EXTRAS

I suspect that I’m not the first person to experience this but when I started writing, there was never even the slightest thought about the reality of what would have to happen after.

You know what happens when you try to spread the word about a book?

Loads is what.

I¬†was never that up on the delights of social media before I started working on the book. My wife is much more adept with all things of that kind. She’d been active on Facebook and Twitter for years and add to that her amazing ability to talk to anyone and everyone and she is very much at home in the world of social media.

I am not quite so comfortable.

I love to see what my friends and family are up to and connecting with like minded individuals is something which can never be underestimated but maintaining the push of advertising of my work is a huge chunk of what needs to go into this being an author malarkey.

I had a few goes before the blog settled into some kind of routine, my writing schedule can best be described as up and down and the need to go to events and spread the word is always eating into the time available to be creative. Add to this Instagram, Goodreads, trying to create a website and everything else that you need to keep on the boil, and pretty soon, there’s seemingly no time left for anything else at all.

Maybe I would have gone about things differently if I’d actually thought about the realities of what was going to be required but I just wanted to write the book and get it out there. The thought that I’d be out hawking the book didn’t enter my mind because it was always about just the story. The only thing I can kind of cling to is that that shows I wasn’t solely motivated by being published, rather it was the story which was the focus with the wider thoughts not coming until later.

This weekend coming we’ll be in North Wales at this years Sci-Fi Weekender and I can’t wait. I love this convention and the chance to meet up with friends and have a blast is one that just can’t be overlooked. We’ve been attending the convention since it started in 2010 but this will be the first time I will have attended as more than just another member of the public. I have a table and I’ll be doing my very best to entice people to explore the land of Dragons I’m creating. This will be the first time I will have attended a residential event as a vendor where I’ve previously been a member of the public. I can remember going to talks on writing at the first event and thought it would be amazing to one day find myself at an event as more than just a ‘punter’ but again, what that would actually entail didn’t even cross my mind.

So everyone out there reading these words. Remember that there is always so very much more going on than we first give credit. To get to the best results always seems to mean spreading that net of experience just that little bit wider than first thought.

By the way.

Have you bought my books yet?

The Circle of Fire

The Circle of Duty

Tall Tales for Dark Nights

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THE SOCIAL SPECIES

When I finally finished writing the first book, I’d tidied and tidied the manuscript until I was past happy with what was there and I was just over analysing everything. I had been working on the book for so long, it had been all I could see for years, just plugging away at the story, making sure everything made sense and was exciting and was ready to set the ball rolling in the later books.

But what to do next?

The publishing journey itself is a big enough challenge on its own so I’ll discuss that next week. What I wandered into next was the delights of the social media world. Facebook, Twitter and this very site all link me to the outside world and allow me to spread the word of my writing journey and how my mind works.

And what a world of possibilities the internet is. Advertising is just the barest hint of how the internet can bolt onto the efforts of the fledgeling author. I can reach out and touch all of you with my very own noodly appendage, casting my own brand of nonsense out to the four corners of the world to anyone who happens to pass by. And these are only a sprinkling of the platforms available for those of us who have something to say. There appears to be an almost endless supply of ways for someone who was so inclined to make their feelings known to any and all of the population who could share an idea or a passion.

But.

How much is too much?

You have your opinions on everything and so do I. But I don’t want to insult anyone so I try to avoid any of the topics or points which go to places which could be controversial. I’m not saying I’m just going to keep on the shallow mediocrity of banality all of the time but I’m aware that I must be considerate of everyone who reads what I write.I don’t hold any extreme views so don’t panic about me being a closeted axe murderer or the like.

That said, I also have a full time job so I have to aware that anyone can read what I post so I don’t want to put my career in jeopardy.

And there’s also the concern of time constraints. There are only so many hours in the day and now, rather than just using it all on writing as I did when I first started, I have to split my time between on-going work on narrative but also now on the comments on Facebook etc. as well.

I enjoy it all though. I like to talk to people. I like to connect with others and chew the fat concerning ‘stuff’. I have my brain whirring away on books etc but this allows me more and more possibilities to explore my own head all of the time.

We are a social species. Humans want to connect. My aim has always been to tell a story that makes people think, laugh, cry and everything else. Now I have the chance to discuss more and with more people.

Just please ‘like’ my page and ‘follow’ me.