Monday, 19 October 2009
With the proof for Shadowknight in my sweaty palm and its publication so close It’s perhaps time to tell you a little about some of the themes within it and why it was written.
Firstly, and above all else, it is an adventure story. It is aimed at teenagers true, but also those who can still taste how fresh the world was when twenty was the oldest you could imagine being!
It is about a search for a resolution to loss and grief. It explores the themes of friendship, duty and revenge. Most of all it is meant to take the reader to a place inside them where wonder still exists.
It’s about horses, a species I have always seen as the height of evolutionary beauty...compared to them we are ugly, slow, and weak. We are ungrateful, violent, bald apes, who would not have conquered the world in the first place without the horse. This lack of gratitude has helped to make them one of the most abused species on our planet. You are, sadly, never far from an equine being abused or dying in agony.
There are few species that, when you meet their gaze, you truly feel that there is a sentient emotional being staring back at you. Horses are one, at least for me.
I’m truly lucky in having some wonderful friends...and some of the best of them have four legs and allow on their back...tasting for a short while...what it is to fly.
Saturday, 10 October 2009
Well, in about eleven days...postal disputes not withstanding...I should have a proof copy of SHADOWKNIGHT in my hot little hand.
This has been an incredibly hard road for me. Rejected by 17 agents, I had to keep up my belief in myself and my book through some hard revisions and soul searching. Admittedly this process is pretty well common to all writers out there...but it cuts hard when you yourself are in the chair! Getting in print is so difficult these days as to be almost impossible.
Enter stage left self publishing...every new writer vows they won’t do it...I did...now here I am four years after first coming up with the ideas for SHADOWKNIGHT and I will be self publishing. There I said it I’m out!
Not, of course, that self publishing is a bed of roses...I have burned fifty gallon drums of midnight oil formatting word files, designing covers and dealing with the vagaries of professional PDF creation (it’s voodoo by the way). The POD (print on demand) publishing houses don’t make it easy for you either, with their websites seeming to have been designed by lobotomised gibbons on stimulants. You want to find the answer to a simple FAQ and you end up ‘menu surfing’ in circles until you disappear up your own event horizon! Half the services they advertise are only available if you live in the USA, or have a degree in bull***t!
Still, that’s the easy bit behind me now...all I have to do is work out my marketing strategy...make sure my ISBN number is carved on some alter somewhere, slog on foot around every little bookshop I can find, try and arrange signings myself...press coverage...
Oh and I have to write my next book as well......AGGGGHHHHHHHHH