“In an era of “post-cyberpunk” science fiction, Maughan is firmly cyberpunk — or maybe “cyberpunk++,” a genre that captures all the grit and glory of technology with a higher degree of plausibility and respect for real computers and networks than the genre had in its glory days…Maughan has a keen eye for the fictional possibilities of technology, a good hand with the what if/ten seconds in the future mode of storytelling, and he’s quite adept at filling his work with hyper-cool eyeball kicks. These stories are fun and thought-provoking, a great combination.” - Cory Doctorow, author of Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom and Little Brother
“In our hothouse present, where technology is little more than vapour, Tim Maughan catches those fleeting moments of possibility in stories that ought to have no shelf-life whatsoever – and which, regardless, linger in the mind. I don’t know how he does this. I don’t know whether he is very naive, or very clever. One thing I do know: these stories are very, very good.” – Simon Ings, author of Hot Head, The Weight of Numbers and Dead Water
“They used to say that Science Fiction was hard to define, but that you’d know it when you saw it. How then to best recommend a collection like Paintwork? A book of augmented realties, icy conceptual surfaces and a healthy dose of contemporary corporate paranoia. Is even a simple book blurb as innocent as it first appears? The best Science Fiction isn’t a road map, it’s a toolkit, and Paintwork is a virtual users guide to a new kind of fictional future. A place where it’s fine to pretend life’s all a game, just so long as you stay on the winning team. If Science Fiction is a toolkit, Paintwork is the missing users manual.” - Tom Hunter, Director, the Arthur C. Clarke Award
“Havana Augmented is the third short story in Tim Maughan’s excellent Paintwork (2011), a collection that focuses on the meaning of artistry in a near-future cyberpunk landscape…(it) follows two streams of conflict. Paul and Kim battle with enormous robots which is, frankly, awesome. Mr. Maughan knows how to write an action sequence without letting it take over. The battles are short, streamlined, vicious and very, very fun…this is the crown jewel of an excellent collection. I’m a sucker for sports movies, especially when the game or match has some sort of Great Significance. Mr. Maughan tugs at my heartstrings with Havana Augmented – a giant robot smackdown with a country’s future on the line.” – Pornokitsch.com
"I loved Paintwork. All three stories show a writer with a real gift for accelerating the world we know into a believable future, with a deft local touch that adds an extra something for us Bristol folk…(it’s) a great read, that pinches a few ingredients from the SF greats and blends them with a unique flavour all of its own.” - Guide2Bristol
Augmented reality street artist 3Cube wants to break into the mainstream, and as one of the best in the graffiti mecca of Bristol he stands a real chance. Except that someone, some unseen rival, seems set on using even the most old-fashioned of methods to stop him from succeeding.
John Smith was successful once, if only for a fleeting moment. Now the documentary film maker is broke and jobless, and finds himself putting his life on the line as one of the new-breed of paparazzi – snapping celebrity video gamers in virtual worlds.
And on the sun-bleached streets of Havana two young Cubans find themselves locked in a fierce struggle with one of the world’s most powerful organisations, as a seemingly innocent video game tournament becomes a fight for both personal and national pride.
Paintwork is a collection of three stories from our imminent future by British science fiction author Tim Maughan, including the 2010 BSFA Short Fiction Award nominated ‘Havana Augmented’