Montag, 15. Dezember 2014

A Yuletide news round up.

 With Christmas stalking us like a hungry goodwill monster, I thought I’d write a quick catch up on what’s been happening recently.

Firstly, my short for the “Drakon Castle” anthology is in, and the book should be out next week!! Just in time for Chrimbo, I hear you cry joyfully…

Whatever, I’m not sure if it’s going to be in paperback yet, but the ebook version will be out soon. Obviously I’ll be ramming it down your collective Facebook throats when it is released.

The idea behind it is to use the very loose constraint of a place called Castle Drakon as the foundations for a story. For example, my effort is set around a place in north Wales called Gwrych castle, which I’ve cleverly renamed to Drakon castle, in the 1920s. A young reporter from Chester is invited to witness the first attempt at filming Satan being summoned from hell, and obviously it all goes horribly wrong. 

Another author, Bev Allen, has set her story in the kitchen. It deals with a cook, trying to catch his master’s eye and failing dismally, until he buys some addictive mushrooms from a travelling merchant. Bev’s contribution is an EXCELLENT read, by the way. I know it sounds like some seriously thin propaganda, but I’m genuinely looking forward to reading the other stories.

My other news is not so good. My publishers have published the release plan for next year, and I won’t be on it. Actually, I have nothing finished to offer anyway, so it’s not a big surprise. If and when I finish my manuscript, Elaina said I should send it in, but their ISBNs are all used up and it won’t go into paperback until 2016, if at all… which is kinda the sticking point.

Well, we’ll see what happens. It’s not like my sales have been doing much recently, and I do like Thorstruck, so I might just see if they want it, and if they do, just go ebook. Then again, I might not? It’s not like they’re waiting for me to write something so they can survive, is it? Thorstruck will survive with or without me, it’s just that it’s so nice and cozy there.

As for the paperbacks of my books, I can’t see them being out for Christmas, somehow. Thorstruck have other priorities, the antho being the biggy right now. However, my army of loyal readers, put away those nooses, sharp knives and other implements of attention-seeking self harm, they will be out at some time, just not yet.

Right, that’s it for now.
As you were. 


Montag, 6. Oktober 2014

Trailer Sir?

Poppet at Thorstruck has created a very nice trailer for House, far better than anything I could manage. So, seeing as this is a blog about my literary progress, I'd be completely remiss if I didn't slap it up on here.

And so, for the discerning viewer of literary trailers, and with all due gratitude to the artist known as Poppet for its creation, I give you, "The House in Wales" by Richard Rhys Jones...

Put it on full screen, it kicks ASS !!

As you were.

Freitag, 26. September 2014

Finally! Amazon pull their finger out...

So there you have it, all three of my books are now out on Kindle with Thorstruck Press.
Of course, as ever, this final release did not go by the numbers. Amazon decided that despite the fact Thorstruck sent them:
1.) A letter from Taylor Street to say The House in Wales no longer belongs to them.
2.) A letter from me to say Thorstruck Press have the rights to The House in Wales.
3.) A letter from them to say they are going to re-release it.
 That they didn't have enough clarity on who owns what and took the book back down.

I've always said Amazon are brilliant if you're a customer. However, try selling anything on their platform and they make you jump hoops, swallow fire and sign your soul over before they agree to anything. They had all the information already, they just couldn't be bothered looking for it and so demanded we send it all again.

Anyway, drama over, and it's now up. Time for me to get back to writing my WIP...

It's just occurred to me that I don't have a trailer for House.
I think I'll do that today!
Why not, it's the weekend, let's go crazy!

Okay, as you were.

Montag, 8. September 2014

Audio book sample!

Well, it's on the verge of popping up on Amazon, (ooer, sounds a bit rude!), and I don't mind telling you that I'm so excited about it, I'm fit to explode. (OO-ER!!!)

The audio book for The Division of the Damned is now being finished off, (ooer) and packaged into a tight little pressy that'll have your whole family squirming in fear and delight when you give it to them at Christmas. (I hope you noted the omission of any "innuendo-exclamation" there. Even I have some morals, as hard as they may be to discern).

Have a listen here, then mentally make a note to buy it for everyone; because nobody should be starved of the joy of Nazi vampires just because they can't read. 

Right kids?

Right Reg. Now they can listen in to the gore :)

Right, as you were.

Montag, 1. September 2014

New trailer, new release!

This is what I posted on my Facebook page for my latest release. The Chronicles of Supernatural Warfare, seven years in the making and about seventy years of wear and tear on my nervous system. The original idea came from Teresa Geering, of the Shasta trilogy fame, who liked my short stories and suggested they should be put together in a collection. A couple of years later I mentioned the idea to Paul and that started the ball rolling. 

