Tag Archives: Novel writing

Destination France: a book for your travels

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Destination France is a terrific publication for the Francophiles amongst us, so I am delighted to report that I have just discovered a review for Sleeping People Lie in the magazine’s ‘Bookshelf’ feature.

Sleeping People Lie transports the reader to the Loire Valley and to Paris – where the sinister aspects of this dark love affair begin to bloom – and what happens next will keep you turning the pages into the night.

Here’s the link to the feature, to my website and to Amazon if you fancy following in the footsteps of Destination France and curling up with a good old helping of ‘Francophilia’.
DESTINATION FRANCE SPL
http://www.jaedewylde.com
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Sleeping-People-Lie-ebook/dp/B009YK1MEU/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1380977149&sr=8-1&keywords=sleeping+people+lie

Author to Author: Lynda Renham’s latest novel – out now!

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Once in a while, you come across an author that persuades you to try out a new genre. For me, that author is Lynda Renham, for whom I have crossed the road to the lighter side of life. Her novels, Croissants and Jam, Coconuts and Wonderbras and Pink Wellies and Flat Caps have made me laugh out loud in far flung places and on plane rides and I, for one, am delighted that her latest novel, The Valentine Present and Other Diabolical Liberties, is out today. I love to find out the nitty gritty behind a novel so I am super pleased that Lynda has joined me for a chat…

Lynda's latest! Buy it now from Amazon...

Lynda’s latest! Buy it now from Amazon…

Author, Lynda Renham

Author, Lynda Renham

Q: So, you must be really pleased that your novels have become so popular that no sooner have you finished one, than folks are clamouring for more. Is that fun or scary?
Well fortunately people aren’t clamouring for the books outside my front door. I have to say that would be pretty scary  But I have to say it is mostly fun. I’ve worked a long time for this success so I’m very happy to have people clamouring and demanding more. It’s the first time in my life I have had people clamouring. It’s rather nice. I could enjoy this kind of fame (says she tongue in cheek) I just need better shades to avoid the paparazzi now.

Q: Where did you get the idea for this novel? Has someone given you an outrageous Valentine’s present maybe?
I’m sure they have and I imagine it was so terrible that I’ve blocked the memory, hence why I can’t tell you what it was. The idea for this novel came in all honestly out of three pretty disastrous starts and after indulging in some popcorn and watching the film ‘The Long Good Friday’ Go figure…

Q: Tell us a little about the story – just to whet our appetites…On arriving home after a friend’s posh wedding, launderette worker Harriet, finds her life irrevocably changed when she discovers her flat ransacked and her boyfriend missing. In a matter of hours she is harassed by East End gangsters and upper crust aristocrats. Accepting an offer she can’t refuse, Harriet, against her better judgment becomes the fiancée of the wealthy Hamilton Lancaster, with dire consequences. What she had not bargained on was meeting Doctor Brice Edmunds. It’s a cocktail of misunderstandings, three unlikely gangsters, a monkey and a demented cat which make this novel a hysterical read. Follow Harriet s adventure where every attempt to get out of trouble puts her deeper in it.

Q: Who is your favourite character in the book and why?
Oh, most certainly the three Jacks. I think you will love them too.

Q: If you were in a film of one of your own books, which character would you most like to play?
Well, they would have to be cool, sexy and good looking, I mean, obviously and of course have a great adventure. It would have to be Bels. Just to get a little bit close to that Christian would make it all worthwhile. All the more worthwhile if he was played by Bradley Cooper (heaven). When do we start shooting?

Q: You have a marvellous instinct for what makes us laugh. Why do you think that is?

I was brought up on laughter. My dad was a clown and my husband is as nutty as me so it helps. Mostly though, you have to have a sense of humour, to be me and to live with me, because I am the woman who walks into the gent’s loo and leaves her handbag in supermarket trolleys. Not to mention crashing the parking system at an NHS hospital car park only last week.

Q: Now, for any budding writers out there: What piece of advice would you give to would-be authors of humorous novels?
Write comedy that people can relate to, the more embarrassing the better. People love to laugh at themselves.

Q: Okay, the question every author hates having just finished a book: What next? Do you already have an idea?
Of course *bangs head against wall* Absolutely *pops head into fridge* I’m just about to write the first chapter *Sneaks onto Facebook* As soon as this procrastination is over I’ll be on it.

