Book Pipeline Review of Healer’s Touch

I know I’m kind of flogging an old, sick horse by now, but I still get excited about generally positive reviews of Healer’s Touch, so I hope you won’t mind if I share it. Also, maybe, just maybe, someone new might decide to pick it up because of this review.

Progress on Warrior’s Touch is currently out of  my hands, and I can’t, as yet, give you any further details about when it will come out, but do have faith that it is working its way through the system and will hit the market… sometime, probably in the next year, or two.

Progress on Magician’s Touch is… slow. I’m doing my best. But, two young children, and a severe shortage of both time and money means that writing time is extremely limited. And then there are the things I’m learning about my muse (it doesn’t like hormonal birth control)… It is getting written, but it’s glacial speed at the moment, with a high likelihood of needing major re-writes…

Anyway, I’m here to share this review.

TL;DR: I can write good (:oP), and I had some original ideas here, but it’s a little bit too similar to other fantasy stories.

In other words, if you love fantasy and want more of the same, but different, then Healer’s Touch might just be perfect for you! Or it might not be…

“So, what is Book Pipeline?” you ask.

Book Pipeline is a competition run by Script Pipeline where you can submit a book to see if it might get selected to be shopped around to movie executives, giving you the ever-so-slightly decent chance of seeing your book turned into a movie.

Book Pipeline Logo

HT failed. But in the process I got this pretty cool review that I’m allowed to share with you and so I shall. I’m going to bold the bits I like (o:

The Review:

The author very clearly knows their craft and also knows how to write up a compelling opening teaser that immediately captures the attention of the audience. The premise of this story is also fairly unique to the fantasy-genre in that it highlights our main protagonist (Llew) as one who is able to draw life from plants and people close by in order to heal herself and, in some extreme cases, bring herself back to life. However, overusing her ability can result in the accidental death of those around her. The nature of Llew’s gift is compelling for a main character and as mentioned, the writer certainly is skilled in staging a very vivid and engaging environment early on. Despite these qualities, the primary drawback for this narrative is the unfolding plot and the structure in which the story proceeds as it feels, at times, overly predictable in its execution and almost derivative of a large majority of fantasy-based stories that overuse the “hero’s journey” in their design. Still, the dark tones and gritty depiction of the fantasy world is very compelling and the nature of Llew’s ability has potential for some dire consequences as the story unfolds. It is possible that producers and studios might find a dark, unusual fantasy-adventure such as this appealing on some level and add weight to the narrative’s adaptation potential.
 
Your submission was also selected for the second round of judging, or top 100 appx., but fell short of semis during the second or third review.
Just like any number of other authors, I often fall back into feeling like I’m no good at this writing gig and what makes me think I can put a book out there and expect anyone, let alone many anyones, to waste their time and money on it. So, I’m going to be re-reading some of the lines in this review because keeping them in mind is going to help me forge ahead and complete Magician’s Touch.

Was the entry fee worth it?

In this case, I think so.
.

A Brief History of Healer’s Touch…

A brief history of Healer’s Touch and its sequels

Now, when I say brief, I mean that I am just going to write, and it may turn out not to be brief at all…

So, now you know.

A sexy manga manThe story of how HEALER’S TOUCH came about really starts back in the late 1990s, when I was attending high school. I enjoyed a wide range of books, comic books, and cartoons that I watched on Saturday mornings and after school. In this sojourn back in time, the cartoon Gargoyles particularly comes to mind. I had also taken up collecting Robin III comics (from Batman fame, of course).

I was always well known for my horse drawings, but I had an interest in challenging myself to do better art, including drawing people. And so, I had a go at developing my own super hero. His name was Equus (of course… and I bet no one has ever come up with that idea before…

Read more…

My Writing Process Blog Hop

So, yet again, I’ve had several thoughts of possible blog post topics over the course of the week, and even had words flow through my mind that I could have shared. Just not when I had the time to sit down to do it. And when I had the time to sit down, my mind drew a blank… or, the passion was gone. And I’m not much good at topical blog posts when the passion is gone…

Thankfully, though, I was once again tagged in the “My Writing Process” blog hop by Kat Hawthorne and, since I’m onto a “new” project since last time, I thought I may as well. So now I have something to post!

