Monday, 24 December 2012

One Last One for Kindle Users

If, as Mark Coker promised many places, he finally lets me submit ePub files of the Fall of the Sea People series to Smashwords, that means that in the New Year they will be going off Kindle Prime. They will still be available to download from Amazon, but I won't be able to run offers anymore.

With this in mind, there will be one, count them, one free giveaway of Venus and the Sea People on Amazon. It will start on January 1st and go through to January 5th. It is unlikely ever to be repeated, so if you think you know anyone who would benefit, please tell them.

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Here Comes the New Year

I've been thinking about what I want to do in 2013.

I'm working on Jove and the Sea People, of course, and having great fun with it. I should certainly get that out in 2013, and it would be nice to get Saturn and the Sea People out too. Two in one year will be hard work, but I will do my best.

Before I made the decision to start publishing my work, I did a lot of writing. I have two complete first-drafts lying around on my computer, both set in a historical fantasy series. My test-readers suggested that they would prefer that I started with the pre-historical story, but I have started to work with my editor to get the first one ready for publication, probably in the new year of 2014. The working title is "To Sail Atlantis", and it's a Sixteenth-Century adventure of exploration, piracy and revenge, with a background of ancient evil and one or two characters from the Fall of the Sea People.

There will also be short stories, and if Mark Coker comes through with his promise to allow direct ePub submissions, or if one of his rivals makes a serious attempt to eat his lunch, then there will be books on other ereaders too.

Lastly one of my competition winners asked me for a quotation or two that has helped to inspire my writing. Now I quoted Fort and Solomon, both of whom have inspired me, but it occurred to me that many of my inspirations are not writers. So I will attempt to describe some of the things that have inspired me, and try and describe why and what I saw in them. I will start with an artist who lived and worked about three and a half millenia ago.

Thank-you, Amber, for getting me thinking about that.

Sunday, 9 December 2012

One for Kindle Users

My short story "Essence: a Short Story of Romance, Scientific Magic and Poisoning" is on free promotion on Kindle. Also, "Venus and the Sea People", the first volume of my fantasy, is on 99c/99p promotion for the rest of the year.

If you know someone who might enjoy these, please let them know.

Monday, 26 November 2012

Monday, 19 November 2012

I've been updating my website with the cover art for "Hermes and the Sea People", which should be available November 30th.

Click here. Receive cover-art.

I've also added some notes on the third volume, Jove and the Sea People. I'm about 1/3 of the way through the first draft, and I am really enjoying writing it.

Monday, 5 November 2012

In the News

First I got a mention in the Roscommon Herald.

Then I won a short story competition in the Berkshire Woman and Family Magazine.

I feel pleased with my month.

Friday, 10 August 2012

Writing in the Dark Ages

One question I have often asked myself is how I would have survived as a writer before computers.

The way I write is to imagine the scenes in a story, and write a sentence describing each one, then arrange these. I then go through picking the scenes that I am in the mood to write on any given day. When they are all written I get together with my editor and, if we agree on the structure, it gets copy-edited and we're done.

Having a computer means I can write those notes and scenes in the order they happen in the story's internal timeline, and then weave them together to suit the needs of dramatic structure. Having a computer linked to a mobile phone means I can take those notes when ideas occur to me, even when I am out travelling?

So how did writers do it before computers? Well, Joe Haldeman offered a link to a page which gives some insight. Nabokov apparently used index cards. What is more, he used them in the car.

I still prefer my computer, though.

Thursday, 12 July 2012

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Book Giveaway 12 July 2012

To celebrate the 28th birthday of Amanda Hocking, the patron saint of independent publishing, I am giving away my short story, "Essence" on Amazon (ASIN B008C253DC). The giveaway will be enabled whenever Amazon realise it is the 12th, which will probably be sometime after 0700 GMT, since their computers keep Pacific Time.

If you missed it last time, this is your opportunity.

Monday, 18 June 2012

Midsummer Giveaway

To celebrate the Day of Midsummer, I am giving away my latest Amazon publication, Essence. I suspect Amazon keep Pacific Time, so depending on where you live the offer may start on the 19th or the 21st, but for 24 hours, it will be free.

Watch this space.

