Work In Progress Update

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It’s been a little while since I’ve posted an update on my comedic fantasy work in progress – The Totally True Adventures of Gustav Gustavson – Legendary Viking Warrior (TTTAOGGLVW for short, lol).

Well, it’s going really well, about 95% complete or thereabouts, and is now officially the longest single work I’ve written to date. Currently weighing in at a little over 47,100 words, I’m aiming to get it above 50,000 by the time I wrap it up.

Why? A couple of reasons. Firstly, it’s a nice beefy number for a novel, and make it a good 10,000 words longer than my second longest. A decent sized read and makes for a nice thick book on the bookshelf. 🙂

Secondly, I’d like to try Kindle Scout and they have a hard 50,000 word minimum limit for submitted works. Never heard of Kindle Scout? This is what they do:

Kindle Scout is reader-powered publishing for new, never-before-published books. It’s a place where readers help decide if a book gets published. Selected books will be published by Kindle Press and receive 5-year renewable terms, a $1,500 advance, 50% eBook royalty rate, easy rights reversions and featured Amazon marketing.

So they’re a publishing arm of Amazon, which has obvious benefits. Essentially, if your novel gets picked up, they’ll kick you an advance on royalties and also promote it throughout Amazon in ways a lowly self-publishing author like me could ever hope to access. It’s obviously in their interest to promote the hell out of it in order to recoup the royalty outlay, which would lead to plenty of sales.

But even if they don’t pick it up it’ll get a bit of extra exposure to people who may never have heard of my books (those poor, unfortunate souls! – to quote Ursula).

I’m really happy with how well the storyline for TTTAOGGLVW has turned out. It’s a mash-up of Viking lore, comedic fantasy, and a little bit of Dungeons and Dragons written as a (obviously fictional) biography of Gustav. I’m hoping to finish the first draft within the next week (time permitting) and then start the arduous task of first-round editing before kicking it over to my beta reader to check out.

I’ve also been working on the blurb which I’ve pasted in below.

The Blurb:

This is the story of a true Viking hero you won’t learn in schools. Gustav the Great. Gustav the Powerful. Gustav the Dragon Slayer. A story so fantastic and shocking not even the History Channel would dare turn it into a TV series.

Every word of it is true. Totally true. How do I know? Because it’s all about me. Gustav Gustavson – Legendary Viking Warrior.

Experience the awesomeness of my unexpected voyage to an undiscovered land where I survive shipwrecks, arena death match spectacles, rampaging rhinoceraptors, naked and rather surly giants, and even dragons! Well, a dragon… all in my pursuit of fame and glory.

Read the blurb above and are now wondering what a rhinoceraptor is? Taking some inspiration from Dungeons and Dragons and their love of mashing up animals to make weird hybrids, I created my own. Basically part rhino, part velociraptor, part triceratops. Actually, here’s a few paragraphs from the draft that explain them:

From the other side of the arena, a beast unlike any I had seen before lumbered its way through the doors. My first thought was it was remarkably similar to a rhinoceros, only three times larger. A six-foot long horn protruded from its head, heavily armored where it joined the skull by a thick gray scale. After that the similarities stopped.

Each of monsters gargantuan feet sported a trio of talons, each one the size of my forearm. From its rear swung a tail the length of its body which ended at what looked like the business end of a morning star the size of a boulder.

I stood rooted to the spot, barely able to put together a coherent thought. It stomped its way through the doors and entered the area. I mean that literally by the way. This thing didn’t bother to wait for someone to let it out, it just smashed its way through. The doors splintered to pieces in its wake, and as it stomped closer to us, I could feel the vibrations through the hard-packed earth.

“Seven hells, what is that thing?” I said when the ability to speak returned to me.

“Rhinoceraptor,” Grogall replied with a grunt.

Apparently seeing a beast such as this was not an uncommon occurrence for him. If anything he looked kind of bored. He gave the beast only a cursory glance as he used a fingernail to pick some rotten meat from his tusks.

The rhinoceraptor reared back and bellowed like some freakish hybrid of elephant and lion that had fallen into a blackberry bush after stubbing its little toe.

So there you go! I’d like to try sketching a picture of rhinoceraptor but am also thinking my ambition far exceeds my sketching abilities. Maybe when I find some spare time I’ll give it ago. Meanwhile, that’s all for now. I really should be getting back to writing.


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Check out my Author Profile at Amazon for everything I’ve published.

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