Thank you for joining me Lynda, and here’s what you’ve been waiting for; the link to the answer to Lynda’s competition question:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Sleeping-People-Lie-ebook/dp/B009YK1MEU/ref=dp_kinw_strp_1
At 8pm Lynda will announce the winner and will email me the winners name, email and postal address for me to send you a signed copy of Sleeping People Lie. Good luck, everyone!

Here are lots of useful links for Lynda and her work:
http://www.facebook.com/events/615825101813018/?fref=ts
Author page
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Lynda-Renham/170503619694017?fref=ts
Twitter
https://twitter.com/Lyndarenham
The hashtag for today is #renham
Webpage: http://www.renham.co.uk
Here’s where you can get her new book right now!
http://amzn.to/1515q3y

Jae De Wylde is the best selling author of The Thinking Tank and Sleeping People Lie.

Pop over to http://www.jaedewylde.com for lots of news and info
Jae’s novels are available from Waterstones, Walkers and from:
http://www.amazon.co.uk and http://www.amazon.com

THANK YOU TO 3077 NEW READERS!

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And thank you from the Chihuahuas too!

And thank you from the Chihuahuas too!

Just a huge thank you today for everyone who jumped on board to help shout out about the free download of Sleeping People Lie last week.

A massive 3077 readers downloaded – so wow! You exceeded my hopes and expectations by miles and miles and I am very grateful indeed.I do hope that you enjoy spending time with my novel. If it speaks to you, reviews on Amazon (.co & .uk would be fab!), Goodreads, wherever, whenever, would be very much appreciated.

I shall be away from my computer soon, writing, writing and writing so in the meantime, have a wonderful summer, lovelies. Travel safely and take care, love to you all, Jae X

Lots of info on my website: http://www.jaedewylde.com
The Thinking Tank & Sleeping People Lie are both available from branches of Waterstones and Waterstones online, Walkers Bookshops and from http://www.amazon.co.uk & http://www.amazon.com

Download SLEEPING PEOPLE LIE FREE with love this week – BUT WHY?

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Good morning, all! I am not used to being FREE. And since yesterday close to 1,000 downloads have gone out FREE! It is a strange experience, promoting your beloved work for NO MONEY AT ALL – when you are so used to standing in bookshops, chatting to folks who will happily pay for their summer read.

So why do offer a freebie at all – when actually you really would like to be paid for your work? Well, the advantage of being with a small publisher is that you work very closely with the team and you definitely have a voice – plus, of course, the fact that they chose your work for publication in the first place. The downside is that they don’t have the huge PR machine of the mass market behind them so it’s up to us all to let folks know that the Summertime stable has over 80 books of real merit poised for discovery by YOU!

SLEEPING PEOPLE LIE FREE ON AMAZON NOW!

SLEEPING PEOPLE LIE FREE ON AMAZON NOW!


So we offer our freebies in the hope that you love what you read and that you will want more. Plus it DOES pop us up in the charts. And how bonkers is it that last night I was on the same page as Louisa May Alcott? My English teacher would be so proud…

Sleeping People Lie is a Goodreads chart topper on Best Books To Read While Travelling. As I type, it is at #27 on Women’s Fiction and #34 in Contemporary Fiction on Amazon.com. It’s a love story with a dark edge, mystery woven in, plenty of twists and has great reviews. So what have you got to lose?

The link to download your FREE KINDLE FILE is below (UK readers please click on UK site). What would I like in return? Well, if you love what you read, I would love a review, but my novel is given with love and no expectation for return. XX

http://www.amazon.com/Sleeping-People-Lie-ebook/dp/B009YK1MEU/ref=sr_1_1_bnp_1_kin?ie=UTF8&qid=1371542118&sr=8-1&keywords=sleeping+people+lie

http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B009YK1MEU/ref=pd_lpo_k2_dp_sr_1?pf_rd_p=103612307&pf_rd_s=lpo-top-stripe&pf_rd_t=201&pf_rd_i=1909193100&pf_rd_m=A3P5ROKL5A1OLE&pf_rd_r=1274FNCVVY0AGQ54EV9P9781909193109-Sleeping People Lie Cover PRERESIZE.indd

Bags more info at http://www.jaedewylde.com

#1 Goodreads ‘Best Book To Read While Travelling’ for Sleeping People Lie!

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IMG_0336Well, I never thought I would see the day when Sleeping People Lie would be nominated for a Goodreads list, let alone be perched at the top, hovering gracefully over such noble companions. Thank you so much to the lovelies who voted for it. I am so aware that these things are as much PR exercises as anything. We authors love to see our books top charts as it spreads the word to others who might consider popping it in their suitcases – so thank you to my supporters too, for every single person who chooses Sleeping People Lie as their holiday companion as a result of your vote. I want you to know how very much your input has been appreciated.

