Guess what? It’s OUT! I’m now officially a sci-fi author!
But DON’T PANIC! As the legendary Douglas Adams would have said. If you’re not a fan of science fiction, you don’t have to buy it. In fact, I’d rather you didn’t! Here’s why:
Amazon is pretty much SkyNet. It knows what you’ve bought, and when – and it uses this to predict what you’ll want next. Then it throws that stuff in your face as often as possible, like the worst kind of enabler.
What happens when a huge bunch of memoir readers buys a sci-fi book is, Amazon starts recommending that book to other memoir readers. And when those people don’t buy it – because why on Earth would they? – Amazon deems the book a failure, and stops recommending it to anyone.
But for anyone who does have at least a passing interest in exploding spaceships and the like, the book is here:
And it’s currently available for just 99c/99p!
Now, I’m not gonna lie – there’s a lot to like about this being-a-fiction-author-malarky. For starters – and I can’t overstate how much easier this makes life – you get to MAKE SH*T UP!!!
Book getting boring? Roll out a car chase! Need more explosions? Why, there’s a hidden stash of C4 just around the corner…
Instead of having to live through a whole bunch of incredibly harrowing life experiences, survive them, and then spend a year re-living them whilst desperately trying to scour my failing memory for every detail… oh, and at least TRYING to make them funny! Also, much as I hate to admit it – making sh*t up is a hell of a lot cheaper 😉
Don’t worry though – I haven’t quit writing travel memoirs for good, I promise! I’m just taking a break. A break which rather sneakily aligns with a potential shift in my personal circumstances… Yes, that’s right – I’m becoming a woman.
WHAT? But… (sigh!) No, you’re right. My nose really IS too big for that. Here’s what’s really going on:
Despite looking (and acting) like a twelve year old girl, in fact Roo is rapidly approaching that age where, if she were a horse, I’d be paying someone for a jam-jar of stallion sperm and a two-foot-long syringe.
This may be the only time in her life when she’s glad she’s not a horse.
But she’s started dropping random, casual hints, like, “I think family is very important,” and, “My biological clock is ticking,” and, “I’ve decided we’re having children next year.”
So… My new career as a fiction writer ties in quite well with this development, as it doesn’t require vast amounts of extended travel. If all goes according to (Roo’s) plan, we’ll be able to travel quite a bit once we do have babies (twins, she’s already decided). At which point, I feel another crazy memoir is kind of inevitable…
But until then, there’ll be a bit of a gap on that front. And I do feel bad about it. I know there’s a whole bunch of you eagerly awaiting a new travel book, so I’ve been thinking about how to fill that gap.
As you know, the America trip didn’t result in a book, for a whole bunch of reasons. Basically, I just didn’t feel that there was enough material for a book, and I didn’t fancy spending a year stretching and padding it out, struggling to make it funny, only to release a steaming pile of drivel that readers gave up on after five chapters.
BUT – the trip DID produce SOME materiel, and whilst it’s not enough for a book, it IS enough for a whole bunch of blog posts!
So, my plan over the coming months is to get a whole lot more active with this blog.
Relax! I’m not gonna be posting every day or anything! I reckon I should be able to squeeze something out roughly once every two weeks (still talking about blog posts here). There’s the USA trip, and a load of random things going on here in Perth that I wanted to write about…
And then there’s a threat I’ve been making for years now – ever since ‘That Bear Ate My Pants!’ was released in 2011. You see, in order to make that book saleable to the agents and publishers I was courting at the time, I had to cut about a third of the chapters I’d written out of the book. The traditional book publishers just won’t touch long-winded rambling nonsense like I write. For some reason.
So, knocking around on various hard drives are those missing chapters – the ‘cut scenes’, if you will – for not only that book, but for all of them! Because for some reason, I seem incapable of writing a first draft under 150,000 words…
So, my plan is to tweak those chapters one at a time to make them readable, and publish them on the blog as I go. Between them, the USA trip and other random stuff, I reckon we’ve got enough to keep us occupied for a bit. And who knows? If it turns out there’s more material than expected, perhaps another book will emerge from the melee?
And if not… Well. Just imagine what’s going to happen when Roo and I have kids. It’ll be absolute carnage. And I’ll definitelyget a book out of that!
Meanwhile, I’d like to take this chance to thank you all, so very much, and from the bottom of my heart. Without readers like you, I couldn’t do what I do. Hell, without you kind folks, I couldn’t eat! Not without getting some kind of ‘real job’ anyway, and you’ve seen what happens to me just standing around in a garden, so… Yeah. Probably best I don’t find myself working in a factory. Heavy machinery and me do not mix well.
So thank-you, once again, for everything! For your emails and Facebook messages, for blog comments and book reviews, and most of all, thank-you so much for reading my books. When I started with ‘That Bear,’ I had high hopes – but even so, I never dared dream of how well it’s gone. To have books I’ve written, in the hands of people as far apart as India, Japan and Brazil…
Granted, I’ve only sold one book in each of those countries, but that counts, right?
And that officially makes me an International Author. I reckon. And you did that! You lovely, lovely people.
One thing is guaranteed. You always make me laugh. Best wishes to you and Roo in your next adventure, I’m sure there will be lots of hilarious happenings to write about 😉
Cheers Kat! Oh, there’s bound to be drama… and it’s always funny in hindsight 😉
I don’t know where this quote comes from, but it is so true:
“A baby changes everything!”