I prefer doing personal posts to scheduled info-only posts… but I have limited writing time, so I tend to prefer to use that writing time to actually do writing of some sort. Excuses, always excuses.

Anyway… in the name of doing a more personal blog post, here is my writing process at this moment in time…

1. What are you currently working on?

I am currently “between books”, but they’re in the  same series so it’s not exactly down-time. Beta Readers are checking out WARRIOR’S TOUCH (the follow on from HEALER’S TOUCH) for me, and I’m pondering my plans for MAGICIAN’S TOUCH (the last of the series). I’m also considering

Read more…

My Writing Process – Blog Tour

I was tagged twice in the same week (same day) for the My Writing Process Blog Tour, so, I have both Zoe Harris and Clare Davidson to thank and introduce you to (if you haven’t come across these lovely ladies already).

Zoe is an Australian now living in Bærum ( just outside Oslo), Norway. Zoe makes up one half of Grimbold Books, and is the driving force behind Tenebris Books. She also writes her own fiction, and will be my editor when I submit WT to Kristell Ink… Phew!

Clare is a mother, wife, teacher and writer, based in Lancaster, England. She first published the fantasy novel Trinity in 2012, before going on to work on her YA Paranormal series Hidden. The first two books in the series, Reaper’s Rhythm and Broken Bargain are available now.

—-

The next part involves me answering a few questions:

What am I working on?

Well… I’m still working on Warrior’s Touch at the moment, although, I am in the final stages.

WT is the sequel to Healer’s Touch, which was released early in 2013 and enjoyed a quiet first year in the market. Then Kristell Ink did a promo in February this year and, well, it’s done quite well. So, yes, people are waiting on WT. I’m working on it!

How does my work differ from others of its genre?

Probably the easiest way to answer this is to look at what my work is like…

Read more…

Welcome New & Faithful Few

Well, hello there.

So, about ten days ago, my publisher advised me there had been some 37,000 free downloads of HEALER’S TOUCH. Now, this is where I have to remind myself that these are downloads that would not have happened had it not been free… because, well, I still have a student loan sitting there… looking at me… and I’m looking at it… yeah. Maybe next time.

Anyway, that was a highly successful promotion we had there… and we didn’t expect it. I guess it just goes to show what a decent cover, blurb and the few kind reviews I already had can do…

Over the course of the month, I’ve gone from having just 22 reviews on Amazon US to over 90. That’s amazing. 22 in a year… another 70 in a month. Goodreads has seen a jump, and I even got my first review on Smashwords. B&N also got some action.

It has been an amazing time

Read more…

Mailing List

So…

We have had a highly successful promo campaign already, and HEALER’S TOUCH is still free for the rest of the month! And after a little BookBub boost at the end of last week, there have been a ton of downloads… I mean that. LOTS. And some of those downloaders have read it already, and some of them have even liked it. And people are, understandably, asking about Book 2.

Well, I have been working on WARRIOR’S TOUCH since before HT even hit the shelves… yeah, that long. Some fifteen months to date. It hasn’t been an easy ride. There have been some parts of the book I’ve been so enthusiastic about, but that just haven’t worked. And there are other bits I’m so excited about and I can’t wait to get them out there. And then there are the slightly less exciting point-A-to-point-B parts… They’re OK. I’ll shine them up a bit by the end.

The point is, I have

Read more…

Swag!

So, not only is HEALER’S TOUCH free (ebook versions) everywhere, but you can also win SWAG!

Swag? You ask.

Swag! I say.

What’s swag? you ask.

Swag is… well it’s… it’s…

Oh, let me show you.

Healer's Touch Swag: Coffee mug, bookmarks, book, necklace
Swag!

So, go, GO to the KRISTELL INK website and enter the Rafflecopter to win!

Good luck!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

If you enjoyed this post, you can vote for it over at Springfree Family Times and help me win a trampoline for my family!! (Just picture me jumping on a trampoline – glee – yeah… now you wanna help me win, eh?)… You get free stuff, I get free stuff… win-win, no?

