Friday, April 17, 2009

The evolution of a novel - the fear

So what do I mean by 'the fear'? Well, in this case, it's the fear of people thinking the book is crap. Now that advance review copies are about to be sent out, the realisation hits home that people are going to start reading the novel. Up until this point, very few people have read it. My partner, a few trusted readers, the publisher and editor and a couple of authors that offered blurbs.

Writing is a very solitary occupation. Me and my demons. Even though the work is a piece of fiction, there is obviously some of 'me' in the story as it originated from me. I gave birth to it. And like anyone with children knows, you care about them. You want to protect them. You want them to get on in life. You want them to be accepted. Liked. Successful. If you find your child is being bullied, picked on because someone has taken a dislike to them, it hurts. It's the same with anything you write. Of course over the years I've learned to harden myself to the criticism. You have to. But that's not to say that it doesn't hurt when someone calls your work crap.

That's not to say I like false praise, and people saying they like something just because they are worried about hurting my feelings. Sticks and stones and all that. Honest constructive criticism is one of the most valuable things people can offer. If someone thinks it's crap, tell me why you think it's crap. That's all I ask. That way I can learn.

So now my child is about to leave the nest, I'll be keeping my fingers crossed that people welcome it's first tentative steps into the world.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The evolution of a novel - the blurbs

In the hope of receiving quotes for the book, I contacted a few authors that I respect. Many are obviously very busy, so I'm very pleased that Jonathan Maberry and Jon F. Merz took time out of their busy schedules to read the manuscript and comment:

“With KULT, Shaun Jeffrey hits one out of the park with this creepy, character-driven thriller that starts with a jolt, stays in the fast lane, and plunges into the darkest territory of the human mind. It’s a bumpy ride through nightmare country.” -Jonathan Maberry, multiple Bram Stoker Award-winning author of PATIENT ZERO and PUNISHER: NAKED KILL

"The Kult is a creeping stalk through a shadowy labyrinth of thrills and terror. Shaun Jeffrey delivers a pulse-pounding novel of superb skill and unequivocal horror. Fans of many genres should be ready to embrace one of the brightest new talents on the scene today." - Jon F. Merz author of Parallax and the Lawson Vampire novels

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Win an ARC of The Kult

If anyone is interested in winning an ARC of my upcoming novel, The Kult, please check out the publishers blog:

10 winners will be chosen at random, but the one condition of entry is that if chosen, you promise to read the entire novel, and then write a short and honest review about what you thought of the novel, and then email it to the publisher as well as post on,, or any other review sites you enjoy.