Events in November

Where you can find me in November

This month, I’ll be taking part in the Chester Literature Festival to give readings from my debut novel, Haven Wakes.


On Sunday, 17th November, you can catch me at the Storyhouse in Chester giving a 20 minute reading as part of LitFest Elevenses. My slot begins at 11.00 am in front of the big screen in the Kitchen.

This event is completely free to attend so why not come along and grab yourself a coffee while you listen to a couple of chapters from my novel.


On Sunday, 24th November, starting at 8.00 pm in the Garret Theatre in the Storyhouse, I’ll be taking part in Your Voices: Celebrating Local Writers.

Tickets for this event cost £3.00 and can be purchased through the link above.

I’ll have copies of Haven Wakes with me at this second event if you’d like to buy a copy at £8.99. Unfortunately, I won’t have the resources to take card payment, so it’ll be good old cash only.


I’ll report back later on how my Festival appearances went. Wish me luck.

Kick starting Book Two of The Haven Chronicles

kickstarting book two of the haven chronicles

NaNoWriMo (or to the uninitiated ‘National Novel Writing Month’) kicks off at the beginning of November. So what’s it all about?

Well, the aim is to write write write for the entire month, working towards a total word count of 50,000. I’ve never yet made it all the way to 50k words (I think my maximum output has been around 25,000) but knowing I’m writing alongside other NaNoWriMo writers really spurs me on.

This year, I’ll be using NaNoWriMo as a way to kick start the first draft of the second novel in the Haven Chronicles series.

October is all about getting my chapter plan complete so I’m ready to start writing on 1st November.

If you fancy having a go at NaNoWriMo yourself, here are my top tips to survive the month:

1. Plan your book

I don’t necessarily mean have a complete chapter plan to hand before you dive in, but having a brief sketch of the main points of your novel – main character, antagonist, setting, beginning and end – can really help.

2. Decide when you will write

If you already have a regular writing slot, then brilliant, carry on with that. If you don’t write regularly though, it might be best to put some thought into when you will write during the month of November. What’s realistic? Remember, you still have to eat, sleep, go to work, wash, walk the dog, or whatever else your life entails.

3. Decide where you will write

Do you have a place that you always use for writing or does it tend to shift? Will you have access to a quiet corner to write each day in November? Do you need quiet? Maybe headphones will help, or perhaps you like to write to a level of noise and hubbub. Will you type, write by hand or dictate? You might want to set up a writing station for the month, even if it’s a mobile writing station to work around the rest of the household.

4. Warn your family and friends

Let them know how important the month is to you and that you may not be as readily available as normal. It might be that during your time slot, you don’t answer your phone or check social media and emails. If people know in advance that you’re not to be disturbed during a particular time slot in the day or evening, then things will probably run much more smoothly.

5. Gag your internal editor

I know, I know, sometimes it’s just too tempting to check back over your writing and give it a little tweak. Don’t. That isn’t what NaNoWriMo is about. Write, write and write some more. Keep your editorial demon happy with the thought that once the month is over, there’ll be a whole load of material to edit.

6. Make some NaNoWriMo buddies

Just because you’re head down writing like a maniac this month doesn’t mean that you have to do it alone. Chat with the members of your Home Region (for me, that’s Wales), connect with your real-life buddies who are also taking part in NaNoWriMo, or have your say in the online forums. There are virtual write-ins and word sprints to take part in too.

7. Don’t let the word count distract you

Don’t get hung up on continually entering your word count into the NaNoWriMo website and checking how everyone else is doing. Of course, all NaNoWrimers know what the minimum word count is to reach the magical 50k (1,667 per day). Use that as a rough guide but when you’re sat at your writing station during your writing slot, just write.

Haven does something else

haven does something else

It’s been one week since Haven Wakes was published by Burning Chair, and I’ve been delighted with the response so far – so many kind words, reviews, and shout-outs on social media.

So what now? Well, I suppose I’d better write the next book in the series.

Book two in the Haven Chronicles has the working title of ‘Haven Journeys’ but I don’t think that’ll be the final title. It does, however, give a hint of what Steve will be doing.

Haven Wakes introduced you to:

  • our main boy, 12 year old Steve Haven
  • his normal life
  • his world
  • a new, hidden, magical world
  • his new, magical friends

The second book in the series will continue Steve’s adventures. I can’t tell you too much, but the second book may include:

  • Steve’s magical friends mentioned above
  • the powers that be in the magical world
  • a jaunt off abroad (with less jaunt and more danger)
  • more background to the world of magic
  • a new dilemma for Steve

What will I be researching to help me write Book 2? Many, many things but I can tell you that I’ll be looking into how a desert city might look in the future.

