No time to write? Get a dog!

So during August and September I wrote a novel. Yeah I know, it came as a shock to me too. This haunted house tale (with a difference!) currently clocks in at 71,000 words, which is more than I’ve produced on a single project since I was in university and I wrote a Doctor Who book called Two’s Company. Yes it was dreadful but it was 75K and it actually made some sort of sense. I was quite proud of that.

Since then of course, life has gone out of its way to ensure I don’t have the kind of time it takes to produce more than the odd short story. Actually that’s bull. Right now I have a day job that saps both energy and spare time and two young kids who specialize in doing much the same. My writing time is squeezed more than ever. Yet back when I had no kids and a less stressful day job, I didn’t write a novel. What the hell was I doing with all that spare time? Probably being a lazy-ass.

If you find you’re in the same boat, if writing is a passion you wish you had more time to devote to, then have a read of these five things I did that resulted — directly and indirectly — in 71K in the bank (I wish I was talking about money).

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World’s Collider FREE this weekend!

This weekend only, Nightscape Press is offering its three debut titles for FREE on Amazon Kindle. That means you can download World’s Collider for nothing on Friday, Saturday and Sunday (September 14th to 16th).

You can also download Peter Dudar’s debut novel, A Requiem For Dead Flies, and Colliderist Trent Zelazny’s novella, Butterfly Potion, all for zero dollars (or zero pounds if you’re in the UK).

Pretty cool huh?

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Book Reviews for Sale!

Announcing my new venture: Paid Book Reviews!

In the interests of raising a little cash, I’ve decided to offer my services to write book reviews for reasonable fees. Need more 5-stars on your Amazon page?

I can help!

Simply browse through our unique collection of fully customizable book reviews and choose the one that best suits your product. Our reviews feature an overload of superlatives, typos and egregious grammatical errors for that authentic feel.

Fees include the exclusive use of your chosen book review, customization to your specific needs, the purchase of your book from Amazon (so that the review will register as a verified purchase) and uploading of the review from a convincing Amazon customer account with a purchase history of dog food, combat knives and heartburn pills.

Fees are listed with each review.

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News, reviews and birthday blues…

Lots to catch up on. Firstly, a bittersweet day this past Wednesday. This site turned one year old and I tried to think of a fitting way to celebrate. Unfortunately, the day job intervened and I didn’t have time, which is more or less the story of my life for the past eight months. Ho hum.

So happy birthday, website and I’m sorry the best I could come up with was a balloon image. You’ve done pretty well over the last year, and I hope you last for many more.

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An incredible week!

So World’s Collider was published on July 10th and sold pretty well out of the gate, but then something happened on Thursday morning (July 19th) that changed everything.

This e-mail was sent to everyone in the UK who had previously bought one of Aaron Rosenberg’s books from Amazon.

So basically, Amazon UK saw that World’s Collider featured Aaron, assumed this was his latest book (which it only sort of is) and publicized it to all his previous customers. Now Aaron has sold quite a lot of books over the years, so the effect of this mailbomb was to launch our little anthology into the stratosphere…

Here is the highest point the rankings reached on Thursday…

Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,179 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
#13 in Kindle Store > Books > Fiction > Horror
#18 in Books > Fiction > Horror
#28 in Kindle Store > Books > Fiction > Science Fiction

#13 in the Kindle Horror fiction list is no mean feat, given the rest of the top 20 is filled with James Herbert books on sale, and the likes of Dean Koontz and Amanda Hocking. Yeah, this is the PAID top 20.

Friday saw the book skirting with the bottom of the top 20, so we never broke the top ten. Still, it’s an astonishing ranking for a small press anthology.

Here’s a screen grab I took when we were #16 in Kindle horror fiction, just to prove we were up there…

To be up above a ranking of #2,000 for every book Amazon sells is also pretty impressive, I think…

Sure this is luck, for Amazon to pluck World’s Collider out of obscurity and publicize it in this way is likely an entirely automated stroke of chance. However, the fantastic cover and the enticing concept clearly helped too, translating this exposure into actual sales as people were intrigued enough to click that big yellow button that says “Learn more”.

On the US Amazon page, we didn’t climb higher than around #20,000, which shows you the difference a well-timed mailing from Amazon can make to your book sales!

Even so, the US page did manage to pick up four 5-star reviews since the launch.

I’ll be setting up a page to track reviews in the near future, but I’ll leave you with these thoughts from the wonderfully named Nessapants in her(?) 5-star Amazon review:

I finally finished this book last night.
It was truly incredible.
Using the different authors to create a novel worked much better than I honestly had expected. I was drawn into this story of chaos and the effect on mankind and the planet. I continued to read to know what would happen next and was left thinking about the novel as I was away from it.
[...]
This book will have a lasting impact on me and I will recommend this to all I meet.

Thanks! People really seem to be digging this anthology. In the end, that’s much more important than rankings. Rankings are fun to watch though Smilie: :)

Remember, you can order World’s Collider from Amazon US or Amazon UK.

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Steven Savile Interview and news roundup

First up, we have a brand new World’s Collider interview on the site today! Steven Savile, one of the biggest names in the anthology, talks to Elise Hattersley. Well worth checking out.

So World’s Collider was published a few days ago and it’s been a mixed week overall. Sales have been pretty good out of the gate and we’re getting lots of positive buzz. The launch was marred somewhat by the attack on the book’s Amazon page by some lowlife who we know has not even read the book, but this was counteracted on Thursday by the most wonderful first genuine review from Anastasia. She gave the book 5-stars and said:

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World’s Collider is Here!

Yes, it really is true, World’s Collider is now available to buy for your Kindle!

Amazon US

Amazon UK

The trade paperback can be ordered direct from Nightscape Press

More formats to follow.

Buy it. Read it. Tell us what you think!

Check out the roundtable interview with nearly all the writers, and this news posting to find out what Ian Whates thought of the anthology, and to read some interesting (sort of) trivia.

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World’s Collider news

We’re getting very close to World’s Collider’s release date now and in the meantime we have some cool stuff for you.

Firstly is the anthology’s very first author blurb. It comes from the talented and lovely Ian Whates, author of novels City of Dreams and Nightmare and The Noise Within, and editor of Solaris Rising: The New Solaris Book of Science Fiction. He loved the book and provided the following blurb to include on the back cover.

“Editor Richard Salter has overseen the creation of a chilling hi-octane future in which reality has been warped into nightmare by scientific disaster.  Each component cranks up the tension and the disparate tales combine in mosaic-fashion to deliver a truly gripping narrative.”

Thanks so much, Ian!

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World’s Collider coming July 10th 2012!

The time is nearly here. On July 10th 2012, World’s Collider will be released and you’ll be able to download a copy to your Kindle or order a trade paperback. You can even pre-order a copy now, direct from publisher Nightscape Press! The final Table of Contents has been released. You can see it on the World’s Collider page.

If you can’t wait until July 10th, here’s an extract from Simon Kurt Unsworth’s story, The Coming Scream.

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World’s Collider – Delivered!

I am proud and somewhat relieved to have delivered the complete manuscript for World’s Collider to Nightscape Press. In the end it took an extraordinary amount of effort, and not just on my part. Pity Steven Savile who had agreed to write the final story. Steven was given a detailed brief explaining how to wrap up all the various plot threads, but given the time crunch towards the end I was still tinkering with the storyline while the final story was being written. Steven was ready to kill me, but luckily he broke his arm just in time and was unable to carry out the execution.

So he quickly hired his good friend, Steve Lockley, to kill me on his behalf. Steve misunderstood the request and helped him finish his story instead.

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