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News

No really, I am here

As you know, things around here have been dormant, and I keep opening up random corners of the site going “Jesus! There’s a rat’s nest in here, and they’ve been chewing on the wires!”

Ergo, didn’t even realize on my post asking for comments that, umm, it’s a bit hard to make a comment as you can’t register here; and that my contact form was utterly broken.

For now, until I figure out my preference, you can register on WordPress.com for an account and use that to comment. (I honestly can’t even remember what commenting plugin I was using previously. I’ll figure it out.)

But arguably, it’ll be a lot easier to just email me. The email is gw at (the site domain), or if you like, ghostlywriter at the email service beginning with G. (Yes. I know how dumb it is to try and fool bots and crawlers. Whatever, I get enough spam.)

Or, use the (now functioning) contact form.

Normal service, etc.

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News

This is a warm up

Flexin’ those fingers, flexin’ those fingers. This is a warm up for writing.

Or it’s procrastination. But the good thing is, either way, there’s words at the end of it! Yay! Okay, some random stuff.

I checked: You’re The One That I Want (I namechecked it last time, right?) is just over 12K words right now. That’s before the rewrite that, goddammit, I’m doing today. End of January, I said, right? Right.

Progress continues on the sequel to Practice to Deceive, and I namechecked that too, right? Didn’t I? Well, anyway, it’s called Seeing is Deceiving. I’ve had that title for years. I have the title for a third book too. Hope for your sake if I do write a third one it doesn’t take, umm, eight years to get done.

Anyway yes, progress, and I actually put it on Instagram, which I never ever post to but here you go, just so we have a picture.

Oh, turns out I put it on my Story so you had to be following me to see which sort of defeats my purpose here. And look at that moire pattern, yuck. This is why I hate the ‘verité’ (blurgh) of phonecam-aimed-at-monitor shots.

Anyway.

Yes, I know it’s just 266 words but as I tell myself on these days, that’s 266 more than I had before, when I had none! Also, we’re up to 108K, which is… more. And more is good.

Back to that after I take a crack at editing YTOTIW – easier than You’re The One That I Want but also, jeez, what a terrible acronym.

Okay, fingers feel warm. Time to make the words.

And hey, you’ve been good. Here’s the opening to (sigh) YTOTIW. As it currently stands, pre-edits. You can tap/click for the original. Sorry for the squinting.

Screenshot of opening of YTWTIO
You’ll probably figure out why the title

That’ll do. Laters.

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News Process Progress Report

These aren’t resolutions for 2022

But promises. To myself. And I guess, to you.

Now, where were we? Oh yeah.

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News

Wow, 2 years? Or is it 4?

Every year about this time, in a highly idiosyncratic and in no way common routine, I start thinking about the year just gone and the year ahead.

It’s interesting. You should try it.

Anyway. Shitty jokes aside, let’s talk.

First: yes, I know, I suck, I haven’t published a thing, etc etc etc. Let’s just get past that, shall we? Okay.

Second: have I actually written? At all? Yeah, some. Not a lot, and really not enough to finish much, but yeah.

Third: was 2021 a shitty year? Well, does the Pope shit in the woods? (Yes, when the Vatican’s unavailable.)

Every time (counts on fingers: like, 5 times) I have opened this site in the last couple of (counts on thumbs: yeah, 2 is right) years, I have laughed bitterly at this entry about 2017 sucking.

I legitimately have no idea why I wrote that. Well, I have one idea. But honestly, if that was the primary reason why 2017 “sucked”, then boy howdy, is 2017 me in for one hell of a surprise.

As is 2018, 2019 and even 2020 me.

But.

Despite 2021 ultimately being Another Year of Suck, like the sequel that nobody wanted (Surprise! They filmed it at the same time as 2020 in secret), I genuinely feel like I’m turning a corner. And not just because of the looming New Year.

Now, talking about this too much would lean far too heavily into what we pseudononymous author types like to call Personally Identifiable Information, but suffice to say, there have been some changes in my life that I see as being positive. For real.

Which is nice.

