Not a Sunday Blog

May 17th, 2016  |  Published in News

Hi folks,

I haven’t written a blog post for a while so even though it’s not Sunday I thought I’d do a short post to say where we’re at.

Personal life: New job is going okay I think, but gosh am I tired.

Caredale: I’m enjoying posting Caredale. I hope you peeps are enjoying it too.

Haventon: When George RR Martin was writing A Dance With Dragons one of the reasons it was delayed was because of what he referred to as the Meereenese knot which was a problem he had getting various characters to Meereen who needed to be there. Right now I have my own Meereenese knot in Haventon which is why it hasn’t updated for a while. I’ve nearly finished chapter 17 but I will try to write 18 and 19 before I start posting again.

Whisper: Has fallen foul of the Haventon tangle as well. I alternate writing chapters of it and Haventon so while I’ve been fighting with chapter seventeen nothing has been written on Whisper. I think I may move to writing alternating days on them so this doesn’t happen again.

Dragon Wars: I hope to get Arc 3 out as a book by the end of the year. I don’t currently have any sort of ETA on posting arc 5. The rewrite of arc 4 may well be so intensive that I have to repost it first.

Shattered: I’m nearly ready to launch Shattered as PWYW serial on Gumroad. Watch out for the announcement! For now here’s the current cover (I’ll get a professional one once I have the pennies for now you get my okay but no pro quality art) and the blurb to whet your appetite.


Conflict shakes the heavens as an injured goddess heals among her people. The War for Heaven has begun.

The Moon shatters in the sky. The Moon Goddess Enled collapses in front of her priest, Ranet. Not just duty but love compels him and his people, the Saleika, to care for her even as they struggle to flee the ruin of their lands.

The disaster that has befallen them is no accident. Someone plots to supplant the gods, someone who doesn’t care how much suffering they cause as long as they prevail. This was just the first blow and their loyalty to the gods puts the Saleika in danger.

But their stories hold secrets that put them in even greater danger. Unravelling these secrets may reveal the enemy’s identity, but that will force them to return the ancient homeland they have tried to forget.

That’s all for now.

Sunday Blog – Short and Sweet

March 6th, 2016  |  Published in News

Not much news this week so I thought I’d try something different.

Name one of my settings or characters in comments and I’ll reply with five factoids about them.

Sunday Blog: Dragon Wars Decisions, Whisper Status and More About Shattered

February 28th, 2016  |  Published in News

Thank you for all the comments on the first of these, peeps. I love talking with my readers. 🙂

So here’s where we’re at:

Dragon Wars:

Having listened to everyone’s advice I’ve come to a decision. Once I’ve finished Arc Four Dragon Wars will go on a hiatus (hopefully no more than a few months) and I will start serialising the spinoff instead. The Caredale Tales book one is  titled The Sundered Light and should stand Whisper alone (though DW readers may well figure  certain things out very quickly if they’ve been paying attention). The current arc has one more chapter (so several installments) to go before the pause so we’re talking at least a month before the changeover. Caredale will release on the Dragon Wars rss feed so those of you who use that will see it automatically.


This week’s installment is written, so I’ll be sending it to Torvawk later today and there will be an update on Wednesday (yay!).


No one commented yay or nay so as things stand I’m going to do the thing. The worst that happens is no one buys in, which would be sad but meh.

I’ve been looking at two friends who do a for money serial for examples and they both handle it in different ways.

(BTW both these serials are excellent and come recommended by me).

The first is Hen and Chick by Tristan J. Tarwater. A fun swashbuckling fantasy adventure which she’s serialising monthly on Gumroad. She is charging pay as you feel with a minimum of $2 month and subscribers also get a monthly worldbuilding post about the setting. I asked her some questions and she’s really enthusiastic about the model.

The second is Curveball by Christopher Wright. He describes this as a superhero prose comic. His serialisation is somewhat different  and not entirely for pay as he is serialising it for free on his site. Each issue is between 8-10k words and is simultaneously available free on his site or as a 99 cent ebook on Amazon etc.

