A thank you to everyone!

I don’t normally post something on here unless I have the material but guys the follows and overall support I have got this month as an author is incredible!

From the bottom of my heart, THANK YOU ALL. Like publishing a book in general I took a plunge or leap this month while already riding the coat tails of some already epic numbers this blog has seen in 2019. Just look where we stand now….

dem numbers

I mean those figures speak for themselves alone just for this month, but 2019 so far has been huge compared to before and there’s another incredible result…

teleporter logo

Last year I dove into the unknown of publishing a super hero comedy novella. Upon release the sales figures were insulting, my ego diminished and all belief in book stuff pretty much gone. We all want instant results but they don’t happen and so after some serious time spent making a name for myself in the literary world of indie publishing/ reviewing, The Teleporter finally arrived!

tp promo results

As you can see The Teleporter shifted some big time numbers and even had a stint as #1 in it’s particular ‘genetic engineering’ chart…

And that isn’t all because there are some genuine results from the Teleporter’s arrival!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I had to put together a fricking slide show to display the amount of new reviews we got!

But wait there’s more, I’ve even had fellow bloggers write reviews which I then re blogged here so Thanks to Mullen Crafts and  also thanks to Elysia Lumen Strife. Both of your reviews were probably better than the damn book itself, and they made it all the way to Amazon.com! the holy grail of places for reviews! 

There was also a 1 Star review which I won’t dwell too much on, but I think some people came out to read the Teleporter in response and support of me, so thanks folks. You can read my reaction to it here via weekly ramble numero 30…. 

For those looking for book promo tips I recommend this little results post I put together earlier in April

And to everyone else, writer, blogger, tweeter or reader, a tip of the cap to you all. Peace out! That’s April folks… my best month ever in writing!  

April 7th… 

tp reviews

April 30th

teleporter now

Amazon US 

amazon us

Advertisements

Weekly Ramble #30

I find myself resisting the urge to react to a negative review of The Teleporter. I know the ‘rule’ is to ignore and move on but this format here is my yard and I’ll use it however I like. First of all I don’t wan’t to appear to ‘retaliate’ in anyway but everyone whom I have spoken to about this has deemed the situation a little unjust and that’s something The Teleporter fights for…

You can find the review on Goodreads and if you ask me; like others have pointed out, it’s contradictory. And should I even be doing this? Right now, yeah, as I’ve said this is my motherfu**ing yard’ll say what I like.

The main gripe focuses on the reviewer not appreciating name calling of a certain character. In fact this reviewer clocked up the precise amount of times this character was called a certain name or referred to it as that name, which tells me there was more counting going on than reading and delving into the words. I just feel as if this book reviewer has rushed through my work and not actually read it properly. Maybe we’re just looking to add another number to the goodreads list…

The focus on this name calling which I wont fully explain because I don’t need to, can be defined with this statement:

 If you don’t get it, you don’t get it, but the whole name calling thing of this character is a part of her journey. Plus this book is a comedy of the comic book persuasion, sometimes people and places are named quite literally. It’s never said in an abusive or bullying type of manner. Her journey which includes this name she is called comes to a culmination with her winning and then choosing to embrace the name everyone calls her, how can’t you see that? 

This reviewer has totally misinterpreted The Teleporter by basically concentrating on finding something that could be deemed as offensive. Maybe we were looking to slam a book because we haven’t given a bad review before… Unfortunately the world is full of name calling, sometimes it can be considered as banter or fun and sometimes it’s part of wider story that the reviewer didn’t quite grasp.

We live in a world where if one person gets offended by something arbitrary then all of a sudden everybody grabs a pitch fork and torch; this is my one fear in the outcome of this review. I’m not against anyone having an opinion, that’s allowed, but make sure you execute what you have to say in a less contradictory manner.

I don’t give shit if it got one star and it wasn’t somebodies cup of tea, try tequila instead and grow the fuck up.

 

A guide to Book Promotion in 2019

Finding the right advice for Authors to promote their work takes more than consulting ‘the Google’ these days. I also know by putting the year in the title of this post will make it pretty much instantly out dated, but for the same reasons scholars recorded stuff back in the day, I aim to do the same, pass on my knowledge and findings to simply learn for the future (where there will be robots…) and I’m not a scholar but a proud Indie Author…

So here is my guide to Book Promotion in 2019.

