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Turning Worlds

So much catching up to do now my I’m back home! The world just keeps on turning, even if I’m not watching it. (Quantum physicists are invited to comment below on that observation.)

Distribution Channels

My novels’ distribution network continues to grow effortlessly! I use the Mention app to notify me if my name or my book titles appear on anyone’s web pages. No, it’s not an ego issue, it’s… professional… market awareness… all that stuff.

Anyway, Mention notified me that while I was on vacation, Continue reading

Road Trip, Trilogies & Good News


Some of you might have noticed a long silence from me.

Many will be grateful.

But now I’m back!

I just spent the whole of October on a road trip covering New England in the Fall and a batch of Canadian cities. Exhausted!

If you want to visit New England in the Fall, you just have to go in the Fall. And I highly recommend it. Stunning views!

Do note, however, that half the small-town New England service industry shuts down after Columbus Day. October is “out of season”. Er… “New England in the Fall”… Fall? You know, that period just AFTER Summer? A period that usually includes October? Ah, well. It’s their cash flow.

Anyway, it’s hard to blog while driving or striding through russeting forests. (Yeah, I made that word up.) So I took a blog vacation.

On my return, I had to catch up with all my snail mail (yes, people still use that in Europe, especially governments and other people wanting money from you). Then I surveyed my “TO DO” list. It was too long, so I set it aside and took up my “REALLY URGENT TO DO” list, which was a little shorter.

First up has to be a final revision of the last volume of my Janus Paradisi TrilogyJANUS ARRIVAL. I hope to send it out to beta readers in a couple of weeks for editing and publication towards year-end.

Yes, I know Christmas is a lousy time to publish, but part two came out in April and I owe it to my existing readers to bring the saga to a conclusion soon. It will help them sleep at night, without worrying about how my oppressed characters are faring, out there in the deep beyond.

GOOD NEWS!

While I was away, I found praise winging my way on the InterWebs!

First up: A full-page article from Scifibook Review

If you like science fiction, you should be reading Sheron’s blog. I was delighted to see such a respected reviewer commenting favorably on my work. Many thanks!

Next: Another couple of particularly glowing 5-star reviews on Amazon. Writers love reviews, even if they aren’t all 5-star, so do a writer a favor and post a review of the best book you read this year, no matter who wrote it. Thank you on their behalf.

Oh, and a belated Happy Halloween to you all.

Whichever way you consumed your pumpkins (in coffee, beer, cheesecake, soup, sandwiches, cupcakes…), I hope you enjoyed them!

66 and Counting…



I made it. Sixty-six years old!

Sixty-six!

And counting.

 

So how does it feel?

I asked myself that last year. The answer’s pretty much the same as then… Continue reading

PARADISI CHRONICLES & NEWS


NEW MUST-HAVE PARADISI CHRONICLES RELEASES (details below)

As my regular readers know, my JANUS PARADISI series takes place in an open-source sci-fi universe. A what?

Essentially, a group of authors agreed on the backstory and main features of a time and place where all action will occur, then write their own stories within those parameters.

These stories can be from any sub genre (hard sci-fi, space opera, fantasy, romance, whatever), as long as they stick to the overall parameters, such as planet names and environments, technology, history, and so on. They can use other writers’ characters (with permission), usually giving them walk-on parts, or referring to great events in other writer’s stories. Continue reading

The Price of Fame

Beware Book Pirates!

Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve been running an Instafreebie promotion (where science fiction readers sign up to my newsletter and receive a free copy of my novel, “FACES OF JANUS“).

Then Google Alerts notified me that the novel was available on a few pirate sites. I checked and found that one site claimed not only to have my novels but also every anthology I ever was published in. Some charge for their copies (and keep the income). Others hand out copies for free. Forever.

I explored a few pirate sites’ extensive book lists. Some of these pirates claim to have as many ebooks as Amazon! Most likely, these were cover shots only and downloaders would get a nice virus instead of my book. (Be warned!)