Sunday, 17 June 2012

Short Story on Kindle

I have put my short story, "Essence", on kindle: ASIN B008C253DC. It is a modern tale of scientific research, but with fairy-tale romance behind the science fiction.

I have set the price at the absolute minimum Amazon permit, but I'm also going to set it for free giveaways from time to time.

I hope you enjoy it.

Saturday, 9 June 2012

Strandhill Summerfest 2012

I've been invited to speak at a forum on the new publishing technologies at Órfhlaith ní Chonaill's Strandhill Summerfest 2012.

If you are a writer living in the West of Ireland, I'd certainly recommend it: not because you want to hear me talk about making kindle books or print-on-demand, but because Órfhlaith runs such inspiring workshops for writers of all levels.

Having been along to her regular monthly writing workshops, I'm really looking forward to this.

Friday, 18 May 2012


One of the interesting things about watching the whole "indie publishing" thing has been seeing what other authors are doing to "promote" their work. There are several places where readers gather and authors make themselves known, set out their stall. Kindleboards is an obvious example: GoodReads is another. A less obvious place is Amazon itself.

How obvious it is depends on how the site works, but all of these places are flooded with "indie" authors like me, hustling for sales. In every one of these sites, hustling for sales is severely restricted or outright banned, so the authors find less direct ways to promote.

The obvious one is lots of social networking. They spend a long time on the discussion boards (or groups, or whatever they are called) chatting about other works in their chosen genre, or about completely unrelated matters, in the hopes that someone will be their friend and buy their books. Maybe it works.

There are other ways of promoting, too. And I'm not doing them.

You see, I think my readers would rather I concentrated on what they like: my writing.

And the people that are yet to discover me? It would be better if, when they discover me, they have more to discover.

I'm sure I will get around to more serious promotion. But I'm going to write a whole lot more first.

Thursday, 17 May 2012

Small Moves

Last night I passed the 90,000 word mark on Book 2, "Hermes and the Sea People." So the first draft is a couple of chapters from being done.

Also, Rachael at my publisher, Cnoc Mhuilinn, has added a buy button to my website. You can order "Venus and the Sea People" in trade paperback, and if you wish I will sign it for you when I am next in their office.

Friday, 13 April 2012

Fly! Be Free!

I have put a copy of my book into the giant public-domain library that is BookCrossing. It's initially going out as a BookRay, which is a list of people who want to read it, kind of like a chain-letter - except that instead of sending money, you get to read books.

To get on the list you put your name down, PM me your address, and are added to a list. When it's your turn, the last person mails the book to you. And when you've read it, you mail it to the next person on the list.

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Website Overhaul

Fixed a few things: added a page and blurb for volume 2, Hermes and the Sea People; contact, download and store pages; and a Kindle sample containing the prologue and the first four chapters. Oh, and I posted a drabble I wrote a few years ago onto GoodReads.

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Free Stuff

Goodreads are giving away a copy of my book. They also have the first four chapters as a free download.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Venus and the Sea People by Henry Hallan

Venus and the Sea People

by Henry Hallan

Giveaway ends April 01, 2012.

See the giveaway details at Goodreads.

Enter to win

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Launch Day

Today is launch day for the paperback edition. The ISBN hasn't propagated across the Atlantic yet, so although you can order it from bookshops in the UK, you can't order it from bookstores in the USA. The lovely people at Bowker are working on it as we speak. I'm working on a buy link on my website so you can get autographed copies. Watch this space.

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

T minus 7 and counting...

Seven days until the paperback launch. And Amazon are already taking pre-orders, which suddenly changes things from "oh, someday soon" to a committed deadline. If someone orders it, we'd better have product to send them! And we will: my lovely editor has been doing a wonderful job of checking the internal layout, and everything should be ready (just) in time.

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Publish! (And Be Damned?)

So the first volume of "The Fall of the Sea People" is on Kindle.

I am working on a genuine squashed-trees edition, possibly for sale from my own website. It should also be available through normal book distribution channels, but the advantage of buying it from the website would be that I could autograph it before shipping it.

The disadvantage would be that I would have to post it from Ireland: possibly adding €5 or so to the cover price (€12.99 in shops, so maybe €18 or so in total.)

If you think you would be interested in a squashed-trees edition, signed by my fair hand, please add a comment to let me know.