Guest Post: Tony Healey – Let’s Help Tilly

At the beginning of this year I released a charity anthology, featuring the work of 16 fantastic writers and the artwork of the legendary Bruce Pennington, with all proceeds to go to The Cystic Fibrosis Trust (we’ve not hit enough for a donation yet – but we’re getting there).

The original inspiration for that collection of stories – and for doing something to raise funds for CF in the first place – is a little girl called Tilly.

She has a chance to win a free holiday with her Mummy and Daddy next year, but she needs your help. It’s very easy and will only take 2 minutes of your time.

Step 1. Click this link

Step 2. LIKE the Haven Facebook page (you can always UN-LIKE it later).


Step 3. Hit the VOTE button.


That’s it!

Of course, if you wanted to be super-duper cool you could also share the above link and get your friends to vote too. In fact, here’s the link again in case you want to do that.

I’d like to see Tilly reach 1,000 votes and take first place. I’ll also be promoting this via my Official Facebook Page, too.

Thanks for your help and support. Let’s win this brave little girl a holiday.

Guest Post: Desmond Kalish

Guest post by: Desmond Kalish, protagonist from Noble: New World Order


Um… hello, world? Is that how people usually start these things? I don’t know; not much of a blogger. I wasn’t given a whole lot of context when asked to write this guest post, so bear with me as I fumble my way through it.

I guess I should start with the basics: my name is Desmond Kalish, and I am twenty-eight years old. Christ, this is already starting to sound like a profile. Talking about me is tricky. I can tell you that I’m a former police officer with the Charleston P.D. in West Virginia, but beyond that, most of my dossier is classified.

Noble: New World Order tells the tale of the most challenging year of my life. During my time as a cop, I dealt with my fair share of drug dealers, gang bangers, and murderers, but I’d never seen anyone like the Street Sweeper before. The whole city was on high alert with that psychopath on the prowl, and Charleston isn’t a place that scares easily.

I didn’t know it at the time, of course, but the Street Sweeper case was only the beginning for little ol’ me…

Meanwhile in Kansas, a man named Father Gibbard toiled away in secret on a plan to manually induce the Armageddon. I know, right? You’re probably thinking the same thing I did when my employers first told me, but I assure you, he’s legit. If you think that sounds farfetched, wait till you hear about his children. Yikes. Definitely not a family portrait JC Penney could capture.

A person can’t go through what I have and come out the other side unscathed. Even now, I don’t think I’ve fully processed the events I’ve witnessed. I’m thrilled to be where I am, don’t get me wrong, but I didn’t get here without experiencing moments of both triumph and loss. Although I live and breathe, those I lost along the way are never far from my thoughts.

For them, my work must carry on.

Noble: New World Order – Coming Soon to paperback and Kindle

Guest Post: Tony Healey – The Making of The Stars My Redemption Part 2


Guest Post by Tony Healey

The Sci-Fi Adventure Novel ‘The Stars My Redemption’ is released June 1st in the Kindle Store.

I pulled something at the bottom of my back and took a few days off work. I took painkillers and tried sitting in an armchair but it was too painful. The only relief I could get was to sit up at the dining table as straight as possible. So, in pain and a little doped up, I started writing on my laptop. I’d had an idea for something involving an amoral character killing everyone on a spaceship. And a week or so prior to me pulling my back I saw that there was a local short story competition. There were no set guidelines on what they would accept, only a word limit.

Seeing as I had nothing better to do, I started to write. I finished ‘Frank’ in a day or two, then let it rest. I edited it (I’m not very good at editing myself) and submitted it, thinking nothing more of it. A month or two went by, and then I heard from them. ‘Frank’ had made the long-list of 40 from about 150 submissions.

I thought ‘Maybe I’m not as bad a writer as I thought.’