Sleeping People Lie is my second novel. The Thinking Tank (also Summertime Publishing) is a top 50 Bestseller on Amazon, Women’s Contemporary Fiction.

Waterstones, Walkers and Amazon in Paperback and Kindle

Waterstones, Walkers and Amazon in Paperback and Kindle


Please visit my website at http://www.jaedewylde.com for details of my novels and much more info.
Copies of both novels from Waterstones, Walkers and from http://www.amazon.co.uk and http://www.amazon.com in paperback and Kindle.

So how did you get published?

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My latest novel is available from Walkers, Waterstones and Amazon in Kindle and paperback

My latest novel is available from Walkers, Waterstones and Amazon in Kindle and paperback

Prompted by an enquiry from a writer who has just completed her first novel – and hurrah for her since that is a brilliant feat in itself – I’m offering to you what I offered to her, which is my own personal take on getting it out there. It’s all very subjective and all I can suggest is what worked for me…

Once you have a manuscript you are happy with, make all your friends and family – especially big readers, teachers and literary folk – comment on what they like or not – what works and what doesn’t. Get them to mark up copies for you. Don’t forget to acknowledge their help in the back of your novel.

Edit and proof read again yourself, working with the comments with which you agree, and then ABSOLUTELY if you are serious about getting it out there get a professional to do a proof read and edit for you. It costs but is worth it if you are serious about being published. I used Megan Kerr for The Thinking Tank before I had a publisher. I found her great for what I wanted. There are lots of people out there to choose from so do your research to find the right person for you. http://www.megankerr.co.uk/

Be prepared to adjust your novel according to what the editor suggests as they know what works. It’s quite hard to let go of paragraphs you judge as your finest work but if it’s deemed unnecessary it will have to go! However, if you feel strongly you can always argue your case – which I did and now realise that my editor was right and I was wrong!

Even with millions of edits there will still be errors – sad, frustrating but true.

Get hold of a Writers and Artists Yearbook for 2013: http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/1408157497/ref=pd_lpo_k2_dp_sr_1?pf_rd_p=103612307&pf_rd_s=lpo-top-stripe&pf_rd_t=201&pf_rd_i=1408135809&pf_rd_m=A3P5ROKL5A1OLE&pf_rd_r=1ARCDBD3GZFRBZ81H500
(or whatever year is when you reach that point!). Inside you will find a guide to all the UK and US agents and publishers. There is no point submitting to an agent who doesn’t deal with your genre – so read carefully and only choose appropriate targets. Then, go to their websites and see what they want as a first submission. Sometimes it’s three chapters and synopsis, others want the whole thing – just depends. Some want email, others only manuscripts.

Then you just have to keep sending out and wait until someone likes what you have to offer.

It can take a very long time with lots of rejections. I was so fortunate to be in the right place at the right time with the right novel. Use any contacts you have – it can’t do any harm.

If you find an agent/ publisher, be prepared to let them have some control as they will know what is commercial and what is not.

I was picked up by a publisher and have no agent, which means I have to do most of my own PR, which is time-consuming and hard work, especially if you want to get down to writing again, so there are definite advantages in having an agent who will represent you. That said, you are more in control doing your own thing – but it might not always be the right pathway.

There is a magazine, published by Warners of Bourne, called Writers’ Magazine and there are often competitions. It’s a good way to get involved and get your name out there. I did this through features for educational journals.

Also – start a blog about something you love – even the process of writing your book. Be on Facebook and Twitter, join reading/ writers’ groups online as well as in life. Anything that helps you get your writing out there.

I love doing book signings, going into schools to talk to AS/ A Level students about dual narrative and other aspects, being grilled by reading groups and anything that puts me in contact with people. What I am not so keen on is the whole cyber side of promoting online – but it all has to be done.

Also, bear in mind that unless you happen to become a best seller/ movie made of it etc, there is not a lot of money in writing fiction until you really make it! Plus what motivates you to express yourself might not be what is commercial. I think the best test for me is to ask myself if I am writing something I would like to read – and maybe you can only really be true to yourself and the writing ‘voice’ that you find.

All of the above still holds true if you decide to self-pub. I know folks who have gone through Matador/ Troubador and also Createspace and who have done lots of networking and been successful. Fifty Shades of Gray is a brilliant example of a do-it-yourself success.

