Saturday, 23 July 2016

New Website. Out with the old, in with the new...

Hi all,

This is my final post on this blog. In case you've missed it, over the past few months I have completely rebranded everything to do with my books. They all have new professionally designed covers, they are available on all ebook formats and in paperback. I have branding across all my social media including Instagram, Pinterest as well as Facebook and Twitter.

I also have a brand new website which features the option to buy all my books. I hope you'll have a look and agree it's been worth the effort.

Sunday, 25 January 2015

Have you missed me?

Boom! And just like that he's back. Bigger, better, stronger, even more determined than before to unleash wave after wave of literary awesomeness upon the world.

God knows who that is. Me? Nah. I'm just chillin.

Currently I'm listening to the new album by the Charlatans. On gold coloured vinyl. I have a signed copy. The album isn't released until tomorrow. Benefits of having a thoughtful wife. Buy a copy, it's very good.

And what, you might wonder, have I been doing in the three months since my last blog post? Well, mooching mainly. Much as I enjoy the blog, it doesn't actually generate anything in terms of significant book sales. Case in point, in November and December I had my highest sales of the year. My last blog post was 8th October. So, what little promo I have done has been via FB and Twitter. It keeps things ticking along with essentially zero effort.

I do have a new book finished. Yay! I've edited half of it as of today and hope to release it mid February. It's a huge departure from my usual stuff. For a start it's not a detective, crime type thriller. It doesn't feature any of my previous characters and it's entirely in the first person, Catcher in the Rye style. That's been quite the challenge.

It's a confession in essence. The story is the killer telling the reader about what happened, how it happened and the aftermath of that. We learn how that single event impacted on his life, his relationships, everything. He's not asking for sympathy, or even understanding, he just needs to tell someone because he can't live with the weight of his guilt anymore. It's powerful stuff but you'll hear more about it when it's launch time.

By the way, if you fancy reviewing it pre-release, drop me an email (or even better tweet me or get in touch via FB) and I'll add you to the list. I'll send everyone a free copy and in return you leave a bloody awesome review. I've no interest in handing out freebies only for you to say you weren't keen so if you don't like it, say nowt!

In other news, well too much has happened to fill you in on three months. Dog nearly died over Christmas but he's okay now. Cost a fortune! Swine. Me old man's been a bit under the weather too, if you can call a heart defect under the weather. Needless to say I've got that to look forward to when I'm old. Still, I plan on being wealthy so that'll help. Work's just work though the wife has joined the firm which I like.

By the way, we've got a house to rent out if anyone's near Lancaster and wants somewhere to live. Needless to say, you can see it in that rather obviously link.

Other than that, everything's the same. Liverpool seemed to have turned the corner in the league which is nice. Some unprecedented upsets in the FA Cup yesterday but that's what makes it exciting. Oh, and we're thinking of getting a fake lawn. Neither of us has any interest in grass. It's a pain to mow, get's muddy in the winter and is not remotely dog proof. We have samples on the way to look at and then it's just a case of getting it installed. We're all quite excited about that.

And that's it. Blog post complete. Nice to be back. For those of you interested in such things one of my books is going to be free tomorrow until the middle of the week. It's my crime thriller sequel, Ballroom, Bars and Seawater Baths. Links below, spread the word.

UK Kindle Version
US Kindle Version

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

My book is a bestseller!

Evening gang,

So, two posts in as many nights. And there you all were thinking I wasn't bothered.

Big news. Turns out I've sold a few books today. Enough to sneak into the top 100 crime books on Amazon. I was at number 92 at lunch. Fell to 96 my teatime, now I'm at number 86 and well pleased with that as an end to the day. Here's a handy screenshot.

So, spread the word. I'd like to make this last as long as possible before I fall back into the herd. Thanks to all those who have purchased a copy today and over the weekend, I do appreciate it. Needless to say I'm all set for the odd harsh review. But all my blog posts, Goodreads posts, Facebook posts and so on, make it very clear what the book is about. So if you don't want to read about women being attacked and murdered in a garage then buy another book. But that's one plot thread. And it's a true thread, as I've said many times. Besides, worse things happen every day on the news, sadly.

Anyway, if you've paid for a copy, I hope you like it. If not, shame, try one of my other books, there's something for everyone.

Right, I'd best get my head down. Busy day spending the tax payers money tomorrow.

Monday, 6 October 2014

Where have you been?

Evening gang,

Remember me? It's been 2 months since I last posted anything to this blog. Time flies when you're busy as a bloke who is busy.

First off, I notice that this blog has now attracted well over 14,000 views, visits, call it what you will. For that I'm grateful as I am prone to ramble and, lately, vanish.

Since my last post the new football season has begun and Liverpool are finding life difficult without Suarez. Meanwhile Man Utd seem to be winning while being awful. Still, early days yet. In Brendan we trust. For now.

So, what have I been up to all this time? Well, plenty, but equally I've been consciously trying less hard, putting less pressure on myself to deliver. I've ticked most of the boxes I needed to for the year so I've eased off. My job's sorted i.e. permanent. A lot less cash, but nothing I can't work with. Plus there are currently quite a few jobs out there like mine and they all pay well. I've just applied for one actually so we'll see. But I'm easy either way.

The wife is also in the job market as part of her ongoing reinvention. I'm not ashamed to say I tend to treat her as a long term investment. Had a few crap months but you stick with it and then... well, let's just say I'm starting to reap the rewards and that she's progressing nicely.

