A Taste of Honey – 1st draft completed

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Okay, so things didn’t go exactly according to plan, but I’m happy with the result so far.

What was the plan?

My intention was to create a new character for a thriller, but invite input from anybody that wanted to put in ideas, for any aspect of the story. As with many things in life, it didn’t work out according to plan.

What went wrong?

I prepared and published an opening scene to try to inspire some ideas. Within a few days I had several contacts saying that folk liked the theory of it, and would like to take part. To cut a long story short, I got one concrete idea from somebody and a character name. I’ve used the character name, but the intention for the plot was too far off the mark. The only suggestion was good, but aimed at an international story. The research would have taken me until this time next year.

What went right?

I had my intro and a skeleton of a synopsis, but after several days of no feedback I set about inventing some more characters and started writing. By the time I’d written the close of the first chapter I knew where I was going and I’d discovered the pace at which to move the story forward.

I had responses from four people (fellow writers), who suggested I should go my own way to maintain my ‘voice’ throughout the story. If nothing else inspired me, then that certainly did and to come from more than one person was incredible for my confidence.

Where are we now?

1.  In a little over six weeks I’ve written the first draft of the entire novel.

2.  The first five chapters appear in this blog, still only at first draft. I have a lot of work to do.

3.  I’ve already decided that there will be a sequel and have a working title.

4.  There is a high possibility that in the sequel, certain characters from this new story will intermesh with the characters of the sequel to Beyond The Law.

5.  I’m now leaving A Taste of Honey to settle for two weeks while I work on other projects, and then in mid-October I plan to start work on the second draft.

Is there a proposed publication date?

If I can work to my usual schedule and everything falls into place – mid-December 2014.

On that happy note, I’m now off to spend some time on the other novel that I have under construction, A Life of Choice.

Thank you for dropping by.

New Opportunities

2013 New - photo edgeHello one and all and welcome to 2013 – our New Year.  As my freshly produced graphic would suggest, I’m setting off into this new year with a positive attitude to what it might bring.  We all have the choice of starting out positive and letting that attitude slip away over time, or we can maintain that same effort throughout the year.

Early last year I decided to cut back on my retail work and increase my writing output.  I managed to write a novel from scratch and publish it as an e-book, which in itself delighted me.  ‘Ten Days’ is that novel, which has now sold into double figures, so although it hasn’t enabled me to retire from my support job completely, it’s nice to know it’s out there.  At present my novel is published with www.smashwords.com – but if there is insufficient sign of movement in sales, I’ll move the book.

Before the old year reached it’s end I managed to do three things that had been ambitions since the Summer months.  First, I discovered that I could work with my portfolio of poetry to produce a set of at least 6 volumes in different genre.  Second, I established a personal website: www.tom-benson.co.uk  in which I display both my writing and artwork.  Third, and importantly for the financial side of things, I invested in a Desktop Publishing (DTP) programme so I could produce my own artwork for book covers.

I can now report that I have published my first three volumes of poetry as e-books on Smashwords.  The main title of the series is ‘Rhyme Scenes’ and I am producing the cover designs myself.  I’m now well on the way with the next in the set.  ‘Rhyme Scenes, Volume Four …’ which is subtitled, ‘Military Matters’ and will contain a collection of fact, fiction, supernatural and observation.  I will of course be writing a blog post to support the e-book when I publish, which I’m scheduled to do in mid-January.

My aim is to follow up immediately by working on the next category, which is: ‘Thrills, Spills and Chills’ – a collection of thriller, adventure, fantasy, fact and anything that doesn’t fit neatly into the other genre.  My final category is ‘series’ poetry which may be issued as a single volume or spread into two – which I haven’t decided about yet.  Among the series are a host of topics but again, I’ll post about them when the book is published.

By the Spring I’m aiming to have all my poetry volumes published and then I can start to work seriously on my next novel.  I had been considering a sequel to ‘Ten Days’, but I have two other options.  The first is to go back to work on ‘Hawk’ which started life as a series of poetry and then was written as a novel in a month for the NaNoWriMo in November 2011.  My other option for a novel is to go back to my first attempt at novel writing.  The working title is ‘A Life Of Choice’ and was in it’s original draft my autobiography.  In light of what I’ve read, written and learned over the last couple of years the story will become a fictional tale of a young man who leaves home and enters a voyage of self-discovery in a military career.  The tale will bring into play his successes, failures and constantly changing mindset.

On the traditional side of life I’ll be completing a final edit of my short story, ‘Smoke and Mirrors’ for inclusion in the next anthology to be released by the Inkerman Writers, our local writing group.

My new three-day working week should afford me the luxury of working on all of these projects and more besides.  I want to improve my website among other things and to increase my potential readership with a more aggresive marketing campaign and a greater web presence.  Any comments here or on my website are greatly appreciated, as are any reviews of my e-books.