2014 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here's an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 2,600 times in 2014. If it were a cable car, it would take about 43 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

FREE THRILLER: ORDO LUPUS AND THE TEMPLE GATE!

Ordo Lupus and the Temple Gate - Extended Edition coverHAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYBODY!

To celebrate, I am giving away the second edition of Ordo Lupus and the Temple Gate: Blood Moon Prophecy Part 1 – the one with the Secret Codes – on Amazon. It’s only free until 2 January so download it now: http://bit.ly/1gWteFq

Free Champagne
There is still time to win the FREE BOTTLE OF CHAMPAGNE in my competition which now closes on 1 January 2015, if you sign up for the Newsletter:

The Man Who Recreated Himself coverThree Free Thrillers
Now you can also get THREE FREE THRILLERS; The Man Who Recreated Himself, The Ice Boat Volume I and The Ice Boat Volume 2 when you sign up for the Newsletter! Don’t want Three Free books? Fair enough!

The Man Who Recreated Himself – Third Edition: (21st Century Prophet and Redeemer Thriller) http://bit.ly/16ge0LX

The Ice Boat: Volume 1 (On the Road from London to Brazil) (Sex, Drugs and Rock and Roll – Pulling Down the Pants of Nick Kent and Jack Kerouac) http://bit.ly/13s3dHh

The Ice Boat coverThe Ice Boat: Volume 2: (On the Road from Brazil to Siberia) (Sex, Drugs and Rock and Roll – Pulling Down the Pants of Nick Kent and Jack Kerouac) http://bit.ly/1gCfK15

It’s all free here today so, once again, HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Christmas Poll: Which is your favourite Lazlo Ferran book Cover?

bannerFirst of all, a Happy and Peaceful Christmas to you all and may you have a Happy New Year.

I am extending the Competition to Win a Bottle of Bubbly until 1 January 2015. You will need sign up for the Newsletter if you want to enter.

I would also like you to know that Ordo Lupus and the Temple Gate – Second Edition will be FREE on Amazon from 29 December until 2 January.

Now on to the poll.

Which is your favourite Lazlo Ferran Cover?

I have just completed updating all my book covers so now I would like your opinion. There is no prize but I hope you take the time, while drinking the last glass of wine and eating the last mince pie, to take the poll. I have put up all the covers below the poll but they are probably going to show up very random here because there are so many and wordpress doesn’t like it. Enjoy!

Ordo Lupus and the Temple Gate

Ordo Lupus and the Temple Gate

Ordo Lupus II: The Devil's Own Dice cover

Ordo Lupus II: The Devil’s Own Dice cover

Too Bright the Sun

Too Bright the Sun

Iron1astronautkindle

Iron II: Unknown Place, Unknown Universe

Iron II: Unknown Place, Unknown Universe

Lotus: (Enter the Labyrinth - Satan's Fatal Puzzle)

Lotus: (Enter the Labyrinth – Satan’s Fatal Puzzle)

Attack Hitler's Bunker!

Attack Hitler’s Bunker!

The Man Who Recreated Himself

The Man Who Recreated Himself

Infinite Blue Heaven

Infinite Blue Heaven

The Ice Boat

The Ice Boat

Short Stories Series (all use same cover)

Short Stories Series (all use same cover)

What should I call the Ordo Lupus Series?

Ordo Lupus and the Temple Gate

Ordo Lupus and the Temple Gate

Today, something a bit different. I need to think of a new name for the Ordo Lupus Series. The third book, to be published next year, begins to focus more on a good (ie benevolent) vampire and we will see less of Ordo Lupus. However, the story does continue and I don’t see an end to it at the moment so I need a series title which includes ‘Ordo Lupus’ but also suggests the other elements; The Serpents and also the good vampire. The phrase or sentence needs to be of no more than 7 words and I would suggest it should include the word ‘blood.’ Include the word vampire if you like but bear in mind that the Ordo Lupus books are paranormal thrillers and not fantasies.

Ordo Lupus II: The Devil's Own Dice cover

Ordo Lupus II: The Devil’s Own Dice cover

Please, please give me your ideas by commenting below. The best suggestion wins a free eBook copy of any one of my books. Don’t go away without suggesting something!

Guest Post #1 – A. L. Butcher, who just published Tales of Erana: The Warrior’s Curse

This week, I am giving over my blog to the author, A. L. Butcher who runs the excellent Library of Erana website, which, among other things, showcases writing talent and has featured interviews with me on two occasions.

The Light Beyond the Storm Chronicles - Book 1

The Light Beyond the Storm – Book 1

Welcome to A. L. Butcher (Alexandra); author of The Light Beyond the Storm Chronicles.

