Saturday, May 23, 2015

The Heroes of the Ashes: Book 1 - The Ache Inside Part 1

If you follow my Facebook page Just Ali you will have already heard my awesome news that my book The Heroes of the Ashes Book 1 has been epublished to both Kindle and iBooks.

I wanted to expand & share a little on this event further than just the initial WOOHOOOO! stage.

Being published has been a life long dream of mine but the purpose of being published is only to share a story that burns inside of you and that you wish to share with others, for various reasons.

I was quite happy to release my book for free as I have seen others do, just to get my story out there, but the epublishers I went through, Tablo Publishing, said that both Kindle (Amazon) & iBooks required the author to set a minimum price. So I chose the lowest price allowable. :-)

The Heroes of the Ashes is a story about faith, honour, commitment, love & loss and how different people deal with grief. But don't write it off as chick lit! Its an adventure story set primarily in Western Australia's Midwest region in a fictitious semi post apocalyptic Australian outback and the scope of Esthers journey spans years, without giving too much away.

Since finishing THOTA and editing it several times and once more for good luck before submitting it for consideration, I have been planning and working on The Heroes of the Ashes Book 2: The End of Life As You Know It & The Ache Inside Part 2.

Through the consultation process with readers of THOTA a common theme has been the length of the chapters, as in some of them seem a little short. So I took this on board and looked into it a little bit. From my previous experience with free ebooks they can be as short as 80 pages, which I kind of didn't find very satisfying as a reader. In fact I started not bothering with books that weren't at least 200 pages. I also remember that Stephen Kings The Gunslinger was originally a very small volume, many short stories published separately and then released together as a small novella, but he built wonderfully on that foundation and I hope my readers will feel the same way.

Harlequin has an open submission for manuscripts currently, which they never used to, but they must be at least 60,000 words minimum. So as I write book 2 I am keeping close attention on my word count for each chapter, as I did with book 1 but I have a better frame of reference now. E page sizes are different to word programs and the lines are not double spaced, so I was not aware that Book 1 was 'only' 100 pages until I had submitted it for publishing.

Live and learn.

For Book 2 my aim is to bring the reader a minimum of 5000 words per chapter for hopefully at least 12 chapters. The journey I have mapped out for Esther has the scope to do it. I just don't want to fall into the trap of waffling on for the sake of a word count. Sometimes chapters will need to end where they end. Full stop.

Miss 9 when she was 2 1/2 with The Waiting Woman.

Anyway, I'm so excited to finally be sharing Esthers story with a wider audience. I'm also very excited about the cover Miss 21 & I created. The fact that pictures I had taken months previously tied in so wonderfully to form an image of Miss 9 that coincidently references The Waiting Woman that stands at the HMAS Sydney Memorial right here in Geraldton, well its just a wonderful piece of serendipitous imagery. 

Also in case you haven't seen it yet, below is the cover for The Heroes of the Ashes: Book 2 - The End of Life As You Know It & The Ache Inside - Part 2.  Adorning the cover is my beautiful carefree Miss 5 dancing last year with such abandon at the Sunshine Festival, and a beautiful Geraldton sunset with my children in silhouette.

Finally a big thank you to every one who has been supporting my writing journey & to those who celebrated my joy with me; whether it be via phone call, Facebook, text message, with a cup of coffee or a glass of wine. It means so much to me.

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