We've bought another couple of houses as part of our fledgling buy to let business and next year should see that start to deliver real profits which should be exciting. Been bloody hard work though which I'll remind people when I'm an idle millionaire and they think I fell into my cash.

We've also been on our first break since we bought our dog - 18 months ago. Only to York, but it was excellent. I went big on the hotel, as you'd expect from me, and we spent enough in 48 hours to cover a long weekend abroad. But it was superb. Hopefully, now we know we can safely leave the dog, we can get back to our old ways of trekking about all over the place.

So, where does that leave the writing then? Well, on the back burner a bit. FEAR is still ongoing and should still be out this year. But I'm not going to rush it and have tweaked it several times. But, I have entered it in the northern crime competition just to show I'm making the effort. Also, I've just finished a free giveaway for The Trust. It was downloaded 3900 times over the weekend which is no bad thing. I also made half decent royalties last month too.

Quick story. The thing that prompted the giveaway was a review I received for The 24 Hour Jazz Café while in York. It was a scathing 1 star review which basically said the book was nothing but an excuse for violent sex and murder. Now, if they'd said that about The Trust I could kind of get it. But the Jazz Café is primarily about two mates running a jazz club who accidentally get drawn into a murky world. There is one scene in the whole book where a prostitute is violently abused and left for dead. The scene is telegraphed very obviously and, because it's a book, you are free to skip past any bits you don't like. Either way, that 1 star review had a hefty impact on the overall rating of the book which, until then, had only received 4 and 5 star feedback. I hope the clown who dismissed the jazz café grabbed a free copy of The Trust. It gets nasty from page 4 and goes downhill from there.

Rant over.

In other news, my fantasy author chum Frion Farrell has her new book out at the end of this week. Her debut was a winner so keep your eyes peeled if fantasy is your bag.

Finally, we had the house decorated while we were in York. Ace to come home and find it done. We had a surveyor booked to come the same afternoon which didn't hurt. Long story short, they valued the house 40 grand over what we paid for it 5 years ago. Means nothing in terms of selling it, but means lots in terms of taking equity from it to buy houses. A very good day indeed and a wicked investment.

Right, that's it for now. I'll try to make more effort but there's lots going on. All my books still available, if you're classy buy the paperback.

Thursday, 7 August 2014

Hot paperback action


Super quick post just to say I got my copy of the new version of The 24 Hour Jazz Café in paperback today. It's really, really nice. I reckon it looks as near to professional as it's gonna get without someone like Random House doing it. New matte cover, cream pages, smaller than the original, top drawer.

I don't generally push the paperbacks but if you've got about £8 burning a hole in your pocket, spend it on my book. I've attached a handy pic below. And tell people! Saves me the bother.

Sunday, 3 August 2014

Want to read extracts of my new book?


Apparently there are still people in the world who don't "do" Facebook, twitter, instagram or any of the other widely accepted social media sites/apps.

For these people I maintain this blog. Interesting that these people have broadband yet don't want to be "social". You have to wonder what they're up to on the internet?

Anyway, I've added a revised opening to my upcoming first person novel FEAR to Wattpad for folk to have a read of. The link has been shared on the usual social media outlets. For everyone else, it's here.


Thursday, 31 July 2014

Have you been watching the commonwealth games?

Hi gang,

I have, just a bit this week because I'm off work. It's been top notch. Tonight being a case in point. Men's 800m was top drawer, 200m also really good.

I've also been to Chester today to see a mate and his wife. Always good, nice lunch, few ales, wander round, can't go wrong. Went to see the play in the park earlier in the week too. Hansel and Gretel. Very well staged, well lit, great sound etc. The actual material felt a bit light to me, lot of noise but not a lot of content, but a good spectacle none the less.

Just as an aside, I was reading a review of A Streetcar Named Desire which has just opened in London. Apparently Gillian Anderson gives a career defining performance. I was reading this at 3:30 this morning and I'd had a bit to drink, shocker! Anyway, I booked tickets to see it when they do the NT Live broadcast in September. It's only £13 a ticket and an ace way to see live theatre if you can't be arsed to take time off work to trek to London. I woke the wife up to tell her. She wasn't thrilled at the time.

Mind you, I wasn't delighted when she dragged me out of bed at half 9 this morning to go to Chester. I soon rallied once we'd stopped at the services for a brew and sausage bun. Once we walked to the lunch spot in Chester I was all set for a couple of ales.

Other news - I've been shortlisted for interview for the job I'm currently doing. I have mixed feelings about it which I won't bore you with here.

So, book news? Well, the new, shiny version of The 24 Hour Jazz Café was released yesterday. The Kindle version is available now, the paperback will be out any day - just depends how fast Amazon do their bit. What's new about it? Primarily I wanted to tweak the paperback. So the cover is now matt, the pages are now cream and it's totally reformatted so it's a hundred pages shorter. But as I was doing this I rewrote bits too. It's now about 2000 words longer, plenty of scenes have more detail and some plot points are tighter and better explained than before. As a result I decided to relaunch the kindle version too.

FEAR is progressing well, I'm not killing myself to get it done though. I'm submitting the first 3000 words of it to a competition in August, along with 3000 words of the new jazz café. Can't hurt. I've also sent an extract of the new jazz café to an agent, just for kicks. In the morning I will also be submitting the new jazz café to the Guardian book of the month competition. Again, no harm in trying.

So that's about it. Lot's going on as ever. Could live without the huge pay cut coming my way shortly but such is life. On the plus side we've just bought two more houses as part of our Buy To Let project which means we have three. Safe as houses.

Right, ale, Tele, early bed since I've only had 5 hours kip.