First of all, much of the stuff in this post is taken from a very recent book promotion I did for my 3rd novel ‘The Teleporter’ which I made free to download via Kindle Direct Publishing. Many author folks will know that having a book for free does help, but there are so many factors as to why I got the results I did.

These results were as follows: 

tp promo results

Over the 4 days I set ‘The Teleporter’ free to download 817 people grabbed a copy! It even went to #1 in one of it’s amazon charts! 

Now let’s explore ‘the factors’ which drove this book to so many downloads…

Factor 1: Book Promotion Sites. 

Book Promotion sites are essential for spreading the word about your words existing; in fact, I would argue that telling people your stuff actually is out there may indeed be the biggest challenge any smaller time author faces and product awareness/distribution is what we are trying to achieve here! 

So as well as setting my book to be free on the dates I decided (about a month previous) I then set out to find some book promo sites who will list my book and send the info about it out to mailing lists. Many of them have certain criteria and some even charge but most don’t ask for a lot in terms of what the results could potentially be.

Here is the list of promo sites, I used this time around. Some I paid for promotions, and some I didn’t. I also staggered the promos to run on most of the days my book was free.

tp 1 year

A few years ago I compiled this list from a Goodreads group called ‘Support for Indie Authors’ a 14,000 strong collective of Indie minds who band together and share results from all sorts of indie related book stuff. I don’t contribute much to the group, I kind of just lurk… but there is a great amount of info on promo sites.

As you can see I only spent $10 this time around, and it also included an interview with Itswritenow which you can read here and yes on my spreadsheet document the heading of anniversary is in french (I can be pretentious like that, being published gives someone such licence to be…)

Factor 2: Established Reviews on Amazon and Goodreads

tp reviews

This is relatively simple, and there is no real sure fire way to get reviews unless the reader wants to leave one. But the 5 reviews ‘The Teleporter’ had at the time of it being free is a huge factor that drove downloads. People seem to trust something that’s been out a while and has a few reviews. Upon release I put this book up for free and only 35 or so people downloaded it. Sometimes a book just needs to be out there for a while. So if you were one of the people who read and reviewed it before last week, you helped sell it!

Factor 3: An established following

At this current time my following has never been bigger, and that should always be the case for anyone who is an active blogger and writer on social media (and sort of obvious). I have also picked up a bunch of new followers whom are yet to read any of my novels. So with that and combined with the book being free, many of the followers I have had recent interaction with came out in force.

How I got that following is complex and simple all at once. Firstly it takes some time to gather a good following of genuine people. Secondly you have to invest by interacting, leaving constructive comments by being genuine and supportive to others in the writing and blogging community. Be there for others in the same boat on the same voyage as you. I have met some incredible writers and bloggers by just being present on the writing community scene.

My following continues to rise as I review indie books, all books I have read this year have been indie books. Many authors will feel inclined to return the favor but that is something I never aimed for, I’m reviewing books from indies because I am one and I have to support them, plus it’s reading and I love reading.

Factor 4: Chancer’s luck #indieapril

For those who are advocates of my stuff, they will know many of my characters are kind of chancer’s and tend to luck out. They look like they are better than they actually are; why do I say that? Because I am a chancer myself and I always have been.

I thought it would be nice to put ‘The Teleporter’ up for free because its a year since publication and the last promo I did was way back in September for Open Evening. This just so happened to coincide with April and then a trending hashtag started spreading around called #indieapril

#indieapril was some genius idea by some literal genius because people started tweeting about it and their support for indies. Then they started asking for indie book links whilst my book was free! Now I normally have the luck of the three blind basta**’s but holy sh** this was an open goal. For a very long while my tactics to sharing my own book link had changed to not talking sharing it at all. So I had a field day! And ‘The Teleporter’ kicked nearly every other book’s ass, and it went up against some pretty big competition…

This is an example of what I dropped in many folks comments of the Tweet machine…

tweet example

When you are really selling something, people just need to know the important details. As you can see it’s snappy and to the point and also the truth. ‘The Teleporter’ is all of those things, apart from being free right now. Boozy undertones; it’s not all serious folks.

Factor 5: Other smaller things I did…

As well as doing all the promo things above I also put up a big ‘ol Teleporter themed blog post, saying it was free and other stuff. It drove some traffic to the blog and many of the followers of the blogging persuasion are relatively new, plus it was free so people take notice.

