Saturday, 19 January 2019

The Day Of The New Gods - (also) published in March

Spinning off last week's post about The Dead Room being published in March, I have news on the prequel to The Mirror Of The Nameless. Turns out The Day Of The New Gods will also be published in March. Two books, two publishers (in two countries for that matter) but the same month.

Publishing is a funny game. Shag all happens for ages and then I get two books released in the same month. Anyway, The Day Of The New Gods is everything I liked about Mirror (violence, horror, full on balls to the wall batshit action) and taken up a notch. Because if you're going to do this sort of Lovecraft meets The Long Good Friday thing, then why not go big?

So, as usual, cover, blurb and a sneaky peek to come at some point in the next few weeks. And if any reviewers and bloggers fancy a go of either new book, just let me know or the publishers (for The Dead Room, it's Hellbound Books and for Day, it's Kensington Gore).

Both publishers will be happy to sort you out with review copies.

In the meantime, I suppose I best start planning a new book.

Monday, 14 January 2019

The Dead Room - published in March

If you can remember as far back as around this time last year, you'll remember I mentioned my book The Dead Room being accepted by Hellbound Books (which made three including Ascent and The Unredeemed). Pleased to say publication for The Dead Room is now set for late March, so not long to go at all. Links, covers and all the bumpf to come nearer the time. For now, here's the blub.

THE DEAD ROOM

A week before Christmas, terrorists detonate dozens of dirty bombs throughout Britain and release a man-made contagion, leading Nicola Allen to begin a frantic hunt for her husband and daughter while a nation burns.

Fleeing from a horrendous event she refuses to speak of and desperate to find shelter in a dying country, Nicola’s sister-in-law Cate takes cover in a partly destroyed hospital. Terrorised by visions of mutilated bodies and the screams of phantom children, Cate joins with a group of survivors, all of whom are under attack by ruthless scavengers and looters.

If Nicola is to have any chance of finding her family and if Cate is to escape from the siege, they must reunite and then descend into the belly of the ruined hospital where the horrific truth of what truly connects the two women is waiting for them.

Waiting for them down in the dead room.

Sunday, 6 January 2019

The Mirror Of The Nameless - pick of 2018

Good news came my way over the last week - The Mirror Of The Nameless made it the top ten novellas of 2018 from Char's Horror Corner and the top five over at Kendall Reviews which, as you can imagine, is pretty damn sweet.

You can check out the reviewers' thoughts on Mirror at these links -

Char's review

DK Hundt's review

And you can buy your copy of Mirror over at Amazon on these links -

Amazon US

Amazon UK

While these are the ebook links, it's available in paperback if that floats your boat. And as soon as I have a release date for the prequel novel The Day Of The New Gods, you'll know it.

Saturday, 29 December 2018

Where I've been and where I'm going: 2018 and 2019

Time for the obligatory end of year/looking ahead to the next year post. So...

Good stuff happened in 2018 on the publishing front. I brought my second book back to life after it went down the toilet when the original publisher closed best part of five years ago. 'Set became Dead Sun - and is still my sole dark fantasy. It hasn't set the world on fire in terms of sales, sadly, so I don't think I'll be investing the time in writing more dark fantasy novels, but I am proud of that book and it's a tale I like very much.
The Unredeemed and Ascent were published by Hellbound Books. In the case of Ascent, that was its second go as another publisher folded soon after putting it out. There are still plans from Hellbound to release an audiobook version of The Unredeemed which is a first for me so that's pretty sweet.
Kensington Gore released The Mirror Of The Nameless which was yet another 'coming back to life' for me although it was the first time it'd been in paperback as well as ebook. I worked hard and fast on a prequel novel for Mirror which I'm pretty sure is one of the best things I've written. Maybe there's something to be said for working to a deadline. Or maybe that violent world of pulp horror gods and OTT action is something I'm better at than I realised.
My short story The Mouth At The Edge Of The World was due to be published in November but delays with the printers has meant the publisher needs to put it back to hopefully next month. No other shorts on the horizon although that's mainly down to my lack of submitting them. The market appears to have shrunk over the last year and that's especially true with paying markets. I'd rather keep hold of my work than get nothing back for it.

Being completely honest, this year's books haven't made me a ton of cash or garnered a lot of reviews. I'd love more of both, of course, but it feels like it's out of my hands. Other than spreading the word and hoping each new book boosts older titles, I'm pretty limited in terms of marketing which is why I always say that if any reader can do me a favour and post a brief review, that would be a massive help.

