Josh's work, meanwhile, has its own flair. It's snarky, clever and entertaining pulp. In a way, I'd consider him closer to the pulp masters of classic Weird Tales fame, including HPL and Robert E. Howard, in how he approaches his Royal Occultist, for example. If I was in charge of a Weird Tales style publication in the modern age (and if that kind of thing still proved popular; magazines are kind of going the way of the dodo), Josh would be one of the first authors I'd approach based on his insane ability to write short stories perfect for serialization.
To RAMPANTLY speculate, this might be a perfect example.
We know that the Horror stories have been very disparate, and we know that the Crime stories are intended be much more focused, much more 'single setting hook'.
I could totally see a conflict of vision therein - Josh seeing a golden opportunity to really blow the case wide open, to get some sort of Grimdark Pulp Noir on the go in a way that Necromunda isn't quite right for.
Heinrich Johannes and the Maltese Flame Falcons, or some such. Proper wildly pulpy hardboiled crime thriller. (Or whatever a good description is, I'm ignorant of the particulars.)
But, given some of the other murmurs I've heard about the Crime imprint (to the extent that I don't know if I've just misinterpreted inconsequential comments by staff!) - I could see that 'single setting hook' having been aimed squarely at, say, cornering a 40k PD James/Ian Rankin/whoever's-big-in-crime-these-days market, or something like that.
Something utterly Crime, but also about as un-pulpy as possible.
If that were the bone of contention, I can imagine a very painful (over weeks and months) sort of recurring disagreement.
It'd be like any one of us who vaguely indulge the idea of "what if I turned out to be a really competent author!" (despite - in my case -not ever typing a word!), and getting the dream job of writing for BL...
Only to find out that we're NEVER allowed to write about Space Marines.
They even propose an amazing new Horus Heresy imprint that goes right back into the beating heart of the long-concluded series...
But still, dear B&C forumite with chance after chance to write this setting, you amazing Space Marine-focussed, Primarch-adjacent stories keep getting shot down.
It's all Solar Auxilia, Squats, Ratlings, Arbites and Rogue Traders in this dark future! Nobody wants any of that Space Marine foolishness.
In that situation, I can imagine even someone confronted with he opportunity of their dreams, might find it hard to keep having to not write anything about Marines, during the Horus Heresy.
Hell, if someone makes an off-hand comment about that being the reason why you're not allowed on the HH team - because you'll keep writing Marine stuff, even when the brief's "no Marines!"...
Josh's written voice is very strong when you view it through that pulp lens, I'd be devastated if the reasoning was along these lines!
Fortunately, as said, this was RAMPANT speculation, so it's likely irrelevant.
By the by, for modern Lovecraft, I've adored what I've read so far of She Walks in Shadows, so you're obviously reading the wrong stuff, DC. (Or reading it wrongly!)
Fabius is a good example of this. It’s probably his most well known and highly regarded work at this point, but Josh mentioned he didn’t really like the character of Fabius Bile. His ability to write so well about things he has minimal personal attachment to is really remarkable.
Arthur Conan Doyle's not necessarily a perfect example - I suspect Josh's a bit more grounded in reality, for one thing - but it's no secret at all that he grew to dislike writing Holmes. Hence Reichenbach Falls.
I understand Agatha Christie was the same way with Poirot - a quirky and sort of loved git of a character - but who wasn't actually that enjoyable to write about.
I can entirely forgive Josh's stance on the matter. I'd be curious to know the other side of that bargain.
Similarly, I'd say I'm also in awe of Guy Haley's approach. I'm sceptical that that sort of grind wouldn't wear down even the stoutest of hearts.
Indeed, hearing Guy and Chris Wraight talk about their stressful times writing Carrion Throne & Dark Imperium... I can sympathise entirely.
Without speculating too much, I hope it's less dramatic for Josh than all this seems. As others have said: Josh's lived a life before BL too, it's perhaps the case that he's just got itchy feet and all this seeming melodrama has just prompted a decision.
That might be diminishing serious problems, or reading too much into things, but in any case: it's a damn wee shame.
As others have said, it's a timely reminder that books beyond BL can be quite appealing.
(It's an equally untimely reminder, however, as they're already publishing more of what I'm interested in than I can practically read!)
I do hope it's an onwards and upwards thing.
Edited by Xisor, 18 May 2020 - 09:06 PM.