Visit Homepage
Skip to content

Category: The Hounds of Annwn

Looking for a tune

Posted in Audiobook, Tales of Annwn, and Under the Bough

That's usually a topic for my fiddling website, but not this time.

This year I'm planning to do several of my audio books. That includes the stories from Tales of Annwn, and one of those (Under the Bough) includes a song.

I better come up with a tune for it. Oops.

It's a rollicking drunks-at-the-wedding sort of ditty. If any readers would care to make suggestions, I'll be glad to consider them before rolling my own, and give you a credit in the audiobook. Welsh or general Celtic styling is what I have in mind.


What did she see in him?
Who could explain?
Another full glass,
And we’ll not mind the pain.
Pain, no pain,
Again and again,
Another full glass,
And we’ll not mind the pain.

Over and under him,
Country or town,
Give us one more
And we’ll drink it right down.
Down, down,
Away with her gown.
Give us one more
And we’ll drink it right down.

Lift up your glasses,
And do what is right.
Wish them the best,
Of both day and of night.
Night, night,
An inspiring sight,
Wish them the best,
Of both day and of night.


Book Bundles

Posted in Formatting, Publishing, The Hounds of Annwn, The Hounds of Annwn Bundle (1-2), The Hounds of Annwn Bundle (1-5), and The Hounds of Annwn Bundle (3-5)

Hounds of Annwn Bundle - 1-5 - Full Front Cover - WidgetBook bundles are one of the great features of the ebook format. It's technically quite easy to bundle several standalone ebooks together into a single ebook file, whether it's a collected teaser of your own works, all the books in a series, or samplers from a group of contributors. Some bundles are constructed for a limited time super-sale, and others remain permanently available at discounted but not giveaway prices.

Over the next month or two, I'll be releasing some permanent bundles for the series books in The Hounds of Annwn. The problem is pricing.

If someone buys all four novels and the short story collection at full price, it costs them $31.95. I'd be happy to sell that as a bundle for 50% off, or $15.99. It's a nice compromise between the number of people who buy all the series books, and those that don't.

The problem is, I can't do that on Amazon, since I'm severely penalized for prices over $9.99, even though it's to the reader's benefit. The best I can do is to offer the five-book bundle on other retailers and directly from my own website, and the two volumes of mini-bundles on Amazon, at $9.99. That's only a third off the full price instead of half off, but what else can I do?

Stay tuned for announcements. The two mini-bundles will be released in August, and the all-books bundle a month or two afterward.
 
Hounds of Annwn Bundle - 1-2 - Full Front Cover - WidgetHounds of Annwn Bundle - 3-5 - Full Front Cover - Widget

Audiobook edition of To Carry the Horn

Posted in Audiobook, Release, and To Carry the Horn

ToCarryTheHorn - Audio - Trimmed - 800x800The streaming audiobook edition of To Carry the Horn, the first book of The Hounds of Annwn, is now available at retailers worldwide.

You can find a full (and growing) list of audiobook retailer links here.

I had a lot of fun producing this edition, and every reader who complained about my use of Welsh names should feel gratified that I was forced to say them myself. Repeatedly. Into an unforgiving microphone.
Read More Audiobook edition of To Carry the Horn

Audiobook edition of To Carry the Horn

Posted in Audiobook, Distribution, Just for Writers, Publishing, Release, and To Carry the Horn

ToCarryTheHorn - Audio - Trimmed - 800x800More than two years ago I decided to experiment with producing an audiobook edition of To Carry the Horn, the first book of The Hounds of Annwn. Many new authors were having success with audiobook editions, and I wanted to get some experience with the market and the process.

I looked at the primary partner at the time (and still), ACX, where most people went for this service. The process was well-laid out and very thorough. They offer voice actors who charge by the finished-hour of recording. There are ways of having some of that cost subsidized. It's a very clean, seductive marketplace, bringing authors and voice performers together and distributing the results.

I went through the audition process and located a couple of promising voice actors but then I… stopped. You see, the costs to produce an audiobook are quite high.

Read More Audiobook edition of To Carry the Horn

The Technology of Magic

Posted in Fantasy, Genre, Science Fiction, The Affinities of Magic, and The Hounds of Annwn

Thomas Edison's lab
Thomas Edison's lab

The Fantasy and Science Fiction genres are distinct in several ways, but there is a certain degree of overlap as well. Both of them specialize not in things as they are but in things as they might be. They may differ in where the emphasis of the story goes — SF is notorious for typically making “the idea” and its consequences the point of the story, not necessarily the characters — but in this post I want to concentrate on what they have in common.

