So, here's the thing! Its been ages since my last blog, so I thought I'd cobble something together today. What's been happening? I'm glad you asked my that, Toady. Not a lot really. I suppose everybody goes on holiday round about now before the school summer break begins, and all the holiday resorts are overrun with unmanageable screaming kids and parents get drunk in the bar! Well, enough about my family!
I did do something though! Well, apart from publishing The Breath of Life (which is currently No.1 in Police Procedurals and No.55 in the Top 100 BTW, Toady!) and getting a 20,000-word foothold in Parish & Richards 7 The Dead Know Not (which is due out in mid-August), I wrote a Foreword - say what? Well look, some people write non-fiction books, you know. This one is called How To Write Dialogue and its being thrown together by Matt Posner - Of course you know him, Toady. He's that American fella who sings, dances, and plays some percussion instruments with The Exploration Project. A teacher of some renown. Well, a crazy teacher I suppose, if he teaches in America! Anyway, he's also written some books - magic books to be precise. No, not about how to do magic, Toady. Well, maybe there's some hints in the books, but... All right, maybe I wasn't being that precise. Look, do you want to hear this, or not? Sometimes you can be a real pain in the... I wasn't going to say any naughty words.
I did something else as well! Yes, I'm going to tell you what. I tried to join one of the top writer's associations. I say, "tried" because they wouldn't let me in. Don't smile like that, Toady. It wasn't because I come from the wrong side of the tracks - does that actually mean anything anymore? It wasn't because I'm a bit overweight and fart at the drop of a hat - all right, a lot overweight - you drive a hard bargain, Toady - seriously obsese then! It wasn't because I didn't know the secret handshake... Yes, all right, I'll tell you. Readers like a bit of suspense, mystery, and... It was because I was self-published!!
I know, that's as bad as someone using two exclamation marks!! So, I wrote to them, said I'd written a lot of novels, sold a quarter of a million books (well nearly), and my latest attempt at writing was in the Top 100, but they said, "Rules is rules"!! You have to have been published through a publishing company, have a contract, be paying most of your earnings to publishing people - that's just the way it is!! I said, you're rules are bit outdated. There are self-published people out there who have sold a million books!! I could hear them shrugging their shoulders and the key turning in the lock. Some doors are still closed to self-published authors!!
So, here's the thing! I've been wandering off all over the place like someone with dementia! This blog is called a Book Blog - and have I been talking about books or blogs? Not in the least! Everything but, Toady. So, let's get back to the matter in hand - books.
You know, I've just read The Warsaw Anagrams by Richard Zimmler - it was good, but I felt the ending was a bit of a wet blanket, and the aftermath went on and on. I also had a quick look at a book by Quentin Jardine and one by Barbara Nadel. Yes, I can hear you scratching those crunchy lice in your hair because you're wondering why I might pick up books by two authors I wouldn't normally read. Competition! Yep, I thought: Hey, these two 'trads' are on the bestseller list in police procedurals, so when my wife took me to town in her new Vauxhall Corsa - I haven't told you... Well, the short and the long of it is that my car is off the road because we didn't need two cars when we were both sat at home staring at each other and wishing we were someplace else - I'm retired and Pam (that's her name) was taking time out. Trouble is, my wife's got a job now - you guessed it! She takes the car and I'm using Shank's pony - that's walking for the uninitiated. Don't you just love idioms? I bet young people have never heard of that idiom, or any idiom for that matter! I wonder when the last idiom was invented? Are there idiom inventors plying their trade out there now? Click on the picture and it'll take you to the idiom of the day. So, whilst I was in town I popped into the Charity shops and bought one of each author! I bet you didn't know Barbara Nadel lives in Essex! What a coincidence - so do I! Maybe I'll pop round for tea and scones!
Anyway, I'm reading (and I use the term under advisement because when I'm writing I find it hard to read other people's books, and I'm always writing) The Prince of Mist by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. Now, in terms of their writing, some authors stand head and shoulders above other run of the mill authors (oops! did I just use another idiom or two?) I loved The Shadow of the Wind and The Angel's Game. The writing was beautiful, and the stories wonderful. I'm also reading The Passage by Justin Cronin. Now, I've not read any of his before, but I like doorstops - or I used to when I was merely a reader and not a writer, but I don't like vampire stories - especially doorstop ones, so we'll see how it progresses. Well, let's face it, vampire stories are boring. I mean, what's scary about someone biting your neck, especially a hot sexy woman with porcelain skin? So there we are, if you want to bite me, get on with it - the longer I live the more books I can write!
Now, if we're talking exceptional books - and I understand that one man's meat is another man's poison (oops, was that another idiom?) - I'd like to mention The Religion by Tim Willocks, Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkein... Now, I could go on and on, because I've read a lot of books, but suffice it to say that there are some books that stay with you, haunt you, and when people say, "Hey, what are your five desert-island books?" You immediately reel them off. When I first read LotR in 1972, it came as one book. Its only recently that the publishers have split it up into three to make more money - a ruse, a gambit, an artifice!
Now, let's talk Indie Authors - one of which sits before you! I'm also reading Murderson by Mark Yarwood, Caribbean Moon by Rick Murcer, and Losing the Hate by Simon Palmer. Although, as I said earlier, it's a struggle to read and write. I used to devour a couple of books a week, but now I'm lucky if I can get through one a month!
So, what's out there for Indie Authors? Well, proliferating like the plague wouldn't be an understatement, but let's pick a few sites where Indie Authors are welcome, because as you've probably noticed they're not welcomed with open arms everywhere! If you click the picture on the right it will send you to Steampunkery and Book Reviews run by the beautiful Mad Scientist. Clicking on the picture below will take you to the Reel Swell Productions Blog. The one below that... Well, I bet you get the idea. Simply click on the pictures to see where they take you, and don't be surprised if you stay awhile to enjoy what they offer.
Now, the people I know - who happen to be Indie Authors - have places you can go to as well. Here are a few of them: Mark Yarwood, Kelvin O'Ralph, Sibel Hodge, Kristina Jackson, Susan Helene Gottfried, David Gaughran, and there's more on my Featured Author page, so be there or be square! Anyway, that's it, I'm off. I have a low boredom threshold and I'm bored now, so...
Hi, I'm Tim Ellis - I write a lot and I hope you enjoy what I write.