I have considered both these options and come up with the following:

  • Starting in mid-April I will serialise Shattered in installments of 8-10k words using Gumroad (I’ll open subscriptions in early April in preparation).
  • It will also  be made available for Patreon Patrons so nobody will have to pay twice (though Tristan reckons that Gumroad is more secure than Patreon and she may have a point so if people don’t mind migrating I’ll probably leave Patreon sooner rather than later as it has been over a year now and it’s still very quiet). (Plus Patreon doesn’t deal with VAT meaning I’ll have to hand email the ebooks to avoid the VATMOSS debacle so I think I’d prefer people to migrate). Expect a Sunday blog on this subject once I make up my mind.
  • I’m currently intending to charge a minimum of $0.99/month. I may up it to $1.99 if I decide to do the monthly world building content. (If I do this and I haven’t left Patreon then the content will only release to Patreon Patrons at the $2 or above level). (Note for European readers: These prices are excluding VAT. Gumroad adds the correct VAT to the prices I set).
  • I will only release on Amazon once the serial is completed and all readers will get the full ebook (and a steep discount on the paperback if they want it).
  • There will be a post on the site for subscribers to discuss each month’s release because comments are one of the joys of serial fiction.
  • Once the serialisation of each book is fully completed on Gumroad I will release it for free on the website in a Serial+ format (There will be a link to the ebook at the end of each chapter).
  • And in case you missed it last week this is the first draft of Chapter One of Shattered. Once ready for release I will have the final version of the chapter (approx 2k words) available as a taster to try and draw people in.

The other possibility is to release it as a pure PAYF serial.

That is people will be able to subscribe for nothing but there will a suggested price.

I actually rather like this idea. Apparently PAYF has worked well for a great many creators so it might be a nice thing to try (and it would solve the Patreon VAT problem). If I did it this way only paying subscribers would get the final ebook and the paperback discount. Also if I do it this way it will never release on the site as it will already be available free.

And finally here is a preliminary graphic for the header. It needs better art because I can’t paint well enough for commercial work (Enled’s mouth and eyes shouldn’t be crooked) but it gives you the idea. Not sure  about the font either.


So there we go. I’d be glad to hear your thoughts on pricing model and everything else. 🙂





Sunday Blog: State of the Becka

February 21st, 2016  |  Published in News

This is a new thing that I’m going to try and do at least most weeks. Some will keep you up  to date on where I’m at and similar. Others will talk about my writing process and stories I’m working on or developing.

So let’s do this.

Where am I at?

Let’s start with the really good news. I have a new permanent job starting tomorrow. I’m nervous as heck but hopefully it will go well. I hope that being free of the constant anxiety of job hunting will make it easier for me to write more. You would think that not working would give you more writing time but my head has been in a very bad place this last couple of months which has interfered.

So let’s go through the stories and see where we’re at:

The Dragon Wars Saga

We’re coming towards the end of Arc Four and some things have become apparent to me.

Firstly, I am not entirely happy with Arc Four. It’s too busy and the plot is not as coherent as in previous arcs. Unlike the previous arcs it’s going to need more than cosmetic editing. I’ll try to get the ebook of Arc Three out ASAP but don’t expect the Arc Four ebook any time soon as I am going to rewrite it and possibly split it in two. I will give regular updates on where we’re at in these posts. So stay tuned.

Secondly, I need to figure out how I’m handling the Caredale Stories as we’re now at the point in the world timeline where they start. The relationship  between these stories and Dragon Wars is similar to that between, for example, The Flash and Arrow. That is they take place in the same universe and some characters even crossover (Caredale being where Sophie Ashbourne and Darylyan both live it’s fair to say they are major characters). On the upside Caredale does pretty much stand alone as well so new readers won’t have to wade through DW if they don’t want to (I did initially envision Arc 5 and Caredale 1 being more linked than they are which is one of the reasons DW 4 needs more editing). I don’t know if I should:

  1. Take Dragon Wars down to one installment a week and post Caredale book one on the other day (say DW on Monday and Caredale on Friday).
  2. Post Caredale on a separate day (say Saturday) and keep DW as two days a week.
  3. Pause DW while I sort out and repost Arc Four and post Caredale book 1 on Monday and Fridays for the foreseeable future instead. I’m leaning towards this as I’m feeling a bit blocked on Arc 5 at the moment. Part of me feels bad about this. Part of me is all “it’s been six years, you’re allowed to take a break”.

If you, as my readers, have any input on this I’d be grateful. I won’t necessarily do what most people prefer as I have to sort out what’s best for me and my writing. I can promise that it will be a large factor in my considerations.



Conversely Haventon 2 is going well. I know where I am and what the end is. There are a couple of plot points I really need pin down to sort out how we get between here and the end but it’s not going badly. I am rewriting the earlier chapters and will repost fairly soon but I’m also on track to get chapter 14 out this week. It’s half done and I intend to finish it and send it to Torvawk to beta tonight or tomorrow. This will mean that the first draft is half written. Yay!

And don’t forget the paperback of Book One: Haventon Born is now available and on offer at £7.99 until 8th March 2016.



I’m sure you’ve noticed Whisper’s unscheduled hiatus. Sorry about that. With the stress something had to give and Whisper was it. The latest installment is about a quarter done and I’ll try to get it done for next week.

