Category Archives: Polls

Authors’ Resources – Poll

Many of you know that one of the things I wish to do is provide a wide range of resources for authors and authors-to-be, so that, at a glance, simple yet popular issues could be clarified in one minute flat.

Issues such as customary phrases people get wrong on a regular basis, for example. Some of my stubborn author friends really need to read these. Hint! Hint!

So, let me know what’s most important to you in broad lines first, and then we’ll look at each one in more detail in future posts. I am serious about getting this show on the road as soon as possible.

Take the poll below. It’s free, it’s anonymous and you can tick more than one box. I’ve even allowed a spare box for you to add things I haven’t thought about (or you could leave a comment below). Go for it! Your opinion matters.


Posted by on July 15, 2013 in Let's Talk, Polls


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2013 – Week 17 and a Poll

Hello and welcome to newsletter number 17. I can’t believe a third of this year’s gone – poof! – and I still have so much I want to achieve! Stand still, Time, for goodness’ sake! I could do with an extra month or two, but I’ll even take a week, if that’s all you have.

I’m still reading and reviewing, of course, though some of the books I read haven’t been released yet, so I’m sitting on reviews until release day. May is going to be a month full of Author Spotlights and reviews – so many books, so little time – but I haven’t booked anything for June. Why have I suddenly gone anti-author, you say? Well, because I want to help authors even more. Bit of a contradiction? Sure. Have you forgotten who you’re talking to?

Yes, it’s a new project and I’m all psyched-up about it, but I need to get some loose ends tied up before I start something new. I expect it will take quite a bit of my time. What do you mean, you want a hint? Oh, ok. I’ll give you just a little idea: my something new this week was a two-parter. I am now confident that I can produce a video – only a simple one, but that is all I need. Part two, which I will research this coming week, is a way to automatically deliver a prize electronically. Stop right there! I don’t have that sort of cash. Yeah. It’s gonna have to be ‘affordable’. Preferably free. If you have any ideas, experiences, the aunt of an aunt or friend of a friend who used it successfully… please, let me know.

I have managed two beta-reads/edits this week and caught up on editing. Kristie, being the awesome author that she is, is re-jigging a few scenes in Eternal Immortality. Only a few more days to wait until its release. Yay. Then it’s on to Blood is Power, the sequel to Blood is Heavier, and then… and then… And so my headache begins. I have no idea which of my million projects I should go ahead with. Or even whether I should slip in the non-fiction book (which is likely to become a series) I’m cooking at the moment.

Fancy giving me a hand? I really need help deciding.

Project A: Deal With It! – which is Tequila’s story. Remember Nick Hunter’s sidekick in Blood is Heavier? Exactly. I have so much material for her – I’ve kept maps, photos, even a book – mini-book, rather, but you get the gist. I’m a little unsure of the genre. If it was a film, it would be a drama.

Project B: Post-apocalyptic scenario. I need much more research for this one, but the approximate plot is there and sorted. I also need to learn more about the genre in general and its market share. Whilst a small market will not deter me, I like knowing what to expect.

Project C: A spy story set during the Cold War, the outcome of which could have easily changed the world as we know it. It’s probably going to end up about 50% fact, 50% fiction. Again, I’m unsure about the market for something like this.

Project D: Drama detailing the life of a refugee/immigrant, inspired from real life. The person I based this on is close enough to me to make writing this a painful exercise, but I’ll just stock up on tissues and get on with it, if that’s where the vote goes. About 90% real life. The remaining 10% will be my best guess of what might have happened where I have information gaps.

Project E: A trilogy set in modern times, showcasing human nature and the difficulty of fitting in. Prejudice and hypocrisy in the most developed nations are set face to face with the same traits in a developing country. I guess this won’t be easy writing, either, but when did I ever do the easy thing? A lot of my obsession with human nature will be poured into this, and boy, do I have a lot of data to play with! About 75% fact, 25% fiction.

Project F: Martin Little Takes Epic Action, the sequel to Martin Little, Resurrected. Yes, satire, but I do make fun of the UK society at the same time. I know too much to keep it to myself. Plus, I need a good laugh.

Project G: Sci-fi – a human mutation which is commonplace nowadays (true!) causes empires to crumble. There’s a fight between the powerful and the clever. Who knows who will win? Well, I do, but you won’t just yet.

Project H: Crime. The killer has an unusual pattern, and there’s no one protecting his real, final victim. Ok, this may slip into thriller a little bit. We’ll see how it pans out.

