Monday, 11 March 2013

Now we're getting somewhere!

What a confident sounding title!  But it’s true, I am getting somewhere.

Work on the second draft of the second novel is proceeding at a good pace.  It would be nice to boost speed a little more to make the deadline of the end of March more definite but there a just only so many hours in a day!  It is good progress though, a lot of scenes are starting to come together nicely and the characters are all having meaningful conversations to advance the plot.

I’m doing my best to spend at least a little time on the novel each day, even if it’s something as simple as tidying up a scene or writing some dialogue.  True, I did manage to have some difficulty over the weekend involving a faulty pen drive, blue screen of death and corrupted novel files but thankfully, one has backups, recovery programs and a working laptop!

I’ve also had progress with the printing of the first book.  At the moment, two big options are open to me.

The first is vanity publishing.  I have been in touch with two local paper-publishers who will print the book for a fee.  Buying in bulk seems to be the best idea as it’s the cheapest per book and seems easy enough considering all they need is the cover and manuscript.  The difficulty then is marketing the printed book; getting the word out and selling it on.  Obviously I can do it individually with friends and family but if go for a very big order of books I’m going to need an online medium to sell them on and get a lot of marketing on the go.  That will take time.

Twitter and facebook might help with that, particularly now as a business colleague of mine has given me some very interesting ideas regards getting noticed on Twitter that I’ve not tried yet.  The option is there and the vanity-publishers have confirmed that the current quote they have given me is valid for a few months.  I have time to think and maybe investigate some new strategies.

Option two is of course getting it published properly.  In this vain progress has at last been made as I have got hold of the book ‘Writers and Artist yearbook 2013’.  It’s been recommended by friends and a few authors I’ve been in touch with and I must say, they were spot on.  It’s an excellent book, listing publishers and agents, as well as a lot of helpful info on how to get published.  I’m working my way through it and already seeing a lot of potential.  The problem is that, say I did successfully impress a publisher with the work, it would still take a long time until the book was published in paper-back and I’d have no control over price, location etc.  Then again, the opportunities that would open up could be immense.

Both the options offer big opportunities.  I shall investigate both further and see how things go whilst I try and sort book two.

Finally, I’m a man of my word.  I said I’d be posting more interesting content and so I shall!  Below is a short story I wrote late last year as part of the little competition between K, Matt and me.  This ones inspiration was ‘A detective who is scared of mirrors’ and was originally supposed to be only 400 words long I think.  I have since spell and grammar checked it since the original writing (wasn’t that well checked over originally, bad me) and its possibly a little longer now.  I hope you enjoy.

Until next time all

* * * * *

            “Good to see you sir.”  said the NYPD officer, beckoning Jacob to follow him. 
            Detective lieutenant Jacob Kingston fell into step behind the officer as he was lead through the police lines.  His partner, detective Laura Barnes, did likewise.  The call had come through over the radio.  Homicide at the Newquay fair park.  It was a not-so-lovely little run-down fair park, often frequented by the nastier drug dealers and gangs of the city.  Police stayed away, leaving the forgotten attraction well alone.  That was until two people were found dead.  Jacob, and his partner Laura, had to find out the who, what, when, where and how.  And fast. 
            The scum would be held at bay for only so long.
            “What'ah we got Sanders?” asked Jacob as he strode ahead of Laura, his longer stride leaving his shorter subordinate in his wake.
            “Same as what we radioed sir.” said Sanders, passing through the ageing Newquay entrance.  They moved deeper into the old fair ground, passing a small rusted ferris wheel, a merry-go round that didn't look quite so merry no more and a haunted house with building integrity issues.
            Jacob was about to ask just where the crime scene was when Sanders halted and pointed.
            “Right in there sir.”
            Jacob looked to were Sanders was indicating.  His eyes went wide and his face paled a little.
            Of all the buildings this one was actually in relatively good condition.  Whilst the yellow paint that adored its front was flaking, the attractions name was still clearly printed in a bright red across the yellow background.
            Hall of Mirrors.
            Oh crap.
            Panting, Laura came up on the two men just as Sanders turned to head back to his position on the line.
            “Thanks for waiting!” Laura snapped sarcastically, casting Jacob her best 'pissed off lady' look.
            Jacob was still staring, biting his lip.  Laura’s enraged expression quickly turned confused.
            “What?  It’s the hall of mirrors.”
            “Oh...” Jacob paused for words.
            “Yeah” he settled on rather unconvincingly.
            “You alright?” asked Laura next, frowning.  “You’re sweating.”
            “Fine!...just, fine.” Jacob fumbled for a handkerchief he kept in his trouser pocket.  He wiped his brow.  “Just the heat you know?”
            With a distinct lack of confidence, Jacob started toward his childhood nightmares made real.  Laura followed, after tracking Jacob with a raised eyebrow.

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