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The Hal Spacejock FAQ

I'm going to keep this brief else people won't bother to read it - which detracts from the purpose of having a Frequently Asked Questions page in the first place.

Questions are bold, answers below them. I'm not trying to be cute with my replies, just brief.

Why 'Hal Spacejock'? Isn't that name kind of lame?
Yes, and that's a joke on me. I like dry intelligent humour, very droll and understated, and so I gave the character a completely over-the-top name. In a similar fashion the books are named after a human even though Clunk (a robot) is the central character. Of course, that leads to one of two outcomes: People who like intelligent humour avoid the Hal Spacejock books because they sound silly, and people who like silly books get hold of these and go WTF? But sometimes it works out just fine. Here's a typical reaction email:

"It's not the zany slapstick style of comedy I was expecting - more of a really well developed, fun story with interesting characters and enough real-world observations to make it a very enjoyable read. Thanks for a great story."

(You'll find more feedback emails here)

I've written a book/short story/poem ... will you read it and give me feedback?
Sorry, but no. First, I don't want some loon claiming an idea in one of my future books came from their unpublished limerick, and second the internet is crammed with writers' groups, mailing lists, forums and workshops.

Will you give me a referral to your agent/publisher?
There's no point. The publishing industry is not a private club, and anyone can get in. You just have to write well, and write something they can sell.

How many Hal Spacejock books are you planning?
I have a lot of fun writing these books, but they're also hard work. If the enjoyment goes out of it I'll stop.

How long did it take you to get published?
Over twelve years, and I felt every one of them.

Have you considered writing anything but Hal & Clunk?
Sure - check out Hal Junior!

... More to come