I try and post about this initiative every year. Last year I wrote about how important eBooks were to me in the early days of my career (they still are today). When we’re talking about eBooks, the conversation often focuses on how convenient they are, usually culminating in a debate between those who’ll read in any format, and those who insist on print. There’s no right or wrong answer, and I still do everything I can to give my readers the choice of how you want to read (or listen) to my books.
But there’s another facet of eBooks that often goes unspoken, and that’s how accessible they are to authors. There must be thousands, maybe hundreds of thousands of novels that have been released electronically over the last couple of decades which would otherwise have remained unread. It makes you wonder how many magnificent pieces of work have been lost over the years because they didn’t appeal to the right publisher, editor, or agent at the right time.
It’s less than three weeks now until AUTUMN: INFERNO is released. I thought you might like to read an excerpt. The book opens with an army of survivors setting out to reclaim the streets of London from the dead – the battle of Wapping. Click the link below to read it.
It’s my last afternoon in the office before I pause for Christmas and the New Year, so I thought I’d take this opportunity to wish everyone the very best for the upcoming holidays. We’ve all had a difficult couple of years, and whilst I don’t think for a second that we’ll be completely out of the woods in 2022, I’m cautiously optimistic that – if we can hold ourselves together and resist the urge to dive down media-fuelled, conspiracy theory laden rabbit holes – things will start to improve.
Before I disappear I’d like to share an offer, a reminder, and a recommendation.
The recommendation – have you seen ANNA AND THE APOCALYPSE? It’s the best Scottish Christmas zombie musical I’ve ever seen. Cheesy as hell, but a lot of gory fun and it’s well worth a watch. The trailer is below and if you’re in the UK, you can stream the movie now on Amazon Prime.
There’s lots of good stuff coming up from me, so I hope to see you soon in 2022. In the meantime, Happy Holidays!
So, one final read through then the next AUTUMN book – INFERNO – will be sent to my editor, and pre-orders for the limited edition hardcover will open. What better time to reveal the cover. The marvellous CRAIG PATON has knocked it out of the park again.
Very excited for you to read this one. More details will be revealed asap. If you bought the limited edition hardcover of AUTUMN: DAWN, check your inbox in the next couple of weeks for your link to pre-order book two.
I finished the bulk of the writing of the next book in the AUTUMN series earlier this week. I have a couple of weeks work left before I send AUTUMN: INFERNO to my editor, but I wanted to break cover and give you an update. Here’s a very brief blurb to set the scene:
There are now more than three hundred people grouped together on the banks of the Thames in the shadows of the Tower of London. On one side, the river. In all other directions, nothing but the dead.
If they can make it through winter, they’ll have a shot at long-term survival, but with so many mouths to feed, food is at a premium. They have no choice but to scavenge through the ruins of London to survive, but with every street they clear, every building they strip, they risk enraging the vast hordes of the undead that have them surrounded.
It’s a delicate balancing act: stave off starvation while doing everything possible to avoid an all out war.
But there may be another option…
As I announced in my most recent newsletter, there will again be a limited edition hardcover. First refusal will go to folks who ordered the AUTUMN: DAWN hardcover (you’ll even get the same number if you order book two!), and I plan to open pre-orders in November. I don’t know if I’ve ever explained – these limited editions aren’t a cash cow. I guess they’re my alternative to Kickstarter and other crowdfunding solutions. The proceeds from the limited editions fund the production of the book – the editing, the cover, the interior design etc. I think it’s a win-win approach. I can fund the production of each new release, and supporters get something unique. With THE LONDON TRILOGY, that means bonus content you can’t read anywhere else, and early access to an ebook version of the novel ahead of publication.
One final update, and that’s about the book’s release date. Non-work related factors have knocked me off course recently (work on the house that lasted 4 weeks instead of 1, immediately followed by a flooded office), so I’m reluctantly pushing publication back a month to make sure the release is exactly how I want it and avoid it getting lost in the chaos of the holiday season. Current ETA is now TUESDAY 25 JANUARY 2022.
I hope by now that you’ve had chance to listen to the audiobook version of AUTUMN: DAWN. I think it’s my favourite audio adaptation of any of my novels, and the reason for that is my brilliant narrator, AUBREY PARSONS. He’s done an absolutely stunning job of bringing the mass of characters that inhabit my dystopian AUTUMN world to life.
