Sunday, 9 January 2011

Meet the New BoSS

But don't stress about it! You don't have to get all dressed up or anything.

Because the new BoSS, he's pretty much the same as the old BoSS. Him I introduced almost a year ago; here's a handy link to a few of his vital statistics. But some among you might recall me asking, before Christmas and Top of the Scots and the Kraken celebrations we began the new year with... some among you might recall me asking whether it was worth keeping the BoSS around.

The trouble with the old BoSS was, you see --- well, it was simple. It took me ages to put together, some weeks, a disproportionate amount of time, and given that the time I have to spend on keeping the blog up to speed with all the goings-on in my speculative life and yours is limited - would that it were otherwise - trying to give every review copy I received a little face-time on the site, whether or not I was ever going to pick such-and-such a book up again... felt a poor way to spend those man hours.

Ever the gentleman, I asked you all what you thought. Should I kill off the BoSS? Stage some evildoings to close the door on this time-sink once and for all? Much to my surprise, the response was a resounding no. For some of you, in fact, it was one of the very reasons that kept you coming back to TSS.

So. I guess that's that.

But the BoSS has to change. Just keeping up got to be a chore, and frankly I'd rather spend my time reading or writing about what I've read than writing about things I often knew I wouldn't be reading - courtesy of that bastard time again, and no other.

Thus, a compromise was reached. I've always tried to talk a bit about every review copy I receive... a losing battle, as it transpired. I won't be doing so any longer. Instead of the seven books I invariably talked about each Sunday through 2010, I'm going to limit myself to five. Some weeks it might even be less, because I'm only going to discuss those review copies that are either significant in some sense or of interest to me: those books, in short, that you're likely to see reviewed here on the blog.

I'll still give fair consideration to everything that's sent for my attention, of course. This isn't me closing the door on urban fantasy or paranormal romance or Doctor Who novelisations by any stretch, though you would be right expect me to mention books of those sub-genres less, simply because in this strange hour there's more of them and I'm not in general as interested in forbidden love affairs with sexy vampires as some other bloggers, who would be better positioned in any event to offer fair and valid criticism of said.

It follows that going forward the BoSS mightn't be as long each week, but in exchange, it'll be more timely, more relevant and hopefully more interesting. Certainly I've struggled in the past to find a paragraph's worth of stuff to say about the latest addition in the continuing travails of one buff zombie and an outcast teenage girl.

But no more of that. Oh, sweet relief!

Cliff's notes: less is more, more or less. A fair compromise, I hope you'll agree?


  1. I think this will be great, Niall! To be honest it used to frustrate me that you'd mention books and then never get around to reviewing them - I think it's much better to know that what appears in the BOSS will be what's definitely lined up for review. *rubs hands in anticipation*

  2. I think sticking to the books you're most interested in will come across in the copy. As a result, what you're saying, whether it appeals to a smaller audience as a result or not, will be more engaging and thought provoking to the core audience. A chore is a chore is a chore and people recognize that for what it is.

    We want you writing joyful expressions of exuberance about the ARC's you've received in the mail, followed by glowing reviews outlining those book's greatness, or backhanded remarks damning their terribleness (didn't think that was a word really).

    I tried once to cover all of the genre movie news that came my way, while trying to review all of the books and movies that I was consuming, and it nearly made me quit blogging. Not to mention the content I was putting out was shite.

    Good luck in the new year, and with the new boss. And nice reference to The Who.


    The Sound and Fury of Kristopher A. Denby