Three Hoodies Save the World

Constant moaning and whinging about everything

Archive for the month “January, 2015”

Tuesday Daydreams, not to be missed.

Greetings fellow bloggers. A book of poetry that I bought and loved is free this weekend.

I can’t urge you enough to get this wonderful collection. You’ll find every kind of poem within, including my favourite: Haikus, a traditional Japanese and very difficult seventeen syllable poem that Kay pulls off with aplomb. Get it or lose out.

Here are the links:Smashwords: Voucher code: FE67Z



Despite my promising to market, I had to write. I couldn’t help it.

The idea came to me and I just had to do it. This will be my next novel. I’ve already begun Old geezers 3 and Kongomato 3 but they can wait for a while.

This is going to be another in which I know nothing until it rolls off my pen. Hopefully the rest will be as easy as the first few words, which will probably change a dozen times. But for the moment, this is it:

The Secret
Chapter One

The man’s face was ancient as time. Deep crevasses lined his forehead and shrunken cheeks, barely interrupting their flow at his battered, misshapen nose. Yet his eyes were bright blue and crystal clear like those of a young child.

‘Are you ready to receive the secret, the secret that only one man in the world may bear?’

‘But, if you tell me then there’ll be two us who know it.’ Perhaps my flippancy was born of fear. Lord knows my levels of terror had multiplied exponentially since meeting this man just a few short days before.

The man’s face darkened. For a moment, despite his age and apparent decrepitude I thought he was about to leap over and throttle me. Yet he smiled, if the expression he mustered could be called such.

‘If you deign to accept the secret, I shall die. I shall die knowing my job is done. I have waited so many years to die. The centuries have rolled slowly by as I waited patiently for one such as you. At first I revelled in my near mortality, travelling the world and seeing sights such as you could never imagine. However that finally palled and now I am ready. I have been ready for generations. Indeed I never thought I would live long enough to find you.’

‘What, so how old are you?’ I asked mockingly. Perhaps he was so old that his word centuries were just a symptom of his senility. Still he didn’t rise to my bait.

‘All this and more I will relate if you decided to accept the secret. There is a lot to tell and little time left. Although the curse of my knowledge retards aging, it does not halt it. I must, for the sake of the world, find someone before it is too late. Someone must know; that he might use the knowledge when the time is right.’ This was all too much, too soon. I raised a hand but he ignored it. ‘The very survival of the human race hangs upon you stepping up to the plate.’ I sat, dumfounded at his words, judging if I could slip out without him shooting me.

‘Have you heard of Jack the Ripper?’

I’m clearly an idiot.

I just spent hours configuring an RSS feed for my blog. In my gawky uselessness I resorted to “Configure your RSS feeds for inconsolable dummies,” and two YouTube videos by someone who forgot to turn on the sound, which was marginally better than the one by another, featuring someone who didn’t even speak English.

I’ve done it – I think. At least I now have a box on my blog inviting people to do it, and was the final result of a potentially wasted evening since I don’t even know if it works.

I got the idea from the book I raved about in my last blog. I’ll do it whatever the cost. I’m moving on to the next idea tomorrow.

Just writing a book is so much easier.

Draft2Digital sent me a free book

In my short break from writing in an attempt to actually sell some of my work – forgive the split infinitive – Draft2Digital sent me a book for free, I mean nothing. Now there’s a novelty. It’s called “Let’s get digital” by David Gaugheran. Download instructions here.

What an amazing book. It has completely overturned my (limited) knowledge and understanding of marketing and I’ll be taking up some of his ideas with immediate effect. That’s not to say that they will all work; and in fact might just be his own opinions and results, but it would be foolish not to give them a go.

I don’t think I’m breaking any publishing laws by telling you of it since it is freely advertised. I’ll be working hard with his ideas and will let you know if they bring me any success.

Meanwhile if anyone else has any gems they’d like to share then don’t be bashful. I’m only selling about twenty copies per month, and while I’m happy to be selling any at all, a lot more would be great.

Doing the advertising biz.

Amazingly, I’ve gone the entire weekend without writing a word – well a few words but only in advertising my books. My intimate and not entirely comfortable sole partnership with Amazon has come to an end at last. I’ll stay with them of course because they actually sell a few books now and then.

After a few false starts I’ve rejoined Smashwords and all their affiliates, and Draft2digtal has welcomed me back with open arms. Of all their affiliates, B/N, Nook and itunes, Apple was the most contentious as even a single syllable of any competitor rules one out. Fixed those and done that. I appreciate that the sales will not roll in just on that basis but it’s a good start.

In that vein I was lucky enough to be featured in Tricia Drammeh’s terrific blog Here on her ‘Authors to Watch’ series. For anyone who hasn’t caught it yet, her book and writer reviews are excellent.

