Plotting for complete world domination…

While the Landlord was playing with the electrics and installing a new shower today, I was forced off the computer.

This isn’t the catastrophe that it used to be – I find that forced time away from the PC can often help me think about my plans for world literary domination and give me a fresh hope that I may actually, one day, be able to put food on the table with the proceeds of my warped imagination.

It’s not warped; just slightly twisty…

Yes, thank you Puff.

Ahem. I was thinking about what I would like to publish next. Obviously, TTATE #5: Nightbringer, is very much on the cards; but there are a few things that I have had in mind for a while…

… so here is a run down of the books I have on the TO BE PUBLISHED list:

KIRA MORGANA

The Tower and The Eye: Nightbringer
(TTATE, Book 5)

The Dragon’s Pendant
(The Secret of Arking Down, Book 2)

The Tower and The Eye: Creation of The Lych Mistress
(A ‘Tower and the Eye Tales’ Novella)

The Bog Boy
(A ‘Secret of Arking Down’ Novella)

The Tower and The Eye Omnibus Edition
(TTATE Box Set)

The Tower and The Eye Tales
( Story Collection)

The Secret of Arking Down Chronicles
(Story Collection)

The Mind of Morgana
(Box Set)

A. E. CHURCHYARD

Genesis of the Churchyard
(Box Set)

The Song of Albion
(Novel)

Now, there aren’t any dates on these titles deliberately. I’m not the sort of writer that can work on one thing, finish it, edit it and publish it within a definite timespan.

I can do deadlines for small pieces, but the big ones take time, thought and mass amounts of energy. For example, the first drafts for three of these are finished, but I’m not doing any editing on them until I’ve finished the first draft of Nightbringer.

Essentially I follow the 8 Rules of Writing that Neil Gaimen came up with:

1) Write

2) Put one word after another. Find the right word, put it down.

3) Finish what you’re writing. Whatever you have to do to finish it, finish it.

4) Put it aside. Read it pretending you’ve never read it before. Show it to friends whose opinion you respect and who like the kind of thing that this is.

5) Remember: when people tell you something’s wrong or doesn’t work for them, they are almost always right. When they tell you exactly what they think is wrong and how to fix it, they are almost always wrong.

6) Fix it. Remember that, sooner or later, before it ever reaches perfection, you will have to let it go and move on and start to write the next thing. Perfection is like chasing the horizon. Keep moving.

7) Laugh at your own jokes.

8) The main rule of writing is that if you do it with enough assurance and confidence, you’re allowed to do whatever you like. (That may be a rule for life as well as for writing. But it’s definitely true for writing.) So write your story as it needs to be written. Write it ­honestly, and tell it as best you can. I’m not sure that there are any other rules. Not ones that matter.

I’ve got rules one to five down pat. Six is something I tend to have trouble with – I can never be certain when to let go…

I like “Perfection is like chasing the horizon. Keep moving.” – it should be on a T-shirt.

All right Puff… actually you have a point there; it should be on a T-shirt…

I also like “Make Good Art” which is another of Neil Gaimen’s sayings.

Ahem… enough of that Puff, can we get on with this post, please?

Of course, all of this is subject to the approval of my overlord (or should that be overlady?) the beauteous Princess Wriggles:

maia
That’s just an excuse to put a picture of her in the blog post…

Shhh, Puff!

PW is the main reason I don’t have any dates for publication of these books; I can never tell from one day to the next if I am going to have any time to write… *grins*

But it is a lovely excuse not to write, or do housework…

“The Baby needs me.” or “I’m playing with the Baby.”

…both go down quite well with everyone!

Camp NaNo, new pages and cutting out the middle man…

That last bit sounds painful doesn’t it? Like I’m slicing someone in half…

…ahem. Never mind. on with the show.

I was pootling along quite nicely with my Camp NaNoWriMo story this morning. As I’m re-writing a story that I’ve had hanging around since 1998, there’s a lot of jigsaw puzzling to be done as I write each new section, add in the appropriate section of the old story and stitch them together. The word count at the moment stands at…

7510 words

Not too shabby considering I’m attempting to do this around a pretty demanding baby and the other things that life throws in my way like sugar mice and mad hatter’s tea parties.

But at lunchtime, I got distracted by Chuck Wendig’s posts about pirates and donation buttons. It was fascinating and as you may have noticed, I posted it for your perusal.

However… the article got me thinking.

…Shhhh – no laughing at the back there. I do think sometimes…

I have twelve books out in the big wide world in both print and electronic format; three children’s books, four sword and sorcery novellas, a science fiction novella, a paranormal novella, a YA novel and two short story collections.

If you look up at the menu bar, there’s a tab that says “The Teigr Princess’ Bookshop”; hover over said tab and you’ll get a menu that leads to an individual page for each book / series that I have published.

Essentially, I’ve made it easy for you the reader; rather than you have to search on Amazon, the links are there to zip through to buy my book. I’ve also started turning my e-books into print books, hence the link to where you can buy the print copy.

There is also something new. Some people don’t like Amazon, but would rather not use Smashwords (for whatever reason) to buy their books. Or maybe they read electronic books through a tablet or laptop. Whatever the reason, there are a whole raft of people out there that can’t access my work.

…Shocking, I know…

So I’ve made my work available through Payhip. If you would like a PDF copy and don’t want to have to pay Smashwords for the download, you can just pay me instead.

