First and foremost, apologies to my loyal and avid readers for the lengthy gap between this and my previous post…you must both have been very upset.
There is a good reason for the delay, though, promise! Well, several good reasons, the most obvious being putting the finishing touches on my fourth novel, the sequel to Realmborn. Oh, parenthood, Christmas, hangovers and the occasional bout of sleep got in the way as well, but mainly it was the new book.
As with Realmborn this is a fantasy novel, plenty of swords and sorcery going on, but with a prominent protagonist who hails from good old twenty-first century Britain, allowing for some modern-day narrative alongside the more traditional fantasy “voice”. It’s a mixture which I like to think worked in my first novel, but then I’m the author so I would think that, wouldn’t I? I guess the proof of the pudding will be in the eating, and I do hope that people at least try a few bites. Test readings have been very positive, constructive criticism was received and acted upon, and overall I feel that it is my best work yet.
The finishing touches have been applied, and the process of making it available on Amazon has begun. I shall keep you informed as to the release date as and when I know it myself.
One part of the writing process I found particularly difficult was taking on board the feedback and criticisms from my first three novels. It’s never easy to read negative opinions on your work, but I brutally reminded myself that I am, to all intents and purposes, an absolute and complete beginner at this writing lark. I’m still immensely proud of the books I have released, I think they are entertaining, intelligibly written, and well worth the low price they are available for as e-books (less than a pint, even in Wetherspoons), but I have made sure that I took absolutely every bit of criticism on board and have tried to learn from it all.
(Worth noting at this point that I resolutely ignored the person who gave a 1 star rating alongside a review that read something like “just not my cup of tea”. Nothing about the writing, the pace or the storyline, just not up their alley. I mean, seriously? 1 star? Gone With the Wind isn’t really what floats my boat, but I wouldn’t leave a 1 star review. Harry Potter isn’t what I’d choose to sit down and read, but I certainly wouldn’t take the time to tell the world that and then leave the lowest possible Star rating possible! Sorry, rant over, obviously I didn’t ignore it, I found it ridiculously infuriating, but I didn’t let it affect my writing. Hopefully.)
I reread my previous books, trying to be as impartial as I could be, and I think now that there was a very definite reason that I didn’t go straight on to the second book of The Realm as soon as I had finished the first. Silver Soldiers and Metal Blade were great fun to write, and I hope great fun to read, but they were very different beasts to my original fantasy epic. I’m hoping that writing them was a chance and a way to work on my craft, to more definitely find my voice as an author, and as a result that Ranidir’s Heir: A Story of The Realm is a leaner, more tautly written novel than its predecessors, yet one that retains the depth and rich tapestry of interweaving characters and storylines that so many people liked about Realmborn.
It’s got less words in it, anyway.
So, the latest novel available soon, and previous books available on Amazon already (and if you have read and enjoyed any of them, please, please, please take a few minutes to pop on and leave a review. Reviews are like gold for an independent author, letting the world know at a glance that this might be something worth reading. Also like gold in that I rarely see it, seem to have to work very hard to get it, and I can’t wear jewellery made out of it because I’m allergic. No, wait, scrap that last bit, pretty sure that’s just about gold.) I shall make announcements as and when, and I really hope people enjoy reading it.
I’m still a massive Aliens fan, so my sign off will remain the same for the duration, channelling the awesomeness that is Al Matthews’ Sgt Apone.
Stay Frosty, people.