Because yeah, honestly, this year has sucked, and not in a 2017 type way or even a 2020 type way but in a real, genuine, “holy fuck I wouldn’t have believed this last year” kinda way.

But we survived. We’re here. You and I. Fuck. Yes. So let’s get into 2022 and slap it about a bit, okay?

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News

Not dead

I know it’s crazy. Anyway. I’m ditching my old theme and going old school. Less flashy but it’ll load faster.

Just wanted to explain the visual change for the two people who might see this…

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News

End of year

2017 has sucked.

It could have been way worse, of course. I haven’t contracted a major disease. I have a place to live. I have a job. In comparison to some other years in the ’10s’, it’s been good in a lot of ways.

In the way you probably care about, in relation to my writing and publishing, it’s sucked. Getting Her Substitute out there didn’t really count; that was a holdover from 2016, where I spent way too long pissing about to get the book out that year. I felt happy to get it published of course, and I appreciate every single one of you who bought a copy.

Beyond that, it wasn’t good. Or pretty.

I’m not asking for sympathy here. I’m trying to tell you how I’m… feeling is maybe the wrong way to put it. I’m trying to tell you where I stand as we head into 2018.

I hit a real middle-aged milestone this year. I’ve been writing mask fiction for almost 20 years – almost half my life. While I’ve been writing this, I haven’t been writing much else. I need to change that balance, but that doesn’t mean I need to stop writing mask fiction. Instead I need to treat this more seriously, along with my other writing, which I’ve neglected for way too long. I thought putting up a site, getting stuff published and selling a few books would be serious, but it hasn’t been. Not really. I need to start writing more and writing faster. I need to be more responsive to what works and what doesn’t.

I’ve no idea if it’ll happen or not. But I didn’t want to end this sucky year without at least coming out and saying something publicly. So, here I am.

See you on the other side of the New Year.

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News Process

Her Smile is now an audiobook

(Also, I’m not dead.)

Her Smile

Her Smile is now an audiobook. Yes. With a professional actress reading it in sexy, sultry tones. You know you want to hear this.

If you don’t care about how I made this happen, go ahead and buy it. It’s only $3.95 – oh snap, it’s even discounted! C’mon, that’s less than you spent on coffee today. You’ll need to have an Amazon account.

As another incentive, you should know that the original text of Her Smile has been revised and expanded. If you already own Her Smile in ebook format, download it again and you’ll see the revised version. (Or if you’ve already got it downloaded, it should update automatically.) If you’ve never read it, give it a go. It’s half the price of the audiobook – a mere $1.99 – and I think you’ll have a good time.

So, you might be asking…

How did you get an audiobook done?

About six months ago (not coincidentally, about the last time you heard from me) I started looking into the possibilities of producing an audiobook based on something I’d written. I knew practically nothing, but I thought it’d be fun.

My first concern was about, well, sexual content – was it allowed? Unsurprisingly perhaps, that’s not an issue. Just as there is almost every flavor of kink in ebook form on Amazon, there’s a similar diversity when it comes to audiobooks. It’s basically right there, and all I had to do was go looking for it on Amazon and Audible. You can do the same.

Then the question was how? I don’t know any voiceover actors. I’m pretty sure no-one wants to hear me reading and trying to do the sexy woman’s voice. Turns out there’s already a solution in place: ACX.com. The site is part of Audible and Amazon, and basically acts as a marketplace where authors can find producers who’ll work on their audiobook. Essentially you create a profile, put up some audition material and wait for auditions to come in.

So, I had to pick something to let people audition for.

I chose Her Smile for the obvious reason that it was short. Paying a professional to read your work isn’t cheap, and I couldn’t really justify paying for a whole novel to be produced, unabridged, which at my length could easily run into thousands of bucks. Just like when I’d used it to test the ebook publishing process, Her Smile came to the rescue again.

I took some care with the audition material. I chose several sections of Her Smile, wanting to ensure I could get an idea of how a potential narrator would perform in a ‘normal’ scene, in a sex scene and when reading female or male parts. I wanted a female narrator, although in theory it could have worked just as well with a male narrator who could manage a good female voice. Female was my preference though, so once I’d prepared my audition materials, I put them live and crossed my fingers that someone – anyone – would audition for this thing.

