A New Beginning

As an author, there are two occasions when I feel particularly happy regarding my craft. The first, is a sense of personal achievement when reaching ‘The End’ with a novel. The second time, is a when I start to revise a new Work in Progress and find myself catapulted into creating the new story.

Two days ago, I completed Codename: Foxglove. Apart from working on various other projects it took me two years to produce what I believe is a satisfactory tale. It is now with four beta readers, and if all goes well, by mid-December will hit the virtual shelves as an eBook. Hopefully, by late December it will also be available as a paperback. This will see the end of the Beyond The Law series of stories.

For anyone interested, the first chapter is Giving Your Word.

A considerable weight had been lifted, so I revisited Selena: Sea Nymph, my first attempt at a modern paranormal fantasy. I read my first two chapters, made a few notes, and enjoyed a coffee before reading them again. From that point it took me a ‘working day’ to rehash what was previously written. The first chapter has seen a considerable reworking. Half of the original first chapter has been replaced, and the half I removed has become the new second chapter. Mysterious or what?

As this is a new venture for me with regard to genre, I’d appreciate any feedback. The refreshed blurb is available on the book’s page, and the first chapter, Realisation, is available for reading and comments.

I have no fixed target set for publication of Selena: Sea Nymph, but a rough estimate is Spring 2022. It will be interesting to see how closely matched my guess is with the reality.

In the meantime, as always, thank you for reading my blog and any comments or suggestions.


Justice Will Be Done …

Anyone who reads my work will be acquainted with my continual need to see justice done. It’s usually summary in style. After all, who needs a judge and jury when you know who the bad guys are? I know that there are those who might disagree, but we’re talking fiction here.

The immediacy of that type of justice is more akin to retribution, a demand for an individual or group to pay the price for the wrongdoing.

What other justice is there?

Apart from that which we associate directly with crime, we can also, ‘do justice’ to someone or something. In other words, to represent fairness or appreciation where applicable.

Having completed another edit of my latest crime thriller, Codename: Foxglove, I feel that I’ve encompassed both meanings of justice. Within the story, there are few grey areas for the characters. They are either bad guys doing bad things, or good guys doing bad things to bad guys. In that second category, in mitigation, and using artistic licence, I absolve the good guys.

How have I used the second meaning of justice?

I feel that I’ve done justice to my original idea for Beyond The Law and the creation of the trilogy. From a passing thought (as we creatives tend to have), Phil McKenzie’s plight became a poem. By the end of the poem, I knew there had to be more. It became a thirty-plus poem series; The Hawk.

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I followed up on the supportive comments of my fellow poets on the Starlite Cafe website, and prepared notes with a view to using the poetry series as the basis for my first novel. In further preparation, I enrolled for the National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) in November 2010. I completed the challenge and ended with a rough 65,000 word story. I was in full-time work at that time so it took two years of dedication and multiple drafts before Beyond The Law was published.

I increased my output (work permitting), and apart from other stories over the next few years, I completed my first crime thriller. I later amended the title to Beyond The Law: Formation, because it became the first in a trilogy. Like many of my readers, Rachel was a favourite character of mine, and so she was developed in a spinoff; Codename: Nightshade.

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Once again as the story closed I had a nagging doubt about leaving things as they were. Dominique had been introduced in Rachel’s story and at that point I recognised what had to be done. The series needed not only another spinoff, but one which would provide closure.

Codename: Foxglove is now a few weeks away from publication, having been through two full edits already, and more are on the way. I aim to have the manuscript ready for beta readers by November.

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If you’d like to be one of my beta readers for this final tale in the series, I’ll be ready to send out the manuscript on Monday 29th November. The deadline I’m setting for returns/critique points is Sunday 5th December. This will afford me two weeks to work through the feedback and amend as necessary.

When I publish in mid-December, Justice will be done … regarding the Beyond The Law series.

Comments and suggestions are welcome as always, and thank you for taking the time to read my blog.