Tweeting and writing

Posted on July 21, 2009 (Subscribe to Blog)

I got back from vacation a few days ago, a week-long trip to Virginia that included a 2-day stay in Washington D.C. I took my computer but didn't use it once, partly because we had no wi-fi internet. It should have been a perfect time to write, but somehow it didn't happen. Vacations are tiring.

Before I left to go on vacation, I opened a Twitter account. I've heard that Twitter is great for selling books and generally getting the word out, but honestly I think the whole idea of Twitter is silly. Who cares if someone you've never met is having a coffee or heading to work at that precise moment? I just don't get it. But I opened an account anyway, and started searching for people to follow. Naturally I searched for "authors" and in particular "children's/YA authors" and soon began to follow a few of these. One looks interesting – he posts mainly about writing-related matters, maybe once or twice a day. Another seems to post every few minutes and the result is a long list of seemingly irrelevant comments. That's someone I'm going to stop following shortly. But on the plus side, through Twitter I've already found an author with a new book – so in theory people will find my book through Twitter too, as long as I post something "meaningful" every so often and try to build a list of followers.

My Twitter profile is http://twitter.com/unearthlytales if anyone is interested.

Someone asked me what else I had written other than Island of Fog. Well, several things. On my Enid Blyton website I have a full-length mystery novel, The Mystery of the Stolen Books. It's fan fic, written (hopefully) in a similar style to the original author, and of a similar length. But, apart from a few short stories that have appeared on various websites, most of what I've written is on my computer, as yet unseen by anyone else. A quick summary:

Flying Saucer in the Woods is finished and actually published, but for my viewing only. It's a complete story, fairly short, and the first of many. The printed book is sitting in front of me on my desk, but I don't plan to make this available to the public just yet; I want to write two more in the series first, so that I can launch Books 1, 2 and 3 in one go.

Quincy's Curse is perhaps my most promising unfinished novel, although I'm struggling with it a little. I thought it would be neat to tell a story where each chapter is from a different viewpoint. The story follows the two main characters, but as they travel from place to place, so the viewpoint shifts to secondary characters that they meet along the way. This method is working great, but the story is difficult to tell, hence the "struggle" mentioned above. Quincy is a boy who seems unable to avoid extreme good or bad luck falling on him. For example, he might find a bag of treasure lying in the grass, only to lose it in a freak accident moments later. The story involves dragons, an incompetent knight, a cyclops, a few mermaids, a wizard with a door that opens at random anywhere in the land, a genie in a bottle, the creepy red-legged scissor man, and more once I get done.

I love the idea of Bubble World, another unfinished novel, but I don't like the way I've written it. I wrote it with adult characters, and for some reason it just doesn't work for me. I might try and rewrite it with younger characters in mind. I think the reason I don't like it is because older characters bring with them "baggage" from real life, such as rent and bills and cars and jobs and so on. Kids don't have any of that boring stuff. Anyway, the bubble world of the title is... well, I shouldn't say, lest someone steal my idea!!

Unearthly Tales is intended to be a collection of short stories featuring, well, unearthly tales. I'm not certain yet whether the collection will be in the form of totally independent stories, or the same characters involved in different cases. Right now I'm veering towards the latter, and in fact it's looking like a novel split into "parts" where each part is a different unearthly event. As an example, the first part is where the main character, Logan, and his chubby friend Billy, meet Madison – a very strange girl indeed. Logan first meets her as she's struggling through a hedge in the park holding a sheet of paper. On the paper is scrawled a cryptic message which she apparently wrote herself the previous evening and is now struggling to make sense of it. This naturally (or unnaturally) leads to the ground opening up and short, bald people from another dimension coming through.

I have another full-length novel, The Secret of Gromble Gorge, about a girl named Rebecca Tinklepott (hehe) who meets a young dragon. Unlike most people, Rebecca can understand the dragon's language perfectly. She also has a terrible secret, which is revealed as the story progresses. This is one of my earliest novels, and is complete except that if I read it again today I'd probably edit just about everything. I like the general plot and idea though, and may do something with it in the future. I would probably change the dragon to some other creature, as dragons have been done to death!

I have other pieces that I started years ago, but nothing worth mentioning as they'll probably never go anywhere. One thing at a time – Labyrinth of Fire is my only project right now. And, of course, promoting Island of Fog.

Comment by MING on Wednesday, July 22, 2009...

An interesting lot of stories! It would be great to read them. :-)

Comment by ANONYMOUS on Wednesday, July 22, 2009...

It was nice of you to reply. So many books! I hope you make them all available to the public later on... they sound wonderful.

Comment by DAN on Wednesday, August 4, 2010...

I agree with anonymous

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