I published ‘Frank’ onto the Kindle, and after getting a few positive reviews I had the bug. I thought of ways I could expand ‘Frank’ into something longer, and I was still mulling that over when Bernard Schaffer started up the Kindle All-Stars and said that he was putting together an anthology of short stories based on the kind of anthologies put together by Harlan Ellison. I thought ‘I can do something for that’ and so sat down to write ‘Redd.’

After that, I truly had the bug. I started to plot a story that could make use of both ‘Frank’ (now renamed ‘Beast’) and ‘Redd’ as flashback scenes. At the same time I was reading ‘The Stars My Destination’ by Alfred Bester. I thought ‘What if Abe isn’t so bad afterall? What if he’s tired of everything he’s been up to, and is open to change?’ Using Alfred Bester’s title as a starting point, I decided I’d call the novel ‘The Stars My Redemption.’

That was how it started. At the same time I was very interested in the idea of serial fiction; releasing a story in parts, one a time, like they did in the old days of Sci-Fi. The tradition dates back even further, of course, to the works of Dickens and other such writers. So I decided to write the novel in 3 parts, and release them one a month.

I had mixed results. For one thing, I didn’t hire an editor. I edited it myself. Big mistake. Whilst readers enjoyed it, they picked up on the fact that it hadn’t been properly edited. Also, as I came to realise when I published part 2, serializing work like that is one of those things with an ever decreasing return. The further on it goes, the less people remember to come back for the next part. Also, they will only buy it when it is free. The only way to truly serialize something, I feel now, is to release it for free on a website. Whether that means text on the screen, as in a blog post, or something the reader can download is up to the writer. But that is the only way to do it really.

However that is not to say that serializing work on the Kindle can’t work. I’m writing an ongoing series of short ebooks, in episodic format called The Honeycroft Series. These are released as and when I write them, but the difference is that each episode is self-contained, with its own arc. It’s different to cutting a novel into 3 and serializing it. With Honeycroft they’re all individual episodes that make a bigger whole. I like to think of it as being like a TV season.

So before part 3 was due to be finished up and published, I dropped the idea. I took both parts 1 and 2 off and decided to finish The Stars My Redemption up and just put it on there as a regular novel.

It didn’t happen. I started working on other stuff. I wrote several short stories. As is always the case with me, I went from one project to another without completing anything. And all the while TSMR sat on my computer, sort of finished, sort of not.

I had the ending half-written, but it wasn’t working for me. And the thought of tackling it didn’t exactly fill me with excitement. You see, there’s another problem with serializing something that isn’t finished, and that is that you have to finish it.

Also, when you have a lot of time in between finishing up and releasing each consecutive part, you lose interest. That’s what happened to me. It’s been a long learning curve for me, the writing of TSMR. I now see that the only way to write a novel is to sit down and actually write it. Start from the beginning, and write all the way to the very end. Hit full stop on that last sentence, go back to the beginning and start your next draft.

That’s the work ethic I am adopting now, as I write my second novel. It’s a bit different to TSMR in that it is not Sci-Fi and is set in World War Two, but I am applying what I learned from the writing of TSMR to get it out in a timely manner.

So anyway, there I was with my unfinished book. And then Laurie comes along. She works with me in editing my short story ‘Burial’ and then on ‘Dark Orb’. She says ‘What else are you working on?’ to which I email her a list of unfinished projects. Some I’ve started, some are just ideas. Some are merely the dream of an idea.

After seeing that, Laurie emailed back with ‘Firstly, you need to get organised. Start something. Finish it. And another thing, what’s happening with The Stars My Redemption?’

I said that it was ‘resting’. But even as I typed that I knew I was lying to myself. It wasn’t resting. I was putting off working on it. I was being the worst kind of writer, a lazy one.

Laurie told me in no uncertain terms that I should be working on it, that there were people out there waiting to read it. So I set to work. I rewrote the ending, then did a few more rewrites. Then we started editing.

I think that what’s coming out of the editorial process is a good novel. I think it works. Come June 1st I am confident that what readers will get when they purchase The Stars My Redemption will be a professional, well-written and well-edited book that they will enjoy. I have now come to realise that writing the book is only half the work. The other half comes in editing it to a polished, high standard.

