Weekly Ramble #37

Things never turn out how you expect them to. I guess the perception of one person can be clouded by the situation they find themselves in. Kind of like the sound of your voice, it seems different on film or recordings compared to hearing it out loud, either way its cringe. 

Writers lay in wait to find out if their stuff is well received, sometimes they never truly know but a live performer gets feedback almost instantly. An audience will react immediately with an applause or just a gasp or even worse silence which can be deafening. Some of the best gags may even go ‘unlaughed’ straight away but have a way of burning into one’s mind even days later. We’ve all laughed at something out of the moment.

The true power of performance or art in general is how it makes an audience member feel long afterwards. It’s a special feeling to reminisce about a show or story you were a part of some time ago. To be remembered is probably the highest of accolades for anyone in the arts. Then again they only saw or read that story on their side of the fence, I guess it all leads back to perception. Others will even argue that having their work move someone in any kind of way is the greatest of rewards.

 

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Weekly Ramble #36

 

38 Days. That’s how long I managed to stay away from alcohol. A personal best. A rather proud statistic. Even though I’ve never considered my consumption to be problematic, I decided to abstain to improve my overall health and even lose some weight. The weight loss thing is hard, damn hard, but I’m exercising regular and mostly injury free (back pain has plagued me for some years). 

Even though the next morning I had that all too familiar feeling of not having an interest in drinking for a while I had no remorse this time around. Those couple of mojitos and some number of ales quenched a thirst for a while and I had a fun night which is always my aim.

Now my aim is to stay on the sober path for longer; until my 30th birthday this August. Eventually I can see myself scaling back the alcohol consumption to near enough zero, but I am a writer so bare with me. Plus the social factor is huge, put those two things together and the cocktail of being a boozer appears. As I get older I am trying to be at the very forefront of a healthy lifestyle. Folks are living longer now, medical care is better and that means life expectancy is going up, my Father always said to look after yourself when your young and your body will look after you in older age. Wise words.

Happy health all.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Weekly Ramble #34

I’m done with book bloggers. I know that statement may tarnish a hell of a lot of people with one brush including myself but I will say it again with more context; I’m done with asking book bloggers to review my books. Now there are many awesome book bloggers out there and particularly the one’s I follow including the few that have done good to me and support this blog, you guys will always rock and of course I do not mean I’m done with you, and please don’t think this is just an angry response post to someone who gave out a 1 star review, I’m past doing responses, but this is a serious conclusion I have come to.

Why? Because near enough every dealing I have had with book bloggers has resulted in a negative review. But negative reviews is also not the reason because I don’t expect everyone to like my stuff. There is a caliber of reviewer out there that very recently reviewed my first book Open Evening; it came out in 2016, it’s not perfect, I gave it an edit a few weeks back, but overall it isn’t terrible. There’s even a sequel if writers want some further reading. You can read the review here

This review has entirely killed my desire to reach out to book reviewers and even consider them a target market. I am still completely baffled by the pretentiousness of it, I mean there’s a star rating in there somewhere I think? And this caliber of reviewer has done an unnecessary amount of dismantling of my work while comparing to other books unnecessarily (that word again) ,and again that’s not what I’m mad about? But what the fuck can I take from this review to use as a learning curve to improve? Absolutely nothing because the guy, clearly knowing in books and stuff has spent too much time writing a review that just tries to be over intelligent and almost upstages the author in a smarmy want to be clever way. And this guy to me just comes across as a wanna be author who never published a damn thing in his life – like much of the book blogger community you just don’t know what its like… so how can he give any critical advice, he cant…

Authors live and die by reviews, indie authors even more so, and these people have no clue what it’s like. They just take someone’s book and seem to just set out to find reason’s not to like it! I’m not saying this as a high a mighty author, because I am not, I’ve reviewed nearly 20 indie books this year, I haven’t bashed a single one and I’ve given critical usable advice where needed, not in a smarmy wanna be author way, but in a way that helps writers. Isn’t that what reviews from book people are supposed to be?

