Allen Donnelly

Artist, Author, Whimsy Merchant

This is the official website of the artist and science-fiction/fantasy novelist, Allen Donnelly.

Filtering by Category: Writings

World Book Day (oh, and some other day. Let's not dwell on that)

It's the 3rd of March, 2016, and it's World Book Day according to the hashtag on twitter. So happy World Book Day, everyone! Buy a book, read it, love it, leave a nice review, hug the author and tell them everything's going to be okay - don't worry about lying to us, we're very gullible.
You could even get one of my 3! Hell, you can even get the first one - Crystal Eyes - for free from Smashwords, iTunes and Barnes & Noble!

It is also, as I write this on the 3rd of March, 2016, less than 24 hours away from me, Allen Donnelly, exiting my 30s.
Tomorrow will mark the fortieth anniversary of my birth, way back in 1976.
God that sounds like a long time ago...
I remember thinking that forty seemed so far away, so oooold, as to be almost inconceivable. And yet here we are. Or rather, there I will be tomorrow.
Here's a pic of me at about age 4 or 5 I think. With some rhubarb. Not sure why...
I don't actually care about turning forty, it's just another number and, hopefully, we'll all get there eventually, but I do tend to get a bit maudlin around birthdays - I enjoy wallowing in existential angst too much not to indulge when give such an opportunity.
If nothing else, it offers an opportunity to look back at what you've accomplished over the last decade...

Moving on.
Let us save the wallowing for tomorrow, when I intend to do nothing but play video games, eat unhealthy food and probably drink some wine, and today focus on the here and now.
I'm still working on the sequel to Heroes Wanted. Some books, Heroes Wanted included, flow like water, the words all but tumbling out of me. With other books, like the sequel for example, every sentence is a battle, every word has to be dragged out as if it were blood from a stone. Every time you think you've got a hold on it, it twists in your grasp and you need to shift directions.
This one's been a battle and I'm still not done.

I've still not heard anything back about The Salvager from the Angry Robot open submissions thing. I desperately want to get that book out there because I think it's awesome but it's going to have to wait; tough for an impatient old man like myself.

Away from literature, I'm trying to get better at the arting and the drawing (which I tend to post on my Tumblr and DeviantArt pages). This drawing is supposed to be Furiosa from Mad Max, by the way. Just in case you were wondering.
I might try sticking some of the less crappy efforts on Etsy or something. Can't make any less money from it than I do from the book sales...

Well, I've managed to avoid doing a morning's work by writing this blog post so I guess it's lunchtime and I'm a couple of hours closer to being 40.

Have a great day!

Well that didn't quite work!

They'll etch that on my tombstone, if I get one, which I probably won't because who wants to be in a bloody tomb?
This took a morbid turn.
Anyway, I was referring to my attempt to get The Salvager published via the Inkshares crowdfunding publishers. I still think that Inkshares is a cool site, with many cool ideas, but it definitely relies on being able to build up a hefty buzz on the social medias, something I'm rubbish at. There also seems to be a fair amount of authors all funding one another so it's hard to judge how it will all work out.
My next attempt will be to submit it to Angry Robot Books, who are running an open submission period from the 15th of December through to the end of January. It's a long shot but, well, what isn't a long shot when you're trying to get a book out there into the world?
Here's the link if you're interested -

NaNoWriMo is going on! Normally I'd have been all over this but I was helping my dad install a new kitchen in my house so I completely forgot about it - I'm a solid eleven days behind now but I'm going to see if I can still do it. It's the sequel to Heroes Wanted that I'll be working on, because writing a sequel to a book that hardly anyone bought is a guarantee of success. I proved that with Sorrow's Herald.
That was sarcasm, just in case you didn't pick up on it.

Outside of writing based shenanigans, I'm still playing a load of Heroes of the Storm (and glaring at the empty space on the BattleNet launcher where the Overwatch play button ought to be - c'mon Blizzard, please invite me to the beta!) and Elder Scrolls Online on the PS4.
Also got the Heart of Thorns expansion for Guild Wars 2 but I've not managed to put much time into it yet.

