Showing posts from October, 2017

The book is out

I am now a published novelist.

I just wanted to type that sentence; just to see how it looked. It looks good. It makes me happy. I will now never not be a published novelist. I've entered a new phase in my life you might say. Not that I'm going to let it go to my head - for one thing my wife wouldn't let me. She's far too sensible. But for the main reason that I don't want to stop trying to be good at this.

Yes, I've been published but that shouldn't be the pinnacle of it. I don't want to risk complacency in any way. I want to be published again. I want to get better at this writing stuff. I want to be as good as I can. And I want to remember always that there is always room for improvement. I want a second book to come out and have someone say it's better than the first; and a third to be better than the second and so on.

Of course this does mean I have to do the writing. So I must also knuckle down and get busy. But that's not going to be ton…

It's been a week

Well okay, it's been a little more than a week. I promised myself I was going to blog more regularly when I started doing it again a little over a month ago and had been keeping to it. Until the last eleven days that is. And a few things have happened in that time.

For one thing my book is now eleven days closer to being released. Here's another screen shot. Just in case you haven't seen enough of it. I know I haven't (yeah, I'm still buzzed).

Last Sunday I went to Huddersfield Haunting. Here's their Facebook page -

It was Huddersfield's first horror convention and it was an enjoyable experience. Mostly for me because I got to meet my publisher at Writer's Sanctum Publishing (

I was a little nervous beforehand as we have had many great email conversations over the months and whereas I thought from them we would get along well you never know until you meet in the …


Two weeks before your book comes out is a strange time for doubt; or perhaps it isn't. Maybe there's a natural tendency to worry about whether anyone will buy it; and then whether they'll read it. And then of course there is the worrying about whether anyone will like it. But strangely that's not the kind of doubt I'm on about.

You see a couple of days ago I bought some books - not an unusual thing. Well I have started reading one of them - Robert Harris's Munich. Now I like Harris's work. I read Conclave just a few weeks ago and enjoyed it immensely. But this is something different. You see I'm reading Munich and starting to question why I am even trying to write.

Now I'm not saying this is the best book in the world EVER. For one thing I'm only five chapters in so it's far too early to judge and, being honest, it's unlikely to beat the books I rate at the top of my personal list - Foucault's Pendulum, Dune and Midnight's Child…

Some links - interviews and Amazon

I may have mentioned a few days ago that I have been doing some interviews to support the now imminent release of my debut novel the Stairs Lead Down. Well these interviews are starting to appear out these in the world.

The first was on Heather Weicht's Blog. Here's the link to her website
Heather Weicht's Website
When you're there just click on the BLOG menu item at the top and you'll see the interview

The most recent is featured on Pamela Morris and you can see it at
Interview on Pamela Morris's Website
The fun thing with this one is it includes a 100 word drabble I wrote and sold a few years only to have the magazine fold before it could be published. It also has a brief sample from the Stairs Lead Down so you can give it a look.

The final set of links I have for you are to the kindle pages for the book on Amazon UK / US / Canada / Australia. You know, just in case you fancy buying yourself (or in this case pre-ordering yourself) a copy. No pressure though, I…

Saturday writing

Today has turned out completely different to the way I expected. Not in any huge way admittedly. I mean I didn't swap a day at my keyboard writing for a day parachuting or paragliding or dog sledding or anything like that. I still spent most of my day in front of this computer and I still wrote. It was just what I wrote that wasn't what I expected.

You see at two this morning I woke up with a story idea in my head - the complete story, everything. I had concept, plot, characters, bits of dialog, how it started, and as it is a comedic stories a number of jokes. So I grabbed a notebook, the one I keep for story openings and started scribbling.

I really should have had confidence enough to grab a fresh notebook and dedicated a book to this one but I was still half asleep. You see this book has one or two page ideas for a page 1,2 of a novel that are waiting for a plot to come along and take them somewhere. This was a fully formed thing. I had the ending. But that doesn't rea…

End of another week rambling blues

It's Friday night. The work week is over and the weekend awaits.