I was going to rant on about DRM and all that it’s ramifications today. Most of us know that it’s pretty much useless and in reality I have to agree with J Konrath, Here (I paraphrase slightly) that if we make out work easily available and cheap enough then there’s little need to worry about pirating. Not that I’ve fallen foul of this yet since I haven’t sold enough. I aim to change that. I wonder, is it a mark of success if one’s work is pirated?

As to my latest ventures, I seem to recall promising myself that I would never again write more than one book at a time. I even stuck to that new convention until the very second I began my new horror novel: The Secret, and without pause continued writing Old Geezers 3 and Kongomato 3, but as the three plots don’t conflict, there will be no overlap. I’m sticking to this story, because it keeps at bay the ominous voice in my head reminding me that I’m an idiot, and one that I keep ignoring. In a compromise-ette, I’ve decided to postpone my end-of-the-world epic until I finish this three, possibly.

I couldn’t wait any longer.

After umpteen edits I couldn’t wait any longer. It took me weeks to decide which of the two endings I liked better and I also knew that if I didn’t do it now I’d spend the rest of my life re-editing it. So finally, The Book of Pain is finished and for sale. The Amazon part was easy. Now I’m just waiting for Smashwords auto-vetter to do its stuff. Hopefully just a few days.

I know I should begin with the advertising biz but I’m making such good progress on my new horror novel I just can’t stop. But I will advertise it soon, really soon. Just got to finish another chapter of “The Secret.”

The artwork is mine. I’m getting better but I’d really like to employ a real pro. Perhaps if I sell some.

One final piece of The Book of Pain before I publish.

My hero has stumbled into the fourth century of his life, and found himself in the world of counter espionage during the Second World War. Yet as hard as he tries, both to rid himself of the curse, and hide his secret, somebody always seems to find out.

‘This whole department is a bloody farce.’ Fletcher announced on his return, utilising yet more new expletives acquired during his brief internment in a navy POW camp.

‘It was a bit of a cock-up.’ Wedge admitted ruefully. ‘But these things happen in war time. Someone must have talked or turned on us. Never mind.’ He smiled, rubbing his hands together briskly. ‘I have something rather special lined up for you in a couple of days. Get some rest. Oh,’ he frowned, ‘but you don’t rest, do you. When was the last time you did sleep?’ For a moment Fletcher thought the man knew something he should not. It was probably just a mistake.

‘Oh, I get a bit here and there.’ Hopefully that would be enough.

‘Well when was it? This century, last?’ Perhaps he was making another of those nebulous jokes he loved so much. Fletcher decided to ignore him for if he really knew, or even suspected any of the real truth then he would have to leave this place quickly. No one could who knew his real identity, or anything about the curse. However, it seemed as if Wedge was determined to pursue this.

‘Talk to me, Thomas. How old are you? Your face says about twenty something but your eyes tell a different story. Look, there’s no one else here. You can tell me and I swear that anything you say stays with me.’ He was no longer smiling. His open and usually humorous expression was absent. Fletcher had no idea what to say? The new expression, “a bag of worms” he’d heard so many times seemed singularly apt. ‘I notice that you never touch anyone, Tom. Why is that?’ The smile was gone. In his eyes a deep glare challenged Fletcher to say something – even to lie if he chose.

Here it is.

After my vain boasts of before I really have finished The Book of Pain. All plot holes filled and gratuitous wordiness expunged. I realised about three thirty this morning that if I didn’t call a halt I’d be doing this for the rest of my life. Thus here’s a quick sample before it’s release to Amazon and Smashwords on the 20th of Jan. No spoilers but simply an overview. It’s the longest novel I’ve ever published though not the longest I’ve ever written. That one got irretrievably lost in the bottomless pits of Volatile RAM. For those of you who don’t know what that is, just count yourselves lucky you don’t live in the eighties.

Tom Fletcher has been alive since the late seventeenth century. Throughout that interminable time food, sleep and and madness have all been denied him since that would ruin the effects of the curse which is to be his for eternity: ceaseless, unspeakable agony.

After two hundred years he discovers one final facet of the hateful punishment. He may finally rid himself of the curse and live a normal, mortal life.That opportunity comes one hundred and fifty years later. But has the ceaseless agony warped his mind enough to commit this hateful deed?

Here’s an excerpt. Not for the squeamish.

‘After being found guilty of attacking, without provocation, one of the ship’s officers, I am given no alternative but to award you the ultimate sanction for this offence.’ The curiously high pitched monologue paused as he took a breath, allowing Fletcher a moment to consider the words. “Award”. He almost laughed, but was given no opportunity as a boot crashed into his ribs. Perhaps he was not treating the situation with enough gravity, or more likely enough terror. Certainly he was not afraid, but he was curious. ‘Thus it falls on me to order you keelhauled. Marines; do your duty.’

