For those three people who've been watching, you might have picked up that something has changed around here. You might have seen me mention something big in the offing, and yet, there has only been silence.
Well, with this post, on this special day, that silence is finally about to be shattered (I hear those three people yelping in delight).
In many ways, this has been 10 years in the making. Crafting novels, going in one direction, believing, hoping, praying for success. Praying for breakthrough.
For nearly as long, that breakthrough has always been out of reach… sometimes close, sometimes me sensing it was right there, just ahead. At most other times it was out of sight (yet never out of mind).
In 2021 it was meant to be different. Bright-eyed, with a budget for marketing set aside from a side-project I'd been running for a few months, I entered last year feeling like this was the year. The year to finally see breakthrough.
It had its moments.
But it wasn't the miracle I had hoped.
By the first week of 2022, I didn't know what to hope for. In fact, I'd refused to set any goals for the year.
What was the point?
I'd just spent an entire year (and lots of money) marketing my books, giving to Facebook more than I would later get back from Amazon in royalties. Yes, I was getting lots of new readers. Yes, it was fun selling books.
But isn't writing full-time meant to be a living? Isn't the author meant to earn something from it? Anything?
Like any of my 20 novels I'd written by this point, my story was heading for disaster. The hero didn't know what to do.
All hope, it seemed, was lost.
Until it wasn't.
Until in one week, one video-call later, everything changed. That was the second week of January. The call was to a brilliant new publisher in the US.
Today is the release of my first book with them.
They picked up my 9-book Hunt series right away. They will be re-publishing all my stand-alone thrillers too, the contracts being drawn up with the 2023 releases for these.
What's special about today, is on this date five years ago, in 2017, The Prey first published. Five years on, this is what's it's become…
Conundrum Publishing are a specialist in thriller books. With years of experience themselves as thriller authors, the publishing company for others (like me), while new, is far from in-experienced. They have tonnes of experience.
They know thrillers.
They know marketing.
My prayers have been answered with these guys. I'm blown away.
The covers look great too. Here is the re-styled version of The Prey. I've also been sent the initial design for The Pride, which also looks amazing. They scream thriller, scream movies that you just have to watch! The series is being rapidly released. Book 2 comes out in May, book 3 in June etc…
I've gone into them all with a detailed new edit. When The Prey first released, it was my fifth novel at the time. I've come a long way since. My style has improved. So has this book, therefore. The action is tighter, the pages turn quicker.
It's the new, improved version of a series so many have enjoyed, and now so many more can discover.
And in the hands of the experts, marketers who speak this language, the series is set to skyrocket.
Which leaves me to focus on what I do best.
Writing fantastic, page-turning thrillers.
If you thought I'd hit my limit with recent successes like The 26th Protocol, think again. There is so much more to come from me.
There'll be more from Conundrum in the days to come, with various announcements, posts etc which I'll do my best to share on my own social media platforms. Being US based, they are yet to start their Thursday at the time of writing this, so it is possible that, if you really are one of those three eager readers reading this immediately, the book isn't yet showing online.
Soon these books will be everywhere (the series will be completely re-released by January 2023).
I couldn't be happier!
That said, there is a lot of work for me to get stuck into in the months ahead. I'm well on my way with updating the entire Hunt series (the latter books need little doing). I'm so enjoying reading them again! I'll then put focus onto reshaping my stand-alone thrillers. Cherry Picking, my debut published nearly 10 years ago now (June 27th for those who care), will be perhaps the one I need to spend the most time on.
Yes, the story will be the same. I just think I'll look at how I told that story, and shudder.
Time will tell.
Thank you to every reader who has been with me this last decade, at whichever point and with whatever book you came on at.
I can look back with great pride.
These are happy memories.
Yet, on this special day for me, I can look forward with immense hope.
I'm not alone.
In fact, I've got some people on my side who not only really believe in me, but know how to find the readers I've been desperate to reach.
I look at the years ahead with wide-eyed wonder.