Lessons from a Megasoap

With all the nostalgia about the 80s around, it would have been a miracle if I hadn’t got infected. Far from thinking the 80s were the best decade in history ever, I did spend some of my formative years in it and while I couldn’t care less about the return of the 80s style (please don’t bring back shoulder pads, please), I have been feeling an itch to return to a digital-free past. Obviously, there was only one thing I could do: binge on Dallas. Continue reading Lessons from a Megasoap

One-Style-Fits-All: The Worst Advice Ever

I sent a query the other day and got quickly rejected because the size of my book exceeded their maximum. In addition to this perfectly sense-making reason I also got a list of writing tips to improve my writing. It made me feel extremely bad for about a second. Continue reading One-Style-Fits-All: The Worst Advice Ever

The Simplest Way to Market Books

Book marketing is tough. I know because I’ve tried it and I’m still trying. The choice of what some like to call marketing tools is stunning. There are also thousands of people ready to help you with what is effectively your war effort — a war on global oblivion of your brilliant work of art. However, there’s a much simpler way. Continue reading The Simplest Way to Market Books

Fun Facts about Book Publishing

This is the fifth year since I submitted my first short story to a publisher. Since then, I’ve sold five stories and I’ve had one novel hybrid published and one self-published. I picked up some things about the whole publishing business inadvertently along the way and some I deliberately researched. Here’s what I’ve learned. Continue reading Fun Facts about Book Publishing

Writing Addiction

I did some of my finest writing to date on Sunday. There was no particular reason other than I wanted this chapter done with because I hadn’t written for two days straight. It was going to be a drudge, to be fixed in the second draft. Now I think it’s the best part of the book so far. Continue reading Writing Addiction

Two Eyes or a Bestseller

My right eye has been bothering me recently. I think I’m seeing flashes of light at the edges of my peripheral vision and it’s making me nervous, after two years ago an ophthalmologist warned me to watch for the flashes as they could be an early signal of impending doom, also called retinal detachment. No, this is not fiction, sorry. Continue reading Two Eyes or a Bestseller

Writers, Give Me Your Recipes

In a book by one of my favourite crime writers, a secondary character tells the main character — a crime writer — that some of her fans are unhappy with her. Why, the writer asks, is the plots or the characterisation? No, it’s because you mention food a lot in your books but never give the recipes, the secondary character says. Continue reading Writers, Give Me Your Recipes

The 37th Invention of the Wheel

I’ve been inventing the wheel for as long as I can remember. Sometimes I invent it once a week, other times are slower and I only invent the wheel once a year. Continue reading The 37th Invention of the Wheel

How To Make Your Life Difficult in 5 Easy Steps

Hello and welcome to today’s session in Life Advice, at which we will quickly explore the five steps you need to take to make your life that little bit more difficult to give it some extra spice because we live in a problem-free world and anyone can use some extra spice, right? Right! Each and every one of these steps is supereasy, so making your life difficult is not just simple — it’s fun! Continue reading How To Make Your Life Difficult in 5 Easy Steps

Hello Voice, Are You There?

Those of the writing breed who have ever dared the Path of the Query have seen that every publisher worth their salt — and even those not worth any — wants what they usually call a unique voice. Now, the dominant school of thought these days teaches us that each and every one of us is born unique and this is probably true in some ways. In others, however, we need to work to develop that uniqueness and this is especially true when it comes to the author’s voice. Continue reading Hello Voice, Are You There?