Reading in Bed episode 5

RIB5

Episode 5 of Reading in Bed is now here.

This month we reviewed poetry and fiction.

We discussed mixing fairy-tales with zombies, and I talked about a book I hated and why. As (possibly) the last two people on the planet who hadn’t read The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, Andy and I both read and reviewed the book. You’ll have to listen to hear our thoughts on the book though, or to find out about the reply I had on Twitter from the author.

See the list of books and the podcast below.

Remember, if you are a writer we may be interested in reviewing your book. We just ask for a free copy, either in print or as a PDF. We can’t promise to feature all books received on the podcast. If for whatever reason we can’t fit yours in, we will write a review on Amazon (or another platform if you prefer).

Contact me through my website.

http://amandasteelwriter.simplesite.com/439723719

 

This month’s books

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time – Mark Haddon

?

Guilt Game – L.J Sellers

Plague: The Tale of Sleeping Beauty – Mark Mackey

Sending a Drunk Text Whilst Sober – Simon Widdop

 

 

Advertisements

Kindle Scout update

THE DESTINY INITIATIVE

 

I Posted on my blog at the start of my Kindle Scout campaign. That post can be found HERE. Unfortunately, Kindle Scout didn’t choose my book as one of the lucky few to publish. So for anyone who is considering trying Kindle Scout in the hope of publishing their book, I’ll tell you what I tried as part of my campaign. Although they don’t seem to select books just on votes alone, I’m guessing it plays a part in their decision. So you’ll probably need to do more than I did to stand a chance.

I started off well by tagging everyone I thought might vote for me in a Facebook post, as well as posting to Twitter and my Facebook author page. This got me in the hot and trending category for five hours.

The few days following that I was short on ideas, other than reposting on social. I didn’t want to sound like I thought I was the next JK Rowling by contacting newspapers and the media in general and saying the should interview me/write about me etc.

I did contact a local newspaper hoping they could help, but they ignored me. After that I asked two people I know from local radio stations and they were kind enough to give my book a plug three times between the two of them. One of them even read out an extract of the book. I read out an extract myself at two different spoken word events in an attempt to get votes.

I was also interviewed by a podcaster and had a handful of people who shared my requests for votes.

So the bottom line is, you probably need a large following and/or lots of contacts who can publicise your Kindle Scout campaign for you, or maybe just a more supportive local newspaper.

Despite Kindle Scout not picking my book, I will be self publishing it and the release date is 15th May. Follow the links below if you want to pre-order it.

Alternatively, I will be running a competition to win PDF copies and possibly even a paperback copy. More details on that to follow at a later date.

US link

UK link

Kindle scout campaign – day 3 update

poster

I’m now into day three of my Kindle Scout campaign and already beginning to wonder why I ever though this would be a good idea. I had ideas for who to ask for votes. Unfortunately, I used up the majority of those ideas on day one. The excitement of been “hot and trending” for an entire five hours has now gone. My book slipped back down into obscurity.

So, what now? I could contact a local radio station and try not to sound too big-headed as I ask them if they would like to interview me. If I do that, I should probably do it soon, as there’s only 27 days of my campaign left. I could have contacted them earlier but there was no way of knowing if my book would be approved. For anyone considering Kindle Scout, you should know that they give you two days notice before your campaign goes live, if it is approved.

I have more things to try on social media and I will writing my progress of lack of it on here.

For anyone who might want to vote for me, I’ll tell you a little about the book and my inspiration for it.

I’ve written and self-published before, but like many writers I want to be able to say I’ve been published. I was trying to have a lie in one Sunday morning, back in October 2016 and the idea came to me for my book, First Charge, the first is a three part series of YA books.. It was obvious I wasn’t going to get any sleep and I had to start writing down the ideas as they came into my head. I had other projects I was working on and told myself I would start it in the new years. I started it in November instead, it just kept nagging me to write it.

Meredith (the main character) is descended from Mermaids, although she’s not a mermaid (or at least not at the start of the story) and Theo is descended from shape shifters. The two of them and others who are also descendants of mythical creatures are either destined to be part of the Destiny Initiative or The Destroyers. The prologue explains a little about what each side does. The short version is one side protects people with important destinies. The other side tries to stop them.

I enjoyed writing the book and exploring both sides, because each side had some valid points. Though as Meredith hints towards further in the book, if you’re saving the world, what kind of world do you want it to be? I definitely lean more towards her viewpoint that there has to be something worth saving.

Here’s the link if you want to read more and maybe vote while you’re there.

https://kindlescout.amazon.com/p/3LNFS6YEHHYC9

 

The Loney (my thoughts)

Last Christmas I asked for and received a copy of The Loney by Andrew Michael Hurley. This book was the 2015 Costa first novel winner. The other thing that interested me about the book is it was originally published through an independent publisher.

As a writer trying to achieve success, I was curious to read and maybe see if there was some kind of winning formula to writing a book that could be taken on by a big publisher and then go on to win awards.

