Today is the one year Anniversary that U-turn at Next Synapse has been out among the wild world of cinematic literature. In other words, my book’s birthday. Woo Hoo!
Thank you to everyone, especially the Inkshares team who has made this dream into a mouth watering reality. It has been quite a year; Sold a little over 400 copies, including three at Skylight Books, not to mention 4 Amazon reviews, and did someone say audio book for 2019??
If you have not checked out this adventurous tour o’ madness and whimsy, I encourage you to do so. I would love for this book to sail to new heights, for I am not done with this story yet. Not by a long shot.
Stay tuned for up to date latest news:
Good evening. I hope this finds you well as the holidays hurtle toward us.
First, the good news. At this moment, Bane of All Things (BoAT), is the top most recommended work by readers on the Inkshares site. And that is not just against other works that are in funding mode as I am, but published novels, too.
If you haven’t lately, check out the REVIEWS section of my Inkshares page to read the wonderful things other Inkshares authors have kindly written about BoAT. You can leave your own review, too, and help BoAT keep that top spot.
Second, the great news. In my last update, I raised the alarm about how pre-sales were not moving fast enough, but I did also raise the possibility of extensions to my campaign. Well, Inkshares has added 30 days. This puts the new deadline at Feb. 11. (Incidentally, my son’s birthday – here’s hoping we have added reason to celebrate!)
Does this extension warrant a sigh of relief?
Does it give me reason to take my foot off the gas?
Definitely not – we still have a lot of ground to make up.
Third, the bonus good news. Startup Canada will be running a concerted social media campaign for BoAT this week. As some of you know, some years ago I served on the board of directors of this non-profit that supports entrepreneurship across Canada and beyond. CEO Victoria Lennox has graciously offered Startup Canada’s social media clout to help spread the word. This is, after all, kind of my startup venture. I’ve always said the author’s journey, and the entrepreneur’s, are more alike than different.
In the meantime, you remain an essential player on this team. Please continue to spread the word and recruit any friends and family whom you think might also dig this story.
As always, your support is deeply appreciated.
That’s all for now. Happy reading.
Good day, everyone.
First, an important note: If you have purchased Bane of All Things but don’t recall receiving a thank you note from me (whether by email or on LinkedIn or Twitter) your purchase might be stuck in the system. It happens, and when it does, it’s not obvious to the buyer. If you suspect this, please email me at email@example.com.
Today’s update comes at an important stage for Bane of All Things (BoAT) – we are at the mid-point of the initial 90-day campaign.
The good news: Sales have steadily gained since the campaign launch. Some fantastic feedback from Inkshares authors and supporters such as yourself gives me confidence that I have something good here.
The not-so-good news: Based on our sales velocity to date, this campaign will not hit its target by the Jan. 12 deadline.
What does this mean?
There is always a Plan B.
Funding campaigns are often extended at Inkshares’ discretion, but of course, they must have achieved sufficient momentum to warrant it. In fact, when I launched this campaign, I had the option of taking a longer funding window, but decided to test whether the default window of 90 days would spur a greater sense of urgency.
It might yet – I have personally reached out to almost 1,000 people in my extended networks on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. That many more remain to be contacted. Many have responded favourably with an intent to buy and just haven’t yet. Sales have started to trickle in from the Inkshares community itself as readers active on the platform discover BoAT on their own.
What you can do
You have already graciously given your support and I am deeply grateful. If are interested in doing more, here are some options:
1. Spread the word. Please share this with any friends or family whom you think might also be interested. Some of you have mentioned talking about BoAT with your book club – how’s that going?
2. Leave a review on my Inkshares page – that kind of endorsement always helps.
3. Buy again for someone else. You can make additional purchases. Take the ebook, for example. When BoAT publishes, you will receive your e-book copies as downloads in whatever of the main formats you prefer. That makes it easy to pass additional copies along by email as gifts.
Remember – if you buy three or more print copies, you will be recognized as a Super Reader supporter in the back of the book. Pictured is an example from a current Inkshares title.
To date, 10 generous individuals have supported Bane of All Things as Super Readers.
4. If you have followed but haven’t purchased BoAT, please do. If you liked what you have read and want to see more, now is the time to buy before we all get distracted by the holidays.
That’s all for now. Happy reading.
In 2016 more than 500 of you followed my book Blood Dawn. I left the Inkshares platform and continued to work on this book under a different publishing arrangement.
This has now led to the publication of the first part of Blood Dawn, a novel called A Thousand Roads. After more than 2 years of production, 5 editors, and 7 drafts, it is now available as an ebook for early readers. The print book will be out in January, including maps and custom interior illustrations.
Note that I am not funding anything through Inkshares -- this is just a courtesy update for Blood Dawn fans since I did promise to keep you posted when the story eventually was ready for publication.
Here is the blurb, including buy links below. Please share!
