Monday 30 March 2015

Seventh Son - A Positive Review for a Change

Where to start? I thought it was entertaining and if you are happy with that then go and see this film. It is a film that you could easily say - seen it all before. However, it was fun and kept me entertained, as I say. Perhaps it is too easy to be negative and as discussed below, fantasy can be an easy tartget. On the plus side, the characters are entertaining and the plot is lively. I liked Jeff Bridges as the "spook" and Julianne Moore certainly made a good Dark Queen.

It captures some aspects of several previous films; Solomon Kane, The Mummy, Lord of the Rings, although very loosely. The special effects are good and being a fantasy tale that of course is essential. There's too few fantasy films and it is a difficult balance of not being too childish whilst recounting tales about witches, ogres and dragons.

Other reviews are certainly very critical about the film, but as I say -- I found it entertaining. I came out of the cinema wanting to write another book, which is always a good feeling. Clearly, my creative juices were energised.

I think fantasy always gets a bad press. Did you notice that none of the Hobbit films were nominated for Oscars or Baftas? I wrote an article on why I like fantasy and linked that article to our ancestors. Romans, Greeks, Vikings etc who all told tall fantasy tales, so it surprises me that fantasy gets such a bad press. And yet, look at the success of the Lord of the Rings films. I think that deep down the popularity has never really waned.

Seventh Son is not going to set the world alight, but you may be surprised and like me, you might actually enjoy it.

Tuesday 24 March 2015

Writing a Book - What Your Friends Won't Tell You

When I initially contacted a literary agent I had a strange phone conversation:

me: Hi, I am David and I have a manuscript that I would like you to consider
LA (Lit Agent): Are you an established author?
me: No
LA: Then it'll be rubbish, dear
me: My friends like it
LA: They are your friends, dear. They don't want to upset you

Harsh but fair. I took that criticism on board and learned how to make my own book (this is before I discovered Lulu and Createspace etc). I then asked the local library if I could display copies, which they did. I also gave copies to people at work that I didn't know.

When I received praise it felt much more genuine and so I felt that the LA was correct in this aspect at least. You do need to get people you don't know to review your work. Time has told and, many reviews later, I hope that my books are well received and are not rubbish.

I also received some less than favourable comments, but this is very welcome (if disappointing) and helps the author to grow. It must be said that not everyone has the same taste and an author has to accept both good and bad reviews. I did have one very damning review, but when I looked at this persons other reviews he also hated a book by Steven King, so I was actually in very good company.

Beta readers are very useful although I learned about them too late for my current books. These are non-professional readers who will accept a book at a good quality standard, but that might still have some blemishes. Anyone reading this who can elaborate or tell us where best to find beta readers -- please feel free to post. I found this on Goodreads and it describes more about beta readers and what to expect.

Goodreads is a great place to visit so if you haven't - check it out, dear.

If you want to learn more about making a book:

Saturday 21 March 2015

Book Giveaway - Prophecy of the Kings on Goodreads

Don't forget -- I am still giving away a copy of the Prophecy of the Kings. It's the Omnibus edition - all three books in one volume. It took me years to write this book and it can be yours in an instant. It's also a complete tale, no waiting for years for the author to produce the next instalment.

Sign up on Goodreads

The offer ends soon so give it a go.

Best wishes


Best Music to Listen to Whilst Reading Fantasy. Seeking Inspiration.

I used to listen to music whilst reading fantasy. My favourite was Hergest Ridge by Mike Oldfield whilst reading Lord of the Rings. Years later and the music still reminds me of the first time I read the books.

Ommadawn, another Mike Oldfield track, was excellent with Lord Foul's Bane (Stephen Donaldson). There was a drum track that built to a really excellent crescendo. Brilliant. Again, some track remind me of the first time I read these books.

Another favourite is Enya. Nice background music whilst reading. I don't think I've ever recaptured the feeling of listening to Hergest Ridge and Lord of the Rings but I keep trying.

Anyone else associate a piece of music to a particular book?

Sunday 8 March 2015

Free fantasy Book - The Prophecy of the Kings

    Goodreads Book Giveaway

        Prophecy Of The Kings by David  Burrows

          Prophecy Of The Kings
          by David  Burrows
            Giveaway ends April 08, 2015.
            See the giveaway details
            at Goodreads.

      Enter to win