Everything should sparkle

Seriously, it should. Not just because I just saw a glitter helmet on the telly (watching American Pickers with My Knight). I’ve been a sparkle lover my whole life. And you all know the joy when my daughter told me I could have GLITTER on my book covers. 🙂

As it stands now, two of the Byte Series have glitter on the covers. I know, I’m excited too!

You knew about Cryptobyte … and the glory that is gold glitter on the cover.

But, now, Metabyte has a new cover. It had to have a new cover (shit happened with my former now defunct publisher, if you recall) and my daughter knows me rather well (imagine?), so when she re-did the cover she added the joy of green glitter. And I smiled, Readers, I smiled a lot. At some stage (probably November) the new covers will be in the bookshop. November because I need to pay for the Cryptobyte copies that have already arrived at the bookshop in prep for the launch on Nov 8. Yeah, they were early. Which is better than being late, right? And for all of you who thought me having a white cover on Qubyte caused OCD anxiety … I’m pretty sure the Metabyte cover will tweak that OCD again. Deal with it. 🙂

#SorryNotSorry

In other news: I’m in Perth with My Knight – taking care of him as he recovers from major surgery (new hip), and, I’m writing. Yes, I am.

I’m having a love hate relationship with the 12th Byte Novel at the moment, but today was a good writing day and now I know that some characters we met in Qubyte are coming back, so, that’s cool. In particular, Tahoma Whitehorse. And I really enjoyed him as a character. Did you like him and his off-sider, Karen Schneider?

It looks like I best go make us some dinner.

Take care out there. xx

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It was Crashbyte …

This morning I opened a file called ‘Crashbyte’ – that’s what Vaporbyte was always supposed to be called. Book 12: Crashbyte. Somewhere as I was following the story, (and it happened pretty fast – two chapters in) I realized Crashbyte wasn’t going to be book 12. It may not ever be an anything. That’s okay, it happens. I left the file and a few days later I saw an entire scene – nothing at all to do with the two chapters I’d written.

I started writing. I knew straightway it the beginning of something. By the third chapter I knew it was something called ‘Vaporbyte’. Great.

This morning I opened that other file, the Crashbyte one. As I read, a slow dawning occurred. By the time I’d finished I knew what I was looking at. It’s not a nothing at all. It’s part of Vaporbyte. It’s the other story thread.

Apparently I’m writing again. Need to catch up? Then, here …

Ten years …

This year marks my tenth year in this industry. Obviously, my journey began long before 2009 because, well, you don’t write a book overnight. Nor do you learn your craft, overnight. My journey began in about 1992. It began because I wanted to read something with real women in it. I wrote a lot and then became serious about this storytelling lark. In 2001 my first short story was published. (Yes, back in the dark ages with gatekeepers and whatnot.)

Around about this time of the year in 2009, I approached Rebel ePublishers in South Africa. (Yay for the internet!)

This year is the tenth anniversary of Killerbyte (April 2009) and the tenth anniversary of Terrorbyte (Nov 2009). They are the original publishing dates. Even though, we tend to say terrorbyte was 2010. It wasn’t. The paperbacks came out in 2010.

The tenth year! That’s supposedly a magic time. Any second now and I’ll be an overnight success. I know, right? Exciting stuff.

Ten books, 1 novella, 3 boxed sets, 1 book of poetry, I don’t know how many related short stories, all in the Byte Series. [Never mind the earlier short stories, or the kiwi novel, or the long shorts, that are unrelated to the series.] The work is there and continues.

I’m as prepared as I can be for instant success. Bring it on. 🙂

Ten years with a main-character like Ellie – could be medal worthy!

Playing with Keynote

This was the result of my messing around with Keynote this morning. Haven’t used it before and it was kinda fun exploring. There is no sound. Haven’t figured sound out yet or maybe that’s not a thing that Keynote does. I don’t know. 🙂

Good chance I’ll spend more time fiddling around inside Keynote at a later date, but right now, I should get back to work on #Cryptobyte.

