An author of Speculative Fiction, speculates about fiction.

Posts tagged “novel

Moving along nicely

Hi everyone!

Well, things are finally looking like they’re hotting up in my little bubble of existence. I’ve finally gotten some writing flow back, after months of creative drought. Just in the last week, I’ve written the opening chapter to Alan Shaw’s third volume of adventures, poetry (which I still suck at but enjoy) and been catching up on articles and blog posts that people have been waiting for for months.

More than that, Inspired Quill have started the editing process with The Adventures of Alan Shaw volume 2 and apparently it’s going well. I had a lovely compliment from Sara, The Boss, who asked if I’d already sent it to an editor beforehand. For someone with crushing confidence issues, that really meant a lot. It’s hard to tell if you’re improving as a writer, or whether you’re just coasting. It seems I might actually be learning! Who knew that was possible, eh?

In other news, my blog on living with depression, Down Days, has now had over 3000 views. It shot up by about 200 in a single day when I posted yesterday in an unexpected explosion of interest. How nice is that? If you have any experiences to share, poems, posts, or artwork, then don’t hesitate to get in touch. It’s very rewarding to share your story, both cathartic and helpful for others.

Well, I’ll let you get back to your weekend.

Thanks for reading!


At the movies

Hi readers!

Again, it’s been a while. Sorry about that. The Down Days blog has been eating up most of my time and I’ve found it such a refreshing writing experience that I just can’t help myself. Still, I’ve been up to some other things, too…

After taking a little break from the signings/events circuit last year to get Alan Shaw 2 finished and off to Inspired Quill, I’ve done a few more events. Some lovely Steampunk events, and planning for more in the future. That’s gotten me bitten by the bug again, as it always does. So many lovely people are asking for the Alan Shaw sequel now, that it’s quite a boost for my confidence which was waning, to be honest.

I’ve started work on a new novel, as well as the obvious sequel work and finishing off Emi (which is pretty much the bane of my life. I just can’t seem to get in a flow with the damn thing). The new book is in the cyberpunk genre, all synthetic humans and media overcrowding. It’s lovely and shiny and new in my head and that’s always an amazing feeling for an author. I’m hoping you’ll be reading it as soon as I can get my finger out and finish it.

What else?

Oh yeah, I’ve finished my first script! I’ve been asked by a small production company to send my ideas for them doing short films based on the Not Before Bed short stories. Of course, I started with the titular story. It’s a total of three pages long (inadequacy issues, eh?) but it was really fun to do. Let’s hope that they can do something with it. I’d love to see some of my short stories on a screen at some point. How cool would that be?

That’s all from me right now. I hope you’re all doing well and that your own projects are steaming along. Oh, and since I’m rubbish and haven’t done this yet… Happy New Year!

(Hey, it’s still January, so it totally counts)

 

Thanks for reading.


A shift in perspective

Hi everyone,

So, I think I’ve had a bit of a realisation moment regards the novel I’m working on. I wouldn’t call it an epiphany, as such, but it’s certainly kicked me in the backside.

Basically, I realised that I was writing my Cyberpunk novel from the wrong perspective. I think that 3rd person is the crutch I always lean on. At least, it’s the reflex direction that I tend to take. But, as I was reading through the last part of my current WIP, (the cyberpunk novel, that is, not one of the other thousand books I need to get finished) I realised that the perspective should be first person. What better way to describe life in Shika-One City than fro behind the eyes of my protagonist? Especially since I’m trying to get across a very particular speech pattern, colloquialisms and, as I’ve mentioned before, a completely gender-neutral society. Do it through Xev’s eyes! (Xev’s name will probably change, but it was what popped into my head from the first, so I’ll deal with it for now.)

The bad thing, of course, is that I now have to rewrite the first 25k of the book that I’ve already written. The great thing is that I haven’t written anything in 1st person in ages and it’ll be fun to do so. I have to admit that I love a challenge and this is a perfect one.

My other fore-brain project, Emi, is also going pretty well. I’ve just re-read the whole thing from the beginning and I think that it reads alright. It’s another of those challenging things to write so I guess the real proof will only come out when someone reads it. I don’t think that IQ will publish a novella, so I’ll have to publish it myself. But that’s ok. It’ll be a nice little thing to add to my signing table.

And Down Days continues to do very well. We’ve had over 2000 hits over there, from all over the world. Every post has some kind of interaction or comments and the followers are mounting swifter than I could have ever imagined. The posts are proving nice and easy to come up with, too. That’s probably because my depression rears its head in some way almost every day, but I’m trying to see silver linings. With plenty of experiences to share, there’s plenty to write about.

I hope all of your writing projects are coming to fruition, too.

Thanks for reading.


