Author Encyclopaedia

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Abercrombie, Joe (Joe Abercrombie)

Now, picture this: Joe is a freelance film editor, and the hands of time are generous. He has ample free time, and then it dawns on him – the echoes of an old story idea he’d had at university come knocking. He grabs his mighty pen (or, more likely, his keyboard) and thus, "The Blade Itself" is born in 2002. Like any good adventure, the path to publishing was a quest. Rejection letters came pouring like arrows in a battle scene. But aha! The publishing house Gollancz, with Gillian Redfearn in the lead, sees the treasure. Joe's book is accepted in 2005 for a five-figure deal (seven if you count the pennies, as Joe jests)!

"The Blade Itself," an epic fantasy, was the first tale in what came to be known as 'The First Law' trilogy, and the literary world was shooketh! Swords clashed and readers gasped as two more books, "Before They Are Hanged" and "Last Argument of Kings," joined the battle in the subsequent years.

In 2008, our hero Joe was a finalist for the John W. Campbell award for Best New Writer, and shared his wisdom on the BBC Worlds of Fantasy series, shoulder to shoulder with great sages like Terry Pratchett and Michael Moorcock.

But lo! Joe didn’t stop there. He penned "Best Served Cold," "The Heroes," and "Red Country," standalone novels still connected to the original trilogy like a secret magical thread. They say that in this world, long ago, there were Demons and Humans, and magic was as real as the rising sun. It was reminiscent of Renaissance Europe but with a dash of sorcery and a whole lot of steel.

Then, with a flourish of his quill, Joe inked a deal for more books in The First Law world. But wait! There’s a twist in the tale. He veered his ship into the waters of young adult fantasy, crafting the Viking-influenced 'Shattered Sea' trilogy. Yarvi, the young prince of Gettland, sets sail with a disabled hand and a heart full of courage. The trilogy - "Half a King," "Half the World," and "Half a War" - was like an ancient song sung by fireside in a world both mystical and rugged.

Oh, but don’t seek maps in Joe’s First Law series, dear reader. He believes in letting imaginations gallop like wild horses across uncharted lands. You can search the Nest for articles on Abercrombie, Joe (Joe Abercrombie) over at