Check out my website for news and reviews: http://www.jaedewylde.com

Sleeping People Lie steals top spot – with apologies to Jamie O!

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Sleeping People Lie & The Thinking Tank steal the top spots at Waterstones!

Sleeping People Lie & The Thinking Tank steal the top spot at Waterstones!

With launch fever over for Sleeping People Lie, I thought that maybe that was that. Written, launched, marketed; over and out.

But no; a great big ‘hurrah’ was just around the corner when Sleeping People Lie AND The Thinking Tank managed to bump Jamie Oliver off the top row, coming in at #1 and #2 respectively following my book signing in Waterstones in Market Harborough.

This last week has been terrific too with books flying out of my hands at signings. Huge thanks to my new readers in Lincolnshire and Rutland. And the best bit of all? The fact that folks came especially to see me because they loved The Thinking Tank and wanted my second novel asap. What a joy and blessing! Although Martin may not think so since it’s made me want to get stuck into novel #3 and that means he has to live with a zombie. Hey ho! Please watch this space…

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Sleeping People Lie is a love story with a dark edge set between Stamford, England, Paris and New York at Christmastime. It’s available, along with my first novel, The Thinking Tank, on Amazon in paperback and Kindle and from branches of Waterstones and Walkers Bookshops.

Please visit me at: www.jaedewylde.com for reviews, news and contact details.

To Compromise or Not to Compromise?

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To Compromise or Not to Compromise?

Yet again this proves a tough question. We are back to the detail of Sally’s grooming in The Thinking Tank, which we see in detail not, in my view for any salacious reason, but because we have to know just how bad Sally’s situation is to make sense of everything that happens to Sally later in her story.

Once again, I was accused of titillation – and it makes me wonder whether I should compromise on the uncomfortable elements of my new title, Sleeping People Lie (November 2012). I know that what I write at times makes for edge-of-the-seat discomfort – maybe that’s a difficult place for readers to be – but if in watering down, we lose the nub of the catalyst, is that not removing something essential from the message I want to convey? But then I don’t want to offend people and lose readers either – so maybe the honesty should be reined in.

Things like this always make me revisit my ideas – not a bad thing, maybe, but it drives home my own lack of confidence – and that’s an uncomfortable place for me!

I am grateful to Megan from Reading in the Sunshine (find her on FB) for a beautifully measured approach to the issue in her review…

 

 

Review of The Thinking Tank

Reading in the Sunshine

The Thinking Tank is made up of two stories in separate times. In 1969, we meet Sally, a young girl who attends church and dreams of playing guitar and performing in the Young People’s Fellowship band. She is soon groomed by Simon, a 22 year old police constable and stalwart of the church. The other story running alongside this is set in 2003, and we meet Sarah, a mother being cared for by her daughter Rebekah. Sarah is just embarking on a new treatment for her Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy, having sessions inside a hyperbaric oxygen chamber (the `thinking tank’). Their relationship is very complex and appears from the start to be very strained.
The blurb on the back was very intriguing, and I was really excited about starting the book as I was interested to see what lay ahead. I did enjoy The Thinking Tank. I will admit I wasn’t sure about it at the beginning. I found Sally’s story at the start difficult to get through, as the subject matter can be uncomfortable reading. Jae De Wylde did a fantastic job in making the story of Sally’s grooming so realistic as it seemed very real and throughout those sections, I just wanted to reach out to Sally. However, it was so realistic that at times it did make me feel on edge, but I persevered with it and I was glad I did because afterwards the story was even more gripping.
Jae De Wylde has to be complimented on her characters and the interactions they have with each other! Jae effortlessly manages to create such complex and interesting characters and you can’t help but be drawn into their lives and their own personal stories. I was especially hooked by the relationship between Sarah and Rebekah; I enjoyed seeing how their relationship developed and how they dealt with the issues that life threw at them. As characters, they were so beautifully written and a lot of the time I felt as though I was stood next to them watching their scenes play out in front of me. I also want to note that I enjoyed the `relationship’ that Sarah has with the `thinking tank’, I thought that it was particularly well-written and added an extra layer and depth to the tale.
After my initial wariness of the first few chapters, I raced through the book, unable to put it down and I was quite sad to finish it. I must say I am looking forward to picking it up and rereading it all over again. Jae De Wylde has obviously poured her heart and soul into this book and it showed, I felt that every word had been carefully selected and the story did reach out to me, and I found myself connecting with not only the characters but taking in the whole picture. It was descriptive, sensitive, thought-provoking and at times very honest, and I must say I enjoyed every bit.
There were a lot of surprises in this book, the twists and turns were excellently placed and compelled me to read on. It’s not light reading but instead the story flows beautifully, giving the reader a refreshing, honest read that will make you stop and think.

