Still feeling pretty sick but not quite on death's door as I was a week ago. I've actually managed to get some writing done and made good progress again on Cry Fear. It's also very strange writing a sequel to a book that so many people have read and who are looking forward to the next installment. I've never written a book before knowing anyone would ever read it past immediate family (and sometimes not even then). It's a whole new experience!
HE WHO FIGHTS is doing very well in the UK and Australia. It went as high as no 2 yesterday in Oz and is no 12 in the UK charts as I write this. It's not taken off in the States yet but I still have hopes for it there too.
I also passed my 10,000th download this week of my books. 10,000 books in essentially 4 months! It's a crazy number. I look back at the launch of Cry Havoc and was excited when I'd sold 8 copies in one week. The average indie book on Amazon sells about 250 copies. (Switchblade has sold about 200 copies in nine months.) But Cry Havoc is at 8500 copies and HWF is at 1500. Crazy. I am so lucky that my books have found an audience that enjoys what I write.
Thank you to all of you for making this journey possible.
It's been a strange couple of weeks since I last posted. I went down with a nasty case of flu which wiped me out and spent the day yesterday being tested for pneumonia. Hopefully the results will come back negative but even so I've fallen behind on my schedule because of it.
HE WHO FIGHTS continues to do well. The book has reached no 18 in the UK Low Fantasy charts and no 4 in Australia. Traction has been a bit slower in the the US which is interesting as it was the complete opposite with CRY HAVOC. It's just so exciting for me to see my book in the same charts as heavy weights like Peter Brett and Mark Lawrence and a certain GRRM.
There have been some lovely reviews too. A couple have compared HWF to David Gemmell and that's a massive compliment as I love his work. Legend got me back into reading fantasy again in my early 20's. I picked up a three book collection that had Legend, Waylander and The King Beyond The Gate. I still have it now even though it's battered and brown with age (and a bit stinky).
CRY HAVOC now has over 200 ratings on Goodreads with a 96% approval and 73 reviews on Amazon of which over 50% are 5 stars. I think I will always be surprised at how well received the book has been. I look back now at some old blog posts and I was so excited when it had sold 3 or 4 copies and now it's passed the 8,000 download mark. I can't thank everyone enough for their support.
Now on with CRY FEAR and apologies for the coughing.
I heard last night that the audio book of CRY HAVOC is being recorded next week with the most awesome narrator. He's done the audio books for nearly all my favourite authors. I am so excited to see what he does with Jack and Lin.
HE WHO FIGHTS continues to do well. It's been getting good reviews - nearly all 5 stars. Thanks ever so much for the love.
I did get one 2 star review because the reader didn't believe an elite military unit could be made up with people from different nations. "No we can't all get along," he said. Now I do believe we can all get along - especially in times of great darkness. However Nathaniel Rane is a member of the Legion Of Swords and I actually based this on the French Foreign Legion, an elite military unit made up of people from different nations.
The same reviewer also believed Lin, the heroine from CRY HAVOC, should also be a man...
Seriously though, I really appreciate everyone who takes the time to write, rate, review any and all of my books. I keep saying this but it makes a massive difference to the sales and sales are what allows me to keep doing this.
HE WHO FIGHTS has been out in the world for a week now and doing very well. Sales at the moment are double CRY HAVOC's over the same period but I have a group of people now who like what I write so that's to be expected (but never taken for granted). I hope it continues to grow and do well as I love the character.
No reviews yet on Amazon but it has four 5 star ratings on Goodreads (and one 3 star). CRY HAVOC now has 162 ratings there with 96% of people liking it and the majority rating it either with 4 or 5 stars. It has 56 reviews on Amazon too - again the vast majority being 5 stars. These reviews really help sales so I'm super grateful for anyone who takes the time to say something nice. It also does my ego good for a short while - always helpful when you're an insecure creative!
On Monday 16th, I have my first interview, talking on the Bestseller Experiment podcast and launch party for their book. It's not an overstatement to say if not for them, my books would still be sitting on my laptop and life would be very different for me. I owe them a huge thank you and wish them all the best with their book, BACK TO REALITY. I can't wait to read it.
