Al's Place

I welcome you to my new blog


Book Reviews

Was that me?

As I sit in my chair and think of my reputation, it is hard to imagine that I was only a short while ago noted for being a prolific writer.


I used to do over 3,500 at a sitting, two or three times a week with great ease and pleasure. If I’ve written 3,500 words this year, it’s a stretch.

In the past, if I didn’t write at least twice a week I got edgy and nervous, but now things have changed, and not writing doesn’t affect me You could say I’ve become tainted over the years.

Things started to go wrong when I decided to try to calculate the numerous connections online my various outlets give me. It was at this point I realised how futile my writing had become, with too many connections to comprehend this blog is fortunate to get about 250 readers a day.

Years ago,, I got great pleasure creating new worlds for my readers, and then things changed and I came to a point where I didn’t care any longer. I realised if something were free people would be happy to read it Something else that taints my view is the number of individuals who lied to me about wanting to buy books, and never buy an e-book After four years the trend hasn’t stopped, the only change is my view. I’ve gone from being upset at being lied to, to not giving a damn what people say. You can lie to someone for so long, and then you find they don’t care what you say

Despite the 580 sales for my series, I doubt there is any interest in my work, after all with all those sales, I’ve not had one review or comment from anyone who bought an ebook.


Big books don’t sell

A Sailor's Love

In my opinion, over the last three years one thing is clear BIG BOOKS DON’T SELL this isn’t only my books. A study done in the USA in 2013 showed readers prefer a short book. I put the decline in length down to the dvd age and video games.

None of my larger volumes has sold either at Amazon or B&N. The only Pat Canella story which sold was “Ghosts of your past” the link between “The Dockland Murders” and the book I had started “Hunted Down.” Despite being an award winner “Chronicles of Mark Johnson” hasn’t sold in the 18 months since winning the award. “The Descent of Mark Johnson,” the following story hasn’t sold in the 9 months since I put it on sale and I fear “A Sailor’s Love” will suffer the same fate, a year in the writing and nothing to show.

On the other side, the stories I used to turn out in an afternoon — and still can if the mood takes me — thrive, as seen by the recent success of “Forgestriker” and the continuing sales of “Holding Richmond.”
Or, a I missing the obvious and it’s my stories which don’t sell, as I keep reading about book deals, film deals and the such among the reports of book sales in the hundreds when I am happy to sell 10 in a month 😥

Will history repeat itself?

The Descent of Mark Johnson

History is set to repeat itself.

Last night I was working on edits for Chronicles book 2 (The Descent of Mark Johnson) — don’t ask me why — I didn’t realise until I went to close down that the edits I were doing were on book 3 (Mark Johnson Returns).

Three years ago, I was laid up because my tendon tore and left me bed-ridden. I was writing so much it became like a drug and I couldn’t stop. My friends feared I would have a breakdown if I didn’t take a break, so, they told me to take time off from writing.

I think the syndrome has returned because I was working on the story for an hour and never noticed the differences in the story. I should have been alerted by the length of the book first of all, but nothing clicked. Even the change in the story didn’t register with me.

The big difference this time is if I am not writing I get edgy, as I feel for some reason I am letting the readers down. Then I think “Nobody cares anyway,” but I still can’t sit still for long.

Mark Johnson Retuns

Hotel by Evelyn Steward

Hotel ebook cover

This short, yet delightful collection from Evelyn tell the stories of three disparate people’s views on hotel life. One a ballerina, one a lady with wealth and the final an old man. Well worth the money.

Create a free website or blog at

Up ↑