A fantastic novel from Jae De Wylde, and I am very much looking forward to her next one.

Must we like a character to love a book?

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The Thinking Tank is available at Amazon, in Waterstones, Walkers and Bookmark Bookstores. Please look out for my new title this November!

Must we like a character to love a book?

This is the question that has haunted me since I began my second novel, Sleeping People Lie/ Two Weeks in Paris – titles currently running neck and neck!

Yes, I do know the rules – but maybe it is time for a rule to be broken. Because not everybody is likeable all of the time; in fact most people are unlikeable some of the time – and some people are unlikeable most of the time.

Do we ever consider that if others could see into our ugliest thoughts, as if we had speech bubbles sprouting from our heads, the image we project of ourselves would be wrecked? And so it is with Sloane and Nicholas, the two main characters in my new title. We see in where others do not, but do we always see what we like?

 

I took heart though, from this 5-star review of The Thinking Tank. My character, Sarah, did not instantly appeal to the writer, but she was nevertheless drawn in. So, filled with hope for my Nicholas and Sloane, I have told their story, which demanded its telling, and I would love you to spend time with them in November when it hits the shelves!

Review of The Thinking Tank by Deborah Fletcher, Author of Bitten by Spain

Much to my own great surprise, I loved this book. Loved it, loved it, loved it.

When I started reading, I took an instant dislike to Sarah, the main character. Her introduction portrays a woman suffering from a degree of immobility and pain resulting from an old accident – petulant and irascible in turns, and clingy and manipulative with her long-suffering daughter, she is exactly the sort of character for which I have little time and much scorn. I wasn’t sure that I would be able to stick with it.

The acuity of Jae’s writing pulled me in, however. Her style is exceptionally clear, well-constructed and honest. And as I became more involved with the slowly-building picture of Sarah’s past, and her arrival in the `now’, my attitude changed, just as I feel it was meant to do.

As her journey of self-discovery continues, so does Sarah’s analysis of her relationships with those around her. This analysis is insightful, clear and sometimes brutally
honest, but beautifully written throughout. I particularly liked many of the short, sharp philosophies that were expressed, and found myself nodding in accord with many of them.

A fairly surprising journey by Sarah to Spain brought me to my home ground, and I read with delight the masterful descriptions of places and atmosphere that flowed from Jae’s pen.

The finale was just as it should be, because I like to close a book feeling content with the outcome. Impressed as I was, I have bought this book a number of times over to gift away. An exceptional first novel.

The Thinking Tank outsells Grey: 50 Shades of Hurrah!

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The Thinking Tank is available from Amazon, Walkers, Waterstones & Bookmark

It was one of those magnificent punch-your-hand-in-the-air moments when the lovely staff at Waterstones in Camberley sidled up to me on Saturday and said, ‘Guess what?’ ‘What?’ I said, as you do. ‘You have outsold 50 Shades of Grey – good for you!’ And we all did a little jig in the shop.

Have I read the rival novel? Well, yes I have. Do I agree with the slamming critics? Well, no I don’t. I like to try different genres and I don’t think the odd dabble into the erotic does any harm – and whatever you say about the style and all the other stuff, in my own humble opinion, it does do what it says on the can.

And the strange thing is that by not being über-critical on Saturday, I ended up meeting some delightful ladies and selling more copies of The Thinking Tank.

So how did that work? Well, I was standing pretty close to the stack of Grey matter as it flew off the shelf towards the cash point.  Had I read it, the ladies wanted to know, so it was good to be able to comment – and to own up to having enjoyed the read. Well, that got us chatting and one thing led to another such that in many cases, The Thinking Tank and 50 Shades went happily off to the till together.

Thank you too to the delightful customer and her daughter who popped off to Primark and bought me a hair clip I had admired – what a brilliant surprise! And to the lovely lady who bought the book, went to the hairdressers and took the trouble to come back to tell me that she was already on page 45 and couldn’t put it down!

The downside of the day is that Brad Pitt arrived to buy books just 30 minutes after I left. Can’t win them all…

Thank you to all the lovelies at Camberley Waterstones for the warmest welcome and for sharing my not-so-grey moment!

Log on to: www.jaedewylde.com

Bags more info and fab expat books at: www.expatbookshop.com

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