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Martin
Martin December 23, 5:22 UTC

The newest version of the Jetpack plugin seems to have a mobile theme, so I’ve enabled that here on the site. Hope it works for you. 🙂

Also, I’ve decided that the next story to work on is Pegasus. It makes sense, it’s been a while since it saw an update.

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Martin
Martin December 21, 0:32 UTC

Just posted the fifth part of the Maw of Despair. Enjoy!

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Martin
Martin December 20, 8:22 UTC

So Wattpad has broken their embedding feature. I’ve sent them a Tweet about it, but I’m not going to hold my breath.

Basically it means that the story page shows up inside the box which would usually have the neat embedded widget. Might as well just link you there instead. 🙁

Evie’s Job

Hi guys. Tonight, I wrote a review of Evie’s Job (by Tess Mackenzie) over on The Site Which Must Not Be Named. It was promptly rejected.

So here you go. Comment if you like, share it if you like. More importantly, if you’re swayed by my opinions, why not go and read it for yourself? 🙂

Let me preface this by saying that I did get a 100% off coupon for the book from the author a while back. I’m an honest sort of guy, so I feel like I should tell you that so you can decide for yourself whether my review is biased.

The dialogue is at times short, as others have mentioned. I like it. It’s quite natural-sounding and though it may not be what you’re used to, the length of an average speech is far more believable than say, Terry Goodkind’s Sword of Truth series, where Richard goes on for paragraphs without anyone butting in. Sorry, Mr. Goodkind, no offence but he does go on for quite a bit!

The emotional conflict between the characters (since this is a character driven story) seems plausible as well.

Meredith is quite the character in her own right – although she seems at times to be the villain of the piece, and is at odds with Evie, she simply wants what’s best for Natalie,

There are a few scenes where Evie and Natalie seem to go around and around an issue and again. Though this might not be your usual cup of tea, it strikes me as the normal thing when people argue, voices are raised and what you’re saying just doesn’t seem to sink in until they really want to listen.

The character development is quite solid for Natalie and Evie. Towards the end of the book you’ll be rooting for them as a couple and as lawyers. There is a sting in the tale, if you’ll pardon the word play, but you can rest assured that they are still together in the end.

Natalie is quite introspective, so if you like that sort of thing in stories, then you should enjoy it.

I do wish that Meredith had moved on and found someone else, but that’s really beyond the scope of the book. Please petition the author to write ‘After Natalie.’ No, I’m kidding. Tess doesn’t really do sequels!

The format is actually quite helpful. Each chapter is numbered and is followed by the viewpoint. It’s not strictly necessary, but it is helpful to indicate to the reader that we’re now seeing things from Evie’s point of view.

A little bit of criticism about the formatting, and this is mainly because of the Smashwords conversion process. There’s no paragraph spacing. In a print book, that’s fine, because new paragraphs are indented. But in an e-reader some white space between paragraphs is always helpful. Also, each chapter should start on a new page. I’m not going to fault the author for that, though! If it bugs you, take it up with Smashwords.

I think it’s a bit pedantic to criticise typos. Pick any book of some length these days, flip to a random page and likely as not you will find typos. What you could do instead is just let the author know and these things can be fixed, at least in the electronic version.

In summary, I really liked this story. It has romance, sex scenes which aren’t cringe-worthy (and not too many of them) and a bit of genuine humour. I think I could stand to read it again, or something else in the same vein! I give it five stars, and I’m quite picky about the sort of books that get into my hall of fame.

Perhaps you’re still unsure. If you want to try the story before you buy it, then you can. Look it up on Wattpad.

While some would consider offering a book on another site to read freely to be a bonehead manoeuvre, I like to think that there are honest customers out there who will like what they see and buy it for the convenience of being able to read it offline (which doesn’t always work with Wattpad, sorry to say). So perhaps in this way, the author will gain readers who are genuinely interested in her works.

 

 

Evie’s Job on Smashwords (or your favourite book store).

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Martin
Martin December 19, 4:21 UTC

Um, no. After a reviewing of the Twenty Fifteen CSS file I decided ‘Hell no’ and reverted to my current theme.

It doesn’t really lend itself to being modded in the way that I would have liked. Shame on you, WordPress. 😛

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Martin
Martin December 19, 3:41 UTC

I may be switching over to the Twenty Fifteen theme for the site. It does not have a page menu at the top though, from what I can see of the preview, so I’d need to provide one for you if I did that!

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Martin
Martin December 19, 2:28 UTC

Hmm, okay. I looked at the publish date for my writing on the site this year and nope, posting new story parts on a semi-regular schedule would definitely be a new thing, haha.  Still, as long as I stay positive and carry it forward into next year, that’s the main thing!

Progress report, December

I’m very nearly done with Part 4 of No Way Home. Actually, I’m up to 1600 words or so and I might have to begin Part 5 with the one little thing that I haven’t written into Part 4 yet. It’s not a big deal, in fact the start of a new part is a good place to do a scene change.

The reason for this is that well, I tend to have three or four parts per chapter, and a rough average of 1500 words per part. It is by no means a hard and fast rule, but it’s nice to have some sort of a guideline to stick to.

Also, I normally have a scene break (and the appropriate spacing) at the start of each part. What this means is that when the story parts are rolled into chapters, I don’t have to manually add scene breaks, because they’re already there.

The part that I wrote tonight has Caroline being introspective. It’s good to get inside a character’s head and work some things out. And it fits very well.

And I managed to finish that despite having Transformers 2 distracting me for a few hours. 🙂

Anyway, here’s a little preview of Part 4:

Erica rejoined Caroline in the cockpit a couple of minutes later, her uniform jacket still unfastened.

“In a hurry to get back to work?” Caroline asked.

“I was thinking of catching a meal, actually.” Erica raked a hand through her hair and took the co-pilot’s seat again. “And then maybe a half hour of rest.”

“You and me both.”

The shuttle ceased forward motion as they finally reached the Orion. Caroline frowned. “That’s odd. The bay doors aren’t opening.”

“I can see that,” Erica remarked dryly, looking ahead of them.

Not the introspective part, because that is all kinds of spoilery.

Assuming that I either finish up Part 4 or make a start on Part 5, I can put this part in the buffer and post the fifth part of The Maw of Despair. I haven’t actually looked at the calendar to see how often I’ve added new stuff, but it seems that it’s becoming regular, which can only be good for those hoping for more story.

 

The posting frenzy continues

So, there are a couple of thoughts which came up when I was looking at publishers earlier today.

The main one is this: does it bother you that a dude is writing stories about women, for women?

I have to consider this when approaching publishers. They may not want to take me on, or they might insist that I use a gender-neutral pseudonym. Which I’m not wild about, but I’d do it for the sake of reader sanity.

Fun fact.  My real name, shortened, is gender-neutral.

I’m a storyteller, and I’m affected by and interested in the reactions of the readers. The more readers I have, if you follow this logically, the better I will get at telling stories. 🙂

If now and again, I have to kindly remind them that my pseudonym is just that, it might be a bit of a let-down for some. Others, I suspect, will shrug and say ‘whatever.’

Later! Off to eat something and work on the writing some more! 🙂