Back To Normal (Almost)

And by ‘normal’ I mean me procrastinating over writing Book 4 of The Modest Proposal Institute series. In theory, I could write 1,000 words per day and be finished in 50 days. In  practice I write a thousand words, ‘unwrite’ 900 words, and then add another 300 words I’ll ‘unwrite’ tomorrow. As I’ve said before, this authoring business isn’t for the fainthearted. It takes a million words to turn out a 50k word novel. What is particularly annoying is I have great ideas for my NEXT book when what I need is more great ideas for this one.

Equally annoying is the slow progress on getting my aunt’s World War 2 diary finished. Amazon and I have been working at cross purposes on the paperback version for some time now, which has meant revising and re-uploading even the ebook version. However, an Author Copy of the paperback is winging its way to me even as we speak and, provided there are no obvious problems with it, I should be finished with this book by the middle of next week.  For those of you interested in buying any of my books, you can find them at my Amazon Author Page. Read them all with a nice cup of tea or coffee:-)

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Writing Ups and Downs (Continued)

Recently, I wrote a post on the trials and tribulations of being an author. I concluded by saying the problems were fixed and I’d soon have my aunt’s diary published. It hasn’t turned out that way. Amazon’s checking systems didn’t like the difference between my title inside the book, the book’s metadata, and the title on the book cover. The differences were my mistakes, not their’s but it set me back a week and required me to re-publish the ebook and the paperback  in order to make them the same. This I’ve done and the ebook is ‘approved’. I’m now waiting for the paperback to also be approved (hoping I really have everything the same this time:-) and I’ll be ready.

Book 4, and probably the last book in The Modest Proposal Institute series, is making slow, but steady, progress, even though I’m still making changes to the story outline — more ups and downs of the writing life. Writing is murder in the modern world, I can’t imagine what it must have been like when it was all done with paper and ink. I’d have needed all the trees in Canada turned into paper to write one novel. Lucky for the environment I’m writing now and lucky for the trees most people buy ebooks today when so many books are being written and read, And on that note, if you haven’t already, visit my Author Page and buy, buy, buy. This is the Black Friday/Cyber Monday Weekend, after all.

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Writing Ups and Downs

Last week, I told you how close I was to publishing my aunt’s diary. I was excited at being so close to completion! Since then, I haven’t received anything from the formatter or had a response to my anxious queries. I hope he’s just on vacation.

I was also upbeat about the next instalment of my series. But Book 4 of The Modest Proposal Institute is also proving harder to write than I’d hoped. In fact, I had more ideas and words for Book 5 than I had for Book 4. Book 5 was supposed to be the end of the series but I have a ‘gap’ in time that’s hard to fill without making up stuff just to fill it. (I know — that’s what authors are supposed to do, invent stuff:-). Anyhow, instead of inventing filler, I’ve started reworking my ‘Story Arc’ to merge Books 4 and 5; that way the reader will have enough interesting incidents to satisfy them. With luck, I won’t need to re-write everything I’ve written:-(

And on that cheerful note, I’ll close this post and invite you to pick up Books 1 to 3 on my Amazon Author Page.

Modest Proposal Institute FACEBOOK and TWITTER TEASER

Aunt’s WW2 Diary Update

Book 4 of The Modest Proposal Institute is still being written and it’s hard to find any late breaking news to report so I’ll give an update on my other book project instead. You can, of course, get books 1 – 3 at my Author Page on Amazon.

The formatter returned the ebook file of ‘1939 – 1945 DIARY AND RECOLLECTIONS OF SARAH ANNIE JACKSON’ and I’ve read it through. I sent back a list of changes on Friday and I hope to see the ebook and paperback files returned very soon. With luck, I’ll have it self-published on Amazon ready to give to the older members of the family for Christmas, which was my intention. It looks like I got the scheduling just right (he said while crossing his fingers, arms, toes, legs etc).

My Aunt’s diary isn’t a book that I’ll be advertising to the world. Beyond our family (and even then only the older members who can remember Annie), the only interested people might be nursing archives, library archives, wartime archives, and local history archives, which is kind of sad.  The upside is, once the book is in those archives, Annie will live on longer than was possible from just my, and her family’s, memory.

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Book 4 Continues

Last week’s post talked about my ‘memoir’ book that I’ve been putting together from my aunt’s wartime diary and her speaking notes. The file and photos for that book are now with the formatter and a cover designer has provided some options to choose from, which I’ve done so that should be ready very soon. All of this is a slow way to say, I now have time and I’m back working on book 4 of The Modest Proposal Institute.