That's it for now. I'll leave you with a pic I did to try (unsuccessfully) to promote The Salvager on Inkshares - it's the main character, Aimee Westmorland, in a poster that is probably familiar to you.

Until next time,

Share My Ink!

An unusual battle cry, to be sure, but relevant in this case!
It's only been a little over a month since Sorrow's Herald was released to literally no fanfare but already we move on to the next one!
Allow me to introduce you to Aimee Westmorland, THE SALVAGER!

A new, light hearted sci-fi adventure about mechs, friendship, booze, mechs and evil big businesses. And also mechs.
Did I mention the mechs?

Anyway, the reason for the odd heading is this: rather than my usual method of self-publishing, I'm trying out the relatively new Inkshares site. They're a crowd-funded publisher - you list your book on their site and people pledge a pre-order (no money is taken yet), if the book gets enough pre-orders then Inkshares publishes it in much the same way as a traditional publishing house would, including providing editing, proofing and cover designing services at no expense to me (I like this bit in particular).
Right now, there's also a co-promotion thing running with the Nerdist which could be pretty cool.

So here's the begging bit (you knew it was coming, right?). I need people to pre-order The Salvager, and then get their friends to do the same.
I should note that you get $5 credit just for signing up to Inkshares so if I do manage to get enough pre-orders it'll barely cost you a bean! You can earn even more credits by using the links on the project page to refer people - in fact you might even end up getting it for free (for more details see the page for The Salvager)!
It would mean a huge amount to me to get that kind of help.
You can expect me to bang on about this an obnoxious amount over the next couple of months, to the point where you might even get sick of it. I've tried very hard to avoid being a spambot on all the social medias but if that's what it needs then, well, that's what I'll do. Whatever it takes! Performing monkey mode: ACTIVATE!
Seriously though, nothing's off the table here.

While I'm abandoning what little dignity I have left (there are people who know me who laughed out loud when they read that) and begging, I'd love to see more (some?) reviews for Sorrow's Herald and Heroes Wanted on Amazon or Goodreads. Good reviews, for preference, but I'll take what I can get.

That's it for now. Still decorating (I am sooooo slow at it), still writing, still playing daft games, still wading through the masses of hair that the dog's shedding. All good fun!

Until next time!

Pleeaaaaase Release Me...

Let me go!
The time for release is here. To almost no fanfare at all, Sorrow's Herald is unleashed upon an unsuspecting world! 
The world won't know what hit it. Quite literally. I suspect it won't notice at all.

If you're not familiar with Crystal, the main protagonist of Sorrow's Herald, then you can catch up on her adventures in the first of the series, Crystal Eyes, for free if you get it from Smashwords. Just check out with the coupon code LA48J

This week I've been doing some pics of Crystal in a rough, painterly style. And here they are

It's Crystal time...

...and there's no need to be afraid!
Reference from 1985 there - that's how up to the minute I am with modern culture. Last blog post it was Olivia Newton John, this post it's Band Aid. 
Zeitgeist, I am in you!

Back to the point, SORROW'S HERALD is out on the 10th of July! That's less than a month away! And you can pre-order it now! Exclamation mark!
EXCITE! A bit, anyway.

If you're looking at it and thinking "But Allen, that's a sequel and I've not read CRYSTAL EYES yet, how will I know what's happening?"
Well, first of all, shame on you! But I hold no grudges so allow me to help you rectify this egregious mistake:
If you go to Smashwords, buy CRYSTAL EYES and check out with the code LA48J, you will get it for FREE!
Look at all those capital letters, that's how you know it's exciting.

Aside from all this book-based nonsense, I'm still decorating. Slowly. Because I'm terrible at it. Also it transpires that the garden is essentially a weed-jungle and now I'm lowering the tone of the whole neighbourhood because I haven't got round to starting on it yet. I sprayed some weed-killer around but they all seem to be immune to it. 
I did stop the back door from creaking. The fact that something so trivial registers as a DIY success for me should give you some indication as to my level of competency with such things. To be fair, the creaking was really getting on my wick.

That's all for now!