I have been busy on Wattpad

wattpad-review

I have been busy on something called Wattpad (not absolutely sure why it’s called that, but there you go). And at last I’m back and writing a post about it.

Wattpad is a Canadian-based online reading and writing community that has been around since 2006. And it’s a very busy place! Many are there as readers, but many others are also posting their own writing efforts — articles, stories, poems… And you are able to comment and like stories or join discussion groups.

 Just who is on Wattpad?

wattpad3

I have been dabbling on Wattpad for a few months now and it’s quite clear that most users — readers and writers alike — are women. Though I have come across men too, including a male video game designer. And many are teenagers. It’s terrific that so many young people are keen to explore their writing abilities. There are many good story ideas and I’ve spotted some pretty impressive writing.

Perhaps not surprisingly, there are plenty of stories written in the young adult romance genre, though sci-fi and fantasy seem very well represented too. I have also come across a fair bit of  fanfic, which I have to admit I am not so keen on. I am not that interested in reading imaginary stories about members of One Direction or about Justin Bieber. However, if someone on Wattpad grows into a great writer through writing about their favorite pop stars — that’s fine by me! (And besides, if the story’s good enough — they can always alter the characters a bit later.)

What have I been doing on Wattpad?

keep-calm-and-write-stories-on-wattpadMy main reason for being on Wattpad right now is to establish a presence with those who may be interested in my writing, i.e. young adult readers into sci-fi and fantasy. My hope is, if I establish some kind of presence on Wattpad, I can upload the draft of my next book there first. If I’m lucky, I may attract some interest in the story and receive some useful feedback prior to publication. Hence, maybe I can use Wattpad as a giant feedback workshop.

To gain some visibility before I introduce my next book, I have so far uploaded one short story, MotherCraft, which currently has just over a thousand reads, and I am in the process of uploading my first published novel, EleMental: A first-person Shooter. I am up to Chapter 20 in that book, so only 10 chapters to go. It currently has a little over 4,000 reads.

Just on this ‘read’ business, by the way, before you get too impressed. I doubt very much if over five thousand have assiduously read the short story and novel chapters I have uploaded to Wattpad. It’s all software-based counting remember. It has no idea what the ‘reader’ is really doing. But at least they’ve had a peek, eh? No matter how fleetingly. And some have gone on to read it, surely. (Tell me that’s true!)

When I have put all of EleMental on Wattpad, I will effectively be offering the ebook version of that first novel of mine for free through Wattpad. I will then make it free elsewhere also, and upload the first few chapters of MonuMental, my sequel to EleMental.

How to get to Wattpad

keep-calm-and-wattpad-on-3Here’s where you will find more info about Wattpad (complete with a Margaret Atwood endorsement): About Wattpad.

And here’s one of Wattpad’s many writers writing about how to use Wattpad (she gets 14 votes):  Wattpad instructions.

And here’s where you will find my Wattpad page: my exciting page on Wattpad.

Or you can go straight to a story:

  • MotherCraft – A father leaving home can be painful at anytime. Leaving the planet, doubly so.
  • EleMental – The future. It’s all about friendship, young love … and dangerous video games.

Keep on Wattpadding!

Steven O’Connor writes young adult fiction. His writing is influenced by Douglas Adams, CS Lewis, Tolkien and just about every sci-fi and fantasy film and TV show you could possibly think of. His ebooks EleMental: A First-person Shooter and MonuMental: The Hack’s Back are available through Amazon. (Just Google ‘Amazon’ and ‘Steven O’Connor’ to see). You may also like checking him out at one of his hangouts:

Website ¦ Wattpad ¦ Twitter ¦ Facebook 

My books now available in the brand new Libiro store!

My books in Libiro

I am very happy to announce that my ebooks are now available in the brand new ebook store Libiro as epub files (readable on all other ereaders beside Kindles, such as kobos etc).

mothercraft - final cover (300 dpi) (no ss)

MotherCraft is free on Libiro

And MotherCraft is at last a free ebook. I have always wanted this little ebook to be free, but it was not possible through Amazon. There I had to sell it for a minimum of 99c, with a number of days where I was allowed to make it free for promotional purposes.

About Libiro

The name Libiro is a combination of libero and library. Libero is an Italian word meaning ‘free’ as in ‘independent’. (It was also the codename for the World War II partisan leader Riccardo Fedel, but that’s another story.)

Libiro, then, is an ebook store devoted to selling nothing but indie books by indie authors. Their aim is to be the No.1 place to shop if you want to buy self-pubbed. Publishing yourself, they say, is not tied down to market trends or a publisher’s business plan. Indie authors can write what they want, when they want. The result? A different breed of writing.

