Monday, 17 December 2007

Countdown to Caligula

Hit another high on the rollercoaster today. Did a search on Google to see if this blog was searchable (it isn't so I'm probably talking to myself) and I got six or seven hits on Amazon and other book sites. You can now pre-order Caligula in Japan,ese and Dutch, and in Canada. The book won't be published for another seven months. It's a as, but it's also pretty scary.


The next big step forward was when I stumbled on a website called which is sponsored by the English Arts Council. All the time I've been writing there have been what I call signposts that seem to show I'm going in the right direction. It happens when you're doing research on something you've already written and it turns out to be spot on, as if you'd known all the time. Youwriteon was one of those signposts. Members upload the first 10,000 words of their writing and critique each other's work for points that entitle them to a critique of their own stuff. It's not for the fainthearted, some of the criticism can be downright vicious, but if you can accept what's constructive and don't let the rest get you down I'd recommend it to any writer. Even when I thought of uploading what was then The Emperor's Elephant I was forced to look at it in a different way. That was when I dumped the first 10,000 words and rewrote the start. I gathered a few points and did my first crits, which was instructive in itself, and received a few. The first three made me think I was a genius, the fourth made me think I should give up. It's that kind of site. Gradually, thanks to some really good reviewers, I tightened the chapters up and eventually I received a professional critique for being in the top 5 books that month. Edward, who runs the site had always been helpful, and he put The Emperor's Elephant in the hands of Sara O'keeffe who specialises in historical fiction at Orion. I'd arrived at the next signpost!


Lexi said...

Hi Doug,

You are not talking to yourself!

This makes really interesting reading for a fellow YWOer. It's fascinating. I will be following your progress via this blog, and I bet loads of others will too. Put in all the details!

Best of luck,


Welshcake said...

This is soooooooo exciting Doug.

It'll be great to follow you on your journey to publication and, we hope, global superstardom!

Justine (HJW)