The Hunt for Great Sci Fi

The Guardian has launched a hunt for the best independently published science fiction and they are asking for your help.

Do you know of or have you read any scifi that shuns the mainstream having self-published or distributed through independent houses? Get cracking to let them know. And yes, you can nominate your own work. Continue reading

One Big Step…

Most of you will know that for the last few months I’ve been moonlighting as a freelance writer, something I do in the evenings and at weekends. I have been writing guest blogs and SEO articles for about three months now and I’ve decided to take a very big plunge.

I’m leaving my current job to write full time. I have given this much thought and have come to realise that I have to do this now. I have been working toward it but due to other commitments have not had the time to fully explore my options in terms of a career in writing. I have to take that plunge to make it happen. I have two months to figure out my options, promote myself and build a client base. Continue reading

Book Review: The Hunger Games (Hunger Games 1)

It is a long time since I’ve finished a book in a matter of days but with this I found I could not put it down. Every spare moment, after work, before work, on lunch break… how I stopped myself reading it on the drive home I do not know and I already know the story because I’ve seen the film at least twice. To my delight, the film – as good as it is – lacked some finer details making the book well worth the read.

When I first read a sample chapter about a year ago (chapter 1) I found the writing style minimalist and passionless, not very inspiring and I didn’t feel compelled to read more. But, fellow readers insisted I give it a go… so I did. Continue reading

Book Review: The Bible Unearthed by Israel Finkelstein & Neil Asher Silberman

Did events in The Bible really happen? Did David have a city? Did Exodus take place as written? What use are the texts of the Old Testament to modern archaeologists and how can we evaluate them without causing offence to a lot of people? These are some of the questions asked by two of the most celebrated Middle East archaeologists today.

Israel Finkelstein is Director of the Institute of Archaeology at Tel Aviv University. Neil Asher Silberman has a role in public interpretation in Belgium and is a regular contributor to Archaeology magazine. Their credentials then, are not in question but that hasn’t stopped the furore around this book erupting eleven years ago at its release. And it is not difficult to see why. Many people see The Bible as real historical documents steeped in history. But there are major flaws in the texts including a lack of continuity, some serious problems in dating events, an inability to tally events against other documents that agree with each other and many anachronisms. Continue reading

I Have a Pinterst Board

I have decided to open a Pinterest board. A few of my subscribers and blogs to which I subscribe already use it to promote their work. What I need right now is traffic in order to get people reading and hopefully, buying my ebook when it is released. I don’t seem to be getting the hits from StumbleUpon and web hits, though improving since the name change, could be better.

My Facebook page is doing well and I thank those of you who have already “liked” it. For those who haven’t, I have already posted a couple of exclusives. I am still waiting for my first stranger to like it (so far only subscribers and personal friends have signed up). I hope it will take off soon.
Continue reading

Book Review: The Philosopher and the Wolf by Mark Rowlands

Mark Rowlands, a lecturer in Philosophy was barely out of his 20s when he bought a wolf cub. It was an act that would change his life forever as he sought to house train it and make it a full fledged member of his household. Early on, he discusses the undeserved bad name of the wolf, how they have been hunted to extinction and recent movements to preserve their numbers.

He names this wolf Brenin and slowly, the pair get used to each other. Rowlands tries – and fails – to set boundaries in the conventional way as you would with a dog. Painstakingly, he teaches it to walk on a lead – something believed to be impossible for a wolf – and begins to explain how differently they think from dogs and how the methods for training are so very different. Continue reading

The New Archetypes

Professor Snape – the ultimate anti-hero

A blog buddy of mine, Pat Wood, listed a number of character archetypes a few weeks ago and I have been thinking about whether in 21st century fiction we have some new character types to explore. I’ve given it some thought and these are what I have come up with: Continue reading

The Plot Driven ———–> Character Driven Swingometer


Nila E. White is thoughtfully going through a number of rules for creating a story. Number 4 in the series insists on the need for plot. Of course I agree but as these things inevitably do, it usually comes down to a debate between plot and character driven prose. Continue reading