1.5 News & Blog

The aim of this page is to attempt to try and keep you up todate with what is happening vis-a-vis "The Red Grouse Tales". However, as I am sure you appreciate, writing is a slow business. So, let's be upfront about it, there is not going to be new "news" every other day! Indeed, there is unlikely to be new "news" every other month! However, I will endeavour to pass on a taster of what I am working on and what is to come as often as I can.

General News.

Goodreads Blog

You all know I have a page on goodreads. What you possibly don't know is that I also have a blog on goodreads. So those of you that are members of Goodreads can also keep up to date with my latest "burblings" on Goodreads. I won't promise that that blog will be the same as this one, as I am sure to mess-up at some stage! But I'll try and keep both up to date.

 

Book reviews.

The five star reviews are continuing to come in, which is very nice. Indeed, I think all my titles have review averages of 4+ stars, which is wonderful. It is so good to learn that others appreciate one's work, that the hours spent are worth while and that the writing is worth doing. Thank you!

 

But not only are reviews nice for me they are also vital to other readers who may not have come across my tales before. Unfortunately you can't walk into Amazon and have a chat with the guy behind the counter like you can in a traditional bookshop. All you have got is a picture of the cover, a brief synopsis of the book, which is written by the author, and yes, the reviews. Although it is obvious, it is worth remembering that the reviews are other people telling you how they found the story. It is these which make all the difference to you or anyone else who is looking at the title - shall I try it, shan't I? - at helping to give an idea of what the book is like. Yes, I can tell you on this website all about my books, but let's face it, we all prefer a recommendation from someone other than the manufacturer! And this is where reviews come in and where your opinion comes in.

 

So if you liked a story - or even if you didn't, though I hope this is not the case! - please give it a review. You don't have to say much if you are not feeling particularly literary, just click the stars and add a simple line or two. That will be fine. But please do do it. Thanks.

 

Amazon discussion Forum

Did you know that there is a “discussion forum” on Amazon? I didn't, so I wouldn't be surprised if you'd missed it. Click this link “Visit Amazon's Leslie W P Garland Page”, and it takes you through to my author page. Scroll down this and you'll find “Customer Discussions” and “Leslie W P Garland discussion forum”.

 

I'll make no promises as regards any contribution from myself - after all, I have got the next series of “The Tales” to write! - but if something gets going, who knows, maybe I'll chip in? However, irrespective of that, you may find it a bit of fun to discuss stories with fellow readers.

 

And of course, don't forget  Twitter - it's always interesting to know what your friends think, to know if they agree with you, or have a totally different theory!

 

 

 

Blog.

19 September 2017

Dear Reader,

I can guess that you don't want to come on to my blog and find me banging on about reviews, yet again!

But that is what I am doing today, because unfortunately in these e-book days, reviews are vitally important, which is why you will find so many authors going on about them.

Back in the bad old days you could go into your local bookshop and have a chat with the guy or girl behind the counter and they would make some recommendations. Those recommendations would be of books that had already been vetted by a publisher (they wouldn't have published the book if they didn't think it any good) so you knew that what you were getting was to a pretty good standard and the only thing you had to concern yourself with was whether or not it suited your taste.

These days when buying e-books from the likes of Amazon, there is no publisher and there is no guy or girl in the bookshop. All you have to go on is the author's write-up of their own book (so why should you trust that!) and other readers' reviews. This is why reviews are so important. They are all you as a reader has to make some form judgement about the book, and all the author has re recommendation.

Please do review.

It doesn't have to be a literary masterpiece. A simple star grading and "I really enjoyed this book", will do. Please do it both for your fellow readers and for us authors. Thanks.
 

18 August 2017

I had to remind myself that it was not Monday, but Wednesday, when I read Stephanie's (at Bundledupbooks) lovely 4 star review of "The Golden Tup" and then subsequently, only this time it was on a Friday, when I read Lisa-marie's super 5 star review. Thanks to both. A 4.2 star average from 20 reviews, can't be all bad!

Whereas I have managed to catch the odd email, I've done little more in the past two weeks, having been driving round and checking out areas where we might move to. Things on this house moving front are gradually coming together, but it is a painfully slow process and in the meantime I still can't get on with any writing. No, I am not one of those people who can sit down at any spare minute and just carry on where I left off, I need peace and quiet and the knowledge that there is no preasure on my time.