‘Indie authors can sometimes have trouble standing out on huge stores like Amazon, and constantly work hard to make sure their books are discovered. Here at Libiro, we want to make sure that indies have the best chance of being found, read, and enjoyed.’

Here’s where you can find my books on the brand new Libiro:

If you have a moment to spare – feel free to leave a quick review. I have none so far. 🙁

You can check out Libiro’s homepage here.

And they’re on Twitter here: @LibiroAtLarge

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Like to find out more about my books? You can check out my Amazon pages here …

And now also as epub files in Libiro: EleMental ¦ MonuMental  ¦ MotherCraft (free)

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My MonuMental Book Tour

MonuMental: The Hack's Back by Steven O'Connor

I am having a book blog tour for MonuMental (and my first book, EleMental). This is my first go at such a thing and it’s already been a very interesting experience just setting it up with Orangeberry Book Tours. Below are the dates. I have something happening from this point on until the end of July. If you get a chance, I’d love you to drop in on one or two of my guest posts or interviews as I make my way around various blogs of the world. Feel free to leave a comment if you do!

Book Tour Schedule (UK times)

7th July – Twitter View with OB Book Tours

8th July – Twitter Blast with OB Book Tours

9th July – Book Review & Author Interview at Mommy Adventures

10th July  – Guest Post at The Bunny’s Review

11th July – Twitter Blast with OB Book Tours

12th July – Book Review & Author Interview at The Reading Cat

13th July – Guest Post at Blog-A-Licious Authors 

14th July – Book Review & Author Interview at Author’s Friend

15th July – Book Review at UK Book Club

16th July – Guest Post & Book Review at Me, You & Books

17th July – Book Review at Book Professor

18th July – Author Interview & Book Review at Brainy Reads

19th July – Guest Post at Paws on Books

20th July – Book Review at Gentleman Reads

21st July – Author Interview at My Life in Books

22nd July – Book Review at Journey’s thru Books

23rd July – Author Interview at Top Shelf Books

24th July – Book Review at A Novel Design

25th July – Guest Post at Non-Stop Reads

1st August – Excerpt at Quality Reads

1st to 31st August 2013 – Listing at OB Book Expo

8th August – Author Interview at Nobody Important

15th August – Guest Post & Book Feature at Book Connoisseur

22nd August – Excerpt at Next Big Book Thing

27th August – Author Interview & Book Feature at Just My Opinion

3rd September – Guest Post at Aspiring Books

17th September – Guest Post & Book Feature at High Class Books

Part 3 – Pushed into indie publishing. So I jumped!

This is the third of my guest posts written for Silk Screen Views about my journey as a writer. Here I chose to talk about my current  – and very new! – adventures in the land of indie publishing. Indie publishing is not easy. There is a lot of work involved in trying to be noticed among the many, many other highly active and very good indie writers. And you are responsible for every step of the way, which can sometimes be quite exhausting. However, there is reward in the sense of control, and it’s important to give things time to grow. You can check out the last of my three posts here.

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Like to find out more about my books? You can check out my Amazon pages here …

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Part 2 – Talk about it. Shout about it. Live it!

This is the second of my guest posts written for Silk Screen Views. I was invited by Silk Screen Views to write about my journey as a writer. Central to this post is a reflection on my family’s migration to the outer suburbs of an industrial town in Australia and the impact that had on my ambitions to write.

You can check it out here.

And, as I said yesterday, while you’re there, don’t forget to have a look around the rest of Silk Screen Views’ beautiful website.

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Like to find out more about my books? You can check out my Amazon pages here …

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Part 1 – How I decided I wanted to be a writer

 I am guesting on the up and coming website Silk Screen Views. In my first post I talk about my decision to be a writer in my childhood (momentous world decision that it was!).

You can check it out here

And while you’re there, have a look around the rest of Silk Screen Views’ beautiful website!

 

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Like to find out more about my books? You can check out my Amazon pages here …

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Creating a MonuMental dragonbot

MonuMental’s dragonbot

I am proud to present a video of the artist Aaron Pocock creating the dragonbot from my book MonuMental. Aaron Pocock did this video off his own bat, and even performed the music. It’s wonderful to see something from one’s imagination come alive on the page at the gifted hands of another. Here it is:

In case you’re curious, here are three excerpts from MonuMental that I gave Aaron to help guide him in the creation of the creature …

1:

And from on high, steel talons spread, a dragon descended. It was the color of emerald and metal. It was a technodroid – Willis could see its fuel lines running under its wings and the rows of bolts up and down its body, giving its torso the appearance of an aircraft fuselage plastered in scales.

