The Nameless Horror

Update: Money, Figures

A little over a month ago I released a little something called ALL YOU LEAVE BEHIND into the wild (not long after some lengthy wafflings on the realities of the ebook market). The aim with AYLB is to shift ~1,000 copies over an equally squiggly 3 years, and then I’ll be at minimum living wage standard on six novellas a year. Not impossible.

So, how did the first month go?

  • Sold via Amazon (UK and US): 10 copies.

  • Sold direct: 3 copies.

The extra % on direct sales makes our total around 14.5 sales on the Amazon scale.

As deeply unimpressive as this is, it’s about half what the ideal rate would be, so all things are relative (and one would expect something of a bounce in a month’s time when TRG comes out in paperback).

Of interest is that in the week or so after release I had a couple of interview/guest blog things elsewhere online (with Al and Elizabeth ‘APMonkey’ White and maybe another one or two), so even though I’ve not exactly been spamming Twitter, I wasn’t exactly hidden away.

Very interesting.

FWIW, expected next-novel work (ahead of the equally expected baby) means I’ve had to hold fire on the next novella for a tick, but it’ll still go on as planned as the decks clear a little.

'The Razor Gate' is an outstanding novel. With characters that you instantly feel empathy for, a setting which is perfect and an uncompromising style which sets the pace early and never lets up, until the last words.

Wake 1: Spy

She was crying.

Mathis watched the man and the woman face each other across twenty paces of dead, empty ground. Sand bleached white by a thousand years of hard sun, surface marked, visible only through the tiny shadows at its edges, by a pair of trackways running off to very different horizons. Crossroads. A place for meetings, and for partings, and it was the latter he’d come for. Standing, unmoving, desert breeze teasing his shirt, watching.

She was crying. Jaw clamped tight, holding herself taught even as the tears smudged the sweat and dust on her cheeks. Keeping the gun held, level and firm, out in front of her, her posture an exact mirror of the man’s.

The words drifted to Mathis, hollow and already turning to ragged streamers in the iron-baked air.

"I’m sorry." Mathis, mouthing it from where he watched, as the man spoke. "I’m sorry. But it has to be this way."

He almost called out, gave himself away, broke the spell. Told them this wasn’t worth it, that what they were willing to kill for was less important than the dust sighing past their feet, that they could still do it, could still change the world. Their world.

Almost.

The gunshot was oddly flat when it came. Nothing for it to echo from, free to just roll on into empty air and void beyond. The woman slumped to the floor. Didn’t make a sound, didn’t look away either.

Mathis, watching from five years later, crying too.

By me. “Wakes” is (intended to be) an occasional-regular writing exercise, fragments out of nothing, inspired in part by whatever cycles through iTunes as I sit down to work.