As is usual for me, I have an ending written and some of the middle but I’m struggling to start the story in an engaging way. The ‘hook’, that great opening sequence that draws the reader in, eludes me once again. I’m told the difference between an amateur and a professional writer is that the pro is just an amateur that doesn’t give up. If so, I’m a professional but not yet being rewarded like one:-)

If you’d like to help out with a small reward, check out my Amazon Author page and buy a book. This author would be very grateful.

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Some Light Relief Writing

Back home and back to authorial work, writing the as yet unnamed book 4 of The Modest Proposal Institute. I’m at the stage where I have lots of ideas but little idea on how to write them down. Anyhow, the way I deal with this is to write them all down in the hope some of the words will still be there when I’m finished.

While I’ve been getting started on book 4, I’ve also been putting the finishing touches to a separate project I’ve worked on, well on and off, for many years. It’s a book based on my aunt’s wartime diary and the speaking notes she used in a lecture she gave some years after the war. My aunt served as a nurse with the British 8th Army, working with wounded soldiers all the way from North Africa, through the invasion of Sicily and Italy, until the end of the war. My contribution has been to research the war and add some context of what was happening around my aunt during that time.

My aunt’s diary is now with a formatter so I’m hopeful it will soon be self-published. I’m not expecting anyone to buy this book, it will only be circulated to family members who remember our aunt or may have an interest in a long dead family member. However, I’ve enjoyed doing it because non-fiction has a lot to recommend it. There are no plot lines left hanging, for example, or characters who won’t behave as the story requires them to do. Historical events, if you don’t try to analyze or explain them, are just stated and that’s that. For a fiction author, this almost feels like a vacation:-)

Meanwhile, for those who haven’t quite gotten round to buying it, Rival Institutes is available on Amazon. You can buy it here.

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Home Again

This time last week we were in Italy, as I mentioned in my post. All good things come to an end and now we’re home recovering — and catching up on social media, emails, etc, etc.

I’ve even started on book 4 of The Modest Proposal Institute so it comes out in better time than book 3, Rival Institutes, did. I can’t promise it will because I started well with book 3 and found it harder to write than I thought it was going to be so I’m not making any wild predictions on when book 4 will be out:-)

So, while you wait for book 4, and I recover from the jet lag, please buy books 1, 2, and 3, if you haven’t already. If you have, you have the grateful thanks of this author.

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Post From Italy

I’ve been away from the Internet for some weeks, which is very pleasant actually, so there hasn’t been a post since the Rival Institutes publishing day. Today, however, I have access to the web and an opportunity to post from Livorno in Italy. I feel very cosmopolitan just saying that:-)

Livorno is an ancient port city in Tuscany but there’s very little left of the old, sadly. It’s still a very busy working port so no time for all that history and anyway, you can get to Florence (Firenze) and Pisa quickly from here so that’s what everyone does, basically. We had a quiet time walking between the Old Fort and the New Fort along the main streets watching the locals and listening to the Sunday church bells. Next week, I’ll be back to doing the regular Indie Author things, like writing another post.

For those of you coming to this site for the first time, Rival Institutes is Book 3 of The Modest Proposal Institute series and you can find them all at my Amazon Author Page here.


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Rival Institutes Published!!!

Book 3 of The Modest Proposal Institute, Rival Institutes, went ‘Live’ on Amazon last night. You can get your copy here.

For those of you following the story, all of you I hope, it’s FREE for the next three days (Sep 26-28) so be sure to pick up a copy then — or buy it after to help out the author:-)

Rival Institutes looks at events from Tomas and Nadia’s perspective, which is why they feature on the cover, as well as the regular Alexis and Shane characters and time is moving on as the Western World’s collapse intensifies.

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Final Steps

Book 3 of The Modest Proposal Institute, Rival Institutes, is almost complete. I have two of the three files back from the formatting folks with one more to come tomorrow.  I planned to publish on Tuesday so all is going to schedule — saying that, makes me feel a bit like the evil criminal mastermind in a Bond movie.

For those of you who’ve read books 1 and 2, and are waiting eagerly for this one, be sure to buy it on Amazon on Sep 25 and 26 when it will be at an introductory price of $0.99. If you do, please write and post a review when you’ve read the book. Just two or three sentences saying how great it is and how awesome the author is (just kidding, honesty is best:-), that’s all that’s needed. Doing so really helps us Indie Authors get a start in our writing careers.

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