This is actually the second publication. Paul Rudd, (the other chap who contributed) published it a few months ago, albeit for only a couple of weeks. It sold one or two copies, mainly to friends, and then was taken down when Thorstruck mentioned they might be interested.

My good mate George Winterbottom provided the third eye of editing, Andi Renson made a cover, Paul formatted it and I watched bemusedly on as it was published with as much pomp and ceremony as our meagre wallets could promote, then promptly taken down.

Edited again, with a new cover and publishing house, (Our publishing house was called Rampant Roadkill, we even had a logo and everything), Chronicles is out now, on Amazon and I'm very proud and happy.

Further to this, The House in Wales should be re-released very soon, Amazon and the Gods willing, so that'll be all three of my books out on Thorstruck Press.
I'd better sort my act out and put fingers to keys for my next book, hadn't I?

As you were.

Donnerstag, 24. Juli 2014

The new trailer with the new cover!!!

So, very quickly, here's the new trailer with, as is advertised above, the new cover.
Press play and enjoy...


Sonntag, 13. Juli 2014

For those who hate to read...

Yesterday I was told some news that I've been itching to hear since I heard it was on the books.

The Division of the Damned will soon be released as an audiobook.
This means that as of September, (the month of release), my friends who have absolutely no wish to read anything can simply put the stereo/computer on, sit back and close their eyes as they're whisked off to Transylvania with Standartenführer Von Struck and his crew.

The Division of the Damned on audiobook, I'm seriously stoked about this new development. It shows that Thorstruck are committed to making an effort for those few they have on their books. It's also more coverage for me as well, the more you're out there, the more you're seen, right kids?
Right Reg.

I also had a very nice Amazon write-up yesterday as well, bringing the tally of five star reviews to forty-eight, out of sixty-eight. Not bad for a nobody like myself... in fact bloody good truth be told.
Have a read:

5.0 out of 5 stars Seemed perfectly plausible to me...12 July 2014
This review is from: The Division of the Damned (Kindle Edition)
I’m not remotely interested in vampires, I don’t much care for werewolves and, if truth be told, I’d rather not read about the atrocities of the Second World War. What possessed me, therefore, to buy this magnificent tale remains a mystery; and it is, of course, all the more to the author’s credit that I found myself thoroughly absorbed by this page-clicking adventure.

The depth of research and historical accuracy on offer here is such that we find ourselves happily suspending disbelief – vampires fighting alongside SS soldiers for heaven’s sake! – while wondering, Perhaps the history books haven’t quite told us the whole story?

Until you reach the last page, that is, when you fall back to earth with a bump, and remind yourself that daydreaming is all well and good, but it’s not going to put your dinner on the table.

Nice innit?
Have a great weekend and good luck to Germany tonight in the World Cup Final!

As you were.

Dienstag, 8. Juli 2014

The story so far...

So, with The Division of the Damned up on Amazon, and the contracts for my other two books signed, I just seem to be marking time until all three are on the market.

I'm really happy with the new covers, even though it was sort of sad to part company with the old ones. All three were made by friends who went that extra mile to do something unique for me, and that's what counts in my eyes. However, it isn't like their efforts were dropped for tardy designs and I'm sure that they, like myself, will come to terms with the change.

Sales have been very slow with Division, however they were waning before. The book has been out since April 2012 and I suppose has run its course, so I'm not really surprised. Perhaps it'll be resurrected to the old 100 downloads a month when my WIP reaches publication? Hope springs eternal, eh?

I made a recording of myself reading the prologue and chapter one of The Division of the Damned the other day. I've been assured by a lot of people that it sounds alright. However, the lingering doubt of, "They're only saying that" is hanging around like an eggy fart in a waiting room.

If you want to hear this lisping Welshman, speaking like he's eating a bag of marbles, follow this link here: Me reading Division.

With my WIP, (Work In Progress, btw, in case you were wondering?) I've decided to start at the beginning again. The problem is that I stopped and started it so often that I lost the continuity. Characters suddenly changed names halfway through the story, people appeared out of nowhere, it was like reading a book written by someone with the memory span of a wheelbarrow.
So I went to the start and am cleaning it up as I go along, and venting out some cracking ideas while I do it too. It's been a good call as I find myself honing the mindset of the individual characters, something you tend to zone out of after long periods of inactivity. Whatever, this new wind of creativity has been a long time coming, and I'm very much up for it. 

Thorstruck has some big ideas, and the satisfying thing is that they're following up on leads and contacts to make things happen. I'm sworn to secrecy, and I'm absolutely bursting to tell you what's planned for The Division of the Damned, but I can say it's something I had hoped for when I actually wrote the initial draft.
Time will tell if it comes off.

