THE WORD ON THE .NET

Writer T. James' Exploration of Words, on the Internet.

Tag: novella

An “Elite: Dangerous” Book – “Out of the Darkness” (Kickstarter Project Launch)

And so it begins…

Anyone who has been attempting to email me, Tweet me or generally contact me in any way what-so-ever this week will have noticed how anti-social I’ve been. (I’m sure you’re all big enough not to take it personally.) I’ve been consumed, gripped, and generally possessed by a sudden impulse to try my hand at a Kickstarter project: to raise money to purchase the rights to set a science fiction book in the Elite universe.

Writers are always being told they need to find their audience and write about something they are passionate about.  I’ve found both. There’s a community of dedicated fellow fans of Elite and I’ve loved the games for years. It’s a no-brainer for me to have a go at writing a story in the setting but, as usual, there’s a catch: I need to buy the rights to the franchise…

So, if you’re a fan of science-fiction books or an avid gamer, why not come over to Kickstarter and take a look—I tell you a lot more there. There are some rewards on offer too if you want to give me a “kick” by pledging.

Thanks for your support, but the clock is ticking… there is less than two weeks left.

KICKSTARTER LINK: An Elite:Dangerous Book – Out of the Darkness

The money raised also funds the development of the game, so everyone is a winner!

Get Your Facts Straight: An Interview On Research For Writers With Rich Weatherly

Today I would like to introduce a longtime online friend of mine, Rich Weatherly, a writer who specialises in poetry and short stories with a modern-day or near-historical setting. He may single-handedly be pioneering the literary thriller as a genre. As well as being an all-round “good egg” as we British like to say—because all non-British know we learn English from Mary Poppins-like matriarchs—Rich is also methodical and thorough. So when it comes to meticulous research, Rich can definitely “bring it”—who says I don’t cater for a broad cultural audience? Anyhow, he seemed like the ideal person to answer a few questions on research and its importance in the writing process, so without further ado… Continue reading

Getting Your Book Out There, the Saga Continues – Website Design

With the release of My Mirror Self And I last week I have begun to explore the dark and murky world of marketing and publishing. It turns out that I should have done both whilst actually writing the book, instead of leaving it until after its release…

However, before getting in too deep with either, I felt I should have a reasonable website to direct people to, and that’s what I’ve spent the last few days working on. This is where I need your help. I’d love to know what you think of the website, whether it would encourage, or put you off buying the book. If you have any ideas for extra content, they would also be welcome. Continue reading

My Mirror Self, and I – Is Finally Out!

DESCRIPTION: “The novella My Mirror Self, and I is an intimate exploration of a young woman’s struggle with breast cancer and depression. Described as “powerful”, “compelling”, and “uncompromising” by readers, this story puts you inside Cassie’s head as she tries desperately to find a way out.
Cassie is a small town girl with everyday dreams: a happy marriage, a fulfilling job, and eventually a family. In eighteen short months her life and hopes slide from her grasp – her marriage to David is failing, and her career prospects are fading fast. Already struggling with her isolation as depression tightens its grip, she is devastated to discover she has breast cancer…

Now Cassie has to choose. Does she let her downward spiral continue all the way to the bottom or can she find something – anything – to fight for and make her future worth living?

This novella touches on themes explored in books like Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar, but it is written in a style more akin to Alan Bennett’s Talking Heads, combined with Victoria Hislop’s The Island.”

—o—

It’s been several months in the making, but I’ve finally managed to self-publish my first work. Anyone who thinks self-pubbing is the easy option either isn’t doing it right or they’ve lots of help. There’s been plenty of hard graft, as a researcher, writer, editor, graphic designer, typesetter, HTML programmer, website builder, chocolate eater, and to come: promoter and marketer. Anyone who’s been keeping an eye out won’t have seen me online as much, and this is why.

Self-pubbing is satisfying though, and not as solitary as some may think: thank you everyone who gave their precious time and valuable insights. The story is much improved from earlier versions because of your input.