My target is to finalise my chapter plan by the end of October at the latest and have the first draft finished early 2020. Wish me luck.

Haven Wakes is almost here

Haven Wakes is almost here

It’s Monday morning – the last day before my debut novel Haven Wakes is published – and I’m preparing for the big launch tomorrow.

To say, I’m excited has to be the understatement of my life, but I’m also incredibly grateful for this chance to share my stories.

I’m grateful to my publishers, Burning Chair for setting me off on this brilliant, new career path.

I’m grateful to my family for never giving up on my dream, even when I sometimes doubted it.

I’m grateful to all the beta and ARC readers, bloggers and reviewers who have helped me to hone and promote my novel.

I’m grateful to the friends who have been my cheerleaders over the last few months.

And I’m grateful to every reader who joins Steve on his journey into magic.

I’ve always been a writer, but tomorrow I become a published author. I still get a bit giddy when I think of that (I really should drink less coffee at the moment) and I haven’t stopped smiling for days.

Tuesday is a brand new start for me, and Haven Wakes, and all of the novels I have lined up to write.

Bring it on.

The inspiration behind Haven Wakes

The inspiration behind Haven Wakes

If you ask what inspired me to write Haven Wakes, I’d have to say…

Hang on, let me think for a moment. Hm. This could take a while.

Well, I suppose the first thing was:

Magic

Ever since I read my first fairytale, I’ve been fascinated by magic – magic witches, magic beasties, magic wands and books – and just how a world rich in magic would operate.

In Haven Wakes, magic is hidden from the non magical world, kept in protected areas where magic-users can live with a level of freedom and acceptance. It’s part of their DNA but it comes at a cost.

So that’s the first – magic. What else inspired me?

Colourful folk

My childhood was spent ricocheting between Leeds, where my mum came from, the homes of various family members in Scotland (my father’s birth-country), and York where we lived.

In Leeds, I would meet the people of my mother’s past. There was the little old lady who lived in one room with her grown-up son and a gathering of cats, having filled the rest of her large terrace house with junk shop finds.

There were the elderly couple whose narrow home squeezed into a gap in a terrace of houses. She was tall with rosy cheeks, big arms and a warm, overflowing sense of humour.  He was small, quiet, and a man of the earth, always happiest in his garden.

The Scots were just as colourful. There was the auntie who would send me home after each visit with a gift of dolls or jewellery,  the uncle who would catch crabs in the harbour to the music of his portable radio, and the other auntie who would tell me tales of Nessy the monster and how to call her.

All of them were magical to me.

The travelling salesman and the dark fairy

I wrote a story called The Crystal Prince many years ago and where I might have left the story gathering dust on a shelf, two characters from that tale always called to me to re-write them.

One was a travelling salesman called Hartley Keg. He’s the kind of person who makes you smile, even when you don’t want to, who always has the right gadget to hand for any dilemma, and who carries a force of personality that speaks of authority and trust.

The other was a dark assassin, dangerous and intent on her mission. Even though she was a villain in the original story, she was always one of my favourite characters. I pulled her out of my writerly filing system, re-writing her for Haven Wakes as a dark fairy reluctantly on the side of our hero.

What will the future bring?

I live in a house of technology-fiends with gadgets galore, and that’s before you even think of computers.

My teens are the generation that has grown up with computers and mobile phones and VR just there. Whereas it was something new, at some point, to me and their Dad, they just accept all of that tech as a normal part of life.

During my lifetime, there have been so many technological changes in a relatively short period of time. Computers have gone from room-sized, to possible to fit on a desk, to small enough to sit in your palm. Phones used to be big, clunky, resin monstrosities. Nowadays everyone, including me, seems lost without their hand-held, fit it in a pocket, mobile phone.

Cars talk to us and soon self-driving cars may be the norm.

My inspiration for the futuristic world of Haven Wakes came from the thought of where these technological advances will take us. Robots? Fabrics that change colour at the flick of a switch or the brush of a hand? 3D printed food outlets? You’ll find all of that in my book.

*

So there you have it, all the things that inspired Haven Wakes. I’m sure there are others too, but these are the main ones.