We’re getting there with The Stars My Redemption. I learned a lot writing it. A hell of a lot. And you know what, having been knee deep in this book for weeks now, I am really enjoying it. I know I’ve got a good book on my hands. I’m confident about it.

I know that if readers have as much fun with the book as I have had working on it, then I’m doing all right.

PART 1 appeared 05/25 at Apiary Society

PART 3 will be appearing 05/27 at

Guest Post: Angela White – Scenes of the Apocalypse #18: Side Effects

Scenes of the Apocalypse #18 – Side Effects

The Apocalypse could bring about horrors that we can’t accept now. It might make current problems worse or bring new ones, but the threat of side effects will be there either way. Who’s to say one of them wouldn’t be a new virus that makes people insane and sends them out looking for blood?

Did you know that there is currently a disease that has many of the symptoms as a Zombie? Called Nodding Disease, it’s scary to think the walking dead plague may have already arrived. Does that mean we are now living in the start of the Apocalypse? It would certainly explain why the CDC has an online page telling people what to do in the event of a Zombie-outbreak.

Zombies are only things of myth, legend, and the imagination, right? They exist in stories…but what if there was already a chemical that transformed people into raving lunatics with only violence in their minds? There is. Now imagine that chemical released on a Warhead, in a major city, during the Apocalypse. Within a year, the new rage disease would spread across the planet, consuming everything.

But what if it also mutated?

In my series, a nuclear war releases chemicals from foreign and US bombs and these toxins mutate current diseases into more lethal forms. One of those, I call Rage Walkers disease. It is the newest virus to challenge mankind’s stronghold on the earth.

“Seven very gifted survivors are destined to rebuild their country after a nuclear apocalypse…If they can stay alive long enough to find each other. Impossible to put down.” – The Review Blog

“What causes their eyes to do that? Do you have a theory?”

Luke sat his mug down so she wouldn’t see the way his hand shook. “None I care to share.”

“I have ideas of my own, you know.”

Luke grinned. “Are they naughty? We’ve got a few hours to kill.”

Kendle didn’t return the joke, too worried to be distracted so easily.

“I think it’s something from the War.”

That had Luke’s mind taking notes. He hadn’t thought of that. “Like a side effect?”

She was thumbing through one of the old magazines he’d dug out for her. “Chemical Warfare.”

“Our nukes didn’t have that shit.”

“But if there was a world war, not just our weapons were fired, right?”

LJ saw her point and found himself almost able to see where she was going. “If it were a gas, it could affect optic nerves, too…”

“Yes. I think parts of this island are contaminated with something that has side effects that include dementia, rages, and changes in appearance, like a mutation almost. Did you see the twitching the Mayor was doing when we first met him by the creek? Some type of chemical nerve agent is what I think.”

Full of realistic and fantasy situations, the Life After War series is a combination of more than 7 genres, so there’s a good chance of everyone liking it and learning a few things about survival at the same time. You can get a free copy at the link below, of the first book in the series. It’s free for all of this year to celebrate the possible end of the world on 12/21/2012.

Adrian’s Eagles: Three months after the War of 2012, Safe Haven refugee camp has made it to South Dakota and now holds six of the seven special survivors meant to lead the rebuilding of their country -but it can’t be done until they find a safe place to settle… and who can think of peace when there’s a huge camp of foreign invaders less than a day behind their group and they only want one thing? Safe Haven and everyone inside the light.

Watch the trailer for this series

Free-The Survivors-The bestselling novel that started it all.

See on iTunes

More Scenes of the Apocalypse

Btw, a huge thanks to David for hosting me on my Scenes of the Apocalypse release tour. Have you read Resistance Front yet? It’s only $0.99 and all the profits are being donated to the Center for Missing and Exploited Children! I just downloaded a copy to my Kindle. Gonna have a great summer of reading by the time I gather up all these new books!

