Meeting authors (Ian Rogers)

Had to pleasure of meeting another self publisher today at a craft fair. Ian Rogers writes the book series Captain Pegg Legg http://ianrogers.org.uk unlike most of us, he has chosen to publish paper back and is yet to explore the world of publishing at any great length.

It was nice to meet and talk about how we plan our books and what issues we have suffered when it come to the world of ebooks (discovered another bug in the kindle version today 😦 )

And I hope you fellow readers and authors can help spread word of his books.

How do I go about writing a series?

I meet up with Lois of http://loiselden.com and started sharing experiences about writing. One of the things that came up was “How do you go about writing a series?”

The Diaries of James Purcell (Book #0 – The End, is coming soon) and is planned for nine book over three trilogies but, how do I find the inspiration to write the series? The analogy I used was “A series is like a tree growing. As you start writing, the story grows on its own and will split and grow branches.

This has left me with a minor issue with the series I have started writing the first of a side series called “Valkyries – The Lady Death.” The Valkyries series follows the female main characters as they o about there lives outside of the main series. so far the first few of the series previously held the title of Æther tempest (a trilogy) but the title never felt right.

The current plans for the Valkyrie series is a follows.

v#1 – The Lady Death
v#2 – Captain Lee
v#3 – The Elf Captain
v#4 – McClays Tempest.

The Lady death while starting as a NaNoWriMo project starts in T.D.J.P – BOOK #0 – The End and will parallel the main James Purcell cycle while the other 3 fit between the two trilogies that make up the James Purcell cycle.

But, I’ve wondered off subject here. The ideas for these books started as chapters and paragraphs in the main stories but as questions started to rise, notes and background fluff started to be generated. These “Fluff” text soon start to take on their own life and demand attention. It is this point that the branches grow to their own branches and eventually enough notes exist that you have another book.

(I really hope that helps)

She also asked me the following: When writing a sequel how do you avoid reproducing chunks of the previous books in the fear the readers will have question about because they didn’t read the first?

There are many ways to answer this.

1, The Prologue. I once read that a prologue is not often read because it usually doesn’t contain much that adds to the story. To me, this feels like the ideal place to recap the previous book.
2, Flash backs. Characters will always drift of and remember or day dream about previous events.
3, Hints and subtle clues. If you want to avoid the recaps and memories then another option is to just drop hints to the past events. assuming that the reader doesn’t expect everything to be reproduced then (I hope) that these hints will be enough to make readers thing, “Oh I’ve missed a book here and ned to read the previous one.”

I apologise if this is hard to understand but I do tend to confuse explanations at times but, the other reason is that I have “Man Flu” (ROFL) and feel drained from not much sleep.
If anyone has any questions please feel free to ask them.

B.T.W once I have finished the ebook I will move on to P.O.D publishing via amazons createspace so expect a writeup of that soon.

See you in port next time Airship Captains and Words Scribes!

On to the subject of graphical content.

With the first stage (writing) now done and the editing phase now in hand, I find my thoughts turning towards the last phase, the phase that will make or brake a book, The Cover.

I’m no artist, I have neither the patience or the talent for it and find myself looking forwards to commission it out. the initial prices are starting to make me feel sick. My current design looks like a leather bound book, but I don’t feel that it looks professional. One of my readers posted a suggestion for cover art but with current pricing, the cover will cost well over £300!
Book 1 is around the 29K mark and I just cant see the point in footing a bill that big for something that will be free.

I looked into buying royalties free stock vectors and while its cheaper, the bill for a DIY job is still in the £200 mark.

I just don’t know what to do.

2013 – A Year in review.

I started this year with 30,000 words written for a book and a deadline for a writing story competition and finished it by:

  • Finishing the first draft of that book up to 50K Words
  • Writing a second during NaNoCamp @ 40K Words
  • Wrote a third for NaNoWriMo and having it up to 53K Words
  • Book four = 15K Words 
  • Two side books contain notes and basic planning.
  • Two shorts entered into the short story competition and unsuccessful,
  • Three more shorts written,
  • One short for the 2014 written but may pull out this year.
  • And one more for a Forum communal writing project that doesn’t seam to be getting worked on.

On top of that what else?

I went to London to celebrate the Chinese new year.

Been to Scotland to visit Edinburgh Castle.

Became an uncle.

Learned how to sail a van and drive on an ice slope!

