I know, I know it’s been some time since our last update. Or it certainly feels like it when we’ve got so much going on! I have good news though, you’re going to get more, a lot more.
I have shrugged off the yoke of my previous day job with the intention to give more time to Curious King and more back to my customers and followers. I share the passion of the production of these books and I promise to give more insight in the form of content.
This doesn’t mean I’m suddenly going to release a flurry of titles. But it does mean I’ll hopefully be able to speed up production on them so you get them in your hands quicker. I’m very excited to dedicate more time to the titles I have under licence and will be able to explore some other related ideas at the same time!
Anyway, on to the updates as that’s really why you’re here.
The Blade Itself
Following the last announcement of the publiushing date going back, we are continuing to make good progress. The Amazing binders at Ludlow have been able to go into production on certain items that don’t require the art which means when it is handed in we should be able to move very quickly. I have a meeting with Tommy and Joe next week to review art, and the aim is to receive art early July, which should mean we see deliveries in September.
As Ludlow’s have been making progress I swung by to see how they were getting on, and the folding is nearly all complete, and most of the slipcases have been produced too.
Just look at all these lovely folded sections. These are the numbered and standard edition’s, the lettered blocks have all been folded.
I’ll be visiting the binder at various intervals during the binding process and will make sure I take lots of videos and pictures of progress.
The Fifth Season
This one is hot on the heels of TBI and is currently being letterpress printed by Ellen and Pat at Nomad Letterpress which is incredibly exciting. I have made a slight change from the original info release, instead of using Magnani Mouldmade 130gsm for the Lettered and Roman Numeral, I’m now using Liber Charta 145gsm. It’s a lovely paper and a little less bulky so I may use this more (it’s also more expensive, but I’m going to swallow that).
Art is next on the list to receive before I can move to binding, and that’s well underway by John Anthony di Giovanni. Once we have this in hand we can then move to binding, which I’m hopeful will be later this year. Timelines and slots are really hard to pin down at the moment, but my goal is to have this shipping well before the end of the year – the binding will follow directly after TBI.
I know I teased some information about it, but I’m pleased to say I now have the Roman Numeral Prototype for The Fifth Season in hand! I’m really pleased with the concept on this and the initial prototype is really strong. There will likely be some tweaks for the final production version but more than enough to show you guys soon. There will be 6 up for sale, but you’ll have to wait for the info release on this one – it’s a bit nuts.
I’m also visitng the printers in the next couple of weeks, and hope to get some nice footage of the second colour going on!
We’ve been busy behind the scenes on Hyperion, there is a lot happening at the moment in the concept/development stage. I’m actually working with the Makers Space at Salford University on several concepts, but due to summer holidays the pre-order date is likely to go backwards.
However, this doesn’t mean the book will go backwards as the art, printing and other prototypes can be done in the background. There is going to be a Roman Numeral for Hyperion, but there won’t be for the remaining 3 books in the series as an FYI.
I’m also exploring some other ideas to go with Hyperion. Would people be interested in a Shrike model, something shelf sized, maybe painted, maybe 3D printed in resin and painted? I’m also looking at potentially doing some larger Shrike busts, possibly 40cm high. They would be hand sculpted first in oil clay then forged in Bronze or aluminium. If this sounds like something people want to see, then please let me know as it will help with numbers etc.
Regarding art, Jaime Jones has made a brilliant start. His dustjacket prelim was loved by Dan Simmons, so I’m very excited to see that finished. We’re also working on some B&W’s at the moment so they can be included in the printing process. Art is due back in Q1 2024 latest, so hopefully Q2 for delivery on this one. Pre-order likely October/November I think at the moment.
Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy
There isn’t much to update on Hitchhikers, but I think you can all appreciate that I’ve got my hands full at the moment getting these initial titles out the door. I am still incredibly happy that I’ll be producing a version of this, and I can confirm there will be four states :
- Roman Numeral
I haven’t been able to confirm numbers just yet on each one. But likely 500/200/42/6 however this may change in the development period.
Timelines are very much up in the air at the moment, art needs to be done first and Gary is going to make a start later this year. When I know more, you guys will also know more!
Of course I am exploring future titles, but that is to be expected. I know some people are conscious/worried about the amount of titles/series under licence at the moment, and I’m going to ensure the future titles don’t impact the original series in production. With that in mind, no hints or nuggets about future titles in this update I’m afraid. Once I have some art commitments for books 2 for TBI and TFS, then i’ll be able to more accurately predict a pre-order/shipping date.
As the press starts to deliver and release books, it’s going to be easier for me to secure artwork for a full series rather than just on a per book basis which is what I’m currently constrained to. Personally I prefer it when a series has the same artist, and I sold the initial book on the artist I chose so feel compelled to carry on with that. This won’t always be possible, but it’s something I am keen to do and sadly this sometimes has an effect on production/delivery times.
However going forward I should be able to work towards releasing books much closer to the pre-order date (ideally 3-6 months). That doesn’t mean they get produced faster, it just means I take the pre-order closer to the release date – if you see what I mean. But with the amount of titles I have under control at the moment, it means I can get art started on new titles asap before I even announce them.
There you have it, an update! But the first of many no doubt. I will be posting pictures and content and updates far more regularly now so you can see how your books are coming along.