Magic

Colourful folk

Hartley and the darkling

Thoughts of future tech

And now Haven Wakes will serve as inspiration itself for book two in the series. But that’s another story, quite literally.

7 facts about how I write

7 facts about how I write

When my publisher asked me to create a blog post to explain how I write, I thought, ‘that’ll be simple to answer, I just…

And then it struck me. There’s no just about it. The act of writing, in fact, the whole process of writing, isn’t just anything. It’s complicated, and meandering, and sometimes a complete mystery.

So instead of discussing the whole mysterious and mystical machination that is writing, I broke it down into 7 facts about how I write.

I think

Or is that daydream? What I mean is that before, during and after the act of writing, I do a lot of thinking about my story. I have this whole internal conversation going on most of the time.

It might be

  • snippets of conversation,
  • or where the story is going next,
  • or changes I need to make to a chapter,
  • honing a description,
  • or even the name of a character.

Long before I put pen to paper or fingers to keyboard, the action of writing begins with a thought.

Brainstorming

This is probably my favourite bit of the writing process. Before I begin to write, before I work out the plot or what will happen in each chapter, I have a mahoosive brainstorming session where I throw all of my ideas about a story down onto paper.

I use an A3 art pad so there are no lines to limit my scribblings. I write down

  • the title of the novel, or ideas about what the title might be
  • conversations between characters in my novel
  • characters – whether they have a name or not
  • settings
  • questions the book should answer
  • things to include to get the story where it needs to go
  • plans for future novels in the series so I know what path to follow
  • if this happens, then what? scenarios
  • topics I need to research
  • mythological beasties
  • spells and other magical details
  • character descriptions and backgrounds
  • details about the world my story is set in
  • problems I need to solve in my story
  • clues I need to reveal
  • locations of off-stage characters
  • character family connections

and anything else I need to know before I can begin to write.

It’s only when I’ve regurgitated all of those details that I can begin to build the story.

Later on, I’ll use my brainstorm chart as a reference tool to return to too.

I’m a devoted plotter

I’d love to be one of those people who can just begin a story with no plan, but I always write myself into dead ends and plot holes.

I make a plan of the different stages in the story (what will happen in the beginning, middle and end) and then carve the middle section up into anywhere from three to five sections.

Then I plot the path of my story in a sequential manner (this happens, then that, then that, and so on until the end).

Now, comes the fun bit, working out exactly how I’ll present my story:

  • Do I want to start the story-telling at the ‘beginning’ mentioned above, or do I want to start the story later?
  • Do I want to jump back and forwards a little?
  • Do I want to reveal everything, or will some scenes be shown through witness statements or clue-solving?
  • Is the story revealed through one person’s experiences or two simultaneous character paths?
  • Finally, does my story end with the ‘end’ mentioned above, or does it go on further?

I’m a firm believer, however, that plotting should always carry a level of flexibility. After all, when a character decides that they want to walk rather than take the train, they’re usually right.

Where I write

I generally write at my computer in my study. I say study, it’s actually the dining room and my desk is the dining table. My family have long since given into the fact that my need for a devoted place to write and work is more important than their need to eat around a table. Maybe one of these days I’ll be able to afford a garden office, or at least a shed.

I tend to switch between typing and handwriting my story, depending on my mood. If I’m struggling over a chapter or section, then making that change usually helps.

Very occasionally, I’ll write in the garden or at my local coffee shop, but generally I find those places too distracting to get any work done.

I don’t wait for inspiration

I’ve learned this lesson from working as a playwright and copywriter with client timescales to meet. I can’t just wait to be in the mood to write or have some wonderful idea to write about. If I did that, I’d rarely get any writing completed.

If there’s writing to do – whether it’s for a copywriting client or the next chapter of my work in progress – I have to just park my bum, pop on my glasses and get on with it.

Boring but true.

20 minute bursts

My writerly brain works best if I write for twenty minutes at a time. Why? Well, twenty minutes allows me to get quite a large chunk of writing done but doesn’t allow me to get bored or distracted. I end my twenty minutes still enthusiastic about my writing and wanting to return to it after my break.

I also find that taking a break allows my brain to cool off enough to solve any problem I may be having with my writing and/or plan out how to continue when I get back to it.

Reading back

When I return to a piece of work after a break, I read back over what I wrote during the previous twenty minute burst. This serves a number of purposes:

  • It reminds me where I left off.
  • It gets me back into the same tone of voice and pace of writing.
  • It allows me to check that the last twenty minutes weren’t wasted and that I didn’t get off track.

