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Tuesday, 31 May 2016

sale

66% off sale on kindle this week only 99c/99p
Also on kindle unlimited and in paperback £8.99

Free preview of first two chapters available on Goodreads at https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25913028-cider-lane
A young girl is isolated by a hostile world. She watches a car burning, consuming all she knows. Grief-stricken she wanders, lost, and alone, her mind withdrawn into darkness. Fleeing from a world which has made her an outcast. Seeking only a refuge from other people.
Meanwhile a traveller, homeless, damaged by his past and living on the fringes. Seeks solace in solitude. Carrying the regrets of his yesterdays with him. Walking the roads to the lost places, as abandoned by the world as he.
Fate draws them together in Cider Lane, a place long forgotten by the world. Amid ruins of the past they must learn to trust in each other. If only they can. While the world is ever waiting to crash in on them once more.
Because the world never forgets anyone for long.
A novel of the lost and the broken. Of sharing the silences, talking to the stars, and the importance of tin openers.




Follow me on twitter at
mark hayes
@DarrackMark



Thursday, 26 May 2016

Making movies


It seems everyone these days has a video advert for their novel. Which in a world of a thousand channels, streaming movies to our phones, You Tubers, facebook, twitter and attention spans which flicker like dying light bulbs make some sense. 
If you want to catch the attention of your audience, then video is the go-to medium for everyone.Even small local bands make videos for their songs because no one really expects people to listen with their ears alone. We are used to the visual medium after all. 
Yet I am a writer; my medium is words and painting pictures with them. Pictures coloured in by the reader mind, and if I have done my job right, made personal by the reader. Their own movie, better than any I made of my words could ever be, for each one of them.
Making a movie, that's outside my  norm, but to get my novel out to a wider audience, I more or less am obliged to at leats try. Though to be fair I love messing around with technology and software and trying to make things so this is not a chore exactly.   the results below , a little rough and ready but hopefully gives people a glimpse of what lays between the pages of +Cider Lane....




video



No danger of me becoming the next Spielberg or J.J.Adrams.
And it needs music of some kind , but thats a task for another day


Thursday, 12 May 2016

#Yourenext book review

What the scariest monster you have ever seen or read about in horror fiction.
Werewolves? Vampires? Zombies? Old tentacle face himself Cuthulu? Pennywise from IT? Pinhead? Maybe old school Frankensteins corpse gave life... It doesn't matter because all those answers are inevitably wrong. Something Stephen King, Clive Barker and Lovecraft all knew as they put pen to paper, the thing dear old Mary Shelly knew all too well as she hung around with the king of opium fiends back in the day, the real monsters, the ones that keep you awake all night, are all too human.
       Vampires and wolfmen kill for food; it's just there nature.  Zombies have your brains on the menu because its what they do, all they do. As for old tentacle face, well the desires and reasons for an old god to eat the minds of men are beyond our understanding by their very nature. But the reasons for Baron Frankies dabbling with cadavers and lightening are all too human. Read anything by Stephen King and it is the humans that do the scaring. Pennywise is a chilling invention of Kings mind but the truly terrifying character in IT is  Beverley Marsh's abusive, controlling husband.  In hell raiser its Uncle Frank and Julia, not Pinhead, who are the real evil characters. Monsters can thrill us, but it takes humans to scare us witless and make us keep the light on at night. The more real, the more grounded in reality, the worse they seem.
Humans with all their 'isums', all there hang ups and distorted moralities. Thier willingness to do evil things not because they have to but because they want to, for love, or jealousy, through rage and fear, anger and hate. All those things we know we harbour within our own hearts, or in the hearts of the stranger in the street, the friend in our home. We can understand them, we know them, on occasion we all feel them. That is what horror is about, looking in the mirror and seeing the monsters looking back at us, wearing our own face.
Vampire, ho hum, give me a wooden stake and some holy water.
The guy who will sell you out for a bag of dope, a roll of tenners or just for kicks, now that's scares you.
Which brings me, via this whining road through horror and the human condition, to  #Yourenext a short story by R, L, Weeks