I’ve read SF&F all my life, and the two genres are cross-fertilized for me now. I like my SF best when it has moral characters as well as ideas, and I like my Fantasy best when its magical or supernatural elements are treated consistently, as though they were science.

It’s a truism in an SF story that you can change just one thing arbitrarily (time travel works, men live for centuries instead of decades, there are sapient aliens we can meet) and, if you can do an adequate handwave in the direction of scientific plausibility, the reader will accept it, as long as the notional basis is scientific (rational). For example, there may be religion in SF societies, and there may be powerful beings who seem to be indistinguishable from gods, but you can’t have real gods (supernatural entities) as agents in SF (though you can have a belief in them). That’s because god(s) may or may not exist, but science has nothing to say on the subject. That’s why they are literally “supernatural”, not “natural”.

What you must do in SF, however, is deal with the change consistently, e.g., if men live for centuries, there will be social and economic consequences. The story can be about those consequences, or they can be a background to the story, but they must be consistent, and a very great part of the pleasure of reading SF is the exploration of the consequences of such an idea.

Fantasy is a broader category. It accepts that those areas where it differs from quotidian reality may not be capable of rational explanation. Hence you can have supernatural entities (gods, elves, demons) as well as beings that might or might not be supernatural (vampires, werewolves, dragons). Read More The Technology of Magic

Sale today – To Carry the Horn

Posted in To Carry the Horn

ToCarryTheHorn - Full Front Cover Widget

To Carry the Horn is on sale from March 18 thru March 20 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Kobo worldwide. Normally $5.99, for these three days you can get a copy for just $0.99.

Click here for links to purchase.

You might also want to check out the following newsletters and sites:

Kindle Books and Tips. If you like them, please “like” their Facebook page.
PeopleReads. Here's their Facebook page.
eBookSoda

Amazon Best Seller
                              Amazon Best Seller

UPDATE (March 20) – Thanks for all your help!

Bound into the Blood – Book 4 of The Hounds of Annwn has been released

Posted in Bound into the Blood, Fantasy, Publishing, Release, and The Hounds of Annwn

Bound into the Blood - Full Front Cover - WidgetI'm delighted to announce that Bound into the Blood is now available at a variety of retailers in both paperback and ebook formats.

Much of the book takes place over the summer in the human world and reflects the changes that are the result of the discovery of the rock-wights and the new status of Gwyn ap Nudd, King of Annwn. For those of my fans who enjoy foxhunting, there's a bit of a puppy show, too.

I'm starting a new series, The Affinities of Magic, which will feature a young man who founds an industrial revolution and builds an academy for magic. Structures of Earth, the first book in that series, will come out this summer, to be followed by more work in both series.

You can find out more about Bound into the Blood and where to buy it here. As always, if you like the book, I encourage you to write a review wherever you bought it, or to post one on Goodreads or Amazon. Reviews make a big difference to authors.

Enjoy!

Bound into the Blood (excerpt) – Chapter 1

Posted in Bound into the Blood, and The Hounds of Annwn

Bound into the Blood - Full Front Cover - Widget

CHAPTER 1

Prologue
It was time to move again, he decided. Soon. He searched his face in the mirror. Ten years in one place was enough. The first jokes about how young he still looked had started, and his unchanging appearance would only raise more questions if he lingered much longer.

He grimaced. It’s getting harder each time to set up a new identity, he thought, to stay off the grid. Maybe I should move to another country altogether, one with bigger problems than surveilling its citizens. I could last a long time in some country in Africa, if I could figure out a way to get there without a passport. And there are interesting beasts there to turn my hand to.

Or maybe I should just stop and put an end to it, the last of my line of the special breed, the pure blood.

He’d done what he had to do, twenty-odd years ago, and he remembered it still each morning when he woke. Nothing much had seemed real to him after that, after he fled and left it all, worlds behind. His death wouldn’t seem real either, when it came, he suspected, just the long-delayed natural conclusion. Well, at least he’d be done with it, then. He was tired of the fight. It would be a welcome relief, a silence and a forgetting.

Read More Bound into the Blood (excerpt) – Chapter 1