Hi Alexandra, thank you for agreeing to this interview. Tell us a little about yourself and your background?

Hi, and thanks for the interview. Let me see, I am British author of fantasy, fantasy romance and poetry. I’ve been writing stories for as long as I can remember. Aside from the writing and reading I like science, history, astronomy, gaming and movies.

1. What were you like at school?
Rebellious 😉 I was raised to be individual, to stand up for my beliefs and to question things. This caused problems, especially with rules I saw as a bit…. pointless. Lessons I liked I was happy to attend, the boring ones – well I guess I was a pain to teach. (Sorry). I actually co-led a student rebellion at college (high school to the Americans). There were several issues with the management of the college – and I mean pretty serious issues such as alleged fraud and misdemeanours of that nature… Anyway I was vice president of the Students’ Union and we had a tiny rebellion….a sit in – and press coverage etc. We actually had the support of some of the teaching staff, the National Union of Students and a proportion of the student body.
Other than that I worked hard at the subjects I liked, but I was always a bit of a loner and considered a bit weird.

The Light Beyond the Storm Chronicles - Book 2

The Light Beyond the Storm Chronicles – Book 2

2. Were you good at English?
Yes. I loved English Lit and Language and went on to study English Lit at college.

3. Why do you write?
Because I enjoy it, because I have stories to be told and because it keeps me sane (ish).

4. What fascinates you about fantasy?
Fantasy is such a versatile genre. Anything can and does happen. More than that it is at the root of our culture – think of all the influences. I’m English and our patron saint is St George, he of the dragon slaying. Britain has a rich culture when it comes to fantasy, folklore and magical beasties. We have fairies, wizards, dragons, heroes, magic swords, mermaids, giants, goblins, elves and so much more. I love the lore, the worlds and the freedom the genre brings, and I love the storytelling of mythic tales of heroes and monsters.

5. Who is your favourite author and why?
Just one? I doubt I could pick one. Fantasy – Tolkien, Janet Morris, Homer, Terry Pratchett, David Gaider, Mary Shelley. Historical/classics – Ellis Peters, Philippa Gregory, Dumas, Victor Hugo, the Brontes, HG Wells, Jules Verne. I love the stories they tell. In many instances these authors were pioneers in their genre, or at least broken new ground. Anything that can still be read over and over and often years later is a masterpiece.

6. When did you write your very first book and what was it about?
The first actual book is under my bed, in several notebooks. It is/was a Phantom of the Opera story. I dare say it will stay where it is. The first fantasy – the first book in the Light Beyond the Storm Chronicles was published in 2012. It sprang from something else I’d written. Book I is the story of an elven sorceress in a world where magic is illegal and elves live as slaves. Once she escapes from her wicked master she has to find a way to survive and to help discover the plight of a missing elven child. It’s a story of courage, self-discover, inequality, hardship and heroism set in a dark and dangerous world. The later books follow this elf, Dii and her friends as they seek to right injustice and find freedom.

Tales of Erana: The Warrior's Curse

Tales of Erana: The Warrior’s Curse

7. How much research do you do?
I’ve researched herb-lore, medieval weapons, castles, swamp and forest flora and fauna, recipes and quite a bit more.

8. What books have most influenced your life most?
Oh gosh, another long list.  Wuthering Heights, Lord of the Rings, Soul Music, I, the Sun, Watership Down, War of the Worlds, Schindler’s List, Chronicles of Narnia, Les Miserables, Phantom of the Opera, Dracula, Frankenstein.

9. What book are you reading now?
I’ve just started Oblivion’s Forge by Simon Williams. So far it’s very good.

10. Do you write full-time or part-time?
I have a day job, so I only get time to write in the evenings and at weekends. I’d love to be able to write full time but I need to pay the bills.

Spectacular Tales

Spectacular Tales

11. Any tips on how to get through the dreaded writer’s block?
Read, watch a movie, try and write something else. I find ideas come from other ideas. I have a folder filled with half-ideas and random scribbles, sometimes I look through that and an idea pops up. If it doesn’t then it doesn’t. If you have to force yourself to write then likely as not what comes out won’t be very good. It is OK to go and do something else for a while.

12. Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
JD Hallowell and his War of the Blades books I really enjoyed. Also Leeland Artra’s Thread Slivers

13. What are your current projects?
I’ve just released a short story – Tales of Erana: The Warrior’s Curse which is a tale within a tale of heroes, monsters and dark magic. I’m working on another short story about a desperate elf and the simple farmer who helps her. I’m also working through Book III of the Chronicles – aiming for release in spring 2015.

14. Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
My friend Diana has been my rock. She’s my sounding board for ideas.

