I received the proofs for Restless back from Alt Hist yesterday. I’ll let you know when it’s published for you all to read. What’s it about?
Well, in the East China Sea in 1870, Commodore Paul Nelson leads a flotilla of ships to the Chinese mainland. They escort the Colossus Engine, a weapon of unparalleled terror and destruction, and carry orders to subdue China and claim it for the British crown. A young Han girl called Bik Shu shovels coal in the ship carrying the Engine, on a mission from a long-dead wuxia to protect her homeland…
After going through several drafts and titles, I finally realised the story needed to be named after the album which had been the soundtrack to its writing: Restless, by Faye Wong [click here to listen to the song of the same name].
You’ve not heard of Faye Wong? Well, why should you? I mean, she’s sold 9.7 million copies of her albums, sold 30,000 tickets in 3 days on her 2005 tour and grossed $20 million in 2011… and generally doesn’t sing in English.
But that’s okay. It’s not like English language-only artists make any sales abroad. I mean, Madonna has only sold a few million records in mainland China…
Ugh. I’m not setting myself up as a champion of any Faye or anyone else. I just think Restless is a beautiful, haunting album and I’m frustrated that there’s probably hundreds of other beautiful things I’m missing out on because The Powers That Be are only too happy to aggressively export our culture, and pointedly refuse to import anything.
But anyway, my story Restless will be appearing soon. Look forwards to it!