Saturday, 25 February 2017

Isaac Asimov's Foundation Series

When I wrote about the author Isaac Asimov, I confessed he is my favourite author, and the one who introduced me to science fiction. Before I go on to talk about other authors from the Golden Age of science fiction, I want to introduce you to his most famous works – or should that be work, because in later life he bound them all together in one series.

The Robot series was originally separate from the Foundation series. The Galactic Empire novels were published as independent stories, set earlier in the same future as Foundation. Later in life, Asimov synthesized the Robot series into a single coherent "history" that appeared in the extension of the Foundation series.

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Pick Your Pigeonhole

None of us like to be pigeonholed. It’s associated with people making judgements about us, which leads to assumptions, which can be wrong.


But when it comes to books, pigeonholes are vital.

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Ebooks: Table of Contents & Endnotes

Table of Contents

Most books need a Table of Contents. In a print book it’s just a list at the front with page numbers, but in an ebook the reader wants to be able to jump to the chapter they want, and to find the Table of Contents easily when they want to.

Most ebook converters will create a Table of Contents on the fly, by looking for the word ‘Chapter’, and this may be fine for fiction, where the chapters are just numbered and the reader isn’t going to want to jump about. A Table of Contents is essential for non-fiction however, and you may want more control, so you can do it yourself in the Word document before you load it for conversion.

Saturday, 11 February 2017

Isaac Asimov 1920-1992

Isaac Asimov is my personal favourite science fiction author. I grew up reading his novels, especially what was originally the Foundation trilogy, later added to. I also particularly loved the robot novels.

He was born Isaak Osimov in Petrovichi, Russia, in 1920. Petrovichi is very proud of their native son, and have honored the place of his birth with a memorial stone. His family emigrated to the United States when he was three years old. He became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1928 at the age of eight.

Thursday, 9 February 2017

AutoCrit Online Manuscript Editing Tool

Last week I mentioned I was going to run my manuscript of Secrets through AutoCrit and promised a review this week. AutoCrit is an online tool to help you to improve the quality of your manuscript. Here’s what they say about themselves:

‘AutoCrit’s founder was a struggling author, weary from the difficulty of getting unbiased and knowledgeable feedback on her manuscripts without the costly expenses of an editor. This journey from “first draft” to “published” had no quick & easy shortcuts…

‘So she created one.

Saturday, 4 February 2017

John W Campbell 1910-1971


John Wood Campbell Jnr loved science fiction magazines from the start, and sold his first stories to them when he was still a teenager.

In the early 1930s he rose to rival E E ‘Doc’ Smith as the greatest writer of galactic epics of superscience. The most popular of these was the Arcot, Morey and Wade series, described in the SF Encyclopedia as stories ‘in which the heroes faced a succession of battles of ever-increasing size fought with a succession of wonderful weapons of ever-decreasing likelihood.’

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

First Edit Finished

Great news about Secrets, the second book in the Flight of the Kestrel series: I finished the first edit last weekend. Yay!

Because I wrote about two thirds of the novel for NaNoWriMo, the novel was a jigsaw of pieces that had to be put together, which is not the way I normally write. Once it was put together, it needed a thorough edit (or maybe rewrite) to make sure the pieces joined up and to add in some enhancements that became apparent.