I didn’t know how it would feel to have something actually finished and available. Am I overjoyed? Am I struggling with negative feelings as I have nothing to work on? I don’t know how I expected to feel but the most obvious emotions are a sense of the surreal, as technically (depending on who you talk to) I am now an author as well as a writer. There’s a huge sense of satisfaction, of seeing something worked on for so long come to fruition. Excitement? Anyone who reads writer’s blogs knows that most eBooks don’t set the world on fire, and sales figures for many writers range from meagre to ‘not bad’.

I’m more ‘cautiously hopeful’. I’ve always known Cassie wasn’t mainstream, and I hope some readers will appreciate the character focus, where I’ve taken the story, and why I’ve made some of the choices I’ve made; there’s at least two blog posts that could be written about that alone, but I can’t write them today.

I was up until 3am attempting to get the website online before this blog post, only to be informed by the host site that although the files should all be there, it can take the internet another 48 hours to get all the signposts in place so that people can actually access the web page. Currently writerandauthor.com points to my old author website. The link may be live (or broken) by the time you read this. There should be an extended free sample available there when it goes live (hopefully – the Amazon Kindle’s limited 10% doesn’t give a prospective reader much to go on).

I’m hoping at least some readers will be moved by what I’ve written, but I know not everyone will enjoy a piece like this. If you do like it, I’ll make a brazen request that you tweet it, ‘like’ it, and review it all the way into the Top 100. :-) (I am available for blog interviews, discussions, opening supermarkets, and guest speaking at bar mitzvahs and weddings).

My Mirror Self, and I is now available on Amazon Kindle via:

Amazon.com

and

Amazon.co.uk

It was a challenge to write, it’s challenging to read – I will find out over the next few months how a writer fares when they walk a road less travelled.

Cover Art & Description Version 2, for My Upcoming Novella, “My Mirror Self, and I”

After a round of discussion, I felt as though there was room for improvement in both the cover design and the ‘blurb’ for my novella.

Please leave your constructive comments and suggestions on the new attempt compared to the old in the comments section below…  Thanks again, I really appreciate all your feedback.

A heartfelt ‘thank you’ to everyone who contributed opinions and suggestions after I posted the first versions of my cover art (post link). Continue reading

It’s Close: My Upcoming Novella, “My Mirror Self, and I” – Cover Art & Description

*UPDATE* as of 23/02/12. Due to your helpful feedback on the first trial of the cover, I’ve revised the design and I would appreciate your thoughts… Please click here!

I’ve been beavering away for a while now getting my novella up to a publishable standard, and I’m getting close – I hope to have it out on Kindle within a couple of weeks, with a paperback version to follow later on Amazon.com, and then to release it on other formats and in other regions as I have time.

There’s still a bit to do, final grammar and punctuation checking and formatting, but otherwise it’s good to go… or so I hope.
I’ve never designed a cover or written the ‘blurb’ for a book synopsis before, and I want to know what people think before I take the plunge…

So, the cover and description – do you love them, hate them, or just want to shrug your shoulders and move on, uninterested? I’d appreciate some honest and constructive criticism, and any suggestions you have for possibly improvements in the comments below…

*Update* Based on some of the feedback I have recieved already I would appreciate feedback on the cover art most of all, I’m hopeful of nailing the description blurb with the feedback I already have… Specifically, if the pictures of the woman put you off, is it because of the way they are integrated into the cover, or is it because you don’t like the picture of the woman in distress? Please give me as much detail as you can…

Thanks for taking a look :)

N.B. I know the best idea is to have it done by a professional, but financially that just isn’t an option. So my choice – either leave my work unpublished (there’s no way it’s mainstream enough for an agent/publisher to touch) or do the best I can myself…

Continue reading

Diving in at the Deep End – Am I Crazy?

 

Over the last few days I’ve been working on my first ever publication, my novella “Cassie” (working title), and I have to say I’m getting a little nervous. Why? Because I am now starting the final stages before posting it on Amazon Kindle for people to actually readContinue reading

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