Book Sprout

I confess to having never heard of these folks before a week ago.

Book Sprout allows readers to find books to read and review, and authors to find readers, and thus reviews. I set up an account a few days ago (a very reasonable monthly subscription), so it’s a little early to say how effective it is, but I’ll be sure to pass on the efficacy after a month or so.

I’ve put my three Nick Harding novels up there if you’re a reader.

Pop by and look me up. And if you check out one or more of my books, be sure to leave a review.

Looking for ARC Readers

Dead Tomorrow will be available on Amazon (eBook) and everywhere in paperback format on May 1. It’s available for pre-order on amazon now (as an eBook) and will be available for pre-order in paperback format in about a week.

I’m looking for avid readers who enjoy a fast-paced crime story to provide ARC reviews on Amazon for me. Got to get that algorithm working for me.

ARC copies are available now. They will be pdf copies. If you’re interested and think you can read (or attempt to read) a 70k book and review it by May 1, please leave a comment below, and we’ll chat, and I’ll send you a personalised copy.

Available now for preorder. Help me kick the Amazon algorithm in the arse. If the description below interests you, please preorder at Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

Looking forward to hearing from you all.

#KindleUnlimited / KDP Select

In an attempt to raise the visibility of the books which lead into “Dead Tomorrow” (coming to all good and shitty bookstores in May 2023), I‘ve placed “Broken” and “Unprotected Sax” in the KDP Select program on Amazon.


Broken is Nick Harding’s last case. Nick is a former member of the Australian Federal Police who specialised in financial crimes. He left the AFB almost a decade ago and set himself up as a PRivate Investigator.

Nick Harding has a new case. Actually, two of them.

A very rich old dude is about to kick off and is desperate to make amends with his estranged son. Nick is contacted by the old guy’s lawyer with a task: Find the son, convince him to get in contact with his father, and help mediate the relationship.

Nick hates mediating.

That same day a friend of a friend engages him to track down a serial deadbeat who has bilked a small financial services company out of millions of dollars. The fee is lower, but the job is more up Nick’s alley.

Then the heir’s life is threatened, the deadbeat has a compelling backstory and everything Nick thought he knew was wrong.

Amazon AU | Amazon US | Amazon CA | Amazon UK

Unprotected Sax

Unprotected Sax came out over a decade ago. The main antagonist in this story was a Rusiian mobster in South Florida named Vladimir Petrovski.

In “Dead Tomorrow (coming to all good, mediocre, and shitty bookstores everywhere in May 2023), Petrovski reappears, with good reasons (for him) and proves to be a worthy adversary.

Amazon US | Amazon AU | Amazon CA | Amazon UK

Scrivener Templates – Again

I use a couple of different templates when I’m writing. One, a 4-part novel template for Scrivener, has been linked by several websites and unfortunately, that link now goes nowhere.

This is/will be the new landing post for templates. They generally follow the structure I talk about elsewhere on this site.

You need to right-click this link (don’t click it. It won’t do you any good) and save the file in a location you can’t forget (let’s go for desktop, for now).

When you start a new Scrivener project, you’re presented with a window that allows you to select a template. The bottom left of that window is an “Options” button that allows you to import a template:

Navigate to the Desktop (or wherever you’ve saved the download) and select the template. It’ll be an option (under Fiction) going forward.

I also use an 8-part “mini-movie” template when writing screenplays. It’s a bit more streamlined than the 4-part (counter-intuitively) because I’m not breaking it into chapters.

If you’re interested, right-click here and follow the directions above.

REMEMBER: Right-click and save. Don’t just click on the link.

If you’ve got any questions, please drop a comment below.

A different way to structure stories

About seven or eight years ago, somebody (and I can’t recall who) put forward a “mini-movie” approach to structuring your story.

Just jumping in here to say story structure does not remove creativity. It’s a set of guidelines, much as building design rules are (roof is on the top, windows on the outside walls, basement on the bottom, plumbing not exposed), and every house (except for those suburbs built in the last decade) are different. If you don’t want to use a structure, fine. I find it much easier to plot a story if I have a rough idea of where things should be. And if you say not all stories follow a structure, name one. I’ll show you the inherent structure in a future post.

Aside over.

The scheme is divided into eight roughly equal sections. The first two constitute Act 1, the middle four constitute Act 2, and the final two constitute Act 3. The guidelines for each are as follows:

A couple of dozen words each, offering guidance to the writer on the expected deliverable for each section of your story.

What do you think? I’ve found this handy when I first start thinking about the outline of a new book.

Bowling Life Lessons

I wrote this after the last Nationals comp Amy and I went to. This site was subsequently hacked and destroyed (thanks to WordPress vulnerabilities I’ve since learned about).

The post was well received, so I’ve dug through the Way Back machine and recovered it:

We recently had an exciting week of bowling in Canberra (this was back in June 2019), where every single one of the Rockets did themselves proud. And over the course of the week, it occurred to me that my daughter has learned more than how to clean up a spare when she needs to. There are valuable life lessons learned from tenpin bowling:

  1. Your first frame is not the game. A gutter ball with the first throw doesn’t mean a poor score. And a strike with the first ball doesn’t mean a good score. Never assume you know how something will end before it’s finished.
  2. In conjunction with the first point, the only ball that counts is the one in your hands. Not the one you just threw, not the next game and not the next tournament. Don’t get ahead of yourself. And don’t beat yourself up about what has happened in the past. Roll with it. (See what I did there?)
  3. Think before you do. Once you’ve let go of the ball, there’s absolutely nothing you can do to change its path. Take the extra time to make a plan. It’s a good investment.
  4. You will meet people of all shapes, sizes and disabilities when you bowl. You’re no better or worse than any of them.
  5. Wait your turn. It’s not just tournament rules, it’s a good thing to do. And when the bowler beside you encroaches, let them. Step back and let them go. Pick your battles. There is absolutely no benefit in pushing something that doesn’t help anyone.
  6. And finally, a seven-ten split is almost impossible for even the best bowler. Pick a pin.

Happy bowling, and see you again in February.