Blog Hop

What a fab way to finish the year: With a re-cap/where-I’m-at post as part of an Author Blog Hop. So, here goes.

A brief run-down of 2013 from me: My book, HEALER’S TOUCH, was released at the end of January by Kristell Ink (part of Grimbold Books). I think it’s done not too badly for a debut novel published by a small publisher. My understanding is that Kristell Ink are really taking off, so I feel privileged to have got in on the ground floor. It’s all up, up, up from here.

We hit a bit of a snag when we split from Holland House to become Grimbold authors, but that’s all done and dusted now, all smooth sailing (Gosh, look at the cliches! Just look at them!).

As far as the rest of life goes, my son turned 3 in September and finally moved on from his terrible twos soon after and is becoming quite a pleasure to have around (phew!). And work has just seemed to get busier and busier. I’m sure it’s all very positive, but we (my husband and I) are stressed a good deal of the time (we work at the same company). Not super great for our parenting and my writing, but we’re managing. There are positive moves being made at work that may lead to reduced stress… or more, who knows?

Anyway, back to the Blog Hop. I was tagged by Elaine White. You can also see what she’s up to on her Facebook Page, Twitter and Goodreads profile.

Here’s how a blog hop works. Elaine tagged me, so I answer the four blog hop questions in my blog, which I will link to Elaine’s answers to the same questions on her blog. Then I will reach out to five random authors to continue the hop!

Read on to find my answers to the blog hop questions.

What are you writing?

I am currently (still) working on

Read more…

The Way Things Are, Could Be, and the Role of Fiction

I don’t write these kinds of posts often… but, well… I just can’t not, this time…

I’m going to say some stuff that people won’t agree with. That’s fine. Say I’m wrong, I’ll listen, and I’ll consider. That’s as much as I can promise.

Amid all this rape culture media coverage (earlier in the year with the boys in the US and more recently with, shamefully, NZ’s own), I have realised that as I happened to include sexual assault in HEALER’S TOUCH it is a responsibility of my characters to deal with it in a realisitic, and hopefully healthy way.

Something I have been realising with fiction: it’s one thing to go out there and say, “Look, this is a bad guy doing bad things, we blew him up… that’s what happens when you do bad things… but, look, this good guy isn’t totally shiny, but he’s not that bad, so he’s cool”… But what about saying “Here… this is how it could be done… grow up like this guy/gal”? Just a thought I’ve been having.

It’s a tough one. Because to go out there and design a character, or three, that you think are the best role models for the world is to assume that you know best… which, well, who can?

I like to think that Jonas is a good

Read more…

Review Hang Over

… When you read a really awesome review and you just keep going back to pinch yourself and remind yourself that the reviewer was talking about YOUR BOOK!

For realz.

This:

Joe Abercrombie iin Style

is my favourite line from a review ever (so far… shut up).*

Because I am a fan.

Do I set out to write like Joe Abercrombie? Well, maybe, because I love his work and I want to love my work (but I don’t know if that is ever really possible for an author to truly LURVE their own output… because we can always see what it was meant to be). I’ve nearly finished reading all his currently published works… then I will be sad… but more is coming out, so I will be happy (yay!).

Anyway… in another sense I don’t set out to write like Mr. Abercrombie, because, well, I like sexual tension and romance in stories, and so I write stories with these elements appearing fairly central to the overall plot. It often makes me wonder if I’ll find much of an audience. I mean, some elements of my stories probably appeal to those who like dark, gritty themes and violence and whatnot, while other aspects of my stories will appeal to those who dig romance and sex… Is there an audience for both? Well… there’s me (o: I’m not entirely unique… Somewhere out there, are others like me, and just maybe (please!) they feel like reading something I write….

And so… I continue to write… Just in case.

 

* my deepest apologies to my other reviewers, because I TOTALLY dig your work, too… it’s just… it’s just… yeah, I can’t dig myself out of this one. But don’t get me wrong, I’ve loved plenty of reviews – the passion with which some people can talk about my book… wow… just wow. Y’all are awesome.