At this final word he was grabbed again, two hands expertly fastening ropes to both wrists. With agonising pain, his legs and arms were roughly forced apart and he was dragged without ceremony to the bow of the ship, his head and various other limbs crashing painfully over several sharp protrusions on the way. The last thing he heard before the rushing of air was a slight chuckle of the evil petty officer. Then with a crash he hit the slowly pulsing sea with a sickening pain in his back.

Once the momentary disorientation and concussion of his impact passed, the vague light from the sun disappeared as he was expertly wrenched into a face-down position. With but a second to twist his head a dark shape above hove into view. The ship’s hull was huge and solid and as he was slammed into one side far below the surface, he saw it was also festooned with barnacles. With another jerk the ropes tightened around his feet and began to drag him slowly, roughly along its length. In an instant a new pain began; if possible even more incredible than anything he had thus far felt. And perhaps on cue, or probably to increase the agony, the movement stopped, but not for long. They obviously did not want to deprive him of more pain by drowning. As he was slowly towed down the rough hull the firmly fixed shells began to peel his flesh like razors; every single one tearing deeper. Within moments the skin was gone but if he had imaged that to be it then he’d been mistaken. Soon the barnacles and other shells affixed to the bottom cut past the skin and into his muscles like butter. He even felt his ribs and spine clattering over the hull. By now the pain had risen to a level his near demented mind could barely comprehend. It seemed incredible that he could suffer so much and yet still survive. But of course he would survive; the curse would never let him escape so easily.

The slow uneven dragging continued for almost five minutes as his back, legs and arms were flayed unmercifully and dark pools of blood bloomed into the murky water reflected by thin shafts of sunlight lancing into the depths. It seemed even the beasts of the sea wanted to torment him. Long thin fish just grey glints in the water, jerked forward silently, their tiny teeth nipping at small shreds of skin as they flowed past, and yet more still attached to his back.

Fletcher opened his mouth, his scream audible only to himself. He swallowed. Mouthful after mouthful of putrid water poured his lungs. He resisted the urge to cough, to vomit. Please let me die, he prayed. Let me die. Yet he did not die as the pain, his constant escort roared, eagerly tormenting him and laughing at his agony. Then just as he thought he finally would go mad, and already begged for death for the tenth time; first his legs, then the rest of him was hauled free of the water and dragged from the foam astern the giant rudder. Moments later he dropped unmercifully onto the desk, gasping, crying within a spreading pool of his own blood, urine and other stinking liquids.

Yet if he thought it was all over, he was still to endure the last course of the horrific menu. With a dull thump, he felt a thick bristle brush smearing something deeply into his ravaged back. The very instant it touched the most inconceivably horrific agony shot through his wounds, burning, scalding his body for the culmination of this awful punishment.
‘A nice bit of salt.’ A satisfied voice whispered into his ear. ‘Always like some salt with me dinner.’

Interview with Kilig

Amaranthine by Joleene Naylor

This should have been posted on a weekend but the scheduling didn’t work, so here it is on a Thursday instead!

Hello! My name is Katelina, and welcome to Weekend Character Interviews. Using state of the art-mumbo-jumbo author magic, Jo has temporarily bent the laws of fictional space and time to allow various literary universes to converge long enough for me to ask different characters a few questions. Since I spend a lot of time in the Amaranthine series quizzing vampires on what they’re doing, where they’re going and why, Jo thought I would be the perfect interviewer. 

Today we have Kilig from the twisted (in a good way) mind of Barbara G. Tarn. Hello, Kilig, can you tell us a little about yourself?

KiligCindifel: Kilig by Cinzia Di Felice (official cover) KiligCindifel: Kilig by Cinzia Di Felice (official cover)

Kilig: I’m a tall, dark-haired man like most southerners. I was born in Godwalkar, once upon a time capital of the Kingdom…

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Amaranthine on

Amaranthine by Joleene Naylor


As I mentioned in my previous post (Amaranthine on Pintrest), some new Facebook policies have forced me tho think about promoting other social network options. Though Facebook is still the big one right now, MySpace used to be the top dog, and now it’s gone the way of the dodo. Who knows what may happen as Facebook continues to be more about how much we can pay them and less about social interaction.

As such, I am showcasing some networks I’m on. I mentioned Pintrest already, and yes, I have a website ( if you’ve never been there), but a website is like a poster at a subway station. Full of good information though not really a way to participate in a conversation.

As such, now seems like a good idea to start mentioning some of those other social media sites I’m on and telling you why you might…

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