Wednesday 6 September 2017

(vol 4) CHAPTER 04: "Creating Brisk Worlds - part 1"

Well, it's a day I've been working toward for some time and it's nearly here.

This coming Monday (September 11th) will see the release of my first solo project; a Flash Fiction collection titled BRISK WORLDS.


The last couple of years have seen me struggle to complete a solo project and release it into the wilds. Despite heavy denial, I've come to realise that I was irking over what my first release was to be, thinking it had to be 'super special' and 'absolutely amazing'. But that was holding me back.

I was constantly struggling to meet my own high standards every time I held a different first draft in front of me. That's the hurdle I've been stuck at for so long; the first f***ing draft. It's one of the toughest stages, but it's also still quite far from the finish line. 

So I would constantly give up on a project which held even the smallest of flaws, seeing the whole book as 'broken' and not worth the effort. Then I'd come up with a better project which would have a reason why it should be easier to complete or be received by more readers.


And then one day, not that long ago, while another project started to scare me off, when dark thoughts of complete failure were looming and I thought that this would be my last attempt, I looked up on my FlashDogs bookshelf. On that shelf are several impressive novels and novellas.

And in among these self-published works sat two small books that showed me another way.

These fellow authors had put together little collections of their Flash Fiction writing. When I read these collections, I recognised several stories from the various Flash Fiction contests I'd taken part in . These stories I was reading in a paperback book held by my very hands, hadn't I competed with these stories weeks, months, and years ago in the online contests. And here they were. In real life.

Why couldn't I do that?

And so I stopped everything else and got to work.


Over the last four years I have accrued many, many stories, but I knew immediately that I wouldn't be able to use them all; some of them are real stinkers.

I proceeded to upload everything I had written since THE LADY IN THE WOODS into a single Scrivener file. And then . . . then I began culling. I read the stories over and over, day after day. 

I then printed the book out (400+ pages) and carried on, trimming, pruning, destroying. Smaller and smaller the project got, with a  little editing here and there (some of it was typos, other bits were improvements). 

When I had my final contenders I began working on a cover (a process covered here). It was all coming together.


And that's all there is. BRISK WORLDS, a collection of my Flash Fiction written over the last three years. Some of those sites are gone now (Flash Friday!, Angry Hourglass, Micro Bookends), others are still going (Microcosms, Paragraph Planet). But without any of them, these little gems would not exist.

This project is a way to get my writing out there, but more importantly, it's a way to get over those first hurdles, and to learn what I can about the process of self publishing by doing it and not just reading about it. Its been educational, and everything I've picked up, all the tips and tricks, will go into the next project, and the next, and so on.

So, below are the links. I will appreciate every purchase and every review (the good and the bad - it's all part of the job). Thank you for taking the time to read this, and if you pick up a copy of BRISK WORLDS, thank you even more so.

Next week I go into more detail about the actual process from finished Scrivener file to seeing the book up on Amazon.

Until then, get writing.

We live in one world . . . 

. . . but inside all our minds are thousands more.

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