I don’t like to mention Facebook because I personally think they are assholes mostly, they are one of those Robocop level corporations who are probably reading this while sharpening Zuckerbergs terminator liquid metal style axe for a hand, hey Mark (waves slowly). I did put up a less than £10 boosted post. It may have helped sell a few copies and definitely a paperback which was someone I personally know so the results are inconclusive. My following is pretty good on my page, you are more than welcome to like it, link to the side somewhere over there >>>>>

Bonus factor: A back Catalogue

I currently have 4 books available which I got published in 2 years, that’s some high revolutions, foot down on the gas type of sh**. I’ve worked my ass off to get those out there and now I have, people take it seriously. It’s true when they say the more books you release the better chance you have, trust me, you got to churn out them stories!

cropped-4.jpg

Results:

The main result is the amount of times the book got downloaded, but there are also longer term results which are still coming in. Kindle Direct Publishing also track page reads (a bit creepy I know) and these are the most recent figures of people reading:

PAGES READ

You can also see somebody has taken on ‘Darke Blood’ also, good on ya, I’m liking that book more and more these days…

There has also been a new review of ‘The Teleporter’ via Goodreads!

tp goodreads rev

Conclusion:

If you’re an indie looking to get more reads, I recommend going free to download for a little while, the first thing I will say is that you are not whoring your stuff out, you are giving it to the world to enjoy and discover. I don’t do this for a living, maybe some day I will, but until then people can read my stuff for free.

Prepare and take your time, spend a few pennies and do the research in finding promo sites and creative ways to get the word out. Take a leap and you’ll never know unless you try.

Thanks for reading and thanks to everyone who downloaded ‘The Teleporter’. Rock and roll man!

 

Weekly Ramble #29

This week more than any I stand by my decision to write and tell a story about a drunk super hero.

Like all of my books they are about so much more than what’s on the surface. Blurbs and covers sometimes do a book zero justice and even now I have a feeling people judged the Teleporter harshly to begin with and most probably still do (I guess I cant win them all). How dare I write a story with a genre that’s ‘in’ at the moment because even now I can see my own logic in doing it. Super heroes are more popular than ever, and did people just see through that? Did everyone just see me trying to ride a trend and attempt to cash in on it?  Was it just an empty grab a fashionable genre?

To begin with that’s what I set out to do, but in the end, this book became something so much more.

The sheer will of my main characters journey is what makes The Teleporter worth reading.

13 people purchased a copy of the Teleporter on release. That was my lowest ever book launch sales figure until Cemetery House but we won’t count that or talk about that (sequels are strange) and even though it’s low, I have zero complaints. That number grew by a handful until this year and back then (even January this year) my following was a lot less than what it is compared to today. This whole deal; reviewing books, interacting, giving back to the writing community has opened a huge door for me. And I haven’t just reached out past my own shores of Hall island to sell books, I’ve done it above all to become a better writer and to be taken seriously, and people are taking this seriously now.

There are two ways a writer learns their craft; by doing and by reading. Along the way I’ve met some pretty bad ass bloggers and authors, types whom I share this voyage with. Perhaps building bridges is what leads to real success in creating.

This week The Teleporter has owned the day. Several times when complete strangers have cast the net out into the twittersphere looking for reads; my scrappy little underdog of a book has come out on top; above other books from authors with huge amounts of follows. That has always been my gimmick, the underdog who waits on the fringes of the unexpected, waiting to strike, waiting for my moment and proving to the international stage that I’m good at what I do.

Thank you to everyone this week, and before this moment. Those who left a review for the Teleporter before today are probably a huge reason why it’s been downloaded over 600 times in two days!

tweet.PNG

tweet 2

sales

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Teleporter is FREE to download!

KABLAMO!

Friends, bloggers and readers from all over the world my 3rd Book The Teleporter is officially free to download. This is a rare one off deal so go now to Amazon and grab yourself a copy….

(The Teleporter won’t be free to download for a very long time, trust me) 

Not convinced I hear? This post is dedicated to convincing YOU to make The Teleporter your next read!

Let the prosecution present to you ‘Exhibit A’ or also known as ‘dem’ Reviews…

Exhibit A:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Reviews aren’t everything, I know and some of you know that. Maybe some of you are thinking I just paid a bunch of people to review The Teleporter I didn’t, in fact this book is relatively undiscovered…

FUN FACT: It only sold around 13 copies on release…. 

