Seumas was our guest back in 2011…
Good day everyone.
I am Seumas Gallacher (yes, seriously, that’s a real name). Three years ago I completed one of my life’s dreams by finishing my first crime thriller novel, The Violin Man’s Legacy, which I considered a cut or two above chewing gum for the brain quality. Nonetheless, others, particularly those who do not need to BS me, tell me they enjoyed the read. That’s step two (step one was enjoying it myself).
I then went through that journey of tortures so familiar to neophyte writers, the non-process of getting publishers and agents to feel inclined to carry it to step three, getting widespread publication. Magic then happened… somebody gave me a copy of Jane’s book, Wannabe a Writer? She foolishly agreed to meet me over lunch in London (I live in the Middle East) after I sent her a nutty e-mail. We have become great friends since then, and those who have met her will be well aware of her generosity of time and spirit, plus she is a naturally witty lady (big plus).
I spent some time getting professional assistance on appraising the book from Jane’s wonderful recommendation, Lynne Patrick, after which I self-edited a couple more times to get it into the shape it now has, and which I am pleased with. Now, back to the torture round, with so many rejection slips with box-ticking reasons from agents not to get involved with it, I decided, lunatic that I am, to practise something that has been an eternal quirk… to go against the so-called standard industry wisdom. I did not want to be a formula writer. I did not want to lose my own writing identity. I did not want the novel to transmorph into a ghost writer’s shadow of the original storyline. Therefore, this old Jurassic (my bus pass should be due soon) decided to get dragged kicking and grumbling, rather than screaming, into the 21st century via THE WEB. This was uncharted territory indeed. My first laptop was purchased only three years ago so that I could do my single digit from each hand typing of the book. When I switched on my laptop, if it lit up I would do a lap of honour, that’s how non-computer/web literate I truly am. BUT, and here’s the great BUT, somebody else whispered in my ear, “why don’t you try eBooks on Amazon, Kindle?”
That all had to be explained to me in single syllable words, many times over. However, net result is, I am now a published author via Kindle, and even hit Amazon, UK’s top thirty of “Thriller” best sellers this week. I used the reach of LinkedIn and e-mail contacts to spread the word, another piece of the dark arts magic of the web world, which was totally foreign to me a couple of months ago. I guess it shows that maybe you CAN teach an old dog new tricks.
Perhaps I owe a large thanks to all of the agents and others who kept saying “you can’t do that!” Oh yeah? Watch this space. I love it when the negative nellies poke their noses up. The trip thus far has been exhilarating, and I don’t see why it has to stop.
Jane Wenham-Jones, you have no idea how much this début writer is in your debt just by your being there as a great example of “never, ever, ever giving up” (similar to my other great hero, Winston Churchill!)
The Violin Man’s Legacy can be purchased and downloaded from Amazon UK.