As my free offer was limited in time and scope, I was at first unhappy about this. But I decided to ignore it, because… Continue reading

Snippets

KINDLE/NOOK AND NOVELS GIVEAWAY COMPETITION

The contest I announced last week is now over and the winners’ names will be released next week. So keep those fingers crossed.

REVERSALS

(Apologies to followers who received a draft copy of this post, sent in error last week. And this contains an update.)

It’s well known that book reviews are important to readers making buying choices. My two Janus Paradisi novels enjoyed a straight flush of 5-star reviews and I was a happy man!

Of course, I’m eager for more reviews and took a look to see if I’d garnered any. I found the opposite: a whole bunch of reviews had vanished.

Of course, I queried this with Amazon: no reply.

I queried again: no reply – for a few days.

Then came the good news: Amazon reinstated those reviews after investigating. Thank you, Zon!

I want to make it clear that I strongly approve of Amazon’s campaign to stamp out fake and bought reviews that boost a rich author’s lousy book to top position, misleading book-buyers. I guess I was just collateral damage, but anyways, Amazon refunded me the stars and so now I’m happy again.

An author friend suggested I’d drawn attention by being a new author with 100% 5-star reviews. So now I’m hoping for a few 4-stars… although it feels odd to be wanting worse reviews to enhance credibility and sales.

Ah, well. Such is the modern world.

SUCCESS STORY: DAVID BRADLEY

I had to mention this. You have to hand it to this guy: following a long list of acting appearances including the Harry Potter movies, Captain America, and Broadchurch, he’s been in both Game of Thrones and Dr. Who.

Well done, that man! And he’s from Yorkshire! Just like me.

So we’ll be looking for his appearance in Westworld soon?

Happy reading, until next time.

 

Faces Of Janus: New Cover and Answers

Cover Confession Time

Newbie mistake #1: “Faces of Janus” was my first published book. If you’ve read it (thank you and I hope you enjoyed it), you’ll see how the two-faced image represented the JCorp logo, the lead characters’ internal conflicts, the deceptions encountered, and the disguises adopted.

But if you haven’t read the book (WHY NOT?), you won’t get these references.

A book cover is supposed to shout, “Hi there! I’m your genre! Read me!Continue reading

The Economics of AI: Example

I recently had a great time at the 68th British National Science Fiction Annual Convention: meeting old friends; making new ones; attending some fascinating panels…

The panels prompted my restless mind to explore tangential threads, as they should. Example… Continue reading

Beyond Beginnings: Sequels

A Good Year End

In November 2016 I became a published novel author, building on my years as a short story writer. 51i8civxul-_ac_us240_ql65_51vykdagqhl-_ac_us240_ql65_

Where do you go from there?

You write the sequel.

Actually, I started writing the sequel long before I published “Faces of Janus“. It’s already gone out to beta readers, for publication in Spring 2017. Continue reading

What’s With Wattpad?

I heard a few good things about Wattpad during 2014.

Wikipedia (December 20, 2016) says…

Wattpad is an online storytelling community where users post written works such as articles, stories, fan fiction, and poems, either through the website or the mobile app…

As of April 2014: [Yes, 2014]

  • 85% of its traffic and usage comes from mobile devices,
  • the site has 35 million unique visitors per month,
  • there are over 100,000 story uploads per day,
  • there have been over two million writers.

… According to the profiles visible on the site, many of these authors are teenagers.”

I took a look and found it full of YA, Romance and Undead Fantasy (not my genres), mostly written by teens. Still, I thought I’d give it a try and uploaded some short stories (horror, hard scifi…) to test the waters. I had a reasonable readership response, but few Likes or comments. Okay (shrug), I’m not Rowling or Atwood or Howey (yet). I’m not going to get swarms of eager readers seeking out every word I electronically utter (yet).

Persevering, I tried a novel.

Continue reading