Indie books take a long time to gather any type of following, unless you got a pro marketing company, a boat load of money and lady luck on your side, so like all of my works the reviews have come after some time. It’s taken a whole year to get to 6 reviews and so its up to you, the reader to tell the world about it.

You could be responsible for telling the world about The Teleporter! (I’ll probably buy you at least 12 drinks for that type of support)

(No doubles, I have a mortgage to pay…)

Exhibit B: It’s a comedy….

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Ladies and Gentlemen of the jury, let me admit these quotes are actually quite terrible at reflecting how funny The Teleporter really is (no wonder it only sold 13 fu**ing copies), but trust me, you’ll laugh, I did, a lot.

ANOTHER FUN FACT: My marketing campaign was probably terrible… there really are better quotes than the sh** above; lesson learned I guess and that’s the most important thing (what all partial failures like me say).

But… it’s not all ‘ha ha’. This book has a hell of a lot more going on than just gags. There is a real message and moral to the story. Our main protagonist struggles to come to terms with his new power, there is a whole responsibility thing going on with that struggle and friendship arc as well.

Exhibit 3: – It’s deep (not a sexual reference)

tp quote 4.PNG

Members of the jury, seeing as this book is a super hero story, it wouldn’t be one without subtly nodding to the Marvel cinematic universe. This quote above is said by a ‘Stan Lee’ type during the latter stages of the story.

Exhibit D: – The Teleporter is dedicated to breaking stereotypes by appearing as just another super hero story, but it isn’t just another super hero story!  

tp ded

The prosecution rests…

ANOTHER ANOTHER FUN FACT: I’m into courtroom dramas at the moment, can you tell? That ‘The People Vs O.J  show was awesome… yes I also realize I’m some years late, I’m an author, and I’m busy…

…and now awaits the verdict which will hopefully be in the form of a 1000 downloads or more. Let me know if you’ve grabbed a copy by commenting on this post or tweeting me! Happy reading and thanks for the support!

Extra fun fact: Every time The Teleporter is mentioned in this post, the link to the book is attached to it… so get clicking! 

Bonus shizzle/ further reading:

Here are some more reasons why you should read the Teleporter…

And this is what the cover looks like, although you shouldn’t judge books by covers, except mine because they rock!

tp 3d

Ultra Super Bonus content: Are you still here? Well if you are I have promised to myself that The Teleporter will get a sequel if it gets more than 15 reviews… so what are you waiting for? 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I am not the Lee Hall who wrote ‘Billy Elliot’

Hello everyone. Important message here, well all of my blog posts are. I feel somewhat inclined to reach out to everyone in general just to say I am not the Lee Hall who wrote Billy Elliot. Quite recently I have received messages from people assuming that I am that same Lee Hall. I am not. But my name is Lee Hall.

And yes this blog post is totally dedicated to me not being the guy who wrote Billy Elliot!

It isn’t particularly difficult to work out that I am an Indie Author of 4 books and 2 plays. None of which is Billy Elliot. I mean that in the most sincere way but use your fu**ing eyes! I’m sorry for swearing but all you really have to do is read probably the first few lines of my profile on all social media outlets to grasp that. I’m not angry either (that’s not allowed either these days).

However, speaking of me, here are the four of my books that are competitively priced on amazon, you should buy one and leave a review….

books

‘Twister’ meets ‘The Teleporter’: the ultimate ‘what if’ crossover scenario…

Just what would happen if a man called ‘Twister’ met ‘The Teleporter’? This is a crossover nobody asked for, but you’re getting it anyway because writer Lee Hall needed content and because it’s nearly Christmas he should have probably thought of something special to give back to his handful of loyal, well cultured, possibly well endowed readers, yes this is a comedy, but aren’t they all…  sit back and enjoy what is a meeting of literary juggernauts of the ‘lhallverse’….

bar.PNG

(Imagine a bar in low light, there aren’t many people, in fact there are only two. One is half perched at a stool in a long rain coat. His hair is mid length and unkempt. There’s stubble on his face and scars on both hands; one of which is cradling a tumbler of whisky. His name is Twister and he looks in no particular direction when the other guy approaches, The Teleporter; dressed in a turquoise hood and purple skinny jeans, a purple bandanna covers his face along with shades.)

