Short and Sharp

Amazon Update

Well, it looks like the books are not available on Amazon US anymore, so I have emailed Amazon Australia to get them to remove them from their site.

I will let you know when I’ve heard more.

Sorry about how short and sharp this post is!

Getting exciting

Okay, so I heard back from Amazon. They are looking into taking the books down, so in anticipation of that, I’m going through Dark Dimensions before it goes to the editor.

I may also have a local cover artist, but I have also submitted Dark Dimensions to a local publisher. If I don’t hear anything back from them – up to 6 weeks – then I’ll be self-publishing with the new cover artist.

I’ll also be updating my page on Amazon with more information and, possibly, moving this over to Amazon. No decision has been made as yet, though.

On other news, I have started to make a synopsis for my ghost hunters story. So, stay tuned for that one.

Hopefully by next week I’ll have more news on the Amazon side of things!

More news

I’m still waiting to hear back about the next stage of Dark Reign, but I’m sure it won’t be long.

I have been in touch with Amazon Australia asking them to remove the other three books so that I can republish under myself. Once that’s done, I will take another look at Dark Dimensions, Heart of Deception and Legacy of Risks and update them appropriately to reflect some changes I’ve made to an earlier part of Marek’s life and some rewriting of Dark Dimensions.

Stand by for more news as it happens!


Dark Reign has been edited and I have gone through the edits – marvellous job!

It is now with the proof reader for a final check over, then we’ll take the next step. Hopefully it will be out very soon.

Keep watching this space!

Oh, and I’m over the cold finally! Yay!


I’m sorry. This week I don’t have any insights or even questions or news. And this is late.

Unfortunately, my great friend became a carer and sharer last week and shared his cold with us all. Thus, I am trying to get over this.

Okay, I do have one question – why are colds (as in cold viruses) harder to get over these days? And, no, it’s not COVID-19. I did the test! 😀

Hope everyone else is well and hope to get over this in the next few days.

Getting closer

Dark Reign is still being edited but it’s getting closer to the end. So, while we’re waiting on that, I have been working on other stuff as well.

To keep you entertained, here’s another article on different things.


A lot of people do a lot of world building before they start writing. Now, there’s nothing wrong with that, but if you’re a pantser like me, then it can be frustrating. I like to get in and grow my settings along with the story.

I remember reading somewhere – don’t ask where, i can’t remember – that you don’t need to describe every feature of every scene. All you need to do is a few pointers.

Like, if it’s important to the story line, then put it in. Such as wall colour. If it’s written as “the wall was as red as blood”, then write that one of the walls is a red wall.

In Heart of Deception, I had a street lined with Victorian style houses – now, to me, growing up in Melbourne, that describes one of North Melbourne’s streets lined with single-fronted double-storey houses – but it can also have people, especially in Perth, visualise Federation houses lined up. The main thing is that both of those visions have tall, old trees in the front of each house, parading down a wide street like they’re in a street-lined park.

So, by saying a “row of Victorian style houses” I’ve said what I wanted. I’ve also (hopefully) pointed out that the other side of the street is commercial with all the taller buildings you can think of. As this book is still on Amazon Australia, i can make change to it to enhance that before its next release.

I hope that has helped someone in their writing and/or reading endeavours.

Plodding away

Everything is still going ahead. Dark Reign is still being edited, so we’re on track there.

I have been writing other things, so I haven’t been alone but I thought I’d write in here about some of the things we do as writers.

Planning vs Pantsing vs Plantsing

So, you might have heard the term “pantsing”. You’ve probably heard the saying “flying (or driving) by the seat of their pants”. Well, pantsing is the same thing for writing. It means opening either a blank page in a notebook or computer, whichever the way you write, and putting words on the page.

Now, sometimes, as with me, those words come from a dream, which is where Dark Dimensions and Heart of Deception came from, sometimes it’s a prompt from a writing group and other times it’s just an idea either from television or from a picture. The point is, there’s nothing on the page to start with and you’re just laying words down.

This is the way I tend to write and I will write the first draft that way – because I believe it’s the characters telling me the story so that I can refine it in other drafts to tell you. But that’s for another post.

This can, however, be problematic – I will admit it. My main problem came up when I decided to explore one of my characters’ pasts. In Heart of Deception, Marek, the main character, is 25. While exploring his life between 20 and 25, I found that he’d been traumatised at the age of 22 and subjected to all 15 symptoms of emotional shock. Luckily, I had to pull Heart of Deception and Legacy of Risks from sales because of the crash of my publisher, so I have been able to rewrite scenes in those books to reflect the effect that trauma had on Marek.

For anyone interested, these stories may come out in a book of their own – sort of compiled events of Marek’s earlier adulthood.

Pantsing is an interesting way to write. It means that a story will continue for what seems a very long time before you get to the end. I know in Nanowrimo 2020 I wrote 25000 words this way in my paranormal story. Which I am now setting out ready for the second draft.