Anyway, that's all I have for you up to now, more if and when anything happens.
As you were.
Reggie :)

Dienstag, 17. Juni 2014

Interview, review, Division on Amazon...

About 3am this morning, Thorstruck Press put The Division of the Damned up on Amazon.
Freshly edited with its new cover and blurb, it signalled I was back in business, and really managed to start my day with a bang.

The next piece of news was that my first interview as a Thorstruck author was up and running. Beauty in Ruins did a top job and you can find it here if you're interested:

Beauty in ruins.

And then, to top it all off, I found a five star review for it that read like I'd written War and Peace.

I wasn't truthfully sure what to expect when reading this book, all I knew for definite was that it included vampires, and that's what piqued my interest.

The Division of the damned gave me a surprising journey. It's jam-pack with paranoia, the mysterious and weird, and very well researched from a theological/war point of view. What I didn't expect was to become team SS while reading it. The characters are so real, their sense of humour in the most dire of conditions was refreshing and fabulous to read, and the plot was intricate and utterly convincing. Once you've read it you feel like you've read a secret document of something that happened during the war that was covered up.

The ending gave me a few emotional lumps, and altogether I found this well written and riveting. The action is insane, the constant running from enemy lines, the subterfuge and hidden agendas by the freaks in power, the human struggle portrayed so sincerely from both a civilian and military perspective, and the 'da vinci code' undertones in this made it one awesome smorgasbord. Whatever you like in a novel, this one's got it. Romance, struggle, fear, the paranormal, action, fight scenes, horror, the struggle of personal ethics and faith, war camps, the British, the Germans, the Russians, the Ukrainians, the Romanians, the civilians, the squad caught in the middle of it all, and overall a fight for humanity's spiritual survival (over the actual background of war) made this an all out ten star review, but Amazon only give me 5.

Compelling, riveting, and very stressful. You'll fall for Maria, you'll fall for a scarred german soldier, you'll love Smith, you'll be intrigued by Michael, you'll loathe Lilith and Rasch, and you will LOVE the grumpy old men. FABULOUS read, I loved EVERY PAGE!


Now if that isn't a good start to my working relationship with Thorstruck, nothing is.

As you were.

Mittwoch, 4. Juni 2014

My author page at Thorstruck

So, Taylor Street have confirmed to Thorstruck that I am no longer with them, the books in Word document form have been sent off to be worked on and my author page is up.

Have a look if you want:.

Thorstruck Press.Reggie's page

AND... here are the new covers for Division and House.

Exciting times ahead...
Take care.

Dienstag, 3. Juni 2014


In my life, events either develop over a period of years to then fizzle into nothing, or they hit me like a striking ninja and completely dominate my direction.

Taylor Steet’s closing left me, well stunned actually. Only days before it happened I’d been planning the release of The Chronicles of Supernatural Warfare with Tim and then BANG, it was all over. I didn’t even have the paperback versions of my books as I’d given them away, and had to quickly buy some off Amazon, which cost me Twenty Eight Dollars(!!!) because “Division” was now out of print.

Whatever, the thing is I naively thought Taylor would simply go on forever, because that’s how I am. I find a groove in life and follow it until something far better turns up or I’m forced to move. Change happens to others, not me.

I wondered what I was going to do? Paul had already said he’d release Chronicles on his own if he had to, so at least that was sorted. However, Division and House were now without publisher and I reckoned I’d have to self-publish, as I really had no time or energy for the whole submit/rejection circus.

In the immediate hours after the news broke I received a couple of offers of help from people who ran their own ebook publishers, which boosted my flagging spirits greatly as it’s always nice to know you’re not alone. I also received an email from a friend whom I happen to rate very highly as a writer and a person, and who also had some good contacts with reputable, money making publishers.

However, it was a Facebook message I was sent a couple of hours after I wrote my last Blog that turned my head. I was invited to have a look at the Thorstruck Press website, and see if I would be interested? I read their, “About” page and liked it automatically. Their philosophy, coupled with the fact that the person who wrote to me is as straight as they come and doesn’t accept any messing about, sold me.

True to their word, they’ve made two new covers, set up an interview and I’m on their website Authors page right now, even though we still don’t have the rights for the books from Taylor. This kind of movement is as inspiring as it’s welcome, and though I loved the peeps at Taylor and was sorry to see it close, I am already very happy at Thorstruck.

So dear reader, that’s how it stands at the moment. As soon as the rights come from Taylor, we’ll be releasing my first two books, and hopefully many more after it.

Take it easy.

Dienstag, 27. Mai 2014

I find myself adrift...