The Teleporter: Hey cowboy, is this seat taken?

Twister: I don’t see any other folks around to claim it.

The Teleporter: Rugged and brooding, how original.

Twister: Excuse me? (he looks to the Teleporter with a raised eyebrow) 

The Teleporter: Let me guess your genre. Wait a second I got this…

Twister: What are you possibly talking about? and what’s  the deal with the outfit? That denim looks a tad feminine.

The Teleporter: Yep, and gender is more than just a word these days but let’s focus on you cowboy. You got those scars, that unshaven look and the whole frown towards life going on. Let’s not mention the whisky your nursing, I’m gonna say horror, or even thriller.

Twister: Still not with ya pal. But looking at those colors and the tight denim I’m gonna say your some kind of fa…

The Teleporter: Whoah! ease back class of 2002, you can’t just go throwing out that kind of language these days, in fact you probably shouldn’t back in ’02 either.

Twister: ’91

The Teleporter: Who in the what now?

Twister:  Class of ’91. Never graduated though, that’s a long story.

The Teleporter: Whatever you say gramps, but you can’t go around throwing out accusations and stuff about what people wear these days.

Twister: These days? Where do you think we are?

The Teleporter: Hoping to god this isn’t my sequel. But you seriously don’t understand this gig?

Twister: It sounds like English but I’m not following. What’s your deal? Maybe should start with names.

The Teleporter: They call me the Teleporter. My deal, is mainly booze and sometimes yoga. Perhaps an occasional blog post.

Twister: They call me Twister.

The Teleporter: Well Twister, how many books did you get?

Twister: Books?

The Teleporter: Cut the crap. The fourth wall is literally right there dude.

Twister: Three..

The Teleporter: Jesus, three books, seriously… (exasperated)

Twister: Well two actually, one was a sequel/prequel and the other is kind of a cameo deal.

The Teleporter: Cameos and sequels? What are you Clark Thorn in disguise?  What the skittles man? I’m got one that’s not even full length.

Twister: Well I aint one for telling bedtime stories… (he finishes the whisky) 

The Teleporter: Is that supposed to be your catchphrase? (he reaches over the bar and grabs a bottle of beer) 

Twister: Says the guy dressed like a damn clown. So what does the mighty ‘Teleporter’ do then apart from kill the mood with sarcasm and empty humor? (he grabs the beer from the teleporter)

The Teleporter: That burns. I take down the assholes in this world who abuse their power. (he grabs another bottle)

Twister: Sounds like a noble cause. Even with the shitty humor attempts.

The Teleporter: Well this is a world where nothing is original. And so what does ‘Twister’ do with his time? and don’t say it’s complicated or it’s a long story, this isn’t a shitty facebook relationship status update. Let me guess, you’re a vegan blogger?

Twister: I survive.

The Teleporter: Deep and reflective. That’s a great title for a porn flick. But it doesn’t give much away, even after three books that’s all your giving me?

Twister: Says the guy hiding under a hood…

The Teleporter: So what does Twister stand for?

Twister: Real name’s Randy.  I don’t stand for much other than my own survival. The line of work I’m in, we’ll call it extermination. (he pulls out a curved sabre type blade and places it heavily on the bar)

The Teleporter: That’s some impressive hardware. What are we exterminating?

Twister: Various kinds of vermin. Is the ‘Teleporter’ just a solo deal or is there some kind of sidekick?

The Teleporter: You’re gonna have to read my story to find out… (pulls out a thin book and slaps it down on the bar) What about you stretch? are you running around exterminating alone or is there some kind of crew you run with?

Twister: I’ve ran with my fare share back in the day but the line of work I’m in, let’s just say nobody sticks around for long.

The Teleporter: Again with the deep mystery, it’s like you don’t want to give too much away to entice reader folks to pick up your tales.

Twister: Isn’t that why we are here? (looks to camera with the Teleporter) 

The Teleporter: There’s the fourth wall break I was waiting for, feels good right?

Twister: Whatever you say pal… (knocks back the beer and gets up) Well, the road is calling me (grabs sabre)

The Teleporter: We should do this again and then maybe I’ll get the sequel I deserve.

Twister: Hang in there, the reviews of this ain’t bad (looks to the front cover of the Teleporter’s book). 

The Teleporter: Thanks for the inspiration.