Project I: Non-fiction. This may be one enormous book or a series of smaller ones. It stems from my editing jobs, in case you were wondering. I noticed there’s no shortage of books on dry grammar – many people collect them like they used to do stamps – and there are loads of training courses and seminars on creative writing, too, but so many authors fall short of just one or two little things, something relatively easy to rectify which would make the difference between an ok novel and a brilliant one. I intend to cut straight through to the core of such problems, and deal with them one by one. That’s part of the reason why I want to publish them separately. If all you need is to fix one thing, 99c is all you’ll have to pay. Why pay $20? But I will make the whole thing available as a compendium, once I’ve finished (if I ever do!).

And whilst you vote, feast your eyes on these beautiful covers from Paradox Book Cover Design & Formatting.

BLOOD IS POWER - out next month

BLOOD IS POWER – out next month



Posted by on April 28, 2013 in News, Polls, Sunday Feature


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Giving Back – Help Me Decide

Hello, my friends. I thought we should talk about something easy today, since it’s Sunday.

So, how about a quick poll? Hey, I never thought it would be easy for you – just me.

What I was thinking about was the injustice of having a multitude of means to recognise the brilliance of traditionally published authors. I know there are some for independently published authors, too, but far too few and far too limited, in my opinion.

What can I do about it? On my own – not very much. But I can start a wave of additional recognition based on what I can see, and what I have read. I’m thinking of putting in place one or more of the following.


Posted by on July 8, 2012 in Just A Thought, Polls


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Sexiest Language Poll



Ok, this is just a cute little poll inspired by one of the books I edited not so long ago.

The choice is simple. If you were to have undying love declared to you loudly and in public, in what language would you rather listen to it?

We’ll assume, for the purposes of this little experiment, that 1)- we are not in the least shallow and 2)- we magically understand every language on the planet.


So, with out further ado…


Posted by on June 16, 2012 in Just A Thought, Polls


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The Ideal Human Being – What Gets Your Vote?

Hello, mes amis. I was having a chat with a few of my friends the other day, and found myself commenting on the characters in my novels. What they are capable of, how they think, what they would do and say… you get the gist. Anyway, what got me thinking after that conversation was not the characters, for once. Not even my friends – sorry to let you down, guys. What worried me most of all was the fact that all of my characters are flawed. They are all imperfect people.

So, the logical progression – in my mind – was then the question: why do I NOT create perfect human beings? And what would make a perfect human being anyway? I could ask a million people and we probably wouldn’t agree. But I am prepared to accept a majority vote.

So, please help me decide.


Posted by on June 9, 2012 in Just A Thought, Polls


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A Question For You

A while ago I did a little poll – well, no, it was a huge poll, actually – about what it takes to be a writer.

I was asked to add to the original answers because I had missed some obvious ones, and I agreed. That list is a combined effort of our author minds. Currently there are 29 attributes to choose from, and multiple choice is enabled. Here’s a link to it, to refresh your memory:

The answers are not that different from what I expected. The most votes went to determination, imagination, passion and commitment. There is no way I would dispute that.

But there has been one surprise, for me. I’ve been waiting and waiting to see whether anyone, at all, would consider this one to be something a writer should feel strongly about. I’m talking about Responsibility.

I don’t understand the complete lack of votes for responsibility. I can live with no votes for humanity, morality and ethics – these concepts are so subjective, so hard to define. But how can a writer not feel any sense of responsibility? How can we not consider the effect our published words might have on our unsuspecting readers? However loosely, however remotely, however lightly – we are putting the germs of our ideas into other people’s minds. We are transplanting pieces of ourselves into others. The way we are, the way we feel, the way we deal with situations, as well as the way we are not and we do not.

Every story has the potential to stick. You can’t think yours will be overlooked and slip away into literary oblivion, because if you did, you wouldn’t be writing it in the first place.

So… just wondering… Am I the only one?


Posted by on May 24, 2012 in Just A Thought, Polls


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Which One’s Your Worst Offender?

This post has a lot to do with grammar, so if that word has the same effect on you as a BOO shouted loudly in the dark, then please yourselves. Run away. Or, if you’re a hero, you could stay and read on.

I grew up in a far away land, in a time when bad grammar equalled hours of detention. Not that I ever got to that point. In fact, my teacher would often use me as his right hand, to help explain new things in lessons. And once I knew the rules, it was easy as pie. I started to enjoy it.

Gasp. Enjoy grammar! It would be easier to get one of the Big Six to take you on with a life-long contract and a seven-digit yearly advance. As if!

I am a lovely, generous person, so I’ve decided to show you quite how easy it is to get grammar right. Honestly. I’ll give you a tiny little bite-sized explanation each Monday, so you don’t ever feel overwhelmed, and you might even remember something useful after a while. You never know.

All I need you to tell me is what terrifies you most. I promise I’ll make understanding it fun. Oh, and please let me know if I’ve missed something important. There’s a comment box right beneath this post.




Posted by on May 14, 2012 in Let's Talk, Polls


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