It might take a little extra time to read back but it always helps me to continue with whatever I’m working on.

*

So there you have it. This is some of how I write.

Visit my Books page to find out exactly what my novel is about.

Inspiration: Roald Dahl Day 2019

roald dahl day 2019

Around the time I decided that I wanted to be a writer and actively began to write stories, I discovered the books of Roald Dahl.

It began with the wonderful Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. The book was bought for me as a gift and although it wasn’t the kind of story I’d read before, the back cover description drew me in:


I was 9 years old, and this book was about chocolate and adventure. What wasn’t there to like?

I finished the book in a matter of days and begged for more. A friend of my father bought me the next instalment of Charlie’s adventure, Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator.

Those two books began a lifetime love of the writings of Roald Dahl. Over the years, I’ve bought and read all of his children’s books and passed most of them on to my own children.

Dahl has a wonderfully dark imagination, mixing scares (evil aunts and murderous witches) with children who are brave and often at odds with their circumstances and lives. There’s fantastical settings (like a giant peach) and real-life relationships (Danny the Champion of the World).

Today is Roald Dahl Day. Whether you’re a child, a parent, a teacher or just a grown-up who likes great writing, there’s all kinds of good stuff to be accessed on the Roald Dahl website. Have a look.

Interview with author Suzanna Williams

interview with author Suzanna Williams

Today, I have the pleasure of introducing to you not only a wonderful writer but a good friend too, author Suzanna Williams. Suzanna is a YA writer of stories that cover sci fi, action and adventure, with a touch of parkour and romance thrown in too.

And Suzanna has a little freebie treat for readers of this blog post. Read on to find out more.

When did you first call yourself a ‘writer’?

I told my primary school teacher I was a writer after I’d filled a whole exercise book with a story for homework. It was called ‘Mr Uncle the Ostrich’, (which I still think is a good title). My teacher must have taken a long time to mark it, because future homework had a limit on the pages we could write. My mum complained about the teacher’s attitude which didn’t make me popular, but it didn’t deter me. I was a writer. I had to write.

Tell me about your books.

I have two YA books out at the moment.

Shockwaves book cover

‘ShockWaves’ is a fast-paced YA action-adventure. It’s about a girl who gets kidnapped by an ex-IRA terrorist and the boy who tries to save her, and it involves lots of parkour, some gymnastics and a touch of telepathy.  

‘Ninety-five percent Human’ is a YA sci-fi romance in which a sixteen-year-old Welsh hill-farmer, a human-alien hybrid and a robot life-form with a bad sense of humour take on an alien leader set to invade Earth.

There are two short story prequels to go with this series. ‘Jake’, the evolving robotic fighter-pilot-turned-space-pirate, the unexpected hit character from Ninety-five percent Human. And ‘Sarah’, the human/alien hybrid sent to test the viability of life on Earth.

The awesome readers of Fi’s blog can download a copy of ‘Sarah’ for free.

What inspires you to write?

Ideas often come from a story I’ve read or a film I’ve watched. Some characters or situations will spark an imagination explosion of ‘but-what-if’s…’ I keep these in my notebook until one of them morphs into a plotline that keeps me awake at night. I am a very sound sleeper, so, I write down any story that disturbs my eight-hours.

How important is research to you when writing a book?

I like to get facts correct.

  • How long would it actually take a one-armed pilot with an eyepatch to fly from London to Outer Mongolia in a Cessna during a thunderstorm?
  • Would it be physically possible for someone to drag themselves ten miles through the burning Amazon rainforest with a broken leg whilst carrying an unconscious wombat suffering from smoke inhalation?
  • In which country would you find a noxious pink plant that would make you hallucinate asteroids falling from the sky?

For these awkward questions, Google is my friend.

On a more realistic note, I once sailed to Ireland and back on the Ferry at night to experience the atmosphere to write in a book, and a lot of the settings in my stories are places I’ve visited.

(Note: I don’t know the answer to the above questions. Any guesses?)

What is your writing schedule like? Do you aim to complete a set number of pages or words each day?

I wish I could say yes to this question, but amongst the chaos that is my life, I don’t have the luxury of a writing schedule. Setting targets and watching them fly past unmet makes me sad. I prefer the satisfaction of snatching a few unexpected hours whenever I get the chance. This method is not productive, and I would not recommend it. However, it keeps me partly sane until life improves.

