This is the sister website to Ian Wood's Novellum, my book review blog, and is the place to come for updates on my novels, for rambling about writing them, for sneak peaks and sample chapters, and for free downloads - when I get organized that is - and that's taking a while. I'm sorry, but I'm all about writing while I can write! When I'm on a roll I just want to write (or in the case of the children's Little Rattuses series), create, and the hell with anything else. That's what it's all about after all, isn't it?
My books are no longer on Amazon. I've ceased all publication and withdrawn all of my books from there because frankly they're jerks, and Amazon is way too big and powerful. Not that I agree with Trump about their postal discount - they don't get anything any other business doesn't, but the last book I submitted there for publication had my name changed by Amazon without any consultation with me, and for no other reason than that the people in charge there are quite evidently morons. I wrote and complained, but my complaint was ignored.
That was the end of the relationship for me, and I don't care if it does cost me sales, Amazon can go to hell. I will never offer another book for sale on Amazon, and I sincerely hope my estate when I am gone will respect these wishes. The books are available on Barnes & Noble, and I hope to publish them on iBooks and Google Play soon, and also on Kobo. I looked into setting up on Lulu, but those people are just as difficult to work with as Smashwords, so no, I will no longer do business with Lulu or Smashwords. I'd rather go direct to the others than to work through middle management like those two.
Seahorses, another novel set in the Terrene world, is out there now, along with Cleoprankster, which is a highly fictionalized account of Cleopatra the seventh (the one and only!) when she was a middle-grader. Not that they had middle-grade back in her day, or even school - at least not for the hoi-polloi. I'm quite pleased with Cleo. The novel took unexpected turns and was exciting to write. I also had a lot of fun with Seahorses which took itself in unexpected and on one occasion sad, directions too, but when you create strong characters and let them have their way, you have to expect the unexpected.
I have many novels in progress at one lowly stage or another at the moment (for certain constrained definitions of 'in progress' and 'at the moment'...and 'lowly stage'). The most advanced (for certain constrained definitions of 'advanced') of the upcoming books are these:
- Two new The Little Rattuses books (volumes seven and eight!) for young children (and their adults!) are in the planning stage - they will cover a fight with another species and a hide and seek game. I have many drawings done for the first of these and some photographs for the second, but neither is in a publishable state yet.
- I envision at least one more novel in the Terrene World™ group, in which Cloud Fighters and Seahorses are both set. The third story will feature largely middle-grade boys for a change. Yes - the world is evolving and expanding, just like real life! I have nothing put together on this story yet except a general idea of what it will involve. It will, I promise you, strongly argue for the environment, as all these novels do. Because this is just in the concept stage, I can't even guess when it might be out, but I can promise you that you will see it here first!
- I'm still aiming to do an updated version of Robert Louis Stevenson's Kidnapped re-written for the modern age, but I have no' yet poot doon anything on paper, Ladies and Laddies! I do have a good story idea though.
- I'm still planning a variation on Jane Austen's First Impressions (yes, you have to be an Austen buff to know which novel that refers to!). I think both this and the Kidnapped stories will get done in 2018, but we'll see. Time's a-tickin' and as you will read below, some projects have taken my fancy that have meant putting off other projects!
- Another is my wish to bring up-to-date an old first draft of a novel set in England about a serial killer that I wrote years ago. I think this will be 2018 too now I've figured out a relatively pain-free way to get it from hand-written to editable electronic form!
- I had started working on a book of short stories based on fairy-tales, but I put that on temporary hold while I started work on:
- The first soft copy of an old sci-fi novel I had in typescript form. The soft copy is now done, and I'd begun working on a preliminary read-through to make corrections and adjustments. I'm part way through that and it will require another read-through after that, but I've put that one on temporary hold while I get this out of my system: Yes, I know I said I was going to set aside parodies for a while but then I made the mistake of going to see Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, and I'm sorry but that movie is the worst out of the five released so far, and it positively screamed for a parody, so I'm working on that. I'm in the read-through stage, and I aim to have this out in August. It actually felt good to let go the serious stuff and just let loose for a while. I've missed working on parodies! But once it's done, I'll be back to the sci-fi novel which I aim to have out in August also, and once that's done it will be back to the short story collection which I aim to have out in September. Both Little Rattuses children's books should be out in that time-period, too. These are moderately tight deadlines but I think I can meet them. This means, of course, that other work will be put off accordingly:
- I have an idea for writing a novel about novel writing! How convoluted is that? This is currently next up after the short stories.
- There is a pair of novels I have in mind, closely connected, about a detective and her twin sister. I have begun work on the first chapters of both of these, but done little with them recently!
- A whole host (yes, because anything less would be a ho-ho) of other projects which may or may not ever come to fruition including a Jane Austen-flavored story I've been thinking about, based on the youngest Woodhouse child (that ought to be an easier clue to solve), I may or may not, but it's looking more likely the more I think about it.
- One more thing I think I was planning for 2018 but which will not probably be next year, is a third novel set in Temmeland™, the locale for Femarine and Nature of the Beast. I've been thinking about this more and more and I'm becoming ever more enamored of it because I'm falling in love with the main two characters, and that's where it starts, right? Love 'em or leave 'em! Nothing is written yet, but I have the basic opening portion mapped out in my mind, which will be about a third of the novel. After that, I shall wing-it, as I typically do, and let the characters tell me where to go rather than the other way around, but I have a general plot laid out. It's more fun for me to work way and it certainly makes for a better novel. Besides, my characters resent me if I try to run their lives. I know the beginning very well, and I know the ending I want, so it's just a matter of getting from the one to the other! It'll be a fun journey.
- I have an embryonic idea for a fourth Temmeland™ novel, this one female-centric involving a character mentioned in Nature of the Beast.
- Finally I have an idea for a novel which will be a bit like a parody of chick lit, but not quite and certainly not like my other parodies; it will be more like Rumped! a satire rather than a parody, but it will also be written in a more serious vein - because that's where my ink comes from: right out of my veins! Maybe I will aim this one at Xmas 2018. Maybe I'll do an annual (or even anal) parody each Xmas, who knows?!
Now I have to get back to writing! Writing! Writing! Keep your pencil up!