Mark Lawrence Going Nowhere…
On March 31st 2015 Mark Lawrence and 150 advanced research scientists were made redundant.
Mark, as most of you will know, currently has four books out – Prince of Thorns, King of Thorns, Emperor of Thorns and Prince of Fools – and has had good success with them. The next two books were a certainty, but I’m sure it was still a pretty scary time for him. It’s never nice to lose your job, right? However, upon returning home, it there was some good news waiting… so good that he confided in fans over social media that he was half tempted to believe it was an April Fools joke.
Mark needn’t have feared a hoax. Today it was made official: HarperVoyager’s Jane Johnson signed UK and Commonwealth rights (excluding Canada) to another trilogy by Lawrence for a “substantial” six-figure sum. The deal was brokered with Ian Drury, Lawrence’s long-time editor. Although not too many details have been revealed about this coming trilogy, we have been told that “The Red Sister Trilogy” will feature a female protagonist who has the ability to access wild, natural magic. This new character’s name has been revealed as ‘Nuna’ by Harper Voyager’s Press Team at The London Book Fair and we are told that she is “being trained to kill” and that “dark political forces seek to use her to their own advantage”
On why Mark is worth six figures, Editor extraordinaire Jane Johnson said: “Mark Lawrence is one of the best reasons I continue to be a publisher: he is without doubt the finest new writer to enter the fantasy field in the past decade and I am hugely proud to publish him. He has an extraordinary talent, combining wonderfully lyrical writing with a very dark sensibility and a scientist’s precision, and he has turned the genre on its head.”
Peter V. Brett said something very similar at the Grim Gathering this past Weekend. In our eyes Mark Lawrence is one of those special authors who you can’t simply think is “OK”. 90% of people are going to read his work and gasp at the beauty of his prose, lose themselves in the wonder of his world and characters, and appreciate the darker elements of his work. As we have seen though, Mark Lawrence’s work doesn’t appeal to ‘everyone’. But, even those who don’t enjoy his work can’t help but elicit an intense emotional response and that is a sign of Literature of the highest quality.
Mark Lawrence has since said that he is: “very excited to have been given the opportunity to continue working with Harper Voyager” and returned Voyager’s compliments by adding that: “Readers often underestimate the degree of support provided by a great publisher and the importance of having an editor who really ‘gets’ the work at every level. I’m lucky to have both.”
We look forward to more Mark Lawrence and would like to congratulate him, his agent and Harper Voyager’s team. The future looks bright for one of the UK’s finest authors and publishers; taking them up to at least 9 books! 🙂