coincidence, sometimes they are unintentional subconscious expressions, and sometimes they are completely intentional homages in respect to other work.

    Shamus, I don’t know if the connection was intentional or not, but when I read your back of book blurb about a robot named “Jennifer Five,” the only thing I could think of was that you had created a female “Johnny Five” robot from the “Short Circuit” movies. Assuming that the cover art is a depiction of the Jennifer Five character, then this is clearly not the case (at least appearance-wise), but that was the immediate association made in my brain given the similarity in the names.

  38. Mark says:

    Shamus! You are very bad at promoting things! Your book has been available since November 27th!

    Needless to say I rushed right out (well, went to the Kindle store in my web browser) and bought it, but still!

    1. Mistwraithe says:

      I don’t know what hack you are running but a google search for amazon shamus young “The Other Kind of Life” comes up with only this page for me out of the entire interwebs (which is saying something, the interwebs are like big right?).

      1. Mark says:

        I think this is the first time we’ve found out what the book is called, so it’s maybe not surprising that there’s nothing else in Google. I went to Amazon, used their search bar and found it right away. Was reading it ten minutes later. Really enjoying it so far, by the way. The worldbuilding is really cool and there’s a dry sense of everyday absurdity regular readers will find familiar.

  39. Dork angel says:

    I am looking forward to checking out this new book by the author of The Witch Watch, which i very much enjoyed…

  40. Erik says:

    Congratulations on getting your second book out! That’s a major step forward – one and done is far more common.

    But it’s true you suck at the publicity part. In this post, where you apologize for not pre-hyping it, and ask us to pretend to have pre-ordered the Collector’s Edition….

    I read the article multiple times looking for it, looked through all your comments, and scanned a bunch of other folks comments, before finally giving up. I’ll search on Amazon since I was able to buy Witch Watch for the Kindle, but more links usually == more sales.

    Good luck!

  41. Simplex says:

    Hey Shamus,

    I am in Poland and the book is nowhere to be found for me. I tried googling ( ), I tried going on your author page on amazon ( ) and I do not see that book anywhere. Bummer.

    1. It isn’t linked on Amazon yet because of the way Amazon works. Not sure which Amazon you use but that is to it in the US (is available around the world so should be on whichever Amazon works best for you.)

  42. Rack says:

    Can’t fake the hype but I really liked the Witch Watch so I’ll pick this up almost immediately for a holiday read in January.

  43. SimeSublime says:

    I’m curious as to how you sourced the picture for the front cover. Did you go to a modelling agency, or is it just somebody you know, or is it some sort of stock photo?

  44. PPX14 says:

    Ooh am excited to pick this up.

    Not a fan of the front cover art I think it looks a leetle tacky, would be seriously put off if I saw it in a shop without knowing what it was. The addition of the shirt and your name do improve things but the woman’s face just looks a bit too Club Ibiza Sci Fi Prostitute for me.

    But I do really like the back cover art.

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