On the upside Whisper has received a great review. Which is definitely encouraging.


Shattered is a  more traditional fantasy story (secondary world, magic, gods, and monsters) that is the next of my creations that I’d like to share you all. You can read the first draft of the first chapter here.

Unfortunately as things currently stand unless my Patreon gets more love it won’t be seen on the site in the foreseeable future. Shattered will post monthly to Patreon (for Patrons only) once total pledges hit $50/month and on the site once we reach $100/month. We’re currently at  $17.96/month so that’s a way off. I don’t like this. I feel like I’m holding it hostage.

There is another possibility. I could make Shattered available now as a monthly serial on Gumroad. This would mean that for 99 cents a month you would get a digital file (probably pdf) containing at least 10000 words of the story until it was finished (at which point the money would stop being taken). And to keep my promise to never 100% paywall any of my serials I would still eventually post it on the site but only once it had concluded on Gumroad. The free release would probably be simultaneous with the complete ebook release with a note at the end of each installment that you can read ahead by buying the ebook. I would do this once the book was finished posting via Gumroad  even if nobody subscribed.

Some things jump out at me about  this model:

  1. You’d be paying for early rather than exclusive access. Likely at least 7 or 8 months early (depending on final length) if you are with me from the start. To incentivize this I would also give access to the ebook only bonus content I create for it.
  2. It’s going to work out more expensive to subscribe than the final ebook but that’s standard (think about the price of collecting a comic as single issues versus multiple issue collections). To incentivize this all subscribers would get a copy of the ebook at the end.
  3. How would we handle comments?  Thoughts – either a forum or simply a post on the site for readers to comment and review (who knows it might draw in new subscribers).

If I do try this then I will also simultaneously make the content available for Patreon Patrons so they don’t have to pay twice and will rejig the Patreon targets accordingly. All Patrons will also get the incentives mentioned above

Given that there is no cost to me in this model I am perfectly willing to try it  out if even a few people express an interest.


Do people want them? I’d like to do one for Haventon Born and I’m thinking that much like Shattered it would make a good test for Gumtree subscriptions but given that audiobooks do have a setup cost (and not an insubstantial one) due to VA costs I wouldn’t want to risk this without either running a crowdfunding campaign or at least knowing I could get enough subscriptions to cover my behind.

Facebook and Twitter

I do have social media accounts for my writing and I’m trying to use them more. So why not like the facebook page or follow the Twitter?

That’s it for now. If you have any comments I’d love to hear them.

Haventon Book One: Haventon Born paperback release post

February 10th, 2016  |  Published in News

Haventon Born CoverHiya, readers,

I’ve finally approved the paperback version of Haventon Born. It’s currently only available through Lulu’s site, but I will vouch for them. I have purchased many books from them without problem.

The normal price will be £9.99 but until 8th March you can get it for the introductory price of £7.99. That’s a massive 20% discount. (Obviously you also have to pay postage).

Want a signed version? Drop me a line and we’ll arrange something. It will cost a little more as there will be two sets of postage to cover.

Been meaning to get the ebook? Here’s links to all the places you can get that.

PDF Version here  (If you’re not sure here’s advice on how to read a PDF)

EPub Version here (need an EPUB Reader try FBReader )

Kindle (click on your local Amazon site): US, UK, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, The Netherlands, Japan, Brazil, Canada, Mexico, Australia, India. Don’t have a Kindle? You don’t need to buy one, there are free reading apps for Apple, Android and Windows available. There should be a link on your local Amazon Kindle store that you can use to get it. I generally read Kindle books on my android tablet).

Thanks for reading,



Sorry, Peeps, but this is a begging post.

December 21st, 2015  |  Published in News

Hi Readers,

As the title says this is a begging post. Sorry about that but it’s got to be done.

As you may know I was made redundant in June 2014 and ever since I’ve been bouncing from temporary job to temporary for the eighteen month since. This is exhausting and stressful in a way that a stable job never was and it’s really cutting into my writing time. This is why Dragon Wars installments are so much shorter now and why Damkina and Haventon are fortnightly not weekly.

To make matters worse my most recent temporary job just ended right before Christmas and my savings are virtually gone. I am looking for work, I have great experience, an excellent CV and have some interviews lined up but there’s no guarantees and this is bloody scary.

There has never been a better time for my writing to start to paying for itself.

So if you want to pledge a few pennies to my Patreon I’ve updated the goals as follows (Note these are total monthly pledges not per person pledges):

$25/month: This target will pay for the website costs  – kind of important if I am to keep posting. Currently The Haventon Chronicles Book 2 and The Whisper of Damkina are serializing on Wednesdays on alternate weeks. Once we reach $25/month total subscriptions and the first month has gone in I will start posting both of them weekly again.

