Wednesday, 27 February 2013

The Digital Publishing Revolution

I’d like to pretend that I’m a visionary. That I predicted the explosive impact that digital publishing has had on the reading public and was in on the ground floor. If only!  Sadly, I can’t bring myself to lie.

I can’t remember a time when I haven’t been oblivious to the world because I’ve had my nose buried in a book, (the type that trees died for). That’s why, when I resumed my career as an author—no, make that, tried to start the career I’d always wanted to forge but never had time to explore—I went down the traditional publishing route. Against all the odds, my first effort at a Regency romance was taken up by a small London publishing house. As you can probably imagine, I was euphoric, and absolutely convinced I was the next Jane Austen. Nothing would stop me now.

Except, of course, that it did. Four more Regencies were sold to the same house but the sales were negligible. Minimum wage? I wish! Still, at least I’d learned one thing. I wrote books that professional publishers were interested in buying. That had to mean something, right? But the whole process was so damned frustrating. Hurry up and wait is the name of the publishing game. You rush to get a book finished, submit it and then wait months, often for a form rejection no one bothers to sign. There had to be a better way.

What about this digital business? It seemed to be taking off and, from what I’d heard the wait times were much shorter. And that, as they say, was that. I’ve had a love affair with e-books ever since and now have over twenty of them with my name on the cover.   

I’m fortunate enough to be with Carina Press, who publish my historicals and a series of marine crime mysteries. We’ve had boats for years and I never waste an experience.

The Hunter Files feature my youngish retired detective, Charlie Hunter, who lives aboard his trawler yacht in Brighton Marine, England and just wants to be left alone. Except it doesn’t quite work out that way and he gets dragged back into his cold cases, simply because he can’t say no. Risky Business, follows on the heels of Unfinished Business. Once again Carina artists have come up with an awesome cover. What do you think of it?

The recurring theme in these books is Charlie’s quest to find answers for the senseless murder of his mother twenty years previously. It’s what made him give up a promising career as a jazz musician and join the police force instead. At last he seems to be getting somewhere—at least that’s what he thinks at the end of Unfinished Business. Risky Business plunges him into the murky world of fixed dog racing. Cleo Kendall asks for his help, convinced that her father, who's serving a life sentence for murder, isn't guilty. Everyone thinks the case is closed. Charlie doesn't agree, especially when his investigation points towards his difficult stepbrother, who may be involved with his mother's murder and Cleo's family.

With the detective chief inspector watching his every move, Charlie delves deeper and deeper into dangerous territory. But someone doesn't want Charlie getting to the bottom of this case--ever. Fighting against the bad guys, Charlie unearths more clues about his mother’s demise, which strike much closer to home.

And, come March, we have the third and final in the trilogy to look forward to, Lethal Business.


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