My good friends Laura and Rachael have released their first book on Kindle! It's set in a medieval fantasy world where vampires rule all and have amazing elemental powers.
This is a setting I had never seen vampires in before and there are so many great ideas crammed into this story.
If you're a romance fan you'll definitely love it so I encourage you all to give it a look.
You can find it on Amazon right here.
"The Outwoods and The Glass Throne have been at war for centuries - not surprising given that they are both ruled by vampires. Pride starts a lot of wars when you live this long. But this is not the story of how The War began. This is the story of how it ended."
It's been a while since I did the whole opinion piece thing. Since leaving MCM Buzz I've definitely missed writing about movies but after watching Batman v Superman, it seemed like the perfect time to write about an argument that comes up time and time again.
After Warner Bros and DC plotted and planned after the release of Man of Steel, a decision was made along the way to throw Batman in there and see if they could get the whole Justice League thing started. And everyone said the same thing. "Marvel spent 4 years building up a universe before they did Avengers, to jump from Man of Steel to something called Dawn of Justice is rushing it."
I'm sure I've been guilty of saying the same thing and it's understandable why everyone is still saying it. Marvel made it work so to copy the formula seems the obvious thing to do. The thing is, the Marvel method isn't the only way to do it and copying another, more successful studio is no guarantee that the same would work for you.
The one point that everyone forgets is that ensemble movies are a thing. To complain that 6 superheroes is too many to cram in to a movie with no build up makes sense until someone points out that Bryan Singer did it years ago with X-men. And the reason Avengers worked wasn't just because of the build up it was because Marvel brought in Joss Whedon, someone who knows how to juggle a large cast of characters and make it work really really well.
If DC was so desperate to make a Justice League movie they should have skipped the sort-of sequel that is Batman v Superman and just gone straight to the main event. This actually almost happened when a Justice League movie was rumoured for 2015. But I guess after Man of Steel did okay, it was easier to just continue with the same team and make a sequel instead.
Once you start to pull away from the idea they should just "do a Marvel" it opens up all sorts of possibilities. Imagine if *slight spoiler* instead of Bruce finding clips of the meta-humans on a dropbox folder, he actually found that the Justice League already existed.
That would have been one amazing bait-and-switch for a film called Batman v Superman. Have the two characters at each others throats but then discover that in another corner of the universe the League was already getting shit done.
Copying Marvel might work if the right filmmakers are involved but studios need to stop aiming for the "connected universe idea" when they'd find way more success by just making a damn good movie first. And unfortunately that hasn't happened yet.
I got into a discussion with someone recently about changing genders in writing and it made me want to try an exercise. What if the main cast of The Darwin Solution were the opposite gender?
Freya. Without going into spoilers, Freya is a physically and emotionally strong person. In fact she's the strongest of the group leading her to be the first to fight and feeling as if it's up to her to defend others.
If you change her to a man, then Freya is closer to the tired trope of the male hero. You try and think of the "strong male hero" and you'll come up with thousands of references. You try the opposite and that number goes down drastically.
Langdon. Langdon is the third generation male to own the family library. But what if Langdon was a woman and there's a sudden pressure to live up to the men that came before her? And what about the scene where Freya has to carry Langdon out of trouble? If they were both women that's an interesting scenario. But if Freya becomes a man then it's another dull scene of the man, rescuing the woman and taking her away from danger.
While I haven't touched on it too much in book 1, there is/ will be a frustration from some male characters that a woman is far stronger than they are.
Liz. The role of the IT tech whiz is usually given to a male character. So again,
My proof copy of Darwin Solution arrived and it looks very nice indeed. However there were some minor changes to make to the cover wrap and the interior.
With the book having already been through a proof read, the things I'm looking at this stage are mainly formatting errors. For example one section of text was the wrong font size and the spacing in a few places wasn't quite right. And for the wrap the blurb need to move over a little bit so it wasn't overlapping the crease.
Proof copy no. 2 is already on the way and hopefully I can check that for errors and then press the big OK button that means I can finally start selling the print version.
The Darwin Solution actually came out on Monday night. And it went live at about midnight so I had to sit on it for the evening before telling people. And it's taken me this long to get some free time to actually talk about it. So I thought I'd pre-emptively answer some questions that no one asked but could.
When is the print version out?
The second I press the big "OK TO PRINT" button on Createspace. The proof copy is making its way from America and I paid extra for speedy delivery because I'm an impatient mother flipper. Once I've got it I'll need to check for errors and formatting issues and things like that before I commit to putting it on the store.
Is the ebook available on Kobo and Nook?
No. I've read a lot of information from other self pub authors claiming that about 95% of their readers are on Kindle. Obviously it does no harm to be in as many places as possible but my aim was to make the publishing process as economical and simple as possible. I'm being very wary of spending time and/ or money on things that aren't necessary. If there is sudden demand for other versions I'll be happy to go for it.
How come the print version is so much more expensive? (Print version will cost around £12)
For the simple reason that books cost money to print and this one's a biggy. Ironically I'll be getting a smaller royalty from print versions but I wanted to make that price as reasonable as possible. Traditional publishers could probably get a better per-book deal but for print-on-demand, big books cost money.
Is the Kindle book really free?
If you're signed up to Kindle Unlimited then YES! The positive side of only being on the one platform is that Kindle offers some good deals and schemes for authors, including the Kindle Select program that allows people to borrow the book for free from the Kindle library.
So how do you get money for that then?
You read more than 10% of the book then I'll get something from Amazon. :)