The state of play …

DebE —  September 17, 2012 — 5 Comments

I was starting to feel it had been a while since I posted here, but I see it’s only been 5 days. That’s not terrible, is it? I mean, you guys don’t miss me that much when I’m gone, right? You’re allowed to, I guess. I suppose it would be flattering. But it was also be, like, responsibility, or something … urgh. OK, don’t miss me. But do come visit. Let’s make it like we’re old friends – we don’t have to talk everyday, and when we do chat, it’s like we’ve never missed a beat. Yeah … I like that.

Righty. So, you guys know I have been writing a story, now titled “Healer’s Touch”, for several years now. It’s taken that long because over the course of shaping the story itself, I was also learning the craft of writing, through my involvement with ‘sites like WDC, or through reading and trying out the advice offered by Larry Brooks (I honestly believe that applying his story-structure to my story has been close to the single most significant thing I’ve done for it) and Janice Hardy.

So, this is a wee “this is where I’m at” post …

In a recent post I mentioned that I had struck up some back-and-forth with a small publisher. Well, right now I am sitting on a contractual offer … it’s up to me to sign. Nice, eh? They’re a small publisher, a new publisher, but I’ve always been a keen “first wave” kind of person, so I’m in on the first wave …

Thing is, I’ve read all the stuff that says the big guys don’t help us new authors with our promoting. I know I will need to promote my story if I want people to learn about its existence, but I also know I need to get on and write the next one, especially since against much advice, my story isn’t really very stand-alone-y. There is obviously more to come …

So, I want time to write, in amongst being a mum, working part-time and doing everything else that life throws out there (friends, family, pets, a little down-time (what? where did that come from?)).

Several months ago, I started to ponder the solution … go with a small press. But who? Who?

It’s a tough question. So many of those that I looked at I didn’t particularly like the covers of their books. Yeah … I didn’t delve deeper, because I didn’t want my book to look like the rest of their catalogue. Fair enough? I think so.

And then, about a month ago, I learned of Kristell-Ink (the Fantasy/SciFi imprint of Holland House). The first thing that struck me was the website design – the main image “spoke to me” you could say … It had a feeling close to what I want to achieve with my book cover. The next part was their mission statement of “Quality not quantity” … Yes, quantity might be the more safe way to go as a publisher (financially – give the readers choice), but, if you can build a name for yourself as a backer of quality, you’re going to do yourself and your authors (not to mention the readers!) a wonderful service. Readers will know what they’re getting.

Sure, I know readers don’t really care who publishes a book, writes it, sure … But in the case of a small press, I can see the potential for discerning readers to discover an imprint and become a fan of that imprint. Who knows? The world of publishing is a bit up in the air at the moment.

The one thing I do know is that I don’t want to publish crap. If I’d chosen to Indie publish, I was going to take the time and find the money to edit and all that … get the manuscript up to scratch. But, there would always be a fear that my own judgement was wrong when it finally came time to putting the work out there. Having someone in the publishing game interested in what my story is (and even more interested in what it will be, no doubt) is highly beneficial to me.

So, right now, I am doing some story edits – tightening up the actual structure, deepening some of the character experiences, etc. I’ll see how those go down, and then it will be on to line-edits and proof-reads and the like … And all the while, a cover will be designed, and some promotions will be planned. I envision this phase of the journey to take 3-4 months.

And then it will be the true acid test … Will reviewers like my story? Will it sell? Hmmm … well, guess we just have to wait and see!

In the mean time, I am going to be getting on with Book 2 of the series. The ideas are flowing … I might even be able to fully outline this one, after all (I was having my doubts).

And in the short-term … I’ll be sharing my blog with some fellow New Zealand-based Speculative Fiction writers this week.

Sometime this week, I shall be interviewing Richard Barnes – go visit. I expect about Wednesday/Thursday, NZ time.

And on Saturday (NZ Time) I’ll be posting up a piece of story being written by Simon Petrie – Part One of which can be found HERE.

Well, that’s the state of play …

If you don’t hear from me, I’ll be writing, or something … I do Tweet, so if you really want to be in the know, check out my Twitter, or Facebook page, even (both are up the right side somewhere).

Wish me luck … (and then buy my book when it’s out, ‘cos, you know, luck doesn’t just happen …)




Deb E was born in New Zealand’s North Island, but her parents corrected that within months, moving south to Dunedin and staying there. Childhood nights were spent falling asleep to cover versions of Cliff Richard and the Shadows and other Rock ’n Roll classics played by her father’s band, and days were spent dancing to 45 LPs. Many of her first writing experiences were copying down song lyrics. She graduated to scientific reports when she studied a nematophagus fungus in the Zoology department of the University of Otago, trading all traces of popularity for usefulness… then traded both for fiction. Mum of one human & four fur-babies.

5 responses to The state of play …


    Hi Deb, great news. Any idea how long until your book will be available as an ebook on the publishers site?


      No dates, yet – still early days (they’re pencilling a schedule at the mo’). I’m tentatively going to say January-February wouldn’t be too far from the ball-park. Really depends how things are going with their other authors, and how quickly I can do these edits.


    Wow, things are hopping for you! Congratulations! It’s been a long road for that particular story, but now things will happen very quickly, I know!


      Thanks for dropping by. Yes, it has been a very long road. I didn’t listen to the advice about putting the first novel in the bottom of a drawer – I was determined that no matter how much it needed changed, it wouldn’t “fail”. I can be stubborn like that.
      And, yep. By going with a small publisher, things will get moving much faster than they would traditionally, and I’ll have some help with publicity that I wouldn’t have had if I’d gone Indie … I see a “Best of both worlds” scenario, here. Of course, I’ll share the story as things progress.

Trackbacks and Pingbacks:

  1. A Night to Remember: Part Six (by Simon Petrie) | Deb E - September 22, 2012

    […] The state of play … ( […]

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