Plotter or pantser?

I started off a pantser. Over the years I have set into many a story with nothing more than the whiff of an idea and an overdose of enthusiasm. This has mostly ended badly. My aimless characters would meander around for several hundred pages before being written into a corner from which I could find them no escape. The manuscript then came to rest among the ranks of the undead unfinished.

On the rare occasion I typed ‘the end’, it would take more edits than I care to admit for me to untangle the plot holes and character inconsistencies I inevitably found when I read it back. This had to stop.

Starting off with a solid plot helps me find the problems with my story before I begin. The more detail I can add, the better the expectation that I will finish. Plotting rules!

Putting aside the writing for a minute, what is your favourite genre to read?

Not sure I have a favourite genre. It might be more useful to say what I don’t like.

So, in no particular order:

  • Erotica. Romance is good but leave the bedroom door shut please.
  • Historical novels. Especially those featuring sub-servient women with menfolk who abuse them. These are just too irritating. I’d leave them on the shelf.
  • Thrillers where children get abducted/tortured/murdered. Books are my escape and I don’t need a reminder that people can be horribly cruel. I’m a big believer in the happy-ever-after ending.

Most other books are fair game.

Any advice for writers just starting out?

Read as much as you can, even books you think you won’t like. (This is especially good at combatting ‘writer’s block.’)

Write as much as you can, even things you think are useless. (Yes, some of your words will be absolute trash, but some will be genius; go with those.)

Repeat.

Repeat again.

What books are you working on now or planning for the future?

I’ve had a long period where real life has brought my writing to a standstill, but I’m happy to be finalizing the last edit of AfterShock, which is the sequel to ShockWaves. It’s been a long time coming but I have a tentative release date in December. I’ve had new covers designed for the series which makes me smile every time I look at them.

I’ve also written a new middle grade series and I’m working with an illustrator on them. I’m not putting a release date on this project (see question 5 above) but fingers crossed it will be in the near future.

A big thank you to Fi Phillips for allowing me onto her blog. I’m looking forward to seeing Haven Wakes on the best sellers list very soon.

*

Thanks, Suzanna. Some great answers there.

You can find Suzanna by visiting:

And once again, you can download her free short story ‘Sarah’ here.

Once upon an edit

once upon an edit

One of the most frightening things I have ever done is hand over my manuscript to an agent or publisher to read through. Eek!

Haven Wakes and I have been through our fair share of rejection but it doesn’t get any easier to say, “Hi, here’s my baby. Are they good enough?” which is exactly what a writer does every time they submit their manuscript.

So when Burning Chair Publishing said, “Yes. Your baby is not only good enough but we want to give them a home,” it was the best feeling in the world.

Then the word ‘edit’ is mentioned. Reality kicks in and trips you up in your happy dance. You land in a pile at the feet of your muse who tuts and pouts because this is where her counterpart, the editing elf steps in.

The ability to write and to edit are often portrayed as two very different things. The first is whimsical and carefree, while the second is dry and disciplined, and never should they be done at the same time, oh no, that would be disastrous.

Here’s the thing. While I fully allow the muse to rule while I’m writing, and the elf keeps me on track while editing, I also know that the two can work well together on occasion.

Elf

Now, we need to show that the main character has developed and changed throughout the course of the novel.

Muse

Ooh, ooh, maybe he could dye his hair sparkly blue to signify the new magic in his life.

Elf

He doesn’t have time to dye his hair, and even if he did, he’s a twelve year old boy. He wouldn’t want sparkly blue hair. What we need is to show him in his old life but acting in a new way.

Muse

How exciting. I know just how we could do that. If we bring…

I’ve had a similar conversation with my publisher about how to improve my manuscript too, ‘conversation’ being the key word. From the outset, they had ideas on how to get the best out of Haven Wakes from character development to plugging plot holes to writing up the rules of magic in the world of my novel.

The editing process went like this:

  • Burning Chair’s initial thoughts on how to improve my novel.
  • I made changes and emailed off the amended copy.
  • Si carried out a developmental edit, looking at the manuscript as a whole and in detail too, and reported back to me with suggested changes.
  • I made the changes I agreed with, re-writing a number of chapters and adding in a new one.
  • Pete carried out a copy edit, to pick up inconsistencies in the manuscript (such as how I signified a thought instead of speech).
  • I made more changes.
  • Next, my manuscript was put into e-book format and forwarded to my wonderful beta readers. Their responses, after a few weeks, resulted in more discussion and a number of tweaks that I can honestly say improved Haven Wakes even further.