However, I console myself with the fact that at least some lovely reviews are coming in. So my thanks to all who are providing them.
 

24 July 2017

 
I am beginning to look forward to Mondays!

Today I logged on to find two new super 5 and 4 star reviews for "The Golden Tup". Many thanks to Courtney and Roisin.

I also saw two nice spikes in viewing over the weekend period (one for each of "The Little Dog" and "The Golden Tup") in the Goodreads adverts that I am running, and wish I could pin exactly what causes these. At present this is all a bit of a mystery to me - a nice mystery though, as I recon the more that see my "Tales" the better!

The actual business of writing is still suffering - things are churning in my head, but next to nothing is going down on paper. I'll be glad when this house move is over and done with as it is dreadfully hard to concentrate while all is up in the air and so uncertain.
 

14 July 2017

During the past week I have graduaIly up-graded my web site. Nothing too dramatic - where necessary additional reviews have been added to the individual "tale pages", the News and Blog pages have been re-vamped, and perhaps most importantly, I have added a sample chapter to each of the "tale pages" so that visitors can get a taster of the tale that they are looking at.

The 13th may be unlucky for some, but Thursday 13th July was certainly lucky for "The Little Dog" advertising that I am currently running on Goodreads, with a massive spike in views to over 21,000 on that day. I have absolutely no idea what prompted it - possibly that little bat that I mentioned in my last post was a good omen?

 

 

12 July 2017

My last three postings have been about "The Bat" and yesterday afternoon we discovered a small pipistrelle bat hanging on to the woodwork of our house!

A lovely little chap! Only about a couple of inches long, witha pug-like face, tiny ears and soft brown fur. He was less that a couple of feet away from an opening window, so we had an excellent view of him.

This morning, of course, he was gone - "The hours of darkness were no longer hours for relaxation at the end of the day, but had become hours of anxiety, when you needed to be indoors, with the windows closed and the light on. No one mentioned the bat, but there was no doubting that it was on everyone’s mind, its tiny black wings casting a huge, dark shadow over our village!"

Let's hope this one has brought luck rather than a huge, dark shadow.

Happy reading!
 

10 July 2017

Had a nice surprise this morning - another 5 star review for "The Bat". It is posted here on Goodreads, so please go and read it. Many thanks to Hector's Girl for a lovely review.

In my last posting I mentioned that I am running an ad. here on Goodreads for "The Golden Tup". Since then I have now added one for "The Little Dog" and am now running the two in tandem. There are a few nice spikes on the stats graph, which suggests that these ads are getting seen, though whether these will translate into increased sales remains to be seen.

Still finding it hard to get back into "The Ghost Moth" - we are in the throws of moving house and so there is just too much else which is taking of my time and concentration right now.

 

3 July 2017

"The Bat" was nominated as a runner for LAS Reviews "Book of the month".

Unfortunately, it didn't win, but as the award is on a votes cast system that is hardly surprising as I don't have the huge fan club - just yet! However, what is really gratifying is that the tale was nominated in the first place. Only three titles are, so to be one of three is pretty pleasing in itself.

A big vote of thanks to all who voted, retweeted, shared posts, etc.

 

28 June 2017

The first review is now in and it is 5 stars, thanks to LAS Reviews (Unfortunately, they don't post on Goodreads, but their review can be read on amazon.com at https://www.amazon.com/Bat-coming-inv... )

Have got my pc back from the repair shop and after way too much hassle - why can't software manufacturers make the installation of their programs easy? - it is now up and running. Fortunately the repair guys did manage to extract most of the data off the hard drive before reloading Windows - pity they couldn't have lost it and put something better in, but I mustn't complain! - and it seems that with luck I haven't lost anything. So now I have just got to get myself back in a writing frame of mind.

Have started running an advert on Goodreads for "The Golden Tup" and so will be interested to see what effect this has on sales.

 

27 June 2017

Having - after too long a break - got back into writing again, the next thing that happens is my computer crashes!

The prognosis is not good. So at present it is looking as if I could well be back to Chapter 3 in "The Ghost Moth" and could well be having to spend time learning how to download story data from Amazon in order to recover that which is published todate. So, I am currently trying to brainstorm how to avoid this problem in the future - buy a refurbished pc with XP (I can't stand Windows 10. MS appear to have excelled themselves at taking three steps backwards!) and use it for writing only i.e./ no Internet use? Buy a Mac? Any ideas would be most welcome. Why can't the manufacturers of hard and software make their products work? Forget the "all singing, all dancing" and concentrate on straight forward reliability.

