You have got to be kidding me!

That moment when you’ve just gotten your publisher to take all your books off Kindle Unlimited and you read a book by a very successful indie author who recommends keeping your books on there and then goes on to explain why very convincingly. Yeah, that! The author who dished out this very interesting advice is Chris Fox, in Six Figure Author, a how-to book on the possibility of actually making a living from your writing. The guy’s a nerd and understands the programming used by Amazon far more than your average mere mortal. I often liken Amazon’s ranking system to something that should be covered in a Dark Arts class at Hogwarts. Completely unbelievable unless you accept that there is magic

Paint on, paint off ...

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 26/01/14 Bit quiet on the writing front of late. Been getting the house ready for sale. This has meant a lot of time on the end of a paint brush. Unfortunately up the top of a ladder rather than in front of an easel. End is in sight though and then I'll be eager to write the scenes forming in my head whilst I've been bunging holes, sanding and painting. On the upside, I did manage the almost final alts on This Girl's Abroad. That MS is now off for reading by three friends and formatting and proofing by editor. The writing I'm talking about here is for the second book in the series.

The RSI of editing ...

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 04/12/13 I've been putting off attacking the edits from Jayne at Rebel. Avoiding looking at the email, avoiding looking at the manuscript with all those notes on it. Yes, I did have painting to do (walls and ceilings, nothing artistic) but I still should have looked at them sooner. I'm only talking a couple of days here, but as someone who pounces on chores like this as soon as is humanly possible, this was a big delay for me. I didn't realise how addictive they'd be. I decided to have a quick look at them this morning - next thing you know it's 5pm, I'm starving and my RSI is giving me hell. I had to put my foot down at 100 pages or risk not being able to work tomo

Living like it's 1978

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 19/11/13 It’s been a week of full-on editing for me. I’m working on getting the manuscript as polished as a shiny thing before sending it off to Rebel. Funny, but the longer I tinker with it, the less sure I am. Just getting too close to it I think. Always a pain though when you notice a little writing tic towards the very back of the book and you think “Is this new, or have I been doing this the whole way through?” It’s then back to the beginning to go through the whole damn thing again. But I’m getting closer with each pass. It’s odd writing in another era. I disappear into the seventies for hours at a time and am always surprised when I surface back in the present

Seven lovely facts tour ...

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 14/11/14 I’ve been tagged by Cat Connor in the 7 Lovely Facts Blog tour. "The next blogger, on the tour is supposed to list seven interesting facts that case a new light on the blogger him/herself." And then they're required to share some blog links of blogs they read. The final act is to pick on someone else and tag them. Hmmm, thank you so much for this, ah, honour, Cat. I hope to repay you one day. Ten-fold! Thinking up lovely facts about myself, is counterintuitive. I stutter when asked to list my strengths in job interviews. Apparently making a good coffee doesn’t count. But I’ll give it a whirl. It would seem I’m generous. Well accordingly to my credit card

So close I can smell it ...

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 24/02/14 Definitely feel as though I'm getting closer to This Girl's Abroad finally being out of my head and in the marketplace. I've made it to the "Coming Soon" page on the Rebel e-Publishers website and that has made it all feel very real. I'm working on my bio and tidying up the synopsis for when the book goes live. The bit I'm dreading the most is the head shot. I'm photo-phobic with a vengeance. Someone only has to produce a camera for my eyes to half close in readiness for blinking in time with the flash, my mouth drops making me look bloody miserable and I generally look as though rigor mortis is threatening to take over. Basically every photo looks like a p

Where to from here?

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 11/12/14 As those of you who follow me on twitter and facebook will know, I recently submitted the first draft of book number two "Mounted & Hung" to my publishers for their consideration. I can't work out if this is more or less nerve-wracking than when I sent the first book off to them. Less nerve-wracking is actually knowing the person at the other end, whereas I'm now paranoid that the level of writing in this book isn't as good as the first. But I think that simply is paranoia. Maybe because I haven't had to sweat so much blood on this book. That's not because I haven't cared, but simply because I learned so much during the first book and some of that has defini

My dirty little secret ...

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 03/05/16 I admit it; I read chick lit, the porn of the literary world. I try to gussy it up by calling it ‘Women’s Fiction’, which technically it is, being fiction for women, and all. Unfortunately, people aren’t fooled for a moment. But in my defence, I actually enjoy reading books that don’t stress me, that don’t depress me, that don’t make me sad. The last thing I need after a long day at work is a book that’s going to have me emotionally on edge (read miserable) or fighting to concentrate with the few brain cells still left in one piece. That’s not to say I don’t read challenging literary offerings, but oh they can be hard work and it’ll take days for my psyche to r

So, what's your book about?

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 11/05/16 We’ve all been asked this question. A lot of us have answered with “Ummm, well it’s, ah …” After this we’ll ramble on vaguely for far too long, leaving the person asking none the wiser for all the words we’ve just thrown at them. In my case, no two answers are ever the same. However, this simple question is surprisingly difficult to answer. How much is too much? How little leaves your potential reader floundering? The idea is to sell the essence of the book; to give them enough to pique their interest and leave them wanting more. There are plenty of theories as to what constitutes a good pitch. ‘Fifty words in 30 seconds’ is often touted as the perfect balanc

The book is dead, long live the book!

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 26/06/16 But like the royal family, you need new blood or you end up with a tendency to be related by more than marriage. And so it is with publishing, with the new blood here being indie or boutique house publishing. It’s not better, it’s not worse, it’s just different. With more and more well-known authors opting to self-publish, the stigma on this is fading and yet the process isn’t so far removed from the traditional model. Self-published books are still edited, professionally typeset and have cover designs that win awards. Yes, there are a few horrors out there, but the majority are every bit as good and sometimes even better, than those you’ll see in bookstores. P

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Ignore the order these are listed in. I carried them over from my old blog and despite putting in the original publication dates, they all list as today. Sigh

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