The first few pages are taken up with positive reviews and praise from the likes of Stephen King, SFX Magazine and The Guardian.

Maybe that’s why I was expecting great things and possibly even some kind of inspiration for what I could do in my own writing to achieve success. I have to admit I was a little disappointed. For me, the first 100 pages contained very little plot or action, rather than being suspenseful or building up tension as some reviewers on Goodreads stated. Obviously Stephen King knows what he’s doing with his own writing and his review inside the book states that this is an amazing piece of fiction.

I just didn’t think the same way. It was readable and I didn’t have to force myself too much to keep on reading like I had to with a few of the self-published books I had tried to get through before reading The Loney, but it didn’t excite me. I’ve read books that I know I’ve enjoyed because I’ve looked forward to reading more. This wasn’t like that for me. I thought there was a lot of religion and that bored me in places. I can see the author either knows a lot about the subject or did a lot of research. The only thing I can really take from it is research is important because it was convincing. It wasn’t of interest to me though.

I was also confused by the ending and wasn’t sure what had even happened. That could just be me. Maybe I prefer a simpler read. I think whether you write something clever or more basic, there’s a market for both. As for gaining recognition and winning awards it’s probably more complex than that. There’s no guaranteed winning formula. There might be things that make a book more likely to win an award, but it depends if you want to write something you choose and enjoy writing or try to copy books that have been successful, but you might not enjoy writing as much.

I’d still recommend the book, especially to other writers just to have a read and see what they think.

The blurb for The Loney is

Two brothers. One mute, the other his lifelong protector.

Year after year, their family visits the same sacred shrine on a desolate strip of coastline known as the Loney, in desperate hope of a cure.

In the long hours of waiting, the boys are left alone. And they cannot resist the causeway revealed with every turn of the treacherous tide, the old house they glimpse at its end . . .

Many years on, Hanny is a grown man no longer in need of his brother’s care.

But then the child’s body is found.

And the Loney always gives up its secrets, in the end.

Halloween reads- zombies and witches

picmonkey-collage

If you’re looking for something to read in time for Halloween and zombies are your thing, “Not Human” is now available in eBook and paperback. If witches are more your thing, “The Last Witches” the final book is the Hope and Magic trilogy is available to pre-order in eBook format. The release date is 30th October, so just in time for Halloween.


The Last Witches

Hope has almost completed her destiny, with just a few witches left in the world. She must strip the remaining witches of their power, but her emotions begin to get in the way. Her resentment over Ritchie’s death, results in her putting not only her own world, but a parallel world at risk.

Meanwhile, Carl struggles to redeem himself for killing Hope’s parents while under the influence of a witch’s cursed bracelet. He thinks he doesn’t deserve to be forgiven and is almost ready to let the world end, if it means he can die with it.

Buy on Amazon UK

Buy on Amazon US


Not Human

The sequel to After the zombies. Although it can be read as a standalone book.

What can you do when zombies are everywhere? Aiming for the head is the easy part. The real challenges are distinguishing zombies from humans and knowing which humans to trust.

Not learning their lesson from the Manchester outbreak, the government are still intent on creating a more compliant race. It looks like they will keep trying until they get it right, or until humanity is completely wiped out, whichever happens first.

Grace knows she carries the cure. She knows she can’t become one of them, but that doesn’t mean she can’t be affected if she is bitten. Some things are worse than death. Sometimes having to face yourself, is worse than facing the monsters and other times, it’s hard to tell the difference.

Buy on Amazon UK

Buy on Amazon US

Not Human – out now

bookcover_final1

 

If you’ve enjoyed reading “After the zombies” and want to know what happens next, the sequel, “Not Human” is out now and available to buy in eBook format HERE

 


Blurb

The sequel to After the zombies. Although it can be read as a standalone book.

What can you do when zombies are everywhere? Aiming for the head is the easy part. The real challenges are distinguishing zombies from humans and knowing which humans to trust.

Not learning their lesson from the Manchester outbreak, the government are still intent on creating a more compliant race. It looks like they will keep trying until they get it right, or until humanity is completely wiped out, whichever happens first.

Grace knows she carries the cure. She knows she can’t become one of them, but that doesn’t mean she can’t be affected if she is bitten. Some things are worse than death. Sometimes having to face yourself, is worse than than facing the monsters and other times, it’s hard to tell the difference.


 

If you haven’t read “After the zombies”  you still have until 28 September, before I delete the free chapters on here and Wattpad

 

Reading Recommendations – Podcast

Here is a link to my first monthly podcast, looking at books and authors who you may never have heard of, but are deserving of a read.

https://soundcloud.com/amanda-steel-339669860/amandas-reading-recommendations

 

 

Here are the links the books mentioned in my podcast and social media profiles

K.A Lentz

The Reaper Realm by K.A Lentz

Facebook page

Twitter

Pinterest

Tumblr




Zoltán Pósfai

The Witchhunter: Red Shadow

Goodreads

Amazon author page

Twitter


Jessica Majzner

Beyond the Veil

Twitter

Wattpad

Goodreads

Facebook