Skip to content

Posts by Peter Grant

This, that and t’other

A large number of articles and news reports related to writing have caught my eye in recent weeks.  I thought you might enjoy a selection of them.  Follow the links provided to learn more about those that interest you.

Read more

Writing books is not like frying shrimp

This article is written, not for experienced authors and self-publishers, but for those just dipping their toes into the water, so to speak.  It was inspired by a couple of e-mails from readers of my latest novel, “The Stones of Silence“, which has been on sale for almost two weeks.  I hated to rain on their parade, but they seemed to lack an understanding of just how much hard work goes into making a book successful.  I thought it might be worthwhile to put up an article summarizing the issue.

Read more

It’s on the way

My article for this morning is on the way, I promise!  I’m just dealing with a minor crisis where all my Amazon reviews for my latest book disappeared yesterday evening.  They’re coming back, slowly – full marks to Amazon for responding quickly to my query.

Look for my article in an hour or two.

Kindle Create and Vellum: a brief comparative review

I’m in the final stages of preparing the first book of my new military science fiction trilogy, Cochrane’s Company, for publication.  “The Stones of Silence” will (hopefully) come out next week;  “An Airless Storm” will follow in June;  and the final volume, “The Pride of the Damned“, will be published in July.

Until now, I’ve simply imported my word processor files to Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing and let its in-house conversion software prepare them for publication.  It did an adequate job, but nothing special.  Over the past couple of years, publication software has come a long way, making the preparation process easier and more sophisticated.  I decided that, for this trilogy, I’d like to spread my wings a little;  so I’ve been experimenting with two such programs, Amazon’s Kindle Create (free) and 180g’s Vellum (free to download and try, but $199 for the e-book edition only and $249 for e-book and print editions).  I thought you might be interested in my experiences thus far.  My descriptions will necessarily be brief, due to lack of space and time, but I hope you’ll learn enough to be able to assess them for your own needs.

Read more

I need a Web ninja, please

To all the readers of Mad Genius Club:

I’m beating my head against a wall here.  For weeks – months! – I’ve been trying to find a Web site designer/administrator who can give me the service I need, at a price I can afford, and who – most important of all – will LISTEN! TO! ME! when I specify certain things. That last criterion appears to be honored more in the breach than in the observance, as if the design community is used to patting its customers on the head and saying condescendingly, “There, there, never mind. We know better than you. Just shut up and do as we tell you, and all will be well.” Grrrr . . .

Read more

An experimental trilogy

At the urging of my wife, whose work is familiar to readers of these pages, I’m trying something new in a couple of weeks.

Last December, I was noodling over an idea for a new military science fiction series to expand my portfolio.  My Maxwell series has reached five books, and has at least as many left to run;  my Laredo War trilogy is overdue for completion of the third and final book (health issues got in the way);  and I have a Western series (currently at two novels, with the third due this year) and a stand-alone fantasy novel as well, with a fantasy trilogy on the table as a more distant project.  I felt the need to add another string to my bow – hence the noodling.

Dorothy challenged me to try something different.

Read more

Factors shaking up publishing – industry and individual

Over the past few weeks, several articles relating to writing and publishing have caught my eye and my interest. Some may change the way we write and market our books in months and years to come. Let’s analyze three of them, and see what they have to offer.

Read more