Hope you’re all having a lovely weekend.

Massive sale and Merry whatever to you my friends!

The entire Byte Series is heavily reduced (killerbyte is free) until New Years Day, on Smashwords.

Here are is the link you need to take advantage of this:

The Byte Series.  

Also, the In between byte stories are heavily reduced (in most cases free).

Here is the link to those! In between bytes.

Get in there, folks! The latest Byte Novel – Qubyte releases on Dec 30th! You want to be up with the play before that drops, so you know the buzz is about. 🙂

Trust me. I’m a professional.

Undivided

Hey there!

This is what I’ve been busily working on for the last few days, an Ellie Iverson short story called ‘Undivided’.  Exciting right?  The story is available in ePub and mobi digital formats from Smashwords. (Link after the image!)

Last night I wrote The End. Such joy. Then sent it off to beta readers who gave it the green light this morning. It’s now live on Smashwords. 

This story is intended to fans of the Byte Series, unlike reading the shorts in ‘Torrent’ this will not bridge any gaps and enable a new reader to jump into the series at around book 5. 

Undivided assumes you know the characters and the current situation. This story follows Metabyte and is intended to be read before Qubyte is released.  It’s a bridge to Qubyte. You’ll understand when you read it. 🙂

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/907782

When I first met Ellie

Seems like a good time to talk about our first meeting and what I knew about her. It’s been a few years since then. 10 novels, a lot of short stories, a novella, her poetry book … she’s given us a lot. She’s been very open and sharing and still is.

When I met Ellie Conway I didn’t know what she looked like, I didn’t know her name.

I did know her chosen career. I knew she was FBI and she was a well-respected agent. Within half an hour of that meeting, I knew her deepest fear. How? I saw her having breakfast with her parents. (Yes, saw, because every single scene in the Byte Series runs through my mind as video.) During that breakfast, that family time, I learned a lot. I learned that Ellie was wary of her mother. I learned she loved her father and he was the only stable influence in her life while growing up.

What was Ellie’s biggest fear?  What made her who she was? She was terrified she would become her mother. (Not like most daughters who don’t want to sound like their mothers.) This was an overriding factor in her life. Ellie did not want children, in case she turned into her mom. She believed having children was the trigger, that she and her brother caused her mother’s mental illness and could not be persuaded otherwise. Not even by Mac (whose mom, not only suffered from mental illness but was violent), not even once they were married, and Mac suggested they would have beautiful children. Ellie was adamant it would never happen. She could not/would not put her children through what she suffered at the hands of a mentally ill/often absent/often abusive mother.

Ellie was/is a strong independent person who loves her job, is a compassionate advocate for children of mentally ill parents, leads an elite team, investigates serial crime, and attempts a work/life balance. She’s well educated. She has friends, family, co-workers, and connections in some interesting places. People like her and are willing to help when she asks. She is a nice person. Outwardly a good person (like most of us, she has thoughts that are less than charitable at times). But she believed mental illness lurked around the corner.

As I got to know her I realized some of that fear was based in the way her mind pulls together little details from the environment. She’d always felt like she walked a narrow line between sanity and insanity. Like she conjured scenarios from thin air, or music, or TV, and didn’t want to say how she stumbled upon clues or information because it made her feel and sound insane.

What is still fascinating for me, writing stories from Ellie’s POV, is how her ability to see what others cannot have evolved. She’s slowly embraced her unusual ways of piecing information together and mostly shares it with her team. The team has grown used to how she works.

But inside, she cannot get away from the feeling that one day she’ll cross that line and her mind will snap.

And you know what?

I don’t know if it will or it won’t. I know she’s come close to the edge a few times and that she has PTSD but will she lose it completely?

Meanwhile: Take a look at how her thinking changed. Until Nov 18th you can get The Byte Series Volume One for half-price! ($3.00, unbelievable good value!)