Still trying to figure out what the f*(&* I want on the cover of Angel Stations. And who by? Okay: there's Steve Stone - some of his stuff is extremely good indeed, and I sure as hell wouldn't knock back the chance of him doing a cover. Then there's Fred Gambino - except I hate stuff like those WordWar: Colonisation books - too cartoony, too many primary colours. Give me subtlety.

Except, that is, for stuff like the covers he did for Jack Womack.

And especially for the cover he did for the recent UK reissues of Lord of Light by Zelazny, which is just an astonishing piece of cover art.

Like, say, Steve Rawlings, who did some absolutely magnificent jackets for Sheri Tepper, ie Fresco et al. But then ... he also did the covers for Neal Asher's Line of Polity, etc, which covers I hate. Far too abstract. Except for the cover of Gridlinked, which is brilliant. I know it's brilliant, because it makes me pick it up and think, hey, maybe I should buy this ... that's how good it looked.

Who else? Well, there's a guy called John Harris. Let me tell you something, John Harris is the absolute sure-fire king of god-damn fucking huge landscapes of technodoom. To coin a phrase. He paints stuff that looks really, really big. I mean, just dementedly huge. That really appeals to me. Especially when it comes to something like the Citadel in the book, or perhaps the Angel Station itself. You really should take a look at his stuff - here's a link.

Can you see why I"m tearing my hair out?

By the by, assuming anyone is actually paying attention, the reason the link I put in earlier to my writer's page doesn't work anymore is I decided to take it down, just for the moment, until I figure out just what exactly I'm allowed to say or not say about Angel Stations prior to publication. It'll be up again at some later point.

What else? The contract is now back, signed, with my agent, so with any luck, caboodles of cash coming my way before too long. I really hope. I really, really hope. In the meantime, I've asked my agent to check out the possibility of what I fully admit is basically hackwork - like writing a novelisation of some crappy movie, or something. I don't know. Just giv me de monee ...

Hang on, no really, I'm more of an artist like that. But it makes sense for a writer to explore avenues that put them somewhere more financially comfortable, so they can get on with writing the real thing. Perhaps I can get something better - let's wait and see.

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