If you’re a planner rather than a pantser, then you will know your characters, setting, plot, subplots all before you start. Generally, a planner knows everything that’s going to happen in a story, right down to the twists, the supports, all the deaths are planned and everything is worked out before the first draft is even written.

You also have your characters right down – their goals, their childhood, their drives, their motivations, their education, their looks, how old they are, etc.

This can be a great way to write and you know exactly where your story is going with each word that lands on the page before you.

Now, plantsing is a mix of the two – I tend to be a little of a plantser – or I try to be. I love pantsing the first draft, but sometimes I tend to repeat information or I info dump. Thus, by planning the second draft, which is what I’m doing with my paranormal story, I can work out exactly what belongs in each chapter.

Also, by this stage, I know what my characters are like and I can write their goals, motivations, destinations, drives, everything that a character needs – even down to the clothes they wear and their looks.

So, that’s the three types of writing that I know. The knowledge I give to everyone here is – if you’re a pantser or a plantser, remember, if you explore a character’s earlier life in another piece of work, then you’ll need to check previously published works to see if you need to reflect those actions in the earlier life of the character.

My suggestion to anyone interested in writing a book? Go ahead – write it. As someone often says to me – someone out there needs that story in your head.

But if you want a “get rich quick” scheme, then don’t look at writing. With writing you have to build readers – and those readers include strangers as well as your friends. This has to be done before you even look at sales.

So, if you are driven to writing, like I am, then you’re in it for the long haul. It’s a long-term career for us and we love every minute of that career.

Lessons to be learned

So, every 2 weeks I help run a writing group in Midland, Perth. It’s a pretty loose-run group, we do a lot of yapping and about all types of subjects. (We’ve even been known to drag Stu into it at times when he’s down from the mines.)

Yesterday’s group were faced with a dilemma presented by one of the members. How to recover a corrupted file from a drive.

Now, having been in this situation on the desktop, I have finally figured various ways of getting to a version of a doc that has been auto-saved, but not saved generally – you know, what happens if the power goes out suddenly and – oh, btw, let me just pause here to save the work I’m currently in the middle of – okay, done. Back to the subject.

So, the times when the power suddenly goes off and you haven’t saved your work for a whole page or more. Win 11 gives you a few options, including opening the “start” menu and searching for the last doc in there. Now, that works perfectly (most of the time) on a desktop, but what if it’s a flash drive?

So, the story goes that the member wrote up a story on the flash drive on the laptop, but edited it on the desktop. Instead of saving it to the hard drive and then editing it, it was saved directly onto the flash drive.

Now, this is something i’ve done regularly, but in this particular instance, the file got reported as corrupted on the drive and wouldn’t allow the file to be accessed on the laptop. My suggestion ended up being to check it out on the desktop at home. hopefully the file would be on the hard drive. Can’t guarantee it.

In the end, the member accessed some of the changes on the edited file through the cloud. We still don’t know how this was done as I know I didn’t open a hotspot on my phone. I’ll have to ask the member at the next meeting.

Now, fast forward to 8.30 last night and there’s a thunderstorm rolling in from the north. I made the calculated decision to turn off my desktop, deciding that if I get woken up by a storm right on top of us, that I would unplug the machine.

Just to be on the safe side, I emailed my current WIP to myself. Just in case.

Suffice it to say, but we must always be careful when saving our work. If you don’t want to lose it, then save it at least once a day in more than one location – especially if those changes are dramatic and cannot be repeated. Email the work to yourself in a word processing document, save it to the cloud, if you trust the cloud, save it in a different file on your hard drive, save it to a back up drive and, as long as you do those things, save it also to a flash drive. One of those options should work for you.

And remember – save as often as you can. Because unlike writing by hand, such as the classic writers did, electronic files can disappear into the aether never to be seen again!

Last days of heat – we think

So, I’m sitting here waiting for the vegetables and rice for a rice salad to finish (now cooling), then I’m going to go and veg out in the spa for a short time.

Yes, we have another hot day in paradise. I wonder why that’s the reason I can’t write snow storms?

Dark Reign’s editing is coming along nicely. Once that’s done, I will get proof readers to go over it and then work out the size so that we can get the word count for the cover art.

I have done an unusual thing – I say it’s last minute heat. I have entered a competition. It’s not a very lucrative competition, but it’s a competition all the same. Of course, if I do happen to get a prize out of it, it’ll go toward membership for another year. The competition is Kathryn Suzannah Pritchard’s Spooky story – After Dark and for those who have read the few stories I’ve put up about Nina and Sam Mitchell, it is one of their stories that I’ve put forward.

For anyone who read my short story “Enhanced War”, I have started expanding that and it seems to be gathering strength. Although there is some work to be done as I go with that one.

I have also got the main story of Nina and Sam to almost 58k words and I’ve started looking at that as a whole, so that’s been some fun.

Other than that, there’s not a lot to say! Apart from sorry I’m late yet again!