15. Who designed the covers?
Oxana Mazur is the photographer for books I and II and I used Mia Darien for the cover for book III

16. What is your latest book?
As I’ve said Tales of Erana: The Warrior’s Curse is the latest release.

17. Do you have any advice for other writers?
Keep writing. Treat people the way YOU want to be treated, if you’re a jerk in your social media then expect the consequences. There will ALWAYS be someone who doesn’t like your book – it happens, move on and don’t respond to the reviewer.

18. How can readers discover more about you and you work?

To support Alexandra’s Tales of Erana Thunderclap event please click the link, support and share: http://thndr.it/1w9Qz2a

Blog: www.libraryoferana.wordpress.com
Facebook: Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DarkFantasyBeyondTheStorm
Twitter: @libraryoferana
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6430414.A_L_Butcher

Amazon Author Pages:
Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Alexandra-Butcher/e/B008BQFCC6/
Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/Alexandra-Butcher/e/B008BQFCC6/

Do you want to win a Bottle of Champagne or $27 at Christmas?

Several Lazlo Ferran Newsletter Members have inquired about the short timescale of the competition; Lotus is in Kindle Match and you will get a free kindle when you buy Lotus paperback so you will be able to enter to win the Champagne or $27! Good luck. If you haven’t subscribed to the newsletter, now would be a good time: Subscribe me to Newsletter

Don’t forget that Ordo Lupus and the Temple Gate is now FREE on most Amazon sites, Google Play globally, most iTunes (Apple) sites around the world, Smashwords (including FlipKart) and all Bookbaby outlets (including Oyster, txtr and E-Sentral). See my Availability in your country page for more details. If you cannot find it free, email me: lazloferran@gmail.com

Will David Caravan, Ed Millipede, Nick Pleb or Nigel Mirage win Wacky Races?

This week: we ride with the Wackiest Racers of them all as we speed towards the 2015 United Kingdom General Election

But first (just like the adverts that would have proceeded Wacky Races on US TV), a reminder that Ordo Lupus and the Temple Gate is now FREE on most Amazon sites, Google Play globally, most iTunes (Apple) sites around the world, Smashwords (including FlipKart) and all Bookbaby outlets (including Oyster, txtr and E-Sentral). See my Availability in your country page for more details. If you cannot find it free, email me: lazloferran@gmail.com

Ed Millipede

Ed Millipede

UK General Election Wacky Races – Episode 1
We are at the starting line and Ed Millipede, in his Millipedobile, is looking for a fast way though the three big players so that he doesn’t get squashed.

This week, he has been doing his best, to impede the cross-team talks about self-regulation during the coming season of races. The Big 3 want to decide the rules for each race before the start of each round but Ed’s having none of it. By claiming that there was a step at the entrance to the meeting tent, which he simply couldn’t climb in time, he effectively vetoed the new rule making system.

David Caravan

David Caravan

David Caravan, true to form, has lit up his Lightning Caravan Camel with a pack of special label-less Marlboro cigarettes, totally outside the rules of course, but that camel sure does move! He has ruled out a newcomer to the Races, Alex Salmon from that wee Scotland country, a fish who can swim faster than a barracuda, simply because Alex wants to have a say in rule making within the UK. Home rule eh, David?

Nigel Mirage

Nigel Mirage

Meanwhile, Nigel Mirage is having trouble getting his French Dassault Mirage fighter, rebuilt as a jet-car, anywhere near the starting line after first mistakenly calling the French mechanics frogs – don’t know how he could make that mistake – and then apparently vanishing into thin air just when he should have been putting on his suit! Shame his lovely secretary… and wife… Kirsten, a former German, wasn’t around to pour the gaseous Mirage into his suit. Without it, he is just hot air! But then again, with French ancestry himself, it’s hard to see anything real about Mirage at all!

Nick Pleb

Nick Pleb

And finally, the smallest of the Big 3, Nick Pleb comes to the starting line! Nick has been trying so hard to convince us that his Plebmobile is really nothing more than a Ford Escort, that he forgot to put a supercharged engine in the…beast… But he did manage to get loud exhaust pipes, leaving him with a mouse that roars! Rather like him, really. We hope that Nick doesn’t get mistaken for one of his own mechanics at a pit-stop and lose the race because it’s not him in the car at the finish!

It looks like the Wacky Races are going to be Wackier than every before folks! So tune in soon for more escapades of the Dastardly Dudes, as they race towards the final finishing line in Westminster.

Please comment with your suggestion for another Racer in Wacky Races and why. The best comment will win a mention in the last of my Wacky Races before the Election.

Wacky Races

Wacky Races