On the 9th April, 2012, I broke the news that The Division of the Damned was live on Kindle, and that the paperback would soon follow. I don’t have the words to tell you how proud I was when I wrote that. How it rated right up there with fatherhood, building a house and my first proper CD recording as a milestone in my life. How, at that moment in time, it was just so damnably good to be Reggie Jones for a change.

When the book arrived, I fondled it like a mother touches her newborn child. I was ecstatic that I finally held it in my hands, and that my work would soon grace the bookshelves of other people.

It sounds corny, almost sad, that a grown man could go through such adolescent, naive emotions, especially when anyone can release a book nowadays, but that’s how it felt. Years of work went into writing and researching it, and then the sending it off to be rejected time and time again. Some publishers were put off by the fact the SS weren't the bad guys, or that it crossed two distinct genres, (war and horror) and thus would be hard to pigeon-hole. For some it just wasn't what was wanted, (zombies were the up and coming monster, vampires had had their day by then) and for others it was just so bad they couldn't even be bothered to get in touch. I waited for an answer from one firm for nigh on a year. When I phoned them up, I was given a curt no thank you, and told not to bother phoning up again! Yet there it was, my book in my hand, made possible by Night publishing.

Night publishing was brilliant. We were basically just a bunch of like minded enthusiasts, pooling our resources and limited knowledge to give each other a shove up the ladder. Tim would suggest something to see if it could sell our books better, and we’d all willingly go along with it. There was a camaraderie there that I’d previously only experienced at Struggling Authors, but with a lot more people. We weren't in competition, we worked for each other, buying each other’s work, spreading each other’s links and just being supportive. The forum on there was as it should be on a writer's website, with a rook of short stories being critiqued and voted for in a jokey yet appreciative way. I can honestly say there was no malice, no arrogance and no backstabbing, which for a bunch of writers is very unusual.

Night, for various reasons, turned into Taylor, and though some people left our ranks to go on to different things, we still had a good core of people who shared the ideal and acted as friends, not competitors.
Taylor Street released my second book, The House in Wales, and once again, though not as raw, the emotions I went through when my proof copy arrived on the doorstep were memorable.

By this time I was pretty savvy as to how the industry, and especially Amazon, worked. A few of my friends had started their own publishing houses, using Kindle as a platform for sales, and Create Space for paperbacks, and they were doing well for themselves. 

However, I had no plans to leave Taylor as it was exactly how I wanted it to be. I’d write something, my mate George would proof read it, (and he is a GIT when it comes to critique. I can’t count how many times he’d cross something out and simply write, “Shite” next to it). Then a couple of other chaps would be my Beta readers, and I’d send the corrected version off to Taylor. Yes there were issues, yes it didn't always go to plan, but what does nowadays?
As I put, I was happy and had no plans to leave… until now.

This morning Tim made it known that Taylor Street Publishing will close its doors as of 31st May. The books will be taken off the cyber shelves of Amazon, Smashword and The Book Depository, royalties will be paid out and the firm will be no more.
I'm gutted.

Tim and Kathleen are my friends, so I won't go into the reasons why Taylor is shutting up shop, but they are health related and serious enough to call a halt on the proceedings.
And basically that’s that. The books are back in my name as of the 31st, so the question is where do I go from here?

Well, the fact is that even though my books have done, “alright”, I haven't had the Times Literary supplement knocking on my door begging for an interview, and I don’t see Harper Collins waiting in the wings to scoop me up like a golden lamb either. So self-publishing is the most realistic route for me to take right now. I think I could quite easily move into the independent market and do alright for myself, well at least manage the same sales. 

Add to that the wealth of experience my writerly chums who have taken the lonely path of self-publishing before me have to give, and I honestly think I'll be OK.

No, for me, the real disappointment is the death of the camaraderie, the almost familial atmosphere we experienced at Night and the early days of Taylor Street, that hurts the most. Ask anyone who knows me, I always want things to stay as they are, be it friends or situations, so to make that break now won't kill me, but I’d sooner not have to make it.

I’ll re-release Division and House on my own, and my work in progress, The Sisterhood of the Serpent, too. The short story anthology I advertised recently will be published with my mate Paul Rudd, so the books will be out, just the circumstances will be different.

I'll close now by saying thanks to Tim and Kathleen for your input into my life, I hope we remain friends and stay in contact. You guys took a chance on a book that crossed genres, painted the SS as goodies and went against everything the industry was looking for, but managed to turn a dream into reality and I won’t forget that.

To all the people I had the privilege of knowing as fellow stable authors, I wish you ALL the very best for the future and I hope that at least one of us makes it into film. Please stay in contact, on Facebook or where ever.

To all the people who have supported me over the last couple of years, and you know who you are, from the bottom of my heart I thank you all… and don’t go away as I need you all now more than ever !! :D

Take care, see you soon.