But one thing I didn’t do was to go on a Holiday. It’s quite amazing how stress relieving, getting away for a while is. 

I seeing in the new year feeling rotten but before I go I will say.

All your budding artist and writers make sure you get your hands on a copy of Writers and artist year book 2014 if you intend to get anything published in the new year.

I gotta have faith, I gotta have faith, faith, faith.

I gotta have faith, I gotta have faith, faith, faith.

Yes I have the George Micheal song stuck in my head. Why do you ask?

Because I have lost faith in both my books and the whole series!

At the moment I just feel that the whole thing is a screw up and just shouldn’t be allowed out in public. I have yet to edit the first book or take it from 50K to 60K but I just feel put off by the whole thing. So far, Since I printed it out, I have not even looked at it. Part of that was the decision to put it on the back burner and take a rest but with it sat there at the back of my mind, the more I research publishing, the more I think that I will never make it.

 

I think that most of it is down to the fact that even though I have taken 25 days of holiday leave from work, I have yet to have a proper holiday. Well the new year is approaching fast so time to change my ways.

See you in port soon airships captains and fellow scribes.

Todays post has been brought to you because of this door step of a book that is a necessity for all writers and authors for 2014 http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/1408192195/ref=oh_details_o00_s00_i00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Loosing a Books identity / Return of the Dragons.

Loosing a Books identity.

One of the things that a lot of people struggle with and something I have been struggling with since I started NaNoWriMo 2013 was thinking up a title. I used the name Mythobiology because it was supposed to be heavy with mythical animals. However, as it is part of a Steampunk series and most of the book is about his life up to becoming the captain of an airship.

I feel that my book has now lost it’s identity and the title now no longer fits. I have been stewing over this for a few days now but until I start the editing and rewriting work then it’s not going to change.

On a side note, I have started to work on my Fantasy series, Return of the dragons.

The series follows each individual member of a group of hero’s without crossing the same grounds. After a civil war that nearly wiped out the dragons, the survivors went into hiding and man kind has spread across the land. The instigators of this civil war, the black dragons have started to stir and are intent on bringing all the species into this new war. How will each member deal with there pasts in order to come together and save the future.

3 books at once?

I’m waiting of the first two to be proof read and started work on the third.

This one will end the current trilogy (well the MC will be written out for a while.) but while I write this I have a side trilogy with the first two books covering events from this one while expanding it from the viewpoint of other Characters.

Book three will be the start of a dark time for the MC, Due to the events of others, darkness will claim his soul and he will turn to the dark side.

To be honest, when I started writing all those years ago, I didn’t think that my idea will grow so big, now I am starting to feel a bit baffled by the scope of my world.

Do other writers feel this way?

The art of writing a sword fight.

The art of writing a sword fight.

Despite what people say, there are no rules for sword fights. A proper fight (unless is scripted fights) had no rules, it was just one man against another, aiming to maim of kill each other. A proper sword fight is a free for all fight where anything goes.

In the medieval times, you couldn’t say “Sorry that thrust is not in the rules and doesn’t count.” If someone came at you with a weapon, you used anything including bare fists to survive.

You could call this a rant, which is what its like but there will always be those who complain when writers diverge from what others have written before.

Well, short and abrupt but I had to voice it.

One Thousand words a day for a month.

New month and a new challenge.

I proved I’m able to write one thousand words a day just to finish the first draft of my first book. The copy’s are out getting reviewed (apologies but it will be Pro-proof read when finished.)

So for motivation I’m going to challenge myself to write a minimum of one thousand words per day. It probably wont be on the same book ( my brain isn’t that liner) while finishing the Aether Shadow. It should be achievable, but I will keep a running total.

Currently, this is how my word counts look.

Image

I hope so see lots of those box’s filled by the end of the month.

I may also find time to start posting up images of my pocket watch collection.

Keep your eyes pealed and

See you in port soon airship captains.

Max OSX (Pages 09) and proofreading.

Max OSX (Pages 09) and proofreading.

While spell checking and proofreading my book in Pages 09 on Mac OSX I came across some oddities that make it difficult for the EN-UK users.

The spell checker and grammar rules rely on EN-US. Some of the rules are that colour is not recognised but the american color is recognised. SS is replaced as ZZ and the proofreader has a distaste of gender specific words. Some of this could be down to anti-discrimination rules and laws, but when you trying to write a historical based piece of work is gets down right annoying.

Call this a rant or a moan but I just thought this may be worth pointing out.