It’s been a while since I did a promotion as a thank you for sticking around thus far. And a great way to thank someone is with a gift! My book The Battle of Watling Street is available on Kindle for free during a five-day promotion on Amazon UK between the 10th and 13th of […]
Category: Publishing and Self Publishing
Ice, Rain, and Submission Squalls- Should I Self-Publish a Short-Story Collection?
Firstly, Happy New Year to you, constant reader! I hope your Christmas and holiday season was restful and joyful, and spent with loved ones. It always feels for me like a physical and mental trudge up a steep hill at the start of a new year, but I know that some brisk walking to shake […]
Anthology Review – Symphony of The Damned
…no matter what the reader fancies, as long as it’s unsettling, s/he is certain to find something melodiously creepy in Symphony of the Damned. Rebecca Rowland, Horror TREE In my last post, I announced that one of my horror short stories features in a new anthology, Symphony of the Damned. You can still pick up the […]
New Horror Anthology – Symphony of The Damned
I signed my first actual, honest-to-god contract for a piece of fiction at the start of the month, for a horror anthology published by Savage Realms Press, called Symphony of The Damned. The book was published a couple of days ago, and I may have to frame that contract! I submitted “Shadows Under Leamouth”, my […]
The Battle of Watling Street – New Cover Art for 2021
I’m pleased to reveal the new, much improved cover artwork for my 2017 novella The Battle of Watling Street. The imagery really captures both the story itself, and the juxtaposition between historical fiction and science fiction that defines my strange little tale that might really be about grief and loss, with historical figures and a […]
Winter 2020 Update – Reasons To Be Cheerful, New Short Fiction, And What’s a Chapbook?
In my July update I hoped for the best but prepared for the worst, and here we are in another year, in another national UK lockdown, with a very unprecedented Christmas behind us.
If I distilled anything palatable from the bitter brew of 2020, it was to be actively grateful – not in a wishy washy, Pinterest board way, but to frequently and actively list out on a piece of paper all the reasons to be cheerful whenever the new normal threatened to overwhelm. We are safe, we are fortunate that we can work from home, we continue healthy, we have a good broadband and Wi-Fi connection so we can connect to friends and family online, as well as buy most of what we need in the same way. We did manage to get out and about for some hiking trips in between lockdowns (pic above is from a brief trip to the Lake District in September), but I’m now doing my part as a stay-safe couch potato.
Lockdown Update – Every Day is Like Sunday, Plus Award Winning Flash Fiction!
I want to kick off with a mention that Reflex Press’s anthology Volume Two, The Real Jazz Baby, has recently won the Best Anthology Award in the 2020 Saboteur Awards. My story Let Me Be Your Fantasy is featured, together with 160 other authors, and I’m very proud to be a small part of an […]
Kindle Promotion – The Battle of Watling Street is Free to Read 14-18th March
My posts are like buses; you wait two months for one, then two come along within a day… I’ve nearly finalised my first newsletter (I’m waiting for the test email, which is taking its sweet time), and I wanted to offer something to subscribed readers as a thank you for sticking around thus far. And […]
Happy New Year!
I hope you all had a restful and enjoyable Christmas and New Year break. The tone of this post was set by my New Year’s Eve iTunes playlist (mercifully for my friends and family it’s quite short, unlike my eight-hour gargantuan Christmas version). While singing along to Abba’s “Happy New Year” I realised it’s not […]
Mini May Update – Flash Fiction Anthology, and Striking the Balance Between Writing Short and Long Fiction
Today I received my copy of the first anthology from Reflex Fiction, titled “Barely Casting a Shadow”; my short piece “The Shore Road” made their summer 2017 flash fiction long list. It’s great to see your words in print! If you get the chance, do check out the stories published at Reflex Fiction, there’s some really […]
They Loved My Writing – But Turned it Down. When Constructive Criticism is More Valuable Than Publication
I’m not going to list out all the famous authors who had to persist through dozens of rejections until their magnum opus was snapped up. And I’m not going to name that Decca manager who rejected the Beatles as a passé guitar group on their way out. I’m not even going to dwell on Stephen […]
Lessons In Kindle – Twelve Things I Learned When Publishing My Book on Amazon
I recently published my first work of fiction, an Alternate history/Sci-Fi novella, The Battle of Watling Street, using Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP). This may turn into a short series of posts, but for now I want to limit the discussion to the technical/formatting challenges and benefits I discovered with KDP. Hopefully this will help […]
The Battle of Watling Street is Published!
I am a published author of a historical/science fiction/alternate history novella! Yesterday was D-Day. After feverish last-minute formatting and some tiny revisions (how can I still find things to tweak after dozens of self-edits, software edits, beta readings and more edits?), I took the plunge and submitted my book to Kindle. I’ve entered Amazon’s Storyteller […]
Pinterest Boards for Books: The Battle of Watling Street
I already have Pinterest specifically for my writing, with boards for my two novels-in-progress; you can view them here and here – please do follow the boards if you like what you see, I do follow back! I’m slowly amassing followers on Pinterest, and it seems that with the very targeted appeal of each board, it could be a useful […]
“The Battle of Watling Street” is here! Calling Beta Readers…
(Edited to add spiffy new cover design!) At 3.30am this morning, while putting the finishing touches to the edited and expanded second draft of my first completed work of fiction, my laptop froze, and I lost 5,000 words of creative frenzy. Half an hour of despair followed until, predictably, a youngster rescued me and found […]
My Second Work-in-Progress: The Bondage of The Soil
I love reading spooky tales at Christmas; M.R. James is a firm favourite, and I usually reread H.P. Lovecraft’s “The Festival” to celebrate the Yuletide season. The idea for a short horror story in the tradition of these greats came to me last December when I was deep into my ghostly reading season; I have a […]
Flash Fiction March 2016 – “Wireless”
This is just a quick post to proudly announce that one of my 100-word stories has been published by John Xero at 101fiction.com. Please check the site out, now in its sixth year online, it has some fantastic flash fiction. My story’s title is “Wireless” and it is published in the March 2016 issue. The […]
My 2015 Writing Review (and plans for 2016!)
When I was younger, I heartily disliked New Year’s Eve; for my mother, it was a time of looking back and rehashing old tragedies, old regrets. She cried without fail, and to younger me this was painful and put a real pall over the end of the year. But I’ve learned that like Janus, the Roman […]
How to Read Kindle Books without a Kindle
This post sort-of follows on from my last one (Are ebooks changing the way we read and write novels?) With apologies to those tech- With apologies to those tech-savy types for whom this is all old hat, I had a surprising conversation recently with a colleague who was asking how my book will be (eventually) published; when […]
Are Ebooks changing the way we read and write novels?
As far back as I can recall, I’ve had an immoderate appetite for two things; sweets, and reading. One of my favourite childhood pastimes was to combine both; lying on my bed, or in the park, or lolling on the sofa with a large dog-eared paperback and a bag of American hard-gums, was my idea […]