My target market has always been everyone outside the writing community, the everydayers who enjoy a good story and will take it for what it is and enjoy it, not compare it to Mary Fucking Shelly. Then they will put that book on the shelf and not sell it on ebay a year later – not that I have sent many physical copies out there, maybe that’s the reason for these reviews…

Either way, I’m not mad, and I appreciate all the support I get from book bloggers, but there are some out there who just don’t have any real respect for story telling and they don’t have any appreciation for the journey we go on as authors.

Weekly Ramble #33

Let’s talk about Game of Thrones; I want to talk about what a lot of folks have on their mind and like me I wholeheartedly agree with the fact GOT resolved itself in a pretty shitty way.

I don’t think a petition to redo will make it any better and when we’re removed from it in ten years time will it be that bad? Some of the stuff that happened fit, the good guys kind of prevailed and the evil Lanister regime fell. Overall GOT became a coming of age story for the Stark kids, looking back at S1 it always was about them so why would anything different happen?

John Snow returning north did kind of leave me a little deflated. Not every loose end was tied and above all this thing felt like a quick cash grab wrap up. Or is this just the complaining culture we live in these days? One person says something sucks; gives zero real reason other than they didn’t like something and then all of a sudden a twitter group is 200,000 strong and putting petitions together.

GOT and it’s final season may be the first time the internet horde generation has faced something like this. Maybe because of the availability of instant opinion means maybe it was always destined to fuck a lot of people off, or am I trying to rationalise the fact it was a shitty ending? But it isn’t ruined, it’s just not the way you fantasized it, grow up. At the end of the day you watched it, so they won.

From a writers perspective it seems the story was put together in a rushed kind of way. It’s almost as if the show writers/runners were offered some kind of lucrative deal from someone like Disney and they got distracted. This sounds like the case and in my opinion if so they have broken the golden rule of story telling – tell the current story you are working on, in an orderly fashion with all of your upmost effort. One project at a time, tell what is in front of you, not in the future or shall we say in this case a galaxy far far away. Above all that’s just unprofessional and bad form; hence GOT’s downfall… 

Another huge factor to the show’s somewhat disappointing culmination is the fact it always had to end. Most shows run until they get cancelled; the show runners then move to an endgame. In this case there was always going to be an end but it just wasn’t very good. It’s not as melodramatic as some people were trying to debate online; quite honestly I don’t have time to discuss a TV show. It is what it is and we can now all move on. The pandemic of bad story telling in the final act is alive and well, I guess they can’t all be Breaking Bad…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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….

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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…

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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!

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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!

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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… 

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April 30th

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Amazon US 

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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.

 

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!

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Weekly Ramble #23

I’m still coming down. And god damn I am proud of what we did over the weekend. For the first time in the 76 year history of Iver Heath Drama Club we put on our own written pantomime show.

This journey hasn’t been easy (and there’s still another weekend of shows to go), they never are and the reward is like nothing I have ever felt before. Writing plays is something I transitioned into from performing, every show I was cast in, I took that as an opportunity to fuel my learning. Eventually that turned into the unique ability to be able to tell my own stories and the open welcoming environment of Iver Heath Drama Club has fostered and nurtured my writing to heights I could never imagine.

I take a look around and ask myself how the fu** did we get here? How did this whole deal become this big. The answer, like all big answers is relatively simple. Without intentionally being deep, the answer much like everything good we ever do or create comes from within.

And I say this now as advice to anyone looking to succeed in not only writing, but in life and work. All you have to do is show up on time and work hard. Get there and roll up your sleeves. If the environment you’re in is decent and so are the people, eventually they will reward you for showing up and doing a shift. And quite possibly they might even love you for it. Everything else will follow, we all learn in our own way.

