One year goes, another one comes

Here in the Netherlands, there are less than 4 hours remaining of the old year, 2011.

I don’t know how it was for you, dear reader, but for me it flew by. Lots of things have happened, including new Hilda stories, this new website, and more and more resolve to continue with the adventures of our favourite witch. But also some other stories have happened, or at least started to grow. More of those as the new year progresses.

From this place in time I want to thank all the fans of my writing for their enthusiasm and wonderful comments. It is not just for me that I write my stories, they are mainly for you. Knowing that I can bring so much joy to other people is something important for me, and you all let me know that this happened. So thank you, everyone!

Also my gratitude to the people who help me in making the stories as good as possible, with ideas, picking out mistakes and other things. (Yes, dear reader, there are people who get to read the new stories before you do!)

One little tidbit that might be of interest to you: I have been working on getting Hilda’s 8th book in print as well, again through www.lulu.com. It is not yet available, as I managed to finish the last bits and pieces only this evening, and the proof print is now ordered. It will take 2 to 3 weeks before I know how this one looks. I shall keep you posted of course.

For now I will leave you to your loving families, friends, or what pass-time you have planned for the rest of this year (unless you are in the new one already), and I wish you a great start of the new year.


Have a good 2012,
from Paul, Hilda, William and the cats, Lily, Daniel and Rayko.

New year’s eve present. The first chapter of Hilda – Dragon Master

1. Archibald

In the distance the mountains became visible. Of course, they were visible all the time, but not to Hilda and William. The magical couple usually was not in the right position to see the large chunks of rock where Archibald, the dragon collecting giant, lived.

William had tried to talk Hilda out of this social call since they had left their house. After the giant had accidentally almost squashed the wizard, William had been slightly biased against the usually gentle person of humongous proportions. Continue Reading…

Why writers write, why readers read, and why others don’t?

These past few months after I created my Facebook Page, I met a lot of wonderful people around the world by just facing my computer screen. It is not a secret how technology changed the lives of the modern people, meaning us. From tapes, to CDs – we are now able to buy download songs online. From boutiques, to department stores, we can also buy our clothes, and even appliances, online. And from old-fashioned books, to a newer look, it’s no surprise that publishers and authors also took their chances on publishing works online.

I was just sixteen years old when I thought of publishing my work. It was a sudden decision. I was not needed to be forced, and nothing really motivated me to write.

No, maybe I said it wrong. Something motivated me to write, and that is because I wanted an additional money allowance for school. It was selfish, I know, but the story gets better.

I wrote and finished my first novel when I was sixteen. What gave me this idea was when I read My Imaginary Ex, written by Mina V. Esguerra, who made this novella available for free for few days. She said it was a Philippine Independence Day gift. I took the chance and read it. To my surprise, I got hooked with it. And then I thought of writing.

I told myself, why not? Writing can’t be that hard. It’s just like telling stories to my friends, except I’m writing. It turned out that it wasn’t. There were a lot of things that needed to be done, and process that needed to be followed. I didn’t know that, but it was a mistake I had to commit to learn.

Immediately after writing my first novel, I sent it to only publishing company that I know of that time. It took me only few weeks to write that work, but the publishing company took more than a month to reply – only to tell me that my work was rejected.

Where did I go wrong? Why did my work got rejected?

Those were just two of the many questions that I had in my head. It crushed me. The rejection made me feel so down. I literally didn’t open Microsoft Word for more than two months after that. And when I finally got the confidence, I read my work again and realized how much of a trash it was.

I deleted it. It needed not to be revised. Seriously, it needed to be put inside the Recycle Bin and be forgotten forever. However, the latter didn’t work out.

That’s when I realized the real reason to why writers write, why readers read, and why others don’t.

Writers write because of passion. You don’t write because you just wanted money. The outcome will never be great because your goal is different than what you should be aiming for.

Readers read because of passion. You don’t read because you were forced to. You will end up jumping chapters to chapters if you don’t have the passion for it. The ending would be not understanding it, and you will realize how much time you have wasted.