2019 plans - the prequel to Mirror I mentioned is set for the next couple of months. The Day Of The New Gods is a balls to the wall action horror about a group of criminals in the mid 80s who aren't going quietly into the night when the gods come a knocking. That'll be out from Kensington Gore soon.
The Dead Room is one of my favourites and I'm beyond thrilled Hellbound will be releasing it. It's an end of the world tale as seen through the eyes of two women who've lost just about everything. But then, there's always a level below rock bottom, isn't there?
The Dead Room is also coming soon and I'm hoping for good news on another book as well as sending out a brand new one in the next couple of weeks - it's a fresh genre for me. More thriller than horror but as I've said before, horror is a big genre with many sub divisions. When the shit gets bad, there's not much of a gap between the levels of darkness we can find ourselves in.

I'm hoping (always hoping) next year takes my writing and success to a higher level. After more than twenty years of submitting work to publishers and agents, it does get harder to hope, but who else is going write my stories?

That's about it for this year, I think.

Long days and pleasant nights.

Saturday, 15 December 2018

Film rec - Brimstone

I've been meaning for months to share more links to decent books and films I come across and, frankly, I've been piss poor at that mainly through a lack of time. Obviously, writing has to come first followed by sending my stuff off and then playing the waiting game. The result is my plans to spread the word about a book or film I really enjoyed goes down the toilet.

Cry your pardon.

Anyway, I recently watched a Western called Brimstone which was absolutely great. I'm not sure if you'd call it a Weird Western or a Western/Horror or a WTF; all I can say it's not just a straight good guys vs the bad guys film by any means. Nor is it a linear tale. Told in four chapters which link to each other and brutal as hell, it's not a film for everyone (put it this way - I have a pretty strong stomach as you might imagine, and even I thought it was fierce) and the run time of well over two hours might put some viewers off. For those who don't mind a slow, detailed story, an unusual structure and a dark storyline, Brimstone is one for you.

I won't say anything about the plot as I often think it's better to go in at least slightly blind to a film like this one. And yes, that is Jon Snow. He knows nothing.

BRIMSTONE


Sunday, 25 November 2018

Trusting to luck?

You may or may not have noticed I've made some changes to the look of my blog recently - hopefully, it's clearer and refreshed. I've added a contact me form over on the right, changed the fonts etc and binned about four years worth of posts. I started this blog back in late 2011 and it was beginning to feel too busy for my taste which is why the oldest post here is now no longer the very first (funnily enough, my first two posts were the ones with the highest hit rate).

Blogging definitely feels a bit old hat now - asking readers, potential or otherwise, to actively seek out my rambling thoughts instead of posting an instant tweet or delivering my news right to their inbox with a newsletter. For what it's worth, I've got this blog, Twitter and a newsletter so take your pick on how you'd like to hear from me. It's funny how things change especially in publishing. Just before my first book was published, every single publisher I checked out specified their writers had to have a site/blog with plenty of them also saying you had to have a Facebook page. These days, the focus appears to be more on newsletters, but I wonder if they've had their time as well - unless you're a big name, of course. I think there's a good chance people just think it's yet another email to read so I'll bin it or save it for later and then never go back to it. The old problem for the writer is how to tell the readers about their books without boring them. Twitter, blog, newsletter, word of mouth, trusting to luck...

Honestly? I still have no idea.

Sunday, 18 November 2018

Grey in my beard

I turned 41 the other day. No age at all to someone like my dad who's 66 or my mother who's 73, but an old bastard to a 20 year old. And no, this isn't one of those wanky posts to moan about getting older. I'm fine with thinking that being 20 or 25 and even 30 is a way behind me now. Those ages may not feel that long ago, but let's face it, 41 isn't a kid.

And that's fine with me.

If you'd told me at 21 that two decades later, I still wouldn't be writing full-time, that I wouldn't really be any more of a success with writing and publishing seven years after my first book was released than at any point before it, and that there's close to zero indication of that situation changing. . .I would have wondered what the point was of spending so long and investing so much in time in making up stories. Whether or not I would have carried on investing that time, I can't say for sure, obviously. I think I would have, but who knows?

Writing, telling stories, making shit up - it's the only thing I'm good at. And that's not blowing my own trumpet; it's what I've come to realise after doing it for so long. I'm happy doing it. If it goes nowhere and if I'm writing another post along these lines in twenty years, then so be it. And if the main difference I can see between the 41 year old writing this and the 20 year old who'd be furious to know he's still not a success is the grey in my beard, then that's what I've got.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I've got stories to tell.