I didn’t really need to worry. In less than a day I had a number of auditions to listen to. Turns out ACX has a lot of producers, and apparently no-one has a problem with my weird fetish fiction! Before too long I was nervously downloading samples of various producers, getting ready to squirm in my seat at the sound of people reading my words.

I didn’t squirm. Much. Every single audition I heard was professional, and several were really good. I actually had a decision to make; I’d half-expected to have no-one apply, so now I had to figure out who I wanted to give the ‘part’ to. Such responsibility!

(By the way, if you’re wondering how it feels to hear a total stranger read – no, not read, perform your writing… well, it feels pretty surreal. And good. Surreal and good. But mostly good!)

Her Smile - audiobook cover

It didn’t take long to make my final choice. Despite a number of good auditions, Ruby Rivers stood out to me; not just because of her performance, which was great even at audition stage, but also because she was friendly, helpful and quick with her responses to my frequent questions. Fantastic for a first-timer like me. Needless to say her price was also right!

Ruby really was superb to work with, and if I’m honest, we could have wrapped the book in about a month if I hadn’t been so slow. Since when did I ever do anything fast, though? First I wanted to do a ‘polish’ of Her Smile that turned into more of a heavy revision, adding almost 1,500 words to the total, but still leaving it as a ‘short’ story. Then I needed to give Ruby some direction on her performance, to get it closer to what I wanted. Finally I made some new cover artwork which you can see above, paid Ruby, and that was that.

So now we have what I believe is a world first – a professional actress narrating a piece of female mask fiction. If nothing else, you’ve got to be intrigued, right?

I’d love to do this for future works, but basically it all depends on your reaction and on sales. So, you know what to do: buy Her Smile in audio form today, and let me know what you think, either below or via the usual contact page.

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News

Reminder: price increase on Her Substitute (and other stuff)

Well. Time flies, eh? Blah blah blah cliché, blah blah blah aphorism. Here we are at the end of February, just about, so I figured I was overdue for an update.

Not that I’m sure anyone is reading these updates. Let me know if you do. I used to blog a bit more frequently, back in the day, and I could do more but blogging takes time from writing. Although that’s a weak defense; plenty of other stuff takes even more time from writing. Ah well, you get the picture. Let’s dive in.

Reviews for Her Substitute

First of all, thanks! Thank you to everyone who left reviews on Her Substitute on Amazon.com (and .co.uk, fellow UK people!). I don’t have time right now, unfortunately, to quote people. I will at some point and add them to the page for the book.

I really, really appreciate your time to review the book. It absolutely makes a difference to sales, to perception and most important of all (ahem) to my ego. Only kidding. Nothing helps that. Anyway – big sloppy wet kisses or hugs (your choice) to all my reviewers.

Want to be one of the people receiving this unwanted close contact? Review the book already people.

Price increase for Her Substitute

As I mentioned back when I launched Her Substitute, the initial price was introductory, for all you lovely people! As of March 1st, I’m pushing the price to $6.99 (and near equivalents – basically whatever A Lie Within A Lie: The Spy costs globally, it’ll cost the same). In addition, I’ll be adding Her Substitute to Kindle Unlimited, which means I have to remove the PDF version from Gumroad, where it’ll be gone for at least three months. Let me bullet point all that for ease of skimming:

Why do I have to remove it from Gumroad? Because putting a book in Kindle Unlimited means it can’t be available for sale anywhere else. It’s a rolling three month exclusivity period. If, at the end of the three months, I can see that the ‘sales’ (AKA page reads) for Her Substitute don’t look as good as the Gumroad sales have been, I’ll pull it back out.

Which makes me think I should consider putting Practice to Deceive in Kindle Unlimited too. Hmm.

On to the free stuff!