My mailing list is growing - and thank you to anyone who's signed up. The plan at the moment is to always give my next book free to anyone who signs up a week or two before release. I'll send updates as well out once a month about what's going on.
2 more days until Nathaniel Rane sees the world. I'm really excited about this release as I love the character and would love to do lots more adventures with him. I always intended for Rane to be my fantasy Jack Reacher so fingers crossed.
Work progresses on Jack Frey 2, CRY FEAR, but it has slowed down after I decided to put HE WHO FIGHTS out. Now that's done, I look forward to getting back to it. I've also been busy with day job work too. Hopefully, with the release of HE WHO FIGHTS, I can move one step closer to my dream of being a full-time writer.
Lots has been happening over the last few weeks. Progress is being made on Jack Frey 2, CRY FEAR. I'm having so much fun writing it. All being well, it will be out in November in time for the holidays.
In the mean time, I'm releasing another fantasy book - HE WHO FIGHTS in early October. This is the story of Nathaniel Rane, a master swordsman who's living in peaceful seclusion with his wife until bounty hunters turn up and tell him there's a price on his head.
I'm really pleased with the cover for this one. It feels very different from the Jack Frey books' look and feel but it still has that trademark Morrris blood splash across the title. I played around with a few other looks until settling on this.
I've got some great news to announce: The Jack Frey series will be produced as a series of audio books by the fabulous people at Podium Publishing. Once I have release dates for CRY HAVOC, I'll be sure to let you all know.
I had a few offers to turn the books into Audio but I wanted to make sure whoever I went with would make the best possible experience. As an Audio book lover, I know how important the production and the voice talent is and there is no one better than Podium Publishing doing this today.
The reviews keep coming in for CRY HAVOC and it's so great to see that they are all 4 or 5 stars. Lots of people eager for the next book too. I love hearing from everyone and answer every email I get - it means so much that someone takes the time to write.
Book 2 progresses well so hopefully on track for a late October/Early November release date
Before there was CRY HAVOC, there was SWITCHBLADE — a sci-fi thrill ride through 23rd Century Hong Kong. It was the first book I self-published, during which I learned a lot. I have a huge amount of love to the book. In fact I once described it as a blood-soaked love letter to a city where I spent nearly ten years of my life.
However I never really liked the cover. I redesigned it once before but again there was something not quite right about it so, as an act of procrastination from writing Jack Frey book2, I redesigned it again. So here's cover 3 for SWITCHBLADE, available at an Amazon store near you.
In the 23rd Century, the Chinese Empire stretches from Shanghai in the East to Los Angeles in the West, and is now expanding its influence into the stars. But not all its citizens are happy. Terrorists plan to strike the very heart of the Empire and only one woman can stop them.
Choi Ziyi is one of the deadliest people alive and there isn't anything she won't do to keep the Empire safe from harm. But, as the bullets fly and friend becomes foe, Ziyi is thrown into the dark heart of a far-reaching conspiracy where no one is who they seem.
Dive in to a dark and violent cyberpunk thrill ride you won't be able to put down.
I'm making good progress on book 2 of Jack Frey's adventures, CRY FEAR, and I'm really enjoying being back in the world again. It's strange in a way writing a follow up to a book that you know so many people have read and enjoyed. Previously I've just written for my own amusement. Certainly I've pushed myself to create the best book I can with each novel but real people have expectations now. CRY FEAR is very different to the first one because it happens in a very short period of time (whereas CRY HAVOC took place over some 12 years) and it's set in one location — Arbour, the capital of Abios.
The plan is to have the book ready to be published at the end of October.
More and more great reviews have come in on Amazon and Goodreads. Most 90% of people have rated the book 4 or 5 stars with 50% of those being 5 star. Again thank you to everyone who has taken the time to do that.
A friend of mine also made a very cool book trailer for me. I just love it. Especially the blood sound effect at the end.
Now I'm off to watch the Game of Thrones finale!