It’s been a long road…

Hi guys, it’s me again. Well, it’s been a busy time! Quick update, I guess.

Author First, my editing service, is going well. I have a few recurrent customers now, which is always lovely, and it’s managing to keep me from starving.

Also, the free e-book on living with depression, Down Days, is doing well. There have been a lot of supportive comments and lots of shares which is always appreciated and makes me think that perhaps I did the right thing by pouring my heart out on paper, although it’s the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do.

What else? Ummmm….The Adventures of Alan Shaw Volume 2 is now with Inspired Quill. I’m just waiting for my turn in the editorial queue as they’ve taken on a lot of great authors lately who are itching to get their first books out. I don’t mind waiting, to be honest. I remember well what it was like to wait for that first book to be released, and the euphoria that came afterwards. They deserve it for all their hard work. IQ have also launched a training course for any aspiring authors that you can find HERE

In other news, my column over at Geek Syndicate is going well, too. Lots of D&D related fun happening there. While we’re on it, my D&D games are getting to be really fun. I think i’m getting into my stride as a DM and acting out characters is getting to be my favourite part, where roleplaying used to be the bit that I dreaded most.

As for writing…it’s going sloooowly. I quite simply haven’t had much time to write lately. Emi is still stuck in a rut that I can’t seem to get out of. I have started a new novel, though, a cyberpunk story which mixes the gaming and real worlds with questions about humanity and where we’re headed. That’s a lot of fun to write and I’ve decided to use only non-gender specific terms and names to show how gender equality has progressed even if the world is otherwise falling apart, a subject close to my hopes for the real world.

I have a signing booked at the Sandbach Author Event on the 5th of November. It’ll be the first one I’ve managed to attend in a while since my car exploded the day before my last signing (long story). Hopefully I’ll see some of you there.

That’s about it from me. Pretty boring, really.

 

Thanks for reading, anyway!


Performance Anxiety: Author’s bane

Hi everyone.

Well, I finally have an e-copy of the new book in my hot little hand. The cover image is complete, as are the internal illustrations, and Inspired Quill have put it all together. The print copies should be ready for release in early September, but for now it’s time to get this thing out for review!

And so the Performance Anxiety begins.

This is one of my major hurdles as an author. I have very little confidence in any ability I may have, and while I’m dying to know what people think, I’m also just plain dying from nerves.

I had the same problem with Greaveburn, and any short story I’ve ever had published. That sinking feeling you get when you’ve poured over a year of your life into a project. You’ve fallen in love with the characters, and they’ve become real people in your head. As I’m typing this, I’m realising what the problem actually is.

While I feel anxiety for myself and if people like my writing, I feel bad for the characters! Those imaginary people are so real to me now that I just want people to like them, for the characters’ sake. I feel bad for poor Alan. He’s a messed up guy who has grown up with very little guidance, and he’s turned into a bit of a shit because of it. So what if people don’t see his sensitive side, his bravery and his charm? I want him to be liked.

I think that makes me a little bit crazy.

And this should come as no surprise to any of you hahaha

 

Anyways, keep your eyes peeled, folks, because I’ll be slowly leaking the book cover and internal covers over the next couple of weeks. I hope you like them!

 

Embrace the weird!


The Adventures of Alan Shaw – Teaser #2

ALAN SHAW TITLE copy

Ladies and Gentlemen, Air pirates and Automatons, it is with great pleasure that I can now reveal the title for the novel in all it’s golden glory:

 

ALAN SHAW TITLE copy


The Adventures of Alan Shaw – Delays

Alan Shaw should be on shelves right now. But he isn’t. And I’m just a bit gutted.

You see, we have had issues with book cover artists. It’s a long story so I won’t pore over it, but suffice to say the artist we had demanded more money at the very last minute before we were supposed to publish.

Damn.

The main problem? Even when the artist in question decided to retract the demand for more cash, I couldn’t bear to think of my writing wrapped in pictures by someone so unprofessional.

And so I said no. And Inspired Quill agreed that we would simply go elsewhere with someone that we can trust. You see, the Alan Shaw contract is for three books, each with six illustrations, and that’s a lot of work and a lot of pay for someone who really wants the work. And I’d rather give it to them than the person we were working with previously.

Still, that means that Alan Shaw won;t be with us for a while longer.

The positives?

I have a much greater piece of mind about the future of the novels. You see, although my artistic skills aren’t great, I’ll be doing the artwork myself (with some outsourcing for the colouring because I’m colour blind and don’t trust myself). This means that although the images might not be the best line work you’ll ever see, at least the characters look exactly like they do in the book. Or, at least, as close as I can get them with my meager skills.

So Alan Shaw might not be here until September. But hopefully it will look dandy by the time we’re done.

Bear with me, true believers.

 

Thanks for reading.