The New Job… is coming back

After a couple of months away I think I cracked – kind of – where to go next with The New Job. (A title which is so ‘working’, it might as well be earning a paycheck.) That means in the next newsletter (which will go out this week, i.e. in March) you’ll be able to read some more of it. Yay! As always, I appreciate feedback – especially on stuff like this, which is totally in process, hence my stop-start cadence, really.

Are you sitting there saying “What the hell is The New Job?” You should subscribe to the newsletter.

Did you see my ‘ad’?

YouTuber and masking enthusiast couple KairaChloe have been making mask videos for a while, and also were taking commissions – so I asked them to make a little video for me to promote Her Substitute. I wrote a little script, Chloe got on camera and had fun with a mask. Here’s the result.

Fun huh? It wasn’t super elaborate, but still I got a few new readers from it. It always surprises me that there are people out there who don’t know about mask fiction. I have thoughts on this, but I might save them for another post. I’m currently thinking about another commissioned video which might promote my books in general… this time without masks. We’ll see if it works out.

That’ll do for now! I’ve got more, but I’ll keep it to myself for now. Speak soon!

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News

Her Substitute is… out now!

Hello everyone! Welcome to February, and that means today… Her Substitute is out! Yay!

(Wild applause, throwing of roses, possibly panties, I’m fine with either, standing ovation, etc etc.)

You can pick up your copy right now in Kindle ebook format. It’s on sale in (deep breath) the US, UK, Canada, Australia Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Japan, BrazilNetherlands, India and Mexico local Amazon sites. Phew. I should point out, I only wrote it in English….

Her Substitute - female mask fiction novel by Ghostly Writer
Click here to buy Her Substitute (Amazon US, Kindle)

… or if you prefer, in PDF format over at Gumroad for the same price:

Her Substitute - female mask fiction novel by Ghostly Writer
Click here to buy Her Substitute (Gumroad, PDF)

Your choice!

The physical, honest-to-God real book version is coming very soon. It’s ‘publishing’ on Amazon right now (after some sort of weird glitch last night) and should be online in the next day or so, so hold up if you want that. FYI – it’ll be $14.99, which is obviously higher. Turns out actual physical trees, printing, shipping etc are involved in that production. But I’m sure it’ll look absolutely lovely on your shelves.

Please remember the ebook prices are for the first month only. Come March, the PDF version will be removed as I put the book into Kindle Unlimited for at least three months. (So, if you’re wanting to read it that way, you’ll have to wait. But why wait? It’s like, the price of a cup of coffee.)

And next? Yes, reviews

If you enjoy Her Substitute, then I would be absolutely indebted if you could leave a review. Especially if you are outside the US – believe it or not, it’s taken me years to realize that there are separate reviews for sites like Amazon.co.uk… so I need reviews in my home country, fellow Englishmen!

In the first month, I’ll do something special for my favorite review. I have no idea what. Something nice? Anyway, if you do leave a review, let me know somehow via comment or contact page, I care not.

More importantly, let me know what you thought! Us writers crave feedback.

Finally, I have to thank Vic one more time for letting me romp around in his plot and with his characters. I deeply appreciate it. I also deeply appreciate the other person in my dedication… but they can read that for themselves.

Enjoy. Happy Book Release Day!

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News

Her Substitute – paperback is being published

Just pushed the button on the print-on-demand paperback for Her Substitute

Her Substitute - publishing the paperback
Her Substitute – publishing the paperback

Should – fingers crossed – be live tomorrow along with the ebook, or if not, a day or so later. Let’s hope!

If you pick up the paperback, please send me a pic – would love to see it in the wild. (Come to think of it, I’d be happy to see pictures of your Kindle or your phone or whatever with the book on it!) In theory it should look something like this render…

Her Substitute - female mask fiction novel by Ghostly Writer

Other stuff: I removed the password protection from the second extract, so if you aren’t a newsletter reader (or even if you are) it’s open to you now. So go peek, unless you want to read the book un-spoiled.

The non-Amazon version of the book will go online sometime tomorrow, probably. It might slip to Thursday. I have some big stuff going on tomorrow, but I’m going to try really hard to get it done. Fingers crossed.

Update just in case you turned up here later: the paperback version is on sale here.