Friday, 31 October 2014

EMILY: Prequel to The Evolution Trilogy

I just wrote a Halloween post on my main blog which you can read by clicking HERE

I have included an extract from EMILY, which went live today! Exciting! To tempt you further here is another scene to enjoy. In my opinion, the confident male has been blown out of proportion over the years...

Emily lay back on the sofa and stared at the ceiling, breathing deeply. After ten minutes of waiting, she had given up on Paul actually turning up. She picked up the Agatha Christie book she had abandoned the night before, and resumed the story.

As she read, she thought about Agatha. When the murder mystery stories first appeared on the scene there had been a lot of interest, but no one could have imagined the extent of her success. What an imagination! If she had even an ounce of Agatha’s talent, she would certainly deserve to live forever. Imagine the amount of books she could write. Unfortunately, writing had never been her forte. Truth, she was not sure what was – other than being an outsider. Everywhere.

Engrossed in a juicy bit, where Poirot is about to unveil the murderer with great finesse, she heard Paul return.

She shut the book, stuffed it under her pillow, sat up and patted the sofa. ‘Come sit next to me.’
Something about his demeanour had changed, as he took a seat and eased his hand into hers.

‘Everything okay?’ Emily asked.

‘Yes, I’m fine. It’s a bit stupid. But, I have to tell you something.’

Emily felt her heartbeat race. She imagined the worst. ‘You can tell me anything. I couldn’t think badly of you.’

‘I don’t think you’d think badly of me. It’s just embarrassing.’

She could not imagine what this was about.

After a minute of silence, he squeezed her hand. ‘I’ve never been with a girl before. I have to admit I’m a bit scared of you. You seem so confident compared to me. I think I’m going to disappoint you.’

She felt like laughing, yet held it back. It would seriously hurt his feelings. ‘Is that why you hold back? Is that why you keep running away from me?’

‘Yes.’ He was keeping his eyes fixed on his wardrobe. 

‘Do you trust me?’

‘Of course I do,’ he replied. 

It was her turn to be brave – to take the lead.

You can read the rest and find out what happens by clicking on the links!

Thank you for your support, Vanessa

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Emily has not changed in fifty years. A freak accident made her immortal, or so she thinks. When she is finally allowed to return to her beloved England all is not as she expected. So much has changed. The past she was holding onto does not exist. Since the Second World War, people have embraced a new age. In this era, people have an obsession with gadgets, strange clothes and weird music.

Added to this her blood-lust has become insatiable and her promise to control herself is torn to shreds. That is until she meets Paul. She never expected to find love... and when it happens, can she do what it takes to hold on to it?

Fate has never been kind to Emily, and it gives her everything she wants at a cost. She must pay a price for being a murderer. For within her twisted heart lies a dark soul.

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Evolution of a Writer...

This weekend I attended the Isle of Wight Literary Festival. I was lucky to be given a slot alongside some fantastic authors, which I mention on my main blog - click HERE for more.

I also managed to get my books sold by the Waterstone's stall on site - I was organised enough to ask them a month before they event and they put me on their system!

It is an impressive sight to see my books alongside those published traditionally and to think "they look good!" Createspace did a great job with these - I love the smooth silky feel of the cover and pages, and the whole effect is fantastic!

Either way, I am an unknown author and my books were stacked alongside the YA books (even though I am not YA) so I did not sell many...

... so I'll tell you a bit about how it went.

There was a fundamental problem (as much as I am grateful to be included). It was not possible to buy adult tickets for my event unless you had a weekend pass! The reason for this is unknown to me, but I suspect that when I was given the extra session in the afternoon, since it was a talk geared at adults, they failed to take it off the children's program.

This would have been a great turnout
for my talk!
At one point, I figured I'd go with my friend Donna for tea & cake and forget it all if no-one showed up! I also came up with a plan B and changed the room layout so that I could do a writing workshop instead if the turnout was poor.

Luckily, adults managed to get tickets, although it was strange to see them enter with a child ticket!

Anyway, I was glad to see about 20 people arrive and all the chairs were filled. Trust me, I breathed a sigh of relief. Compared to the last talk I gave in Gibraltar this was a small cosy affair.

My plan was to talk for about 30 minutes and then do a writing workshop for the second half. Well... I talked for 50 minutes instead. What exactly I said is a blur, but I think everyone enjoyed it. Ultimately, I could have said so much more, but I focused on the lead up to my writing career and read excerpts from my trilogy that focus on topics such as relationships, war, my upbringing in Gibraltar, and personal conflict.

If I had been more organised I would have shown the trilogy video I made, but I did not think of that!

I was not focused on selling and it showed.

Honestly, I barely slept the week before and felt sick on the day of the talk... I was so nervous! I guess I am out of practice and lack confidence.

If I ever make it (and I doubt I have to worry about that too much) I'll laugh about this one day...

For the last ten minutes, I carried out a writing workshop. I gave them 2 minutes to write something about a character chosen by chance. Three of the adults read aloud what they had written and I was stunned by the quality. There are so many writers hiding in the woodwork, waiting for a chance to peek out and shine! Self-publishing has helped many do this already...

Ultimately, if my talk helped anyone discover hidden talents then it was all worth it! I can't help but think that I love to teach not to sell. Therefore, I am going to try to focus on what I started this for. To write and have fun. I am lucky to have achieved what I have since 2012. I have not done as well as others, but I simply am not ruthless enough. I can not change who I am and refuse to. If this means I sell no more books, then so be it.

I don't think Vincent Van Gogh would have ever believed how much his paintings are worth today... talent is not always spotted until someone gives it credibility.

I must thank my wonderful friend, Donna, for helping me on the day and for being incredibly supportive.

I also have to say a huge thank you to a lovely friend I have made via the web, My Book Fairy. She is also trying to drum up support for my NEW release, Emily via a BLOG TOUR. If you have a blog and are willing to get involved please contact her. Again, I am over the moon to have someone else who is willing to wave my flag!

In 2010, I had the foolish idea that I should write for fun... nearly five years later I have self-published three novels, seven anthologies, and am about to release a novella. My weakness is the fact I have wanted to do it all myself (I should get someone to design my covers one day), but I am proud of what I have achieved and hope some of you see something good in what I do.

Thank you for reading,