Others don’t because of their lack of passion. Yes. They don’t have the love to read and write. Why would they do these things? It’s not something that should hurt us, writers and readers. It should give us an understanding to why they don’t.

And how did I know these things?

Because I was once one of those others, and I am currently a reader and writer — trying to appreciate things with the use of words, and wanting to be appreciated through my own words.

(Reproduced with permission from the blog of Celester Meija.)

“Bad” reviews

Dear reader, fellow author,

I once posted about the value of reviews for authors, and the way they can influence or help the author in his or her writing. One of the most unnerving things about a review is that it can be a bad one. This is also known as the negative, or “no star” review.

But how bad is such a review really? In my view it is more important to see how many of those there are. Is there only one bad review, and the rest is at least average, then it is important to realise that the one bad review is an exception. It is always possible that someone reads your book and does not like it.

What does the majority of reviewers say? Do they like your book? Or do they all blast it? In the former case, you don’t have much to worry, except perhaps how to maintain or improve your quality or writing. In the latter case you should seriously reconsider your work. Perhaps you are not writing in the proper genre? Perhaps you went out on a limb with this book and slipped?

Be realistic: not everyone will love the fruits of your hard-wrought labour. There will always be people who like romance more than science-fiction, people who think a fantasy-story about elves is much better than the coolest blood-ridden vampire horror. As I see it, there are two things important: 1 – that you love what you made, and 2 – that the majority of people who read it do as well.

Patchwork Dog and Calico Cat

Since e-readers are becoming more and more part of the common household, dear reader, it occured to me that not only adults, but also children probably enjoy these new gadgets. Especially when the device in question is a tablet, like the Samsung Galaxy Tab, a Kindle Fire or a Nook. (Think of the games that one can play on these.) So I thought I might point out the occasional entertaining children’s book here.

Introducing:

Patchwork Dog and Calico Cat

Patchwork Dog has a knack for getting into trouble and Calico Cat usually winds up in the middle of the mess with him. Join Patchy as he attempts to fly like a bird and gets caught nosing around an airplane. Together they eat too many apples, confront a not too friendly skunk, and take a magical ride into town. The five illustrated stories will entertain while teaching kids some valuable lessons.

You can find “Patchwork Dog and Calico Cat” on Smashwords.com. It’s priced $2.99.

 

Indie Promotion Day

It is 2nd Christmas day, Boxing day, whatever you like to call it, but it is also Monday, so I present to you:
a new Indie Promotion.

Eland Dances


by Philip van Wulven.

Ebook Short Description: Peter Fitt aims for peace and love in the middle of a war zone.
He uses a Soviet airplane in a development project, and finds the Russians supply arms to both sides in the Rhodesia/Zimbabwe independence struggle.
They intend to escalate the civil war so their cadres can climb into power.
Shit rises to the top when stirred.
Pete fights the men with lion-spirits, who seek power regardless of the cost in other’s lives.
Eland Dances is set in South Africa, during the Rhodesia/Zimbabwe war for independence.

Where to find.
You can find the e-book on Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk.

E-book gifts at Smashwords

From the blog of Mark Coker, founder of Smashwords:


Smashwords yesterday released a new ebook gifting feature.

Because Smashwords books are available in multiple ebook formats, our books are readable on any e-reading device.

Simply click to the book you want to gift, and click the “give as gift” button. The shopping cart will ask you for their name and email address. The lucky recipient will receive an email with a hyperlink that allows them to claim their gift. If they’re already logged in to their Smashwords account, the book will appear in their Smashwords Library. If they don’t have a Smashwords account, they’ll be prompted to register.

Prior to this new feature, authors were unable to purchase their own books. One advantage of the gifting option over Smashwords Coupons is that the recipient, assuming they’re already a Smashwords member, can simply click the hyperlink in the email and the book is loaded into their Smashwords Library. No purchase or checkout process necessary.

In the next few weeks, we’ll add new features based on your feedback. We’ll also integrate prompts into purchase confirmation emails and review reminders so your fans are encouraged to purchase your book as a gift for their friends.