Archive : Category

New Article at Fantasy-Faction on Aeon Timeline

POSTED ON September 3rd, 2014  - POSTED IN Writing

http://fantasy-faction.com/2014/so-whats-the-fuss-about-aeon-timeline

So, this month over at Fantasy-Faction I take a look at another piece of writing software in the form of Aeon Timeline.  For those of you who struggle to keep track of which characters are where when, this can be a Godsend!

The Great September Word War

POSTED ON September 2nd, 2014  - POSTED IN Writing

September.  How the hell did it get to be September already?

With the advent of fall comes the knowledge that the year is running out.  We’re now two thirds of the way through and I reckon I’m about half a book behind my schedule of four books this year.

Which is not bad, but gives me the worry that I might get to the end of this year and have just one finished book to show for it.

So like a lot of writers it seems, September is knuckle down and write month.  If I can get this Thieving King draft done by end of September (and I’ve got a feeling that this is going to be a BIG book), Thunder of Crows could be my NaNo novel and then Refugee could be edited in October… or something.

Gah!  I’ve gone from quietly confident to quietly panicking.  Who stole the summer?

To help me I’ve declared a public word war on the incredibly talented CE Murphy.  Like me, she is behind schedule and looking to have a busy September.  We’re keeping it simple, most words over the month wins, although it’s less about ‘winning’ and more about ‘getting stuff done’.  Feel free to join in at #SeptemberWordWar

Managed to get over 3000 words of Maureen fighting Vargs (i.e. Wargs / Worgs) done as a warm up yesterday so whilst I don’t expect to win it’s given me the impetus to start cranking up the productivity.  I’m especially pleased as swapping between the 1st person present POV of Black as Knight and the 3rd person limited past of Thieving King has proved difficult before now.

Anyone would think that Thieving King has a potential release date!

Projects On The Slate

POSTED ON August 19th, 2014  - POSTED IN Writing

At the start of this year I set myself a huge challenge – to write four novels in 2014.  A few friends said I was crazy but as I replied  I have good processes now and even if I ended up with just one completed novel it would be better than nothing.  As long as I didn’t let quality slip, anything more was just a bonus.

Eight months in, and I’m really happy with the progress.  I’ve written about a quarter of a million words so far (some good, some not so good) and already completed one novel with everything else progressing along nicely.  I’ve lost a few weeks due to house buying but hope to try and claw that back in the last third of the year.

Scrivener Article At Fantasy-Faction

POSTED ON August 12th, 2014  - POSTED IN Reviews, Writing

http://fantasy-faction.com/2014/so-whats-the-fuss-about-scrivener

This month over at Fantasy-Faction I ask the question “So What’s The Fuss About Scrivener?”  This article on the popular word processing software for writers seems to have generated a lot of positive response so please check it out!

Nine Worlds Meat Meet

POSTED ON August 11th, 2014  - POSTED IN Travel, Writing

I’ve been feeling a bit frazzled lately.  My friend and fellow writer, Stephen Aryan, suggested that I needed a good convention and perhaps he was right.  I’ve been working incredibly hard this year and have become a little frayed around the edges.  Couple this with day job stress, trying to buy a house and ongoing recuperation; I could really do with getting away from my desk to recharge a little.

This was my first Nine Worlds convention.  A lot of friends had gone to it last year and had great time so I was expecting a lot.  And to be honest, it delivered.

Conventiongeddon

POSTED ON August 7th, 2014  - POSTED IN Travel, Writing

I’ve been so incredibly busy, what with novels being both written and edited, BFS Award judging, house buying, and the like, I realise it’s been a few weeks since I updated the blog.  It’s always the way when the most is going on that I update the least!

However, if you to see me in person, I will be at a couple of conventions this month.

The first is Nine Worlds this weekend in Heathrow, followed by Loncon3 in London the following week.  I’m not participating in any panels so you’ll mostly find me in or around the bar; but feel free to come up and say hello.  As always I have a convention game to play. so be sure to ask me the rules!  This one could be a lot of fun!

Hope to see some of you there!

Five Reasons To Cast Your Novel Article At Fantasy-Faction

POSTED ON July 14th, 2014  - POSTED IN Writing

http://fantasy-faction.com/2014/five-reasons-to-cast-your-novel

This month over at Fantasy-Faction, I’m giving you five reasons why, instead of creating characters from scratch, you should instead ‘cast’ the roles with actors and actresses.  From the comments it seems a lot of you are doing this already.  But if you are not there’s some compelling reasons to try!

News Report On Burlington Bunker

POSTED ON July 10th, 2014  - POSTED IN Writing

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-wiltshire-28158437

If you’ve read The Four realms, you’ll remember the underground bunker where Darwin & Cassidy find D’Toeni.  As some of you are aware, this location is loosely based on Burlington Bunker in Wiltshire.  The location isn’t open to the public and there are very few photos of what was intended to be seat of government in the event of a nuclear war.  However, this news report I found on the BBC talks about it being utilised as a data centre and shows some of the site.

What do you think?  Could you imagine Mr West and his fellow aliens prowling those halls?  I still reckon it would be a good lair to re-establish the Vampire Council.  If only the aliens hadn’t got there first!

Some Four Realms News

POSTED ON July 3rd, 2014  - POSTED IN Publishing, Writing

With Black As Knight out the way, I spent some time last night scheduling the remaining work needed to get the final draft of The Thieving King done.  It’s a huge, complex book and I really started to appreciate all the planning I put into this draft which should make it easier now I’m in the meat of the novel.  Still, I reckon I can get it done by my internal deadline, even allowing for all the other craziness that’s currently going on in my life.

But, as if to remind me Thieving King needs to deliver as much as its prequel, I got a couple of bits of good news about The Four Realms.

It appears that The Four Realms is current on offer at Amazon for just £1.02 in the UK and 99c in the US! So if you’ve been considering picking the book up then now is a good time. I have no idea how long the promotion will be running for, so best not delay.

The Four Realms also recently got voted as one of Reddit R/Fantasy’s Official Underrated and Underread Fantasy. Whilst the main vote is now over, there’s an ongoing poll over at Goodreads.  I’m currently sitting at #16.  So if you loved the book (or indeed loved any of the others listed), please be sure to go vote.

Which leads me to the last point. If you’ve read the book and love it, or even if you didn’t, please be sure to go and rate the book at places like Amazon and Goodreads.  Aside from being a major ego boost when someone posts how much they loved your novel (and trust me on days when you discover massive plot holes and have unco-operative characters, you need it!), small press books like mine really, really depend on word of mouth and reviews at places like Goodreads or Amazon.  You honestly have no idea how much.  False platitudes aren’t going to help anyone but honest reviews might just help someone find a book they love.

It’s a bit of a catch 22 situation.  You need honest reviews to get people to consider your book and possibly buy it.  But you need people to buy it so they can review it.  So if you have two minutes to either rate or review, I’d really, really appreciate it.