This weekend is going to be a little different to most. My wife is a musician. As a result she is out playing quite a lot and mostly at weekends. So for her to be out is not unusual. Many weekend evenings/nights I sit at my keyboard tapping out whatever my current WiP happens to be. But this weekend it's a little more extreme than normal. She's out for most of it; playing a number of gigs up in Yorkshire. So as they are all in the same vicinity she is staying up there. My Saturday is going to be a solo venture.

Now don't get feeling all sorry for me and wondering how on earth I am going to cope without her being, as I am, a mere man. I am quite capable of managing solo. And it's not as though in truth this is all that much of an unusual event. Her day job (unfortunately the music doesn't pay enough for her to not have one, much as I need to work in addition to being a writer) sees her travelling …

Tuesday writing update

After a day off from writing to spend some time with my wife before she set off on a business trip, I have been back at the keyboard tonight and, although it wasn't as easy going as it has been, writing definitely happened.

It didn't get off to the best of starts. I re-read the end of the previous scene to know where to pick things up from and didn't like it. So I broke the first rule of first drafts. I rewrote it. In fact I rewrote it five times. And if I'm honest I am not totally happy with that sixth version. However I did finally accept that I had it as good as I was going to get it for now and moved on. I can always give it another think when I come to do the first revision.

Hmm, thinking about it this isn't really the first draft, or at least not yet. This is my second attempt at this novel and I'm still in the rewrite phase. The first attempt, last year, just didn't happen. I had it in my head that because the MC is a teenager then it was a young ad…

Back in the Saddle? Hopefully

For some time now I've been struggling with writing. It's not been a writer's block type thing. It's been more a life kind of thing. I go through peaks and troughs in general and recent times have seen a definite trough. I've not been wanting to do many of the typical things I enjoy normally. But I have hope I'm emerging from my low point.

For one thing I've found and compulsively binge watched a couple of TV shows (as previously mentioned). I've also found myself getting hooked on reading novels again, completing Emily St. John Mandell's wonderful Station Eleven in just a couple of days. So maybe writing will go the same way.

I hope so as we are heading towards one of the busiest times for my wife. Musicians always work more in the run up to Christmas. Add that to the fact she has a few overnight trips for her day job too and it means I will have ample spare time to fill. Writing would be the perfect way to do this. So I'd better figure it out…


I am not a very graphical person. I like art. I'm just not any good at creating it. Fortunately not everyone is like me. Fortunate because it was up to one of these talented types to design the full cover for my book. And I think she's done a great job. But I'm not going to have you take my word for it. Here's the full cover. (A small version of it anyway. The full file is huge.)

And that wasn't the end of the graphics goodies that came my way. She's also designed some bookmarks. Below are images of the front and back...

The book comes out in 24 days

Some TV thoughts

I grew up in the 70s and 80s back in the days before video recorders were commonplace; certainly before On Demand TV. As a result even decades later I still find the idea of binge-watching a novelty. And exiting too, if I'm honest. The only problem is finding the kind of show that makes me want to binge-watch.

I've tried a number of shows but few have made me desperately want to watch the next episode even when I'd promised myself I was going to go to bed before each of the previous two. Some shows, much as I've enjoyed them, have seen whole days pass before I got back to them just because the mad desire, that unable to control you urges level of desire, wasn't there.

I'm counting the Marvel Netflix shows and series like Man in the High Castle amongst these. I enjoyed the first Daredevil. I really enjoyed Jessica Jones (and will admit this nearly got me losing sleep). But I stalled in the second Daredevil and am still to finish. I will. I want to give Cage a t…

Weekend Update

Unfortunately the weekend is nearing its end. They always seem to end too quickly. Still at least the day job is not one I hate. Anyway - the blog. I promised in the last entry that I would try to not be a stranger to posting in the way I have in the last few months so I am here again typing in an inane commentary on parts of my life in the slim hope it might entertain someone. I really should consider vlogging. Of course that would involve having my face on screen - not overly happy about that idea.

[Get on with it]

I have done little writing in the last seven days. I have re-read the opening three chapters of Breath of Imagined Dead and am generally happy with it - once I have the changes I'm scribbling down sorted that is. The story set up is fine and the chapters end with a cliffhanger I hope is perfect as a tempter to go out with the first book.

And that's the bit that's getting real in a hurry. The Stairs Lead Down comes out at the end of the month form Writer's…