2:

The dragonbot pushed on through the air until it reached the far end of the rambling street. Then it dropped, releasing Trinity as it neared a rusty water tower. From this distance, she was the size of Willis’s hand. She fell to the top of the tower with a faint shriek. The dragonbot spun about and settled behind her, gripping the tower’s edge. It curled its wings and hunched vulture-like, but kept its head up, glaring back at them, as if defying them to mount a rescue.

3:

The dragonbot spread its great wings and arched backward. The fuel lines fixed to the underside of each wing and running up its scaly chest and neck tautened as petroleum flowed through them. Long jets of flame erupted from its snout and a wave of heat washed over them. It was as if the creature had understood Trinity’s words. It lunged forward, almost crushing her, and dropped from the tower, swooping at the three of them.

If you go to my MonuMental website page, you can see more pictures Aaron Pocock created before arriving at the final cover. And you can also check out more of his wonderful artwork here: That Space Between.

MonuMental1_sml

Finally, if interested, MonuMental (my new book, in case you didn’t guess!) is available here:

Amazon

Amazon UK

Amazon Canada

MonuMentally worn out but EleMentally free!

Tired as Lemur

Tired as Larry the Lemur

I have been quiet haven’t I? In actual fact I’ve been tweeting like mad. And jumping around all over facebook. Telling everybody about how you can currently download EleMental, my first book, for free. This is all in support of my lovely new book, MonuMental.

The internet is a terribly big place and it’s easy to go a little unnoticed no matter all the hooha you’re trying to make.

And why have I been trying to make a hooha?

Because I just discovered that I was about to lose my current allotment of free days for EleMental if I didn’t hurry up and use them. And use them I of course do want to … for promotion.

Yes, EleMental: A First-person Shooter is currently free for download. It ends midnight Thursday, 14 March (US time).

It’s great bringing your book project to completion but it can also wear you out like a … lemur. Well, that lemur above, anyway. Having just come across its picture (and spontaneously named Larry). And that’s why this initial promotion has been rather quick!

Also note – this is absolutely the first time EleMental has been offered for free.

Here are the links for you to head over there right now and grab your copy …

If you’re reading this late and have missed out, don’t worry – this was a rushed affair. I will offer EleMental for free again in a much bigger campaign coming mid-year. (And MonuMental can always be read separately too.)

Yours monuMentally, eleMentally, everyTHINGally …

MonuMental – The final countdown

MonuMental Copy

When you see something behind your reflection in the floor, your instinct is to look up. See what is above.

They looked up. They saw nothing above.

MonuMental

That is the start of Chapter 22 and where I am up to in the final ebook-edit of MonuMental, the follow up to EleMental. Willis, Zeb and Arizona are unable to shutdown a v’game and have been drawn into an immense, silent hall with an endless, polished floor. They can see reflections behind their images in the floor, but there is nothing above them. The start of this scene marks the start of the climactic sequences. Including this chapter, I have sixty pages of final ebook-editing to go – nine chapters.

I should be getting on with it, shouldn’t I?  Instead, I am writing you this message. I’m keen to tell you I’m close!

Writing MonuMental

I wrote this follow up book at the request of my previous publisher, Pier 9 (an imprint of Murdoch Books) and that’s the sole reason the book exists. I love it, I’m proud of it, but without them, I wouldn’t have written it.

When the publishing house (not a small one!) folded in the second half of last year (bought out by Allen and Unwin), I was successful in regaining the publishing rights to EleMental, and so I put aside MonuMental for the time being and re-edited and re-published EleMental as my own ebook.

Months later, and I am at last almost ready to publish the follow up. I have emulated the traditional publishing process wherever I could, engaging a professional editor, an artist and a graphic designer. To do this properly, and make sure I am creating the best ebook I possibly can, is an exhausting process, and so it is good to see that I am now almost there.

I am running a chapter by chapter countdown on my website home page, and tweeting every time I move on to my final edit of the next chapter. I’m into the final countdown! And it feels great.

Stay tuned, and I will let you know when MonuMental is at last available.

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My Amazon pages:

US

UK

The Next Big Thing

I’ve been invited to be a part of a complex blog posting chain that’s going round and round the world like an ever-thickening global spiderweb. Stay with me! It’s actually harmless fun. Basically, writers tag other writers, responding to ten questions on their websites/blogs, and use The Next Big Thing as the title. I hasten to add, I’d dearly love my current project to be the next big thing, which I guess is what the title is implying. I’m sure every writer before me has had similar thoughts. But it’s not up to me. It’s the big thing in my life right now – I can honestly say that. But that’s all I’m reasonably allowed to say.