$50/month: Now we’re covering my internet and phone costs as well. Once we reach this level of  support I will post a chapter of Shattered – my traditional fantasy WIP on Patreon once a month for Patrons only.

$100/month: While far from any livable target this is the level where my writing is paying for itself. This will cover not only the website costs but also the costs of preparing my books for publication. At this point I will start up Shattered installments to once a fortnight on Patreon and begin publishing it monthly on the website.

$250/month:  This is the point at which you begin to impact my day to expenses while far from enough live on this amount of money would allow me to start saving more money for emergencies. Patrons will now get Shattered weekly and it will be released fortnightly on the website.

Now if you don’t want to make a monthly pledge but would like to send me a one off donation as a Christmas gift I do I have paypal (You can see the button in the top corner) and am offering a few perks to encourage you.

  • All people who donate will receive a mention on the update page and a thank you email.
  • If you donate £3 or more you can also have your choice of one my ebooks emailed to you.
  • If you donate £10 or more you will get a thank you card in the post from me.
  • If you’re really generous and donate £25 or more I will send you a signed paperback edition of one of my books with enclosed thank you card.

Or of course you can buy my books from Amazon and other places.  Links for Haventon. Links for Dragon Wars.

If you can’t afford monetary support that’s fine. I really understand being short of money.

  • Tell your friends how much you love my work ( and tell your enemies you hate it so they’ll read it to spite you).
  • Review my work in the venue of your choice.
  • Offer your services – Trix and Torvawk really help by doing beta reading and Tony who does my ebook formatting saves me a packet.
  • Just keep reading. Readers make me happy. Comment if you want.

Whatever you can do to help I love all my readers. Thank you and Merry Christmas!



Tentative Haventon Book 1 release date.

October 16th, 2015  |  Published in News

Okay peeps,

I’m about to send the manuscript of Haventon Book 1 off to the ebook formatter and I’m looking to have it up and ready to buy before Halloween. Hopefully by the 25th October.

So I need to ask you a couple of questions. I’m doing them as polls as I seem to get a better level of response that way.

Thanks in advance.

Will you be buying a copy Haventon Born?

Yes, Kindle version
Yes, epub version
Yes, pdf version
Yes, paperback

Poll Maker

If yes would you be willing to make your purchase on launch day to help generate a bit of buzz?



Haventon Born Cover Reveal

October 8th, 2015  |  Published in News

So here it is as promised. The Cover reveal for The Haventon Chronicles Book One: Haventon Born. Cover Art by Roman Hodek.

What do you think?

Haventon Born Cover

News and updates

October 2nd, 2015  |  Published in News

Hello loyal readers,

Just an update on where I’m at and what’s happening. Mostly good news and a bit of begging.


Whisper and Haventon returning!

I’ve spent the last few weeks carefully building up Buffer on both Haventon and Whisper an now have a fair bit of each, so they will be returning as of Wednesday 7th October. So as not to overreach myself both will be updating fortnightly on Wednesday on alternating weeks starting with Haventon.


Patreon and Paypal

Nothing critical or dire but I am between jobs again so now would be a very good time to it the paypal button if you like my stuff. Or if you’d like to back me more regularly consider backing my Patreon.


Haventon Born:

Only one pre-reader needs to get Havnton book 1 back to me and I can start prepping for release. The cover is already visible to Patreon backers and I will do a public reveal here next week.

I’m hoping to get t out for the end of October (Vampires, werewolves, halloween – excellent) and I’d love to ask you to help with marketing of it. If you read book one either on here or as a pre-reader and could make a one line review suitable for use in a book trailer I’d be really grateful. If you want to leave it in the comments here, please.


So that’s where things stand at the moment.

About Haventon

February 5th, 2015  |  Published in News

Hi Peeps,

I’m know several of you are wondering when Haventon Book 2 Lord of the Wolves will start posting. I can now answer that question.

The answer is Tomorrow (5th February 2015).

That’s the good news.

The bad news is that posting will be sporadic. I will post each chapter on the Thursday after it is finished but I cannot guarantee that it will be weekly or even fortnightly – all I can say is that I’ll attempt to get up at least one chapter a month, hopefully more, and these will be full not part chapters. So you’ll have to keep an eye out for new posts.

In other news – just in case you missed it –  I currently have $33/month worth of pledges on my Patreon. If we reach $50/month I’ll start posting Shattered (a tradtional fantasy of which I have 20 chapters written) once a fortnight.  To wet your appetite you can read Chapter One here.  If you want to read it please consider becoming a Patron. Thanks!




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