" I don't blow my own trumpet enough," a comment often said to me by my friends, and it is true. I am naturally a reclusive person, and too often shun the spotlight I deserve.
Today, I will try to give myself a little praise, and also give you an insight into my works.
Two and a half years ago, I had the honour of one of my books being awarded the certificate of excellence by the US non-profit organisation http://indiependents.org/ . The site has changed in the last year, and the awards are not shown, but are sent to over 20,00 people via Facebook, libraries, and are available to read via http://www.indiependents.org/uploads/3/0/2/0/3020232/catalog285online.pdf and a monthly newsletter sent the members.
Chronicles of Mark Johnson
The story started out its life after seeing Lorraine Kelly complain on TV about having to cross the desert. Like many of her friends, she never thought of the poor camera crews who haul the cameras so her fans can see her. I wrote the book as a tribute to the unsung heroes the men & women who take the shots, and films but never get the credit for all their work. http://alsdomain.weebly.com/awards/chronicles-of-mark-johnson
Although the award was for a speculative fiction story,my writing covers many genres. I write for the children's charity The Peacock Writers http://alsdomain.weebly.com/the-peacock-writers we bring out two books every year - last year was an exception - with the rise of bullying, we brought out an anti-bullying special edition. All the money from these sales goes to help children in crisis. I am involved with another multinational group of writer called The Booktrap http://thebooktrap.weebly.com/ the writers in Booktrap cover many style of writing, and the books are of high quality. Some of the stories tell of harrowing real life horrors, so be careful what you choose to read.
My hit US sci-fi series is as much an amazement to me as to anyone. Until last year, I had not written any sci-fi stories, and thought with most of the Barnes & Noble sales outlets being in higher education establishments, I wouldn't be able to sell any e-books. Boy, was I wrong - and in a BIG way - the title book has sold over 100 copies, and the series has sold over 220 copies http://alsdomain.weebly.com/forgestriker---the-hit-series.html.
Has the award had any effect on me? None what so ever, I am still the same shy man I was before the award, if anything I am more reclusive. The one thing having the award taught me, not everyone who "claims to be a friend" is a friend. I lost contact with many people in the months after the award. One of the reasons was they were upset I got the award, with no formal training, when they were constantly telling me about their college courses; another was I was a good deal older than them.
Hopes for the near future.
One hope is my LAST novella - A Sailor's Love - will sell a few copies; the book took 14 months to write, and is my dedication to the brave people who fish our shores (my family in Yorkshire included) https://www.draft2digital.com/book/34522 As a matter of interest, the length of time it took to write A Sailor's Love is the amount of time Forgestriker has been on sale.
Last month I was contacted by agent from Edmonton, Alberta during Pitmad day about my work; although her publisher was interested in work I don't write - teen romances - the lady did put me in contact with Zharmae.com http://www.zharmae.com/ who are a small firm of fantasy publishers based in the Pacific Northwest area of the USA.
There has no been no changes radically made, apart from I consider myself semi-successful as an author - only because of Forgestriker - other people consider me a success. I will consider myself a success if I get a book on the shelf at Waterstones-Cribb's Causeway,or Waterstones-Bristol Galleries. The picture above was taken last year at a book signing by Raymond E Feist, in the Galleries branch. Another way for me to consider myself a success is for a greater selection of books to sell.
I don't get out a lot these days as I suffer from Ehler's Danlos Syndrome, which makes walking hard and painful. I am awaiting news of an operation on my right tendon, the left has already torn. I don't expect to be walking much in a few years, I will miss my odd day trip to Cribb's Causeway, or into the city; a far cry from the days when I went to Cheltenham almost ever month, and planned a return to Scarborough to get some peace to work. It was at Scarborough that I did most of the writing for my award winning book.