Sunday, 22 April 2018

A Body in the Sacristy now published

Wow! That happened quickly. My first novel, A Body in the Sacristy, is now available on Amazon.
The link for the e-book version is:
https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=A+Body+in+the+Sacristy
or for my Canadian followers:
https://www.amazon.ca/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=A+Body+in+the+Sacristy
 Alternatively, you should be able to find it by typing A Body in the Sacristy in the Amazon search bar.
Next step is to get a print version ready for sale.

Saturday, 21 April 2018

New website

I have established a website - https://www.alankemisterauthor.wordpress.com. It will allow me to post static material about my writing credits as well as the book, A Body in the Sacristy, that I soon hope to have published. It will also allow me to continue blogging about progress with publishing that book and other writing related things.

Tuesday, 10 April 2018

Maps of imaginary town in my novel to be.

The mystery novel (A Body in the Sacristy) that I am trying to get ready for publication is set in an imaginary town on the South Shore of Nova Scotia. I thought, since it was not a real town, that I should provide maps. Here are a map of the area and the town.


Sunday, 1 April 2018

Back cover for A Body in the Sacristy

A few weeks back I posted my attempt at a cover for the first book I hope to self-publish. Here is my try at a back cover. It needs to include a blurb about the book and this generates a small problem. The novel is a mystery, in some ways a police procedural, but one with more focus on the community and the principal investigators family and friends that I expect in a standard police procedural. So in some ways more of a cozy mystery, but my central character is a police officer and I have no mystical elements. So I seem to be caught in between two sub-genres of mysteries.
Anyway, here is my back cover with an attempt at a blurb. Any thoughts would be appreciated.

Monday, 26 February 2018

Plodding to Publication

I've had greater success publishing short stories than novels. The answer is simple - deadlines.

There are generally submission windows for submission of short stories to anthologies, and short story contests invariably have a deadline. In 2017, I had good short story publishing success for a complete amateur, with three stories in Off Highway: Journeys of Nova Scotia Writers, an anthology published by the Evergreen Writers Group, and another in The Coldest December, an anthology of stories commemorating the one hundredth anniversary of the 1917 Halifax Explosion published by Quarter Castle Publishing. I had two flash fiction pieces published in On the Premises, a New England based literary ejournal, and one in The Stand. I also had one story that was runner up in a short story contest. Not bad for someone who is just dabbling in this creative writing business.

Novels are not as simple. There are seldom deadlines for submission, and endless opportunities and excuses for revising, editing, rewriting. I said in a blog post in October of last year that I needed to bite the bullet and publish my first oft-revised novel. Since then, I've done another rewrite. Once again, I find myself in need of something to push me toward publication.

This is step one: a cover for my new novel to be - a mystery set in an imaginary south shore Nova Scotia town. If I follow the front cover with a story synopsis, map of the town, back cover, and I don't know what else, I just might turn the manuscript that has been finished for some time into a book.

Or, I could go back and revise it all one more time.



Thursday, 26 October 2017



Off Highway now available on Amazon
 
Off Highway: Journeys of Nova Scotia Writers is now available as paperback and e-book from Amazon.com and Amazon.ca. You should be able to find them by typing Off Highway Journeys of Nova Scotia Writers into the search bar in the books section of either website, or by clicking on these links:

Off Highway: Journeys of Nova Scotia Writers is a 200-page trade paperback with 30 short stories and poems written by 13 members of the Evergreen Writers Group. It contains pieces about journeys real and imagined, many based on events in Nova Scotia. There are historical stories, personal memoirs, fictional stories sparked by personal experiences, and purely speculative ones.

Here is what Lesley Choyce, a prominent Nova Scotia novelist and poet, said about our book.
"This anthology of Nova Scotia authors is a collection of spirited prose and poetry written by a range of writers with diverse and intriguing backgrounds. Here you will find history, poetry, fiction and creative nonfiction by men and women who have been TV writers, animators, genealogists, teachers, playwrights, museum curators, scientists, and more. Many of these writers have travelled far and wide, but they have strong ties and fondness for this province."

Wednesday, 18 October 2017


(re)nvisions, where n is an integer

My tendency to revise my manuscripts over and over again is out of control. For the novel I’m currently working on, n, in the mathematical expression in the header, has reached eleven. Eleven complete revisions of the manuscript with many more-focused rewrites of individual chapters.
I fear I am now making pointless changes to a manuscript that is as good as I can make it. Why am I doing this? Sadly, the answer is I am reluctant to take the next step.
It is time to bite the bullet! Should I submit it to a publisher or join the modern world and self-publish? Or should I just delete all the files from my computer and be done with the damn thing?
Tom Robson, a colleague in the Evergreen Writers Group (https://evergreenwritersgroup.wordpress.com) has just published his first novel. It’s a romance involving two forty something lovers and their spouses, ex-spouses and various offspring. If you are interested, his book can be found on Amazon by searching for Tom Robson or the title - “Wait and See”. I’m sure he made two or three extensive revisions, and I am starting on #12. I mean what’s with me?