Throughout the whole process, Burning Chair made it clear that this was my book so the final decision was with me on any changes made.

My muse and elf have both had their say as Haven Wakes has been edited and re-written. They actually make a good team (although the elf would rather the muse sat down during their sessions instead of pirouetting around the room).

Haven Wakes has now arrived at its final stage – ready for all that technical formatting malarkey that I don’t know anything about really – and will soon be available to order. I can’t wait to have a copy in my hands. I may even join my muse in doing a little dance.

You can download the first eight chapters of Haven Wakes here.

My bumpy road to publication: a cautionary tale

my bumpy road to publication

Asking ‘how long does it take to write a book?’ is almost the same as asking ‘how long is a piece of string?’. Or at least it was for me.

I began to write Haven Wakes in its current form as a children’s novel back in 2013 under the title ‘Haven Falls’. The backbone of the story was basically the same as the book that will be published this year but a lot of changes have been made along the way. Characters have been and gone, subplots have taken a different route, and the original villains were put aside for a book of their own.

Why did it take that long to write? I’ll tell you.

I took too much advice

Advice is a good thing, isn’t it? Well, yes, it can be but here’s the thing. Sometimes, advice is well informed and valuable, and sometimes it’s just an opinion. Or maybe it’s a bit of both.

I took too much advice from some very well-informed people. I won’t say how many exactly but it was more than I could count on one hand.

All of them had valid points and with each I altered my manuscript:

  • Wrong age group – I altered the ages of my main characters
  • Too many viewpoints – I cut them down to two
  • Not complicated enough – I simplified
  • Too obvious and predictable – I added intrigue

I can honestly say that Haven Wakes/Falls improved in some ways because of the advice, but it also got a little worn and patchy in places.

At the beginning of 2018, exasperated by another round of professional advice, I sat down with my manuscript and all of that advice and took a long, hard look at it all.

One thing became clear. All of the advice I had been given, although valuable and from a place of knowledge, was coloured by opinion. We all know what we like in a book and it’s rarely the same from reader to reader. All of my advisors had based their advice on their knowledge of writing ‘and’ what they liked in a book.

Change of mindset 1: What do I think of my book?

I waited for perfection

Most writers have a habit of tinkering with our creations, continually changing a line here and a line there, then maybe changing it back, or completely deleting a chapter.

‘Kill your darlings’ – that’s what they say and yes, plenty of my characters have been culled (well, asked politely to leave the room) when I felt they didn’t fit.

I fell into the perfection pit. I kept chipping away at my masterpiece until I had no idea whether it was finished.

Here’s the thing about perfection though: it doesn’t really exist.

Most things can be improved, even if that’s only in the opinion of one or two people.

Perfection is boring anyway. It’s an end point. Writing (and reading) should be a journey.

Change of mindset 2: If it’s not perfect, is it good enough for now?

I took the well-trodden path

I started the search for a literary agent back in 2015. I’d submit a batch of queries over a number of months and once every one had said no or enough time had passed for me to realise I wasn’t going to get an answer, I’d gather any pearls of wisdom from the rejections and re-write my novel. I did the same in 2016, 2017 and 2018.

By that last year, I was getting a majority of ‘almost there’ or ‘great but not what we’re looking for at the moment’ replies that were more frustrating than an out and out ‘no’ or no reply at all.

Over Christmas 2018, I made a decision. 2019 would be the last year when I would try to publish Haven Wakes. If I couldn’t land a literary agent, I would put my darling book on the shelf and begin a new novel.

The end?

I still don’t know exactly how this happened, or what I was searching for, but I came across an online article listing small, independent British publishers.

I eagerly checked down the list but found that none of them published fantasy novels. That couldn’t be right, surely? Where were all the small publishers dealing in books like mine?

By almost the end of 2018, I had found one small, independent publisher who might be interested. On 28th December, I submitted my manuscript to Burning Chair Publishing and waited.

Happy ever after…

By March 2019, I had been offered a publishing deal and the process of getting Haven Wakes to market had begun.

Haven Wakes will be released later this year. To download the first 8 chapters of my fantasy novel for free, click here.

Image coutesy of troy williams on Unsplash