Category Archives: Books

Hearts on Fire is available

Hearts on Fire coverIt is now 04:14 on a Wednesday morning in South Africa, but I know somewhere in the world, it’s still Tuesday. So I think that still counts. I kept my promise, and Crossfire: Hearts on Fire is available on Smashwords and Amazon.

By the way, for those who read the first few chapters of Hearts on Fire at the end of Fire & Ice, it would be worth it to start Hearts on Fire from the beginning, because I made a few changes to those first few chapters.

Happy reading to all, and thanks for your patience. (I’m going to bed now, and I plan to sleep for a week.)

Hearts on Fire coming soon

Well, I guess that’ll teach me to make promises. Two months ago, on February 7, a reader asked me when I planned to publish the third installment of the Crossfire Trilogy. I had just finished the manuscript, and replied very confidently that I’ll release Hearts on Fire in 6 to 8 weeks. After all, I just had to do the edits, right? Wrong. I had miscalculated, forgetting that Hearts on Fire at 96 000 words was almost double the length of Crossfire or Fire & Ice, which had each taken me two months to edit. And double the length means double the editing time.

I did my best, working seven days a week, in the process cutting nearly 7000 words from the manuscript while tightening up my language. Don’t worry, I didn’t cut any scenes, just silly words like eventually, finally, really and other words that slow down the speed of the story. Believe me, when I edit it’s more like an interrogation of the manuscript, and it’s brutal.

The good news is that I almost made it. And if April 7 had not fallen right in the middle of the Easter weekend and left me with a very busy household, I would have made it. Yesterday I still thought I had a chance, if I used Los Angeles time instead of South African time, but an hour ago, I realized the game was up.

To give you an update of my progress, the edits are finished. What I normally do once the edits are finished is to convert my word file to a kindle file, load it on my kindle, and give it a final read through as a reader, not a writer. I have the uncanny ability to read a piece of my work as if I had not written it, so this final read through is very important. I always think of a book as a symphony, and when I read it for the last time, I’m listening to my book’s music, and listening for clangers. Yes, I just made up that word. But what I mean by that is anything that jars, anything that pulls you out of the story, like this. CLANG. It could mean a missing word, or an extra word, or a missing punctuation mark, anything like that.

That’s what I’m busy with now, but with the amount of interruptions I’m getting, I’ve had to put it aside. I’ve realized there is no point in trying to rush it, because I would hate to put out a product that isn’t as perfect as I can make it.

So I’m in the homestretch, and will announce it here the moment Hearts on Fire is available.

I want to say Tuesday but I don’t want to make any promises. Shh.

Driftwood free on Kindle

When Dr. Nancy Kendall, a trauma doctor from South Africa, took a stroll on a Mozambican beach, she had no idea how her life would change during her six-week holiday. She had gone to Mozambique to forget, but instead found a man who couldn’t remember his name or his past.

Driftwood is a 15000 word novella that I wrote to escape the monotony of editing a 96 000 word manuscript, which is of course, Crossfire: Hearts on Fire, the third book in the Crossfire Trilogy. My creative spirit needed relief from spending day after day analyzing words and sentences, and polishing my prose. While it is a necessary procedure, and those who have read my books know that I take it very seriously, it isn’t much fun.

Readers who have enjoyed the other two Crossfire novels will probably remember Karl Dietzen, Stefan’s cousin and right hand man. Though Karl is a secondary character in the series, he features prominently in Crossfire: Hearts on Fire, which prompted me to see if I could write a novella with Karl as a main character.

Driftwood takes place in the year 2000, three years before Stefan meets Marcelle, when he is still busy building Omega into the huge organization it was to become in later years. For readers who have grown to love Stefan, he doesn’t feature in Driftwood, except briefly near the end. But even that brief glimpse will give readers a strong insight into the kind of person he was before he met Marcelle.

Driftwood can stand alone as a romance novella, but also serves to introduce the Crossfire Series. So certainly, I am hoping that new readers will go on to pick up the rest of the series. For the next three months, Driftwood will be available on Amazon exclusively, but readers who use other platforms need not despair. If you have a PC, a tablet or a smartphone, you can go here to download the free kindle software that will enable you to read Driftwood.

And that’s not the only good news. Tomorrow (24th), Saturday (25th) and Sunday (26th), Driftwood will be free on Amazon. This is the first time I’m running a free promotion on Amazon, so take advantage while you can. And if you love it, please tell your friends, or drop a short review, if you have the time. A review can be a single sentence, such as these two from Nook readers. When I read that first review, I had a smile plastered on my face for three days straight. I don’t need long reviews, that first gut reaction is good enough for me.

Here it is!

Last night, I went to see Twilight: Breaking Dawn. This movie opened in South Africa about 5 weeks ago, but I waited until now to see it. To give you a little bit of background, I am a Twilight nut. I simply love the story (hate Bella, but love the story). I have read each of the Twilight books two to three times, and I have seen all of the Twilight movies at least 5 times.

What I loved about the movies was that they kept so closely to the book, and the characters were so well cast. I hate it when I read a book series, such as the Jason Bourne series, which I was also crazy about, and then a Jason Bourne movie comes out. I go there with great expectations, and what do I find? A completely different story, different plot, and a man with the face of a child, (yes, I love Matt Damon, but not in that role), who looks nothing like Jason Bourne. So, I’ve been burned before, but never by Twilight.

My thoughts on the movie, while not as exciting as the previous ones, I enjoyed it more than the book. Why? Well, part of the Breaking Dawn book was told by Jacob, and I am firmly Team Edward, so I didn’t enjoy seeing things from Jacob’s point of view, but that is purely a personal preference.

Anyway, the reason why I took five weeks to see Twilight: Breaking Dawn was because I was editing my second novel Crossfire: Fire & Ice. And when I’m working, nothing else matters. Perhaps I am too obsessed for my own good, but when my eyes were open, I was editing, and when I wasn’t editing, I could hear a clock ticking in the back of my mind. The reason for this was that a wonderful thing had happened. Readers had started contacting me via Twitter, via my email, and even on this blog, asking me about the sequel for Crossfire. I promised many of them that the sequel will be out by Christmas, and that was a promise I planned to keep. So here it is. Crossfire: Fire & Ice is available on Smashwords and on Amazon. For those of you who have patiently waited, I say thank you, and enjoy.