Azzadul, the god-king, the Lord of Light revered by many. When the darkness corrupted him, he became the Dark Lord, feared the world over. His magic, once a gateway to immortality for his people, delved instead into horrors as he sought ever deeper levels of mastery. Children were stolen from their beds, coveted for his blood-rites. When he vanished, it all ended, and the people of the world tried to forget, to move on…
Jak Fuller has always wanted a home. An orphan born ten years after Azzadul’s disappearance, he has wandered far and wide, trying to forget the memory of a burning woman. When he comes to Fort Lasthall, on the outskirts of the Dark Lord’s former kingdom, he hopes to finally settle into a peaceful life. Instead, he finds himself unnaturally compelled by a dark, terrible voice, a voice that knows him, calls to him. A sense of destiny that fills him with fear.
New powers are rising in the dark places of the world. A master of fire-rites called Talamus the Red, arch-foe of Azzadul, seeks to enslave the world with a magic he has been developing for the many centuries of his life. Ready at last, there is only one weakness in his plan, an obstacle he is determined to remove: a boy, bound to an old magic that just might resurrect the power of Azzadul.
The very power bound to Jak, before he was even born…
A Thousand Roads is the beginning of a grand fantasy epic told in the tradition of my favorite fantasy authors – J.R.R. Tolkien, Robert Jordan, and George R.R. Martin – think Game of Thrones set in a more modern time with a fair helping of magic and Tolkien-esque myth-building. Originally known on Inkshares as Blood Dawn, back in 2015-2016, A Thousand Roads is the first part of the story to emerge from the revisions.
It is now available as an ebook:
Print book will be available in January. I will update you at that time.
Well friends, we’re overdue for an update. I was holding off on sending one out until Tantalus Depths had officially been put into the copy editing phase, since I really wanted that to be the next news I could deliver, but unfortunately we’re still not there yet. I do have good news, though, so stick with me to the end of this update for that.
At the moment, Tantalus Depths is in a sort of limbo between the end of the development editing process and the beginning of the copy editing process. This is because Adam Gomolin, the CEO of Inkshares, has personally given me a new set of notes for further recommended revisions. Adam knows his stuff, and has helped other authors achieve enormous success with their debut novels, including getting TV and film deals. As much as I want to finish this process, get the book into stores and the hands of my longsuffering supporters, I have to take Adam’s feedback seriously. He wants this book to succeed as much as I do, and I owe it to all of you to make this book as strong as possible before wrapping up the editing process. He and I have been going back and forth over how to make improvements to the book for the past couple of weeks, and I should be able to deal with this final edit over the next couple weeks, aiming for an absolute final development draft by the end of the year.
So that’s where the book itself is sitting right now. I know it feels like it’s not going anywhere (believe me, I am painfully, intimately aware of that feeling), but progress is happening. That leads me to my first piece of really exciting news:
Tantalus Depths is going to have an audiobook!
We’ve signed a deal with Audible to produce Tantalus Depths as an Audible-exclusive audiobook. Audible will produce this audiobook in-house, with a professional narrator and crew. We don’t know any details about the juicy stuff like who the narrator will be yet, and production can’t really begin until we’ve fully finished the final draft of the manuscript, but this is really exciting news nonetheless. I’m a huge fan of audiobooks and have listened to them religiously on Audible for years, so I couldn’t be more thrilled. I’ll keep you all updated on this as it unfolds!
Finally, I have one more piece of exciting news. I’ve been keeping this one under my hat as a special surprise to you all, but the time has come to finally let the cat out of the bag!
I, along with 19 other published and soon-to-be-published authors, participated in a short story anthology, which will be released on New Years Day and is now available for pre-order. My brand new original short story, Breach, is a standalone story set in the same universe as Tantalus Depths and Proteus.
Breach is a tense, thrilling tale of desperation and peril as two starship crewmen struggle for survival in open space, trapped in a piece of debris when their ship is destroyed by pirates. Death surrounds them on all sides; can they hold it together long enough to survive the deadly debris field, their own diminishing air supply, and bloodthirsty space pirates intent on leaving no survivors? You’ll have to check out Escape: A Writing Bloc Anthology to find out.
After all these delays with Tantalus Depths, I am so glad I can finally present you a tiny peek into this universe of mine with this new short story. Beyond that, though, I am beyond thrilled that my work gets to appear alongside so many other incredibly talented authors in this anthology. I’ve read most of the other stories, and let me tell you, you’re in for a treat here.
Well, I’ve dumped way more than enough info on you all for now. I’ll give news on the final draft of Tantalus Depths, the audiobook, and the Escape anthology as soon as I’m able. Stay tuned!
Good day, everyone. Now that this campaign has finally crossed the century mark in pre-sales, it’s time to announce something near and dear to my heart.
For those of you who don’t know, I am Canadian and live in our nation’s most populous province, Ontario.
One dollar (in Canadian dollars) from each copy of Bane of All Things sold during this campaign will be donated to Autism Ontario (www.autismontario.com). This registered charitable organization is the leading source of information and referral on autism in the province and one of the largest collective voices representing the autism community in Canada.
Why am I doing this? Simple. His name is William. He’s 13 years old and he’s my son. And he has two cousins, Aidan and Tristan. All three are autistic.