I view story telling as just a sequence of ideas put together in a neat orderly fashion. The more time you spend tidying up those ideas in that mind of yours, the better the stories will get along with those ideas. Above all I create because I enjoy it, making something gives me the greatest sense of fulfillment in life and this time around I am not alone. We put together a show as a team, and for the first time, writing hasn’t been a solitary lone affair, its been so much more and so I can live with being high on that for a while…

Weekly Ramble #21

There goes another decade, well nearly. Time flies when you’re writing books I guess and this year just sort of crept up from the shadows. The past few weeks have all kinda merged but things are trying to settle down…

Lets talk goals for 2019; because A new year feels like a fresh start, this is my year and it may even be the crowning piece of one hell of a decade.

  • I’m handwriting the first draft for my next book, a paranormal romance in the form of a diary. Yes I said romance, my whole deal in writing is to nail as many genres as I possibly can. If you can tell a story, genres are just the variable. We’re looking at a festive season 2019 release and I may fully self publish this one, I will still need an epic cover though!
  • Book Code named ‘Project X43’… or the real title ‘Jack Thorn’ – ‘In the future there will be robots… and this book is my writing destiny’. This year I’m finishing the rebooted draft and I’m going to find an agent and get it published (yep easier said than done). Those who have followed me from the start will recognize the ‘Thorn’ name and yes this book is massively linked to it.

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  • Darke Blood Sequel: ‘Darke Awakening’ has already been drafted and for those who have been keeping up this one serves as not only a sequel to ‘DB’ but it’s the continuation of Open Evening and Cemetery House. This year I will hopefully edit and set a release date for the Awakening. It will probably see the ‘light’ in 2020.

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So that’s all of my writing goals for 2019, let me just take this opportunity to say, keep it real, be safe and may the force be with you! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Final Ramble

2018 has been a punishingly brutal year. Too dramatic? I’ve been taking the last few weeks to look back and actually find a way to accurately describe what this year has been and that’s what I got. But now comes the save, because nothing in this world worth having comes without a fight and the last 12 months have been the most important of this decade for me and for a lot other fellow bloggers/writer folks…

There were a few occasions when things turned really, really, really dark and I’m not taking a shot at my energy supplier because the greatest tool we have as humans is our mind and as much as it can take us to wonderful places, it can turn sinister. Some few months ago the fire of all fires in my heart almost burned out, you know that fire which drives us to do what we do in life. It stokes and heats up the engine that carries all of our hopes and dreams, yeah that, it almost went completely out. Mostly for reasons that are internally swilling around inside me and those reasons turned to thoughts which then turned to dark dark feelings, but that fire (think of it as the one in the Goblet of Fire) burst back to life after some epiphany style thinking and like Peter Pan I had found my happy thought which in turn brought me into the light. You have to experience true darkness if you ever want to see the light (Darke Blood reference and fu**ing true dat).

We’re two months removed from that now and although I haven’t fully gone back into book writing I will be very soon. Those two months that followed have been as a matter of fact the most important time of my writing life and they can be defined by one word, connections. If you ever want to succeed in anything these days you have to connect and that is what I have done. 

People are starting to take notice of my efforts and my work is actually starting to take off, I’m talking sales every other day, book reviews and people dropping me lines about reading my stuff. Things have been boosted massively via this blog and Twitter with the use of a wonderful hashtag #writerscommunity which has slowly put me back together again because we are all on this journey together. And do you know why this has happened? I interact with other bloggers and writers and since August I have offered Indie book reviews in which my to read list for next year is near full! I’m not just writing content and saying buy it, follow me or fu** off I’m reaching out to those who need it and deserve it, my distribution plan is simple, follow and interact with others.

2018 has been a roller coaster of events and emotions and this has been a damn important year for my writing, I now have 4 books published, that’s double compared to last year! I’m damn proud of this but the one thing I will be most proud of has yet to happen, before this year closes out I have my finest achievement yet to happen; on friday I will be a property owner with my better half, I’m getting my writing room and I’m bringing the table I have always written on because as always the story continues….

This is my official sign off for 2018 and my final words are this… thank you for joining me!