Blessings and some Irish luck to you and Roo. It’s a great plan. Your books have given me a lot of pleasure. Love, Maura
Cheers Maurua! A baby changes me into a gibbering terrified wreckage, I think is how the rest of that saying goes… we’ll see, I guess 😉
Tony, I wondered if that little baby bug was ever going to bite you two. I had this really rude post in my head about it, but for once, I’m just going to let it go and say good luck with the pregnant pause. “That was a joke, son!” Will be glad to see the blogs.
He he! Now I want to know about the rude post… I’m still a conscientious objector, of course – but in will come as no surprise to learn that Roo wears the pants in our family 😉
Well, I hope it doesn’t mean a loss of recommendations for you on Amazon but I was happy to buy your new book and can’t wait to read it … and I’m glad you enjoyed writing fiction and the fun of making sh*t up! I love the photos of you and Roo and can only imagine the fun your children will have with you two as their parents! And the fun we, your fans, will have to read all about it. I love your idea of doing these blog posts of the US trip plus the left-out bits of your memoirs … having LOVED all your books so much, I’m extremely pleased to know there’ll be new bits to read from them all, here on the blog. And from your South African fan, I’m very happy to be part of the people who have made you an International Author! Thank you for sharing your life with us in your writing as well as the photos of your and Roo’s lovely craziness! 🙂
Cheers Colleen! It’s really great to have your support. I’ll be very busy working on all this stuff over the next few weeks and months, to try and reward you for helping me out 😉 Plenty to come, photos, blogs and books… as for the kids, well, that’s still a work in progress 😉
Im used to the life ruled by Skynet…my sons name for his internet ! Syfy is something I’ve loved since reading The Day of the Triffids as a child..exciting new turn of genre. .cant wait to read..a good author whose brain is in the clouds should be able to nail this…
Ha – yeah! And while you’re waiting for him or her, maybe my stuff will occupy the time 😉
Look forward to reading whatever you publish. Need a bit of a laugh. All the best to you and Roo hope you hear the pTter of tiny feet soon.
Ha ha! Cheers! And don’t hold your breath on the tiny feet front, I’m still a conscientious objector 😉
You are genuinely the most fun and hilarious writer I have ever read Tony! Whatever you do will be great and I look forward to it. Best wishes to you and Roo!
Cheers Bill! Lovely of you to say that! I’ve added a flash or two of comedy into this book too, just to keep the tone light in between space battles! Gotta have a bit of humour, eh 😉
Hi Tony. I’ve just finished reading your book and absolutely loved it! The main characters are a wonderful mixed bag of personalities … the space adventure/action is epic … the sci fi technology very intriguing … and plenty of humour along the way! As soon as I finished it, I wanted to be able to immediately go on to the next book! I’ve left a review on Amazon and hope your book is being very popular, as it deserves to be! Hope you and Roo are keeping well. Take care! 🙂
Yay! Thanks Colleen, that’s such great news! I was terrified about making the transition to a completely new genre – new kind of writing completely – so I’m really thrilled and relieved st how well it’s going! The sequel is 2/3 done already, so keep an eye on Facebook for the announcement when it goes on sale in early December! 😉
Hi Tony. You certainly needn’t have been so worried about the new genre. You definitely have a talent for writing – this book flows so easily when reading it; the style of writing plus the characters plus the story line. I’m very pleased to hear that the sequel is 2/3 done and I’ll definitely keep an eye on Facebook for the announcement – I’m glad it’s not going to be too long to wait! 🙂
Maybe a collection of short stories will come out of the missing chapters and the America trip…
I love short stories. When my life gets too hectic, I can’t focus on a whole book!
YES! That’s exactly what I’m planning to do! I hope that by working on the chapters individually, I’ll be able to get enough ready to make a book… and the same with the US stories I want to publish. That way I can devote my ‘day job’ time to writing the sci fi stuff, as it’s selling really well at the moment, and still get some progress on the next travel book. Happy days!
That was a pretty spectacular piece of self-harm even for you!! Hope you’re healing well and that the Sci-fi book proceeds help defray dental costs. Sadly, I’m not into that genre but I may make an exception in this case? The blogs will continue to amuse, meantime. Thank you for brightening life with your “idiotic epistles”, your talent to make us laugh is awesome. Thank you!!!
PS: We have connections with Perth and Roleystone, would love to buy you and Roo a beer and/or a meal when we’re next over.
Ha ha! Definitely! Roo’s dad still lives in Roleystone, so we’re up there quite a lot. I love the hills! My dentist is fantastic, she’s giving me a very good deal on my treatment, but the sci fi book will have to stretch to cover it. Still, it’s been selling really well… I can’t be crass enough to recommend you try it, but it’s been getting pretty good reviews! Well, for my first attempt, anyway 😉
Just bought your book Earth Warden, looking forward to a good weekend read.
Love the photos seeing the Australian sun, hoping to visit again next year, looking into the non stop flight Heathrow to Perth.
Yay! Cheers Sue! Hope you enjoy it. The sequel is nearly finished, I’ve just got the last big exciting bit to do, and then a thorough edit…
We were amazed when they decided to create that London to Perth nonstop route… only trouble is, it’s always way out of our price range! So we’ll be going via Singapore instead 😉