I will make this donation whether or not my Inkshares campaign is successful. That’s right – even if we fail to reach the target, that gift will be given, on behalf of all of you who kindly offered your support.
But, the more books sold, the larger that donation will be.
In closing, I want to give a special thanks to all of you who came on board to support this campaign since my last update. It doesn’t matter what level of support you have provided, you matter. My deepest thanks. Please continue to spread the word if you have any friends or family whom you think will also enjoy this gritty, fantastical tale.
I do want to give a shout out to Linda Simpson. Not only did she come on board as a Super-Reader last week, she promptly recruited two other Super-Readers.
(Linda runs Performance Plus Rehabilitative Care Inc. (www.PPRC.ca), which specializes in providing personal employment counseling services to Ontario residents with physical, psychological or developmental disabilities looking to enter the workforce.)
That’s all for now, happy reading.
Hello wonderful supporters!
PrOOF re-writes are underway. Head to the ’READ’ section to see the latest stuff. There’s a much darker tone, so be warned, it’s not for the squeamish, and it’s not necessarily safe for work. Hey, this is supposed to be a Horror book, yeah?
Speaking of Horror, the 2018 Inkshares Horror Contest is getting VERY competitive. My wife, Alexandra Welch’s novel GRIMALKIN has slipped into a 5th place tie. Visit her page to view the moody BOOK TRAILER she’s authored, and please consider supporting GRIMALKIN!
Lastly, the lovely and talented Dean Fearce and my endeavor, Ruining Boise, is getting shellacked in the Mystery and Thriller contest. And we’re ok with that, since we both have our cute button-noses to the cute button-grindstones on our main books, MINE and PrOOF. But y’know, I’d be remiss if I didn’t plug it.
Books make great Xmas gifts, by the way. Even if you can’t hold them in your sweaty little hands quite yet.
Happy Thanksgiving to those so inclined to celebrate it, and happy...mid-week...football to the rest, I suppose.
I realize it’s been a long time since my last update, and I have reasons ranging from a back injury that’s been plaguing me for months (that seems to finally be resolved) and of course, just putting my head down and trying to move The Tide of Madness closer to completion.
I won’t lie, the finish line is still a way off. The first draft had more problems with it than I had hoped. But with so many different points of view, continuity issues are to be expected. The majority of the characters in The Bones of the Past were separate enough that I didn’t have to worry so much about a day here or there. But Tide will see a lot more interaction between the various characters, so I have to be a lot more careful. I’m writing shorter chapters (splitting up each point of view) and tightening up the timeline as much as possible. Still, I’ve been hard at work and I’ve finalized the order for the 57 chapters and made the tough decision to cut a side story out of the book (hopefully just moved to book three but that’s a problem for another day).
The three notebooks in the picture hold – among elements for the following book – the last sections of the Tide of Madness that I need to integrate into the version on my computer. The majority of my creative writing still happens with pen and paper and is one of the ways I make the commute for my day job part of my writing day. This guarantees that I have at least 45 minutes once or twice a day set aside to dig further into my world and fill in the insane puzzle I created for myself.
Most recently, I’ve been getting into the backstory of some of the side characters. Min’s story is about done and was rather refreshing to write – just one point of view and a nice simple story arc. I may or may not put it out there for people to read as a novella in the future, though my focus remains on The Tide of Madness and the as-yet-unnamed book 3 for now. If there are any minor characters you’re curious about, let me know! I’ll be looking for a new side project in a month or so for those days when I’m not able to spend enough time at my computer to make significant headway on the rewrite.
Thank you all yet again for your patience and support!
All, thank you for the continued support. For those of you who aren’t aware you can get a copy of Daughter of the Mara for FREE at all major e-book retailers. Please read and review!
Is everyone having a lovely Friday!?
Unlike most of my recent updates, this one is just going out to the backers and followers of The Seclusion on Inkshares. I just wanted to send a brief check-in message to all of you, my original support team!
The book has now been out for two months, and a one pretty major thing happened recently that I wanted to share with everyone. The Seclusion received an official ’Starred Review’ from Kirkus Reviews! This is in addition to being named as one of the Best Sci-Fi releases back in September. These are both wonderful benchmarks for a new book from a first-time author. It wouldn’t have happened without all of you, and we hope to have more exciting news in the coming weeks and months.
Reviews continue to climb on Amazon and Goodreads. We are at a 4.26 star average with 111 reviews on Goodreads, and a 4.9 average with 39 reviews on Amazon! If you have had a chance to read the book, and have not left a review yet, it would mean the world to me if you could take a moment to leave a review. It is absolutely vital to the continued success of the book now that the ’new release’ energy is wavering. Especially on Amazon. Once we pass 50 on Amazon (only 11 more reviews!) the book will receive a bit more recommendation love from the sites algorithms.
I hope those of you that have had a chance to read the book, have enjoyed it! I appreciate all of you, and if you ever want to reach out with any comments or questions, I would love to hear from you - JacquiCastle@gmail.com
Hope everyone has a beautiful weekend!