Twister: Is that a sarcastic thank you or…

The Teleporter: I don’t know man, I mean, now your leaving but taking your time and what do we do, shake hands, man hug, or even nod defiantly.

Twister: You’re the one who made this awkward. I’m goin now.

The Teleporter: Well, I hate goodbyes.

Twister: We literally just met.

The Teleporter: But I feel like we genuinely bonded.

Twister: We didn’t. I’m gone.

The Teleporter: I can still see you…

You can catch Twister in Open Evening and Cemetery House, of course they are also linked and in the same universe as Darke Blood!

The Teleporter is out now! Rock and roll man!

Happy Holidays folks!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5 Reasons why YOU should read The Teleporter

Everyday we face adversity, whether it be from injustice, bad news, the jobs we do or even our inner demons, surviving this world can be a miracle in its own right sometimes.

There’s so much out there in the world today that will get you down, so as humans we need to escape, hence my third book The Teleporter; a not so heroic tale of true life struggles in which modern readers can very much relate to. Here’s 5 reasons why YOU should read it…

1. It’s pretty much real, apart from the fact it’s fiction…

Stay with me here, but the story of the Teleporter and like all of my books contain several elements and plot arcs that are taken from truth/real life scenarios. Kurt Wiseman is probably the closest version of myself reflected in any of my stories. Why is that interesting? Because it makes the struggle our hero faces real, and when something feels real, it’s worth hearing. Strip away all of the words and fancy stuff, you’ll still hear what is a story of just a person trying to make it in life…

2. It’s comedic

Most of you will know by my marketing efforts that the Teleporter is in fact a comedy. If you read it I guarantee it will get you laughing somewhere. Although there is much merriment in this tale, it faces real issues with that comedic touch, making the whole deal light to read and relatable… 

3. The Teleporter isn’t afraid to face the demons of this world head on…

Trust me when I say this, the Teleporter isn’t afraid to call out assholes and problems this world has with assholes. I designed the story to be that way, for a ‘hero’ to lift the lid on stuff such as, money spinning businesses that don’t care, media control, alcoholism, diversity, friendship, abuse of power and even Trump. The whole theme of the Teleporter is to stand up and be listened to, no matter what background you are. Together we all have a voice to change the crap that this world faces, daily. 

4. It’s short, and cheap

The novella length book means it isn’t the standard length of my books. This means you’ll be through with it in no time, what’s not to like about that! The paperback is less that £5 and way less to download, everybody loves their heroes for a bargain price.

5. There are so many morals in the Teleporter’s journey..

Kurt Wiseman’s story is a journey of struggle, realization and friendship. It’s not just a meaningless ‘lets beat up the baddies’ type of deal with a bunch of gags. There is real reasoning and motive behind it. Something I hope people will tap into and appreciate. Every action in this world has a reaction, and that is one of the many lessons this book will highlight. 

6. Bonus: You may see more of the Teleporter!

This is in the basic thought process right now, but if enough people read it and like it, you may see another Teleporter tale in the near future. Everyone loves a sequel! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Weekly Ramble #2

I want to talk about cliché, a word every blogger and writer clashes with every time they put finger to key board, and in this place it’s okay to talk about it…

Is it cliché to come across as artsy and reflective when talking about being a writer? As much as I like the image of wearing a dark roller neck jumper, cradling a whisky tumbler, staring thorough thick rimmed glasses and reclining in a popular chat show sofa; that image totally isn’t me.

I find myself dancing around the inevitable question when somebody tells me they’ve read my work, it’s almost as if they are waiting for me to ask ‘what did you think?’. Instead I’ll weave around their words and seem disinterested, yet another typical behavior artists have towards their work.

But cliché seems to evolve around everything successful in story telling today, you see it in similar looking book covers, titles and everyone has to have at least two reviews on that cover. As much as we strife to stay away from cliché, we need it for our stories to thrive.

In my writing I like to suggest something typical is about to happen or a certain person has traits that are seemingly familiar only for the reader to discover there is something much deeper within and that is the inner message of all my work. I call back to my latest novel The Teleporter, and the main character Kurt Wiseman. On the surface of this story the whole deal reeks of comic book style cliché with a dusting of comedy, something I meticulously toiled over and decided would probably sell the book, something now I was very wrong about. I wanted people to come for the super hero bit, but stay for what the story is really about (read it and you will find out). In essence I failed to capture the right level of cliché in a super hero comedy, a niche which would seem failure proof.

