Published! No Quarter

Front Cover Image


I’ve made it through the formatting maze and have (deep breath), hit the ‘Publish’ button on both Kindle and Createspace, which means that No Quarter is now available on Amazon!

‘Alma, even I do not know what he is capable of…’

Things couldn’t be better for Alma. She’s returned the lost Sword to Ambeth and is finally with Deryck, Prince of the Dark. But what’s really going on? Deryck is struggling with his father, who wants to control Alma, while Alma is struggling with her best friend Caleb, who doesn’t trust Deryck one inch. Plus it’s getting harder and harder to keep up with her life in the human world. Falling in love shouldn’t be this difficult. But things are about to get much worse…

Quests and friendship all fall by the wayside when there’s romance to be had. Plus, spending time with handsome Deryck is much more appealing than with an increasingly angry Caleb. The Light are always on about making choices, so they shouldn’t have a problem with her choosing to be with Deryck. Besides, he’ll protect her from his father – won’t he?

Now I might take a couple of days off 🙂 See you next week!

xx Helen

Bits and Pieces

The light at the end of the tunnel...

The light at the end of the tunnel…

I’ve been a little bit absent from the blogosphere this week – mainly because I’ve been working on the final edit for No Quarter, the second book in my Ambeth series. This is the part of writing I like the least. (though I still know how fortunate I am to be able to do this at all).

I had some issues with my proof copy, as you know – thankfully the lovely people at Createspace got right on it and it is now resolved, plus they are replacing my faulty proof copy. It hasn’t stopped me from reading through and sacrificing endless quantities of sticky notes as I record small changes and the occasional typo. These corrections have been made, the new file uploaded and, once I get through the fiddle-faddle of formatting for Kindle, I should be ready to publish.

One part of the process I find frustrating is that everything always takes longer than expected. This is why I’ve not yet explored the option of setting up pre-orders for my books. I’ve already had to push my (self-imposed) publication date out several times, due to health, family life, the edit taking longer than expected, and issues with the proof. I would hate to be in a position where I was locked into a date and had to deliver a book that wasn’t finished to my satisfaction

The other thing I don’t like about this part of the process is the doubt. Scurrying up like beetles from under the floorboards, doubts come to plague me as I read through my book for the last time before pressing ‘publish’.

Is the story good enough? Will people like it? Have I covered all the different storylines? Does the language flow? Will anyone read this, ever?

I don’t think I’m alone in this, nor am I alone in thinking I will unleash dragons or some form of unpleasantness onto the internet once I hit that publish button. And yet, I’m still going to do it. And then I’m having a couple of days off. 🙂


‘Look at the tree..’

Oh, and in my post the other day, Autumn Sky, I recounted the tale of a teacher I once had. A few of my commenters suggested I look him up and, guess what, I did! I had thought maybe he would have passed away, as I remember him being about 60 when I was in his class, almost thirty years ago. And yet, a google search of his name and my high school revealed… he is still working there??!!!

And a further link revealed, complete with photo to corroborate, that he was also working there in 1961!!

So we have four options: Either he was younger than I remembered when I took his class (though I distinctly recall him having silver hair and a beard), or he has been working at the same high school for 54 years and refuses to retire, or the website listing him as employed at the school has not been recently updated, or he is a vampire.

What do you think?

Oh and finally, the lovely Geoff LePard is coming for a virtual visit on Monday, with a guest post to promote his new release, My Father and Other Liars – yay!

Letting Go


The light at the end of the publishing tunnel…

I’ve had a few days away from my blog, mainly because I’ve been concentrating on setting up the manuscript for my book. I’m publishing through Createspace, the Amazon print-on-demand platform and, to be honest, it’s been pretty easy so far. I chose my size, downloaded a formatted template and started loading the text. I copied it over one chapter at a time and, besides a small formatting issue (why, Microsoft Word, would I want a line space after every paragraph and line of dialogue? Really?), it’s looking pretty good, if I say so myself. So the last step is to upload and finish the cover template, then, I guess, I can press Publish and that’s it. I’ll be published.

Which is a bit, just a tiny bit, scary.

Many of you who read my blog are writers and most of you have published already, so perhaps you know what I’m talking about. That moment before your work goes live, before you send it out into the world and it is no longer in your control. But I’m going to do it, of course I am. It’s why I’m writing stories, after all. And I’ve done all I can to make this the best product it can be – I’ve had it edited, a professional cover designed and, hopefully and most importantly, written a half-decent story. So it’s time to let go.

I guess this might be why some people refer to their books as their children, or describe birthing a novel. It’s not as intense, of course it isn’t, but it is a similar feeling. As my girl gets older and has to find her own way in the world, I have to slowly let go. Of course she will always be mine but her life will eventually become her own, so to speak. And so it is with my first book. I will send it out there and then it’s on its own. Open to criticism, to unscrupulous people who might copy it without leave, left to sink or swim. I will do all I can to help it, of course. Spread the word. Try to guide it as best I can. And, hopefully, there will be good things as well. Positive reviews. Sales (a few, at least). Sequels to come. More books in the future to keep it company out there. Don’t get me wrong – I’m pretty excited about it all too. I just have to get on with it.

They say with so many things that the first time is the hardest, and so I think it might be with publishing a book. Have any of you felt the same way?

PS I’m also planning an e-book version as well – will let you all know when it’s out there!