The History of the Runestaff

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The first omnibus in the Hawkmoon sequence by Michael Moorcock featuring Dorian Hawkmoon. It is followed by Count Brass.

As Hawkmoon it was Volume Three in both the The Tale of the Eternal Champion omnibus series published in the United Kingdom by Orion Books/Millennium and the The Eternal Champion omnibus series published (in a revised version) in the United States by White Wolf.

It was retitled Hawkmoon: The History of the Runestaff for its appearance as the thirty-sixth volume in Gollancz' 'Fantasy Masterworks' series and retains the same title for The Michael Moorcock Collection, for which series it was further revised.

Publishing History (UK)

  • Boxset, Mayflower, ISBN: 0-583-12304-X, 1974, Cover by Bob Haberfield - containing the four individual volumes
  • Boxset, Mayflower, ISBN: 0-583-12944-7, 1977, Cover by Bob Haberfield - containing the four individual volumes
  • Hardcover, Hart-Davis, 576pp., ISBN: 0-246-11128-3, May 1979, Cover by Bob Haberfield
  • Mass Market Paperback, Grafton, 576pp., ISBN: 0-586-06134-7, 13 Sep 1984, Cover by Bob Haberfield
  • Hardcover, Millennium, 533pp., ISBN: 1-85798-027-1, Nov 1992, Cover by Yoshitaka Amano - as Hawkmoon
  • Trade Paperback, Millennium, 533pp., ISBN: 1-85798-028-X, Nov 1992, Cover by Yoshitaka Amano - as Hawkmoon
  • Mass Market Paperback, Millennium, 646pp., ISBN: 1-85798-437-4, Oct 1995, Cover by Yoshitaka Amano - as Hawkmoon
  • B Format Paperback, Gollancz, 656pp., ISBN: 0-575-07469-8, 10 April 2003, Cover by Steve Stone - as Hawkmoon: The History of the Runestaff
  • Paperback, Gollancz, 448pp., ISBN: 978-0575108691, 14 Mar 2013, Cover art by James Cawthorn - as Hawkmoon: The History of the Runestaff

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Publishing History (US)

  • Hardcover, White Wolf, 504pp., ISBN: 1-56504-178-X, Apr 1995, Cover by John Zeleznik - as Hawkmoon
  • Trade Paperback, White Wolf, 504pp., ISBN: 1-56504-193-3, Nov 1996, Cover by John Zeleznik - as Hawkmoon

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Mike Says

  • " took me three days to write the Hawkmoon books. I used to say that I COULD do the job in two days, but it needed a third day for that extra polish... I used to spend a few days in bed thinking over the story, get up to write it, then go back to bed for another day or so. It was to do with best use of energy."[1]
  • "I have yet to read [the Hawkmoon novels] myself. I know them better from the comic versions! But I know I had sketched out the basic images and written an opening (later used in a subsequent chapter) then set it aside. I doubt if I would have written them had it not been for the fact that I'd burned out on doing comics for Fleetway and wanted fiction which was owned by me rather than owned outright by the publisher. Economically I could earn in three days what those books made me ($1000 a book) from Lancer so I gave myself three days to do them in. This doesn't mean I could make $350 a day, day in and day out, of course, because I would have burned out totally within a month working at that intensity, but it enabled me to finance NW and keep myself and family while I wrote less immediately commercial work. I was fascinated by masks, including social masks, and that, oddly enough, was the initial inspiration. Few people got the jokes then and few do now. They weren't really meant to be anything but an optional extra, as it were! Incidentally, the Corum books wouldn't have been written, either, had not my wife, Hilary, announced she was pregnant! So I got a wonderful son and the world got Corum..."[2]
  • "The Hawkmoon books were written for money and took three days each to do. But I still tried to make them the best I could do of their kind. In the end it's the public who pay me and I feel I owe readers the best value for their money I can produce, irrespective of genre or level of ambition."[3]



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