I thought it would be fun to ask Aubrey a few questions about his narration, to offer a glimpse into the huge amount of work that goes into producing audiobooks. It’s definitely not just a case of sitting down in front of a microphone and reading a novel out from cover to cover! First of all, I asked Aubrey how he got into the world of audiobook narration.
AP: I was a professional singer for 20 years. I spent a lot of that time working away and travelling the globe. It meant that I didn’t get to see much of my family and I had absolutely no social life. I did get to see a lot of the world and meet a lot of wonderful people but the toll it took on my social life and family eventually got to me. So, I decided to try something different. Since I already have my own small recording studio at home, I decided that maybe voiceover work was the way forward. I searched the Internet and found a couple of different courses and trained myself up to become a voice actor. I’ve always loved listening to audiobooks so it seemed to be the natural progression to work on them myself.
Obviously one of the most prolific suppliers of audio books in the world is AUDIBLE so I looked at their website and found out how I could become a producer for them. it took around three years for me to get myself trained and build a database of authors that I could work with to make things worthwhile. Then COVID came along which in a weird kind of way gave me the perfect opportunity to concentrate fully on my voiceover work. Everything happens for a reason I guess!
I asked Aubrey how he approaches narration. Does he read the book first, or just dive straight in?
I’m pleased to announce that the AUTUMN: DAWN audiobook is now available from Audible, Amazon, and Apple. The book is expertly narrated by AUBREY PARSONS and I have a number of copies to give away, courtesy of Audible. Read on to find out how to get your hands (ears) on one.
I don’t tend to mark that many book anniversaries, but I noticed that the US release of AUTUMN: PURIFICATION is ten years old today. It’s frightening how fast the time passes. Even more frightening to think that the original Infected Books edition of the novel was released seven years earlier still. It feels like just five minutes ago.
I have a lot to thank PURIFICATION for. I learnt so much about writing while I was working on that book. The initial success of AUTUMN and then AUTUMN: THE CITY caught me off guard, and PURIFICATION was the first novel I wrote with the pressure of knowing that people were waiting for its release. It was the book where I realised just how much fun I could have with the living dead (I know how wrong that sounds), the book where I earned my chops and started to think big in terms of where I wanted the AUTUMN series to go.
On a personal level, much of the writing was done in my final year working in banking. I found myself managing a team of around 100 staff who’d all been given (myself included) around a year’s notice of redundancy – our jobs went overseas, and we didn’t. As the work volumes dwindled and the personnel issues mounted up, I used PURIFICATION as therapy. Their names were changed, of course, but quite a few members of my team ended up as featured zombies. When I got home from the office at night, I found there was something very cathartic about plotting imaginary fates for the folks who’d made my days such a challenge!
And here I am in 2021, writing even more AUTUMN books. AUTUMN: DAWN has gone down an absolute storm, and I’m making good progress on AUTUMN: INFERNO. But the fact is, if I hadn’t had such a positive experience with PURIFICATION, I doubt the series would have made it past book three.
There’s a vast amount of information about the entire AUTUMN series over at www.lastoftheliving.net. AUTUMN: INFERNO updates incoming shortly.
I’ve disappeared from view again. As I’ve said many times before, this always happens when I’m writing. Right now I’m working hard on AUTUMN: INFERNO, the second book in the LONDON TRILOGY.
The reception readers have given to the first book, AUTUMN: DAWN, has been wonderful. I thought I’d break cover to share a great review from www.sfbook.com which you can find here.“Autumn – Dawn is impressive, offering a new perspective on the author’s past creation, resulting in strong, atmospheric and thoughtful horror.” Thank you to Ant for the very kind words.
Very, very, very, very happy that folks seem to be enjoying AUTUMN: INFERNO. Available now - paperback, limited edition hardcover, eBook, and audio.Not yet started #thelondontrilogy? Grab an eBook copy of book one - AUTUMN: DAWN - for only 99c/99p for a limited time.Read more about the new AUTUMN books at www.lastoftheliving.net.#autumn #zombies #undeadlondon ... See MoreSee Less