Sunday 29 March 2020

March update - filming, signing and editing!

It has been a very strange few weeks and I am sure, that like me, you have found it hard to get on with life without constantly turning to the news and/or social media. I hope you and yours are safe and well in these difficult times. This last week has seen my usually quiet house, filled with my family, as my wife has been told to work from home and our youngest daughter's school has closed. It is lovely to have them around and to know they are safe at home, but it is not the most conducive to being able to focus on writing. I am quite flexible with my routine and I'm able to write in quite short bursts pretty much anywhere. But I do need some periods of uninterrupted concentration to get the words down, and at the moment that just hasn't seemed possible. However, we are finding a routine and hopefully next week I'll be able to get back into it.

In the meantime, let me tell you a little bit about what I've been up to in the last month. The first weekend of March found me driving hundreds of miles to multiple locations in south Wales and Oxfordshire for the filming of The Serpent Sword TV project.

I got to work with some of the most talented and enthusiastic people I have ever met. As you know, at this stage the series has not been funded and apart from Patreon subscriptions and one very generous contribution from a friend of the project, to help cover some of our ongoing costs, all of the cast and crew are giving their time, experience, expertise, talent, not to mention props, armour, weapons, costumes, jewelry, and the list goes on, for nothing. It is truly humbling for me to see so many people be so passionate about something that sprang from my imagination years ago and which has frankly taken over a large portion of my daily life.

The teaser has already been watched by more than 20,000 people, which is fantastic!

The next step is for the Proof-of-Concept Trailer to be edited by the amazing guys at Cinemerse. An incredibly talented composer, Josh Evans, is composing original music for it, and we have even been offered the services of a top notch post-production studio to create the sound design (more about that in the future!). Everything about this project feels amazing and the footage I've seen so far is going to blow your minds. I can't wait to be able to share the Proof-of-Concept Trailer with the world, but till then, I have been busy with other stuff, like my day job of writing!

Early in the month saw the release of Wolf of Wessex in hardback and audio. I went to Goldsboro Books in London and signed some copies, which was a first for me (not signing books, but getting invited to London to do it!). I also got to meet my editor for lunch and have a good chat about all things book-related, which is always nice.

Wolf of Wessex has been really well-received, and thank you to everyone who has left a review online or spread the word to others about the book. March also saw another first for me. My first review in a national newspaper, The Times, no less!

So after the excitement of being reviewed in The Times, signing books in London and spending four days on set with actors and crew making my imagination come to life, it was time to get back to work!

I completed the edits of my latest book, A TIME FOR SWORDS

A TIME FOR SWORDS is now out with beta readers and it is also up for pre-order, were you can read the blurb of what it is about. I also got the copy-edits back for FORTRESS OF FURY, which took me a couple of days to go through and send back to my editor. Book seven of the Bernicia Chronicles is out in July.

If you would like to read the first pages of A TIME FOR SWORDS, and the opening pages of FORTRESS OF FURY, you can do so (and see lots more behind the scenes, exclusive and advance content) on Patreon.

Next up I am going to start planning book eight of the Bernicia Chronicles and I can't wait to get back to writing about Beobrand and his friends (and enemies!)!

Before I go, just a quick heads up that both planned events I had lined up have been cancelled or postponed. The Wrexham Carnival of Words has been cancelled, but there might be some online live events in order to allow readers to connect with some of the writers involved. I will probably be doing something for that, so watch this space.

The other event in June in Gillingham Library has now been postponed till December 10th. Hopefully, we will be allowed out of our houses and able to congregate by then!

I think that's it for the time being. Stay safe and healthy and keep reading.