Unfortunately cliché moments in the book are what sometimes define them, readers want to see the good versus evil battle, the damsel in distress get rescued, the rugged semi handsome guy put in the save, an older paternal/maternal type perhaps die on their valiant sword for their efforts, the guy gets the girl, the nerd is actually a warrior, the monsters came from space, the bad guy is bad for a reason, the dead parents… the list ultimately goes on.

What if all of the above is justification to say there are no more original stories?

Something which I half agree with, but what if you can get over that statement by being different, perhaps delivering the story in a different way that distracts the reader enough not to think this was the same old stuff. If can call back to another one of my works; Open Evening, the not so typical high school horror with so much more waiting underneath the surface. Yes you’ve got the typicality of such a story, but the way it is delivered, the struggle, the uncertainty, the ultimate resolve all have a different and a cliché busting way of providing the story which is totally different to those in it’s genre. Just read the reviews, not one bad word goes against the actual story.

If I’m going to plug my books it is not complete without Darke Blood; a not so ‘vampirey’ type vampire story… again the whole deal begins with your typical horror affair but what comes out the other end is a bunch of things done before, but not like they have been done in Darke Blood.

All of my work is example enough to say cliché can be embraced and avoided. There are ways as writers and bloggers that we can deliver our products and words differently. Then again if we are all going to be different, then aren’t we actually the same? I guess that’s cliché to say…

 

 

 

 

 

The Weekly Ramble #1

I’ve been inclined to start a weekly article called the ‘ramble’,  a place to take my writing and more importantly opinions of stuff that 3 novels and counting just couldn’t contain…

Everyday I find myself scrolling through social media, playing the proverbial game of bingo spotting the usual bullshit that fills up our timelines and stories, yeah I’m in that crowd, but normally I share stuff because it might enrich someone or at least make them aware of my efforts as a writer, it could even make someone happy.

el director

Us human beings have and always will be on the hunt for instant gratification, hell I’m sure that’s what the ‘gram’ is named after, a basic extension of life invader or Facebook as you all know it. An opportunity to create blatantly planned and set up moments… back to that game of bingo, I see a full plate of food with a pair of sunglasses and maybe a book. The only thing missing is the phone which should be face down, just eat the damn meal and read the book instead, nobody really cares about your average life. People emptily like the picture probably because it’s better than the one below it, of that person telling you how good and full his life is when really deep down that post is aimed at an ex and so again I stamp my bingo card.

You can define the social media user by two crowds, the constant posters and the ones who hide but are always watching. The watchers will say they’ve had enough of Facebook and will probably deactivate their account when they get round to it, or in fact they have just returned from a three month stint of that blank profile picture, you’re not fooling me, you are just the same in nature to the constant posters, you need it, for the gratification and because it’s still there you return.

I mean I am no saint when it comes to social media, of course I probably over use it, I am human after all, and my weird journey as an author wouldn’t be what it is without that. Success as a writer and on social media echo each other in the same bipolar way. Take my latest novel, The Teleporter, a super hero type comedy with a hell of a lot of relation to this modern world, it’s anti Trump, and sometimes pro booze. There are so many things in that book that make it unique, despite that and all my marketing efforts, it sold less that 20 copies. Bipolar right? Or maybe bad timing or maybe nobody is interested unless it’s Marvel or DC, or so many other theories, I think maybe the cover has something to do with it, not that it’s bad, I think it’s wonderful, but is there some kind of primitive dislike for a certain colour or font? Because whenever I put that cover up anywhere on social media, the likes and attention are seriously reduced. Is it the title? Weird huh? and you should see for yourself, it’s probably the most interesting outcome I have had for a book, it has simply been rejected.

Now rejection is something we all need to embrace if we want to use social media, people wont always be there to like your stuff, and people that do without fail, are they liking the content or the person? Rejection may as well be my middle name when I began this journey into the words, I still have the rejection emails in the hundreds via the inbox of a time not so long ago.

I continue to process why the Teleporter has seemingly failed, and I say that in the least dramatic sense, I know some have read it, but not a lot, and it is still very early to really gauge the success of it. How I process this stuff is simple, retreat into writing, keep churning out content across genres, I’m holding hundreds of darts and the target is somewhere ahead. As long as I keep throwing, some day the I’ll make something stick….