Yes, that’s right. I’ve cut out the middle man…

 

…ew, there’s that image again… hmm – this one is much better…middle-man-150x150

Click on the payhip link and it will take you through to the page where you can buy my book by paypal. When you click the buy button, I get paid! Simple, eh?

There are currently only four of my books through Payhip – I’m working on getting the rest up there. Those books are:

Beginning 300 x 200  Prince Loric and his companions gather at a tavern in  the  village of Pleasemore, in the heart of his father’s  kingdom  of Galivor.

A castle ruin has drawn him forth and he risks his life  to  capture the Heart of the dungeon below it. With  battles  and creatures aplenty, who will return to the  light of day  alive to tell the tale?

https://payhip.com/b/JZBb

 

Grof 800 x 533

Castle Grof has claimed the lives of many already, but  Lord Harnez of Valdez is determined to clear the  menace of the dungeon underneath completely.

Drawn into the quest with a barbarian warrior, a monk  of Tyr and an old friend, Aranok and his half sister,  Ariana, begin to wonder if they will actually return to  their home in the elven realm of Alethdariel alive…

https://payhip.com/b/QpOj

 

Freya 300 x 200

Freya has many assets, the least of which is her exotic  beauty. Having been freed from the benign slavery of  the Pleasurehouse, she journeys to Jinra to meet up  with her brother Grald. Along the way she meets Sir  Vrenstalliren, Paladin of Espilieth, who insists on  becoming her guardian.

In the next town the two become five, having been  joined by Kraarz, an Orc Shaman; Vox, his Otherworld  Spirit Guide and Lin, an Elysian warrior on a quest of  her own.

It is just as well, for she is walking into a danger she is ill equipped to face alone…

https://payhip.com/b/DyHL

Harp 1200x800

Another border skirmish with the Franierens forces the  Elves to send Lady Julissa Alethdan to hunt for the  Harp of Aleth; a magical harp capable of healing the  most tormented of souls and calming the fury of battle  into peace.

This should be an easy task, after all, the dungeon she is  entering was cleansed over a hundred years ago…

 https://payhip.com/b/YHzZ

 

Book #5 is currently in the editing queue – “The Tower and The Eye: Nightbringer” – and will be out as soon as it has gone through the usual processes.

Keep your eyes peeled for more news on that one as and when it arrives!

If you fancy following along on my journey at Camp NaNo, you can read the chapters of  “The Lost Princess” on Wattpad –

http://www.wattpad.com/43349034-the-seven-towers-the-lost-princess

Or, you can wait until it’s finished, been through editing and published… I don’t mind. As long as you enjoy what you are reading.

Forget What you know…

My son has Aspergers. It makes him highly intelligent, socially awkward and seriously obsessed with various things – mostly Money, Pokemon, Doctor Who and Card collecting…

Aspergers is what they call an Autistic Spectrum Condition. Autism is –

a lifelong developmental disability that affects how a person communicates with, and relates to, other people. It also affects how they make sense of the world around them

Everyone has a few autistic traits, it’s just when there is a whole slew of them that the condition is diagnosed. Aspergers / High Functioning Autism are two separate conditions, but are so similar that they get mistaken for each other.

Why am I talking about this?

Well, I came across this video in my internet ramblings earlier today and was immediately struck by something… Go watch the video and come back – I’ll hang on until you do…

http://autismawarenesspage.com/jacob-barnett-forget-what-you-know/?utm_source=social&utm_medium=autaware&utm_term=20130820&utm_campaign=jacob-barnett-forget-what-you-know

…interesting one isn’t it?

Okay, what struck me about this video is that it took a teenager with Aspergers to notice something significant about the way the human mind works.

We shove our kids into school at an early age and push them to “Learn Something”. We insist that it is the best way for them to grow up; they have to be tested and constantly have information shoved into their delicate brains and memorised before they can be allowed out to play .
Yet Jacob Barnett noticed that it was only when Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein were stopped from Learning (one by the plague, the other by racialism) that they made their biggest and best discoveries.

This is why his Tedtalk was called “Forget What you Know.”

In order to be truly creative in our thinking, we have to free ourselves from that crammed in mass of knowledge that the education systems of the world force us to memorise.

It doesn’t matter what subject you are working in or learning – forget about the book learning we are all piled high with and allow your creative mind to wander through the daisies.

Believe it or not, this actually works!

My best stories have come from times when I have ignored conventional forms and styles of writing and allowed my mind to run free with an idea. My favourite short story was created for a charity anthology called “Words to Music”.

The story isn’t remarkable because of that though. It’s different because of the way I wrote it. I originally wrote a story called “Statues of Justice” for the anthology.

I’d been assigned a song I’d never heard of and I had to look it up in order to write my contribution. The story that I created was just a little pedestrian and predictable (it’s changed substantially since it became “Tales of Cassius: Statues of Justice”) and wasn’t really my best work; mostly because I had tried to write the story that the lyrics told.

So when it was rejected, I lay back, listened to the song for about the fiftieth time, and let my mind wander.

It came back with the idea of rebelling against a higher authority. And while Statues is definitely about rebelling, it isn’t pure enough. The story for the anthology needed to be more idealistic and the second story  I came up with was perfect – it’s called “I, Dragon”…

The idea was simple – a lightning strike on a computer creates an AI mind which travels the interconnected worlds of the electricity system and the Internet to find a way of becoming a physical reality.

I managed to combine SF and Fantasy into one story without being too clichéd – and this time it was accepted.

So forgetting what you know and allowing your creative mind freedom does work… and it’s much more fun!