#Yourenext by R.L. Weeks#Yourenext is written by an authoress who understands that humanity makes the best monsters, the same as King, Barker, Lovecraft and Shelly. It's a tale told of the modern world, indeed about that most modern and defining aspect of the modern world the internet. If anything defines and reveals the depravities that the humanity around us is capable of, its all those little ones and zeros bouncing around the WiFi. Spend ten minutes reading the bottom half of the internet, you know the comments, and you discover the very worst of people lurking there waiting to be spiteful, nasty and judgemental. Now imagine for a moment that all those nasty little words people so easily type were taken a stage further. That out there in the Twitterverse a killer lurks, and then #Titterkiller #Yourenext gets tweeted with your name, and by the time you read it, its already too late ....
Its a simple idea, told with terrifying insight, of the world of #twitterkiller , a world so very like our own, inhabited by people so very like us, like our friends , our nieghbours, the strangers on the street. So very like it because it is our world, with just one small insignificant step to the right.
Its a powerful story made all the more powerful for the telling, grounded in a simple idea and the knowledge that if you want real monsters that keep people awake at night its there fellow humans that truely fit the bill.
R, L, Weeks writing draws you in, to see the world as it could so easily be, and her real gift is that while you read, it is how the world is. When you finish, you might just want to delete your twitter account and keep the light on for a while ...    

Available on Amazon from the 27/5/2016  I will put a link on here then    

Full paperback cover Cider lane

Finally the new paperback version with its complete new cover is available on amazon .
Which pleases me so very much. As you might imagine


FRONT COVER























 BACKCOVER

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

Amazon reviews

Amazon Reviews and why they are important

Amazon, like it or not, is the leading retail channel for new authors, and the marketplace. It's not perfect but is vital if you're trying to get people to read your books. All the Facebook/Twitter/word of mouth/Blog posts and anything else in the world doesn't amount to anything in comparison to just getting reviews on Amazon.
Unfortunately, this is the reason there are so many 'paid' reviewers out there offering to review books for a price. Which is not a route I ever wish to take. I want people to read my books, enjoy them (hopefully), and leave honest reviews.
Not everyone who has read my novel has written a review, however, which is fair enough, I am not about to hold a gun to peoples head after all. That they enjoy the read is more important to me than getting a review on a personal level, but like any author I want to reach as many people as possible. 

Cider Lane is not the world's longest book, it's not war and peace, and it's not a great opus, it's hardly 1984. But while it's just a book, to me personally it is the culmination of about three years work.   The 84,348 words of the final proofed copy of Cider Lane, came about by closer to half a million words been written by myself. I would not like to think of the hours, days, months of actual work that I poured into the novel. It may well be just an odd little book but for me, it represents a labour of Love, Dreams, Heart and Soul, almost as important to me, in some ways, as one of my children. It simply became a hugely important part of my life, and still is.    



It takes about 3 minutes to do an Amazon review.

Six words minimum, more if you wish, add a few stars. 

After 20-25 reviews  a book will be included in the 'also bought' and the 'you might like' lists, increasing visibility on the Amazon site

After 50-70 reviews, Amazon highlights the book for spotlight positions and its newsletter


So those three minutes a happy reader who has enjoyed my works takes out of their life to do me a short review are incredibly important to my dreams of finding a wider audience and perhaps finding a few more people who will enjoy my novel.  

Tuesday, 10 May 2016

Cider Lane free sample chapters

You can download or view online a free sample of the first two chapters of the newly reproof Cider Lane: Of Silences and Stars at good reads by following the link below.

I hope you enjoy it and come back for more...

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25913028-cider-lane


 Mark

Thursday, 5 May 2016

New covers



Cider lane has been reskinned, to go with the reproofing of the text.
Very pleased with the new cover . 
The back cover will appear here at some point in the next couple of days once the cover is live on Amazon. Bye bye old apple tree cover, welcome in the Lost Girl cover. 




To celebrate I made a cover for the forthcoming The Passing Place novel as well in the same style .