Anyway, it’s called a meme apparently. A meme is a cultural item that is transmitted by repetition – I had to look it up. I am to begin by acknowledging my ‘pre-poster’, then answer the blessed questions (nice and quick), and finally link to four fab writers at the end. These fab four (sorry, no, not The Beatles, just fellow writers I know and I’ve successfully cajoled into being a part of this! Thanks guys) will turn in their own posts about a week later. And wonderful people everywhere will tweet and share (or not!). The idea being that you can scroll back and forth through the posts, in one enormous, complex circle of writerly togetherness. So how beautiful is that!

Right then, let me tell you about the marvelous writer who tagged me to begin with. Nicole Hayes. She has her debut young adult novel coming out in June this year through Random Penguin (don’t you just love calling them that? Random House/Penguin really should name themselves that, we’re all saying it – so half the marketing would already be done). It’s called The Whole of My World. Nicole and I first met through Varuna, Australia’s only national writer’s center. We were both lucky enough to have been awarded national mentorships.  Me, for a very early version of EleMental, and likewise Nicole, for a very early version of The Whole of My World. We both barrack for the same footy team, by the way. The Mighty Hawks. Just thought I’d add that.

Nicole Hayes doesn’t have an author website yet, but she does have a popular blog site: Melbourne Musings. Here’s her The Next Big Thing post on her blog, tagging me at the end.

The Ten Questions

OK, done that bit. Now, onto the ten questions – which I will endeavor to answer in record briefness.

1) What is the working title of your current/next book? MonuMentalWell, hey, this seems like a good opportunity to present to the world the brand new cover for my next book (left). Complete with final title. Ta da! What do you think? Isn’t it beautiful? It’s a dragonbot. It’s the the cover’s first public outing. Exclusive, guys!

To answer the question properly, the book’s called, in full: MonuMental: The Hack’s Back. (Cover artwork by Aaron Pocock.)

2) Where did the idea come from? So easy. From out of my head.

3) What genre does your book fall under? Do you know, I have always struggled with this. What the hell is young adult fiction? It can be anything – which is why it’s so great. I write for teenagers and up, up, and up – until you get to me (not sure about beyond me, is there anybody there?). And I don’t think in terms of sci-fi, fantasy, speculative blah. I just write what I love to read. Young adult fiction, if you like = all or any genres, written for all ages. Freedom.

4) What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition?

(I struggled with this. I’m no good with actors. But I know a few comedians.)

5) What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book? In 2050, video gaming goes wrong, horribly wrong.

6) Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency? Indie published, thank you very much.

7) How long did it take you to write the first draft? The first draft is always quick. A year. The long, hard slog starts after that.

8) What other books would you compare this story to within your genre? My stuff has been described as Blade Runner for teenagers (Bookseller+Publisher). Nice. But I’ve more thought along the lines of Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.

9) Who or what inspired you to write this book? Nine Inch Nails, Opeth, Van Der Graaf Generator, Lord of the Rings, Halo, Bioshock, Call of Duty, all of the Lego video games, Douglas Adams, Dr Who, Blake’s 7, Red Dwarf, Star Trek (especially the one where millions of small, fluffy things take over The Starship Enterprise) … I could go on. But I won’t.

10) What else about the book might pique the reader’s interest? I loved writing it. Look and you will see.

The next The Next Big Thing authors

Now, onto the next authors. Here they are, in alphabetical order …

1. Tracy R Atkins

Tracy R Atkins’ first novel, Aeternum Ray, was published a few months ago. If you’ve ever wondered what hard sci-fi is like – this is it! I posted a review of Aeternum Ray on Amazon not long ago: ‘If Plato had written sci-fi, this is what it would have looked like.’

Author website: http://tracyratkins.com

2. Tom Evans

Tom Evans describes himself as ‘a wizard of light bulb moments’. His latest books, Planes of Being and This We Know, are philosophical explorations into what it means to be human and where we might be going as a species.

You can check out his website here: www.tomevans.co

3. Althea Hayton

Althea Hayton is a  writer, counselor and teacher. She writes books focusing on such areas as ‘womb twin survivors’ (someone who lost a twin before or around birth) and food addiction.

Author website: www.wrenpublications.co.uk

4. Mary Lee

Mary Lee is a writer, illustrator, graphic designer and a mom. She lives in the Bay Area of San Francisco, where she writes children’s picture books, many featuring the adventurous Mia.  I posted an Amazon review of Mary Lee’s Surprise in the Kitchen not long ago: ‘Lots of color, lots of fun’.

Author website: www.maryleekids.blogspot.com

Remember to check out their The Next Big Thing blog posts in about a week or so. Over to them …