Guest Post: An Excerpt from BURIAL by Tony Healey

Tony Healey's "Burial" is available now on Kindle
Upon my acceptance into the Kindle All-Stars last year, it didn’t take long before I met the other authors and got the opportunity to read their work. Before I knew it, I was up to my eyeballs in unpublished works-in-progress written by my fellow KAS crew—some of which I still haven’t gotten around to.

I became a fan of several of the other writers in the group, one of which is my guest poster today, Tony Healey.

Even though Tony is best known for the characters that he has created as part of his The Stars My Redemption series, it only scratches the surface of his talent. With each new story that Tony releases, I am in awe (and maybe even a bit jealous) of his creativity, and his ability to shift between genres with minimal effort.

Tony is imaginative, and his pool of story ideas is vast. If you like the subject matter of your reading material slightly left of center, then you need to be reading Tony’s work.

I could go on and on, but I’m going to let Tony himself talk a bit about the creation of his recent release, Burial. Following that, be sure to read the included excerpt and see for yourself why Tony is a modern day master of the strange and unusual.

Tony Healey: On Writing Burial

I thought of the twist in the story first before sitting down to work out the rest. So in a way I worked backwards. I do that sometimes when it comes to writing. I don’t always start at the beginning. That’s the fun of it sometimes, I think.

I remember reading an interview with a writer where he described writing the very last chapter of his novels first before going back to the beginning and working his way toward that end point. I find that to be an interesting approach. It doesn’t always work to do it that way, but with Burial it did.

Burial is a short story of roughly 35 pages, written in pulp horror/thriller tradition, with an ending that will split readers right down the middle. They’ll either love it or hate it. It was edited by Laurie Laliberte, of the Kindle All-Stars, and it was our first time working together as author & editor.

To say that we took every approach possible with Burial would be an understatement, but it was worth all the hard work, though I’m sure I had Laurie pulling her hair out at times.

When you first work with an editor, you have to sort of hit the ground running when developing a relationship with each other. But, you know, we got there in the end, and now we’re back working on another short story of mine, Dark Orb, which should be out soon. Maybe David will let me hijack his site again when it’s ready!

Editor’s Note: Dark Orb released this week. Tony has a standing invite to take over my site any time he’d like.

An Excerpt from Burial

By: Tony Healey

His name was Fred Aniello. Six months ago his wife walked out on him. At least that’s what he told anyone who asked. No, I don’t know where she is. Another man? Maybe. No I didn’t suspect anything. I thought we were happily married. No she doesn’t have any friends out of town that I’m aware of… and so on and so on. That’s how it always seemed to go. Over the months he’d become very fluent in the continuation of the same story, embellishing it when needed with the occasional show of water-works.

A little while into the lie, he imparted the bad news on his neighbour ‘the old man Rickett’ who laid a heavy arm around Fred’s shoulders. “There there, don’t worry about it son.”

But he wasn’t worried. Not in the slightest. It was all done, dusted… buried.

Or so he’d thought…

BURIAL is a short horror story of 7,000 words available on the Kindle Store for only 99c.

Guest Post: Joshua Unruh – Tiny Acorns

Author Joshua Unruh
David asked me one of those hard writer questions that you hear and think will be easy to answer. But then, once you actually sit down to write the answer, you realize it might as well be “where do your ideas come from?” as far as complicatedness. He had the nerve, the unmitigated gall, to ask me how I knew when my story ideas were ready to become actual stories.

I think it might be a bit gauche to just copy and paste I HAVE NO CLUE over and over when I promised an actual blog post. So here goes.

Just like every other writer, I have a comp notebook. Now, they might not have an actual comp notebook, but that’s just because they’re buck-toothed hillbillies who don’t know what’s good. Regardless, it’s the repository of all rough ideas. Snippets of dialogue, rough plot hooks, basic character concepts, doodles, unfinished poetry, or whatever takes your fancy. The notebook holds the kinda junk that wakes you up at 2am so you can scribble down what you’re sure is genius, only to find even you barely know what the heck you were thinking when you jotted it down.

