If you were reading last week, you’ll know that my first Young Adult novel, Castles of Steel and Thunder, has just launched as an eBook (paperback launch coming soon – more on that subject next time). The last week has been very exciting, and I was delighted when the eBook hit the number one spot in two Amazon categories within 24 hours of its release.
Launch day for me was spent at my kitchen table, sharing the news of the launch everywhere I could think of, and refreshing the Amazon ranking charts. When the book went to number one in its first category late that afternoon, I was ready for a glass of something fizzy – and a little cry. (All this after the mild panic of trying to get a screenshot before someone knocked me off my perch!)
By the following morning, the book was at number one in a second category, and it felt for a while like life couldn’t get much better. I’d like to thank everyone who bought the book, or found a way to support me over on social media. I really appreciate all the likes, shares and comments which have helped to spread the word about Castles of Steel and Thunder far and wide.
Over the past few days, I’ve received some wonderful feedback on the book, which has been really rather touching. It’s been lovely to receive messages from readers as far afield as the US telling me how much they enjoyed the story, and its links to the lore and legend of the far north. The words ‘magical’ and ‘enchanting’ have been used, with more than one reader telling me they couldn’t stop reading the novel once they started. Of course, I know negative reviews might come – when they do, you won’t see me for a while as I’ll be busy curling up in a ball of writerly neurosis. For now though, I’m enjoying basking in the warmth of all the support and positivity that’s been so kindly thrown my way.
In line with this, it’s important for me to find ways for my writing to do some good in the world, and particularly here where I live in Caithness. So until the 10th December 2020, 50% of all profits from eBook sales of COSAT will be going to CASWA, a local Women’s Aid charity, as part of their involvement in the 16-day Change Her Story campaign. As part of the campaign, agencies across the Highlands and Islands are teaming up to raise awareness of gender-based violence across the area – an initiative I’m very proud to be a part of. If you’re looking for a new book, or a way to help a good cause over the next couple of weeks, you can find the eBook here.
Finally, if you do read and enjoy the book, please consider posting a review on Amazon – reviews encourage Amazon to put books in front of new and potential readers. And if you like the story, please tell others – word of mouth is invaluable to us indie authors of the world.
If you need a little something to whet your appetite, here’s a taster: the very first lines from Castles of Steel and Thunder – I hope you enjoy them.
Sent with love from Caithness – and a writer discovering that dreams do indeed come true.
On the day it ended, blood fell from the sky like raindrops. It trickled down the cliff and into every crevice, scarring the obstinate stone with a streak of restless, seeking red. I heard her cry out, a sound both young and ancient in the darkness. And then silence, piercing the air like a steel blade cutting through the sky. They thought it ended then, as the sky seer flew and the mountain turned over into slumber. In truth, it had only just started.
Like the buds pricking open on the hillside, I had only just begun.
Excerpt from ‘Castles of Steel and Thunder’ – Copyright Gail Anthea Brown.