On a different subject, I got my first review for "The Bat" - 5 stars from LAS Reviews! Unfortunately they don't post on Goodreads, so if you want to read it you'll need to pay www.amazon.com a visit at https://www.amazon.com/Bat-coming-inv...

 

11June 2017

At last I have managed to get back to writing again. Think I might have finished Chapter 3 of The Ghost Moth and made a start on Chapter 4. Confess it is rather hard to get going having been away so long - whereas I have the plot of the tale mapped out, one looses the atmosphere of the story and it takes time to get back into that again

Reviews, and very nice ones as well, keep coming in for all the tales. Thanks to everyone who has contributed to this.
 

1 May 2017

A coming of age story involving good & evil, a search after truth, doubt and a bat!

“To one who has faith, no explanation is necessary. To one without faith, no explanation is possible” St Thomas Aqinas.

What is true, what is Truth?

In this coming of age story a sceptical Thomas recounts the events of a term at school when his class returned to a new beautiful class teacher, a donation of stuffed animals and birds by an eccentric benefactor which he and his friends subsequently discovered weren't quite as dead as they looked, an exorcism in which a bell-jar which had been containing a bat shattered, and then things, which up to then had been strange, turned to being sinister and frightening.

In an attempt to understand what was going on, Thomas found himself reading up on Black Magic, Satanism, the early Christian Church, and the worship of evil, but instead of assisting his understanding this made him more confused than ever. Even a conversation with his local priest failed to resolve the problems he found himself wrestling with. What was true? And of course, where was the bat?

An adult fantasy story for those who like to think about what they are reading. (A warning for more sensitive readers - the story does contain sex references)


Background Information.

With “fake news” hitting the headlines, I thought it would be nice to look at “truth” and muse on questions such as “what actually is true?” and “what is Truth?” using a fantasy story as a foil for same.

Is truth what we believe to be the case, or is it what we know to be the case? Why is one religion deemed to be true, whereas others are deemed not to be so? And why are religions deemed to be a “good thing” when they appear to be the justification for much of the conflict and appalling atrocities that have been and still are being perpetrated around the world?

St Thomas Aquinas' famous quotation “To one who has faith, no explanation is necessary. To one without faith, no explanation is possible,” doesn't provide an answer to these questions but I think, does rather nicely state things as they are - the lunatic who believes a god is on his side doesn't require an explanation, and of course those who don't share that same mad belief will never understand!

I needed my narrator to be at that age where his opinions hadn't been formed, so that he would question and ask “those embarrassing questions” of others. He also had to be a bit naïve and not be fully aware of what was going on. So I thought a sceptical "doubting Thomas" would make a good narrator. Somehow the story cried out to have both the Reverend Money and Felicity (both from “The Little Dog”) in it, so “The Bat” became a prequel to “The Little Dog”.

The subject matter of Knowledge, required that apples, whether metaphorical ones, or ones in gardens or buckets of water, had to be included as did the Garden of Eden allegory and the having to leave it. I hope my choices of other characters do not require further explanation. And of course sex had to feature in the story, because the "gaining of knowledge" is just another way of saying "sexual awakening". So for more sensitive readers; be aware that sex does get a mention.

And finally, I hope I have been even-handed in exploring this subject, with a sceptical Thomas and logical, brain-box of a Bobby Thompson on one side of the argument and genuinely nice, Felicity and thoughtful, steady Reverend Money on the other side. I am not sure there is a conclusive answer, hence the St Thomas Aquinas quotation, but none-the-less I hope the end result is both an interesting exploration and an entertaining read!

 

24 April 2017

Coming soon to Amazon!

Thomas recounts a term at school when his class returned to a beautiful new class teacher, a donation of stuffed animals which he and his friends discovered weren't quite as dead as they looked, an exorcism, and then things changed from strange to frightning.

A coming of age story involving fake news, a search after truth, doubt, and a bat!

The Red Grouse Tales; paranormal tales for adults who like to think about what they are reading.

Info on www.lesliegarland.co.uk

 

8 April 2017

For one day only, Thursday, 13 April, "The Golden Tup" can be downloaded for FREE! from amazon.
The Golden Tup: A dreadful tale of paradise being cruelly taken by latent evil.
Check the links for more info and reviews.
Your review will be much appreciated.