Friday 17 July 2020

The coolest introduction to a book ever for How Kirsty gets her kicks

This is the coolest introduction to a book ever. 

Thanks to the awesome Mark Pelletier @MPell2137 and to Shotgun Honey for publishing How Kirsty Gets Her Kicks

What's it about then?
A tale of skullduggery that plays out on the mean streets of Glasgow…

One-legged barmaid Kirsty is in a shit-load of trouble after she kills one of gangster Jimmy McPhee’s enforcers with a stiletto heel to the head after he gets a bit too handsie.

Now she’s on the run from the gang boss who loves to torture his victims before he kills them, with a safe-load of cash she stole from him and a hot gun. And she has company—a choirboy barman Jamie who just happens to be the only witness.

She needs to survive long enough to spend the cash.

How difficult can it be to catch a “daft wee lassie with one leg?” Glasgow hardman Jimmy McPhee is about to find out. Kirsty’s made a laughing stock out of him and he doesn’t like that one wee bit.

Bring together a one-legged barmaid who’s legged it with a safe load of dirty cash, a spurned gangster’s wife who wants a walking womb for her mail order sperm, a giant birthday cake and a mad chase to the end, and you’ve got How Kirsty Gets Her Kicks: one freaking minute at a time.

Monday 1 June 2020

3 ways to get more writing done during lockdown

one writer's office
"I can't seem to find the time to get any writing done with everything that's going on."

That's a common refrain I'm hearing from writing pals. It's understandable given the circumstances caused by the coronavirus.

But there are ways you can get some writing done.

Here are just four -

writing is work

1. Don't tell your family that you're going to "get some writing done". 
Nope, tell them you have some work to do.

A funny thing happens to writers I know. When they tell their families they're off to do some writing they get constantly interrupted by kids asking where stuff is and partners coming in for a natter. 

Unless you say you're working your work will be treated like it's not work at all.

Not everything good comes in large packages

2.  Try to do your writing in manageable chunks. 
If you have 10 minutes to spare use that time. You might find it easier than say telling yourself you need to set a few hours aside to work on that article or your novel.

Speech to text can get that writing done

3. A slow typer or just someone who likes to read something out loud that you've written to see how it scans, making use of the speech to text capabilities on your phone, tablet or laptop is a good way to get your writing done. 

It's also perfect when you just want a break from typing and want to be productive.

I use OneNote on my phone.

Saturday 25 April 2020

How to survive family lockdown (without killing one another)

Even your dog needs headphones

It's predicted that the divorce rate is set to soar under the pressure of couples being forced to live on top of one another during the lockdown. Close family relationships are also going to be seriously strained.

Here's some tips on how to survive that family lockdown without killing each other because the family that stays together drive each other insane.

Now might not be the time to watch Ravenous

1. Be careful with the movies/tv shows you watch - Try and avoid watching anything related to the apocalypse and cannibalism  and society breaking down. You don't want everyone waking up with nightmares because it'll disturb your sleep and that's the only me time you're currently getting.

2. Get rid of everything that annoys you - I'm talking about the harmonica your son's just discovered and is trying to play very badly. The drill your daughter has decided to use to hang up picture hooks in every bit of space on her bedroom wall. The guitar your partner decides to start learning to play.

Dug holes are useful

Dig a big hole in the garden whilst nobody's looking and toss the unwanted items in the hole and bury.

3. Step away from the board games - In fact, you may consider tossing them in that hole.
This is for several reasons -
*Board games cause arguments and recriminations in households.
*Someone always cheats.
*Someone always gets upset when they lose.
*Someone always crows about winning. 
*Somebody always takes their frustrations out on the board and throws it up on the air with the game pieces all going everywhere.
*Somebody always ends up in tears.

Board games only cause arguments

Don't be swayed by nostalgic remembrances of happy days spent playing board games with your family. If those times were happy you're not remembering them right. Ads that show happy Brady Bunch type families playing board games all smiling and laughing are a trap set up by the toy industry to rake in the cash.

These happy ads hide the truth - during the lockdown if you play board games as a family you will regret it.

4. Buy a pair of noise cancelling headphones - even better, buy a dozen so everyone can have them including your dog. You're going to need them because you'll start to get tired of hearing everybody's voice.

5. Read loads of books.
There's some great deals at the moment - and here comes the shameless plug - my publisher is offering the first book in my Detective in a Coma series, Vile City for just £5 via PayPal. The book usually retails at £8.99 

Click here to see the deal. 

There are lots of other great books on the Caffeine NIghts online store. 

Saturday 18 April 2020

How to kill your neighbour - my WIP

She thought she'd something in her eye.

Yes, that title got your attention, but I'm not really advocating killing your neighbour although I am currently writing a crime novel with the working title How to kill your neighbour.

For one thing, it's hard to get away with it because you will be considered a prime suspect due to your proximity to the victim. And that goes double if you've had a yell off with them in front of your other neighbours.
For another, to kill some neighbours would take a stake through the heart or a silver bullet. 

You know the kind of neighbour I mean? The kind that would rather launch a foul-mouthed tirade at you for some imagined slight rather than a 'Good morning.'

Again, I'm only kidding about killing your neighbour. Honest. Where would it get you? Prison for life. 

One person who did get away with killing their neighbour - at least in a short story I read - did it in the most novel of ways. 

The method used was contaminating the solution their contact lenses were in so their eyes started to sting and smart as they drove to work and guess what, they crashed their car and died in the wreck.

I haven't decided how my killer will murder their neighbour but I'll keep you updated on how I'm getting on with Killing my Neighbour.