Archive for the ‘McClelland & Stewart’ Category

Guess who’s coming back?

Sunday, March 29th, 2020

3a book graphic

This has not been a closely-guarded secret. In fact, I’ve been mentioning it when asked at talks and readings for the last few months (back before the Corona Curse when I was still touring around). But I realized yesterday as I finished writing Chapter 1 of my eighth novel, that I’ve never formally noted it in this space. So here goes. The characters from my first two novels, The Best Laid Plans and The High Road, are returning in my next novel. That’s right, Angus McLintock, Daniel Addison, Muriel Parkinson, Lindsay Dewar, Bradley Stanton, and some new players are back in Operation Angus, the tentative title. It should be out sometime in 2021, likely the late summer or fall.

After having given nearly 1,000 book talks and readings since 2008 when The Best Laid Plans was published by McClelland & Stewart, the most common questions I field from readers are various versions of “When will you write another Angus novel?” I never closed the door on another “Angus novel” but to be honest, I never really had the intention of returning to the principled Scottish engineering professor with the unruly hair and beard. Okay, “unruly” is a profound understatement. But as the years passed and more and more readers asked about it, the idea of a third novel about Angus, his trusty sidekick Daniel Addison, and the rest of the gang began to sound more appealing. Well, now is the time.

The tentative title is Operation Angus, though that could change before publication. (After all, Albatross, the title of my last novel was an eleventh hour change just before publication.) I’d like to have “Angus” in the title to make it perfectly clear for readers that the accidental MP is back. The story is less a political satire and much more of a comic thriller. Without going into too much detail, Angus, now a Cabinet minister, and Daniel, while in London, stumble upon information about an assassination plot against the President of Russia set to unfold while he is briefly in Ottawa for a meeting with our Prime Minister. For various reasons, the intelligence is not considered credible (except by Angus and Daniel) and so the RCMP and CSIS don’t really pursue it. Angus and Daniel are left to uncover and thwart the assassination attempt pretty much on their own, supported by the quirky bunch around them. I should probably stop there.

If all goes to plan, I should have a completed manuscript ready for my editor at M&S, Bhavna Chauhan, by the end of August. Now back to Chapter 2.

Screen Shot 2020-03-29 at 9.16.11 AM

This is the simple table I use when writing my novels to help me keep track of word count and sometimes to make me feel good about my progress or daunted by what remains. Right now, it’s more of the latter.

After 7 months, Albatross still a Canadian bestseller

Friday, March 20th, 2020

This afternoon, on a lark, I checked back in with Bookmanager, where you can find all of the books in Canada ranked according to the previous week’s sales. Bookmanager provides the bestsellers lists for several major media outlets including CBC Books. I confess that in the weeks following the launch of my novels, I usually check the Bookmanager rankings every half hour or so! (Okay, that’s a slight exaggeration.) But Albatross has now been in bookstores since last August so I haven’t checked the numbers for quite a while. But I just did, filtering for “Canadian” and “fiction.” What a lovely surprise it was, in these bleak days of social distancing and self-isolation, to see that Albatross remains among the top twenty bestselling Canadian novels some seven months later (albeit at number twenty). Chuffed. Now back to our regularly scheduled hand-washing and crowd-avoidance. Stay safe, all.

BookmanagerMarch 2020

French translation of Albatross coming in May

Saturday, February 22nd, 2020

Screen Shot 2020-02-22 at 8.46.27 AM

 

I’m thrilled to report that a French translation of Albatross will soon be released in Quebec. Les Éditions de l’Homme in Montreal secured the North American French language rights late last year. I’ve been working with the translator in the last month and the plan is to release the French edition in May. I’m looking forward to seeing what they come up with for the cover. This is actually the very first French translation I’ve ever had, hence the “I’m thrilled.” Here’s hoping it leads to more. My thanks to my tireless literary agent, Beverley Slopen for her work in making this happen. I’ll release the cover when it’s all been decided. Stay tuned. À tout à l’heure!

A thorn between two Atwood roses

Thursday, September 12th, 2019

Now that The TestamentsMargaret Atwood’s much-anticipated sequel to The Handmaid’s Tale, has arrived, hot on the heels of Louise Penny’s latest blockbuster, I’m thrilled to be still in the bestseller mix. This is the top ten list of Canadian fiction bestsellers according to Bookmanager as of this day. It’s a veritable “who’s who” of CanLit with Margaret Atwood, Miriam Toews, Michael Ondaatje, Emma Donoghue, Esi Edugyan, Michael Crummy, Cherie Dimaline, and Louise Penny… and somehow I’m there, too. Surreal.

 

Bookmanager ranking 190912

 

Update on Albatross as a Bestseller

Friday, August 30th, 2019

Albatross continues to hang in there on most bestsellers’ lists. Any way you slice it, I’m one lucky novelist. There should be a shake-up next week with Louise Penny’s new book landing. I suspect she’ll be atop the charts very shortly. But it’s been very nice while it lasted! Anyway, here’s an Albatross bestseller update for the current week:

CBC Bestseller list 190829

Globe 190831

Toronto Star 190828

Winnipeg Bestsellers (McNR) 190828

Nice piece in several PostMedia papers

Friday, August 30th, 2019

Here’s nice interview I did with Jamie Portman, an arts reporter with PostMedia (National Post and many other papers across the country).

Post Media interview (smaller 3) 190825

Albatross now at #3 on Globe Bestseller List

Friday, August 23rd, 2019

Last week Albatross entered the Globe and Mail Bestsellers list at #10. One week later (and only two weeks since it was published) the novel has somehow risen to #3. This is very encouraging and I’m thankful for the work of my team at McClelland & Stewart and for the support of readers across the country who have so quickly snapped up Albatross. May it continue at least for a few more weeks!

Globe 190824

Number 3 on the Toronto Star Bestsellers List

Thursday, August 22nd, 2019

Thank you all who have picked up Albatross already. You’re clearly moving the needle! The novel has opened at number three on the Toronto Star Bestseller list one week after launch. I couldn’t be happier or more grateful.

Toronto Star 190821

My interview on CBC-Radio’s q

Tuesday, August 20th, 2019

I had a great time this morning being interviewed on CBC Radio’s flagship arts and culture program, q, with guest host Ali Hassan. He did a wonderful job of making me feel relaxed. It was like we were just having a conversation over lunch except there was no lunch but there were headphones. My thanks to Emma, the talented producer at q, for helping make this happen.

Click here to listen to the interview.

q interview 2 190820

q interview 190820

Albatross is a CBC Books #1 Bestseller

Tuesday, August 20th, 2019

A tweet caught my eye as it flashed by in my Twitter stream. I took a closer look and was glad I did. Here’s the lovely tweet:

Tweet re #1 bestseller 190820a

What a thrill. Seems as if Albatross has taken flight (pun intended) and I couldn’t be happier. When I clicked through on the link in the tweet, it confirmed the unlikely but welcome news. Exactly one week after it was released, Albatross is the #1 bestseller in Canadian fiction, at least for the next seven days.

CBC Bestseller list 190820