For me, those are the story seeds. Sometimes it really is gibberish from the middle of the night, but sometimes it’s whole plots in bullet points. However it starts, it doesn’t usually take up a whole page. Like I said, sometimes it’s one line. But I leave that idea, however thin and flimsy it may be, on its own there.

Now and then, I flip through the notebook and reread the ideas and see if any of the other stuff floating around my head that’s too amorphous to even be in the notebook yet sticks to the page. If it does, I scribble it down wherever it’ll fit and then connect it to the rest of the stuff on the page with underlines, different colored ink, or enough squiggly lines to confuse even Jeffy from Family Circus.

When I have a page or two of that mess, it’s probably time to go to the Pre-Writing Package bequeathed unto me by Aaron Pogue of the titular blog and the writing advice repository Unstressed Syllables. The ideas have gathered enough momentum that I need to let them keep rolling and see if they become an actual story. The PWP helps me connect the dots, flesh out characters, make sure there’s an actual Story Question I’m answering, that kind of thing. If I can make that leap, then it’s ready to graduate to a story.

As you can imagine, this is a far from perfect process. That said, I’ve only had it explode in my face one time. I wanted to knock out the first draft of a sci-fi neo-Noir story called Copper Lincoln, Robot Detective in The Big Sleep Mode. I had three or four pages of notes, so I knew it was time for the PWP. I filled that out in painful graphic detail. Courtney Cantrell, my Acquisitions Editor, and Aaron Pogue, my publisher, looked at it. They both declared it detailed, well thought out, and ready to be written. I had a long car trip and I attacked it with gusto.

I wrote the first act and it was…not very good. I mean, all the pieces were there, obviously, it had been through the process. But it was too short, too obvious, there was no subtlety. I had great sheet music but it had left me with no funk. So I did the only thing I could do. I rewrote it.

I didn’t scrap it, though! I didn’t start over from scratch because there was gold in what I’d written. I went back to the PWP, I figured out that all I had to do was tweak some character relationships and, in one case, change the relationship wholesale. It left me with something much more interesting, much longer, and, best of all, much more Noir.

So the process failed me. But I guess it hadn’t failed me all that hard. Not really. Oh, I didn’t finish the first draft on schedule (or at all, yet). And it was difficult to move bits around, write new connective tissue, and then stitch the existing good stuff I’d written into a new whole. And I’m positive you can still see the stitches and scars. But the new monster runs rings around the villagers where the old one lumbered. Instead of frustrated, I’m energized to finish it. In fact, I should really get back to work on that thing…

Here’s the thing about my process: It’s totally mine. I don’t actually expect it to work for anybody else EVER. There’s a ridiculous amount of Zen mixed into my notebook pages so that, in some way I can’t entirely explain, the entire story is represented in the first pen stroke in the notebook. Sorta like how every cell in my body holds the DNA that makes me, me. That sounds like hippy crap, and I know it, but there also isn’t anything I can do about it.

Anybody else’s process look like this? If not, tell me what yours looks like.

Visit Joshua’s official website:

Check out The Consortium, a non-profit organization that supports the arts by encouraging the development of local talent and generating high-quality works of art that directly benefit the community.

About the author

Joshua Unruh is a stay-at-home dad and professional author who refuses to think of either as being unemployed. He lives in Oklahoma City with his wife, his son, his father-in-law, two dogs, and absolutely no peace. Still, he manages to write a little bit. He strives to make everything he writes clever, interesting, or funny. Like Meatloaf said, two out of three ain’t bad.

Though he has been a professional liar in the fields of advertising, sales, and private investigations, it is only recently that Joshua has turned his love of fiction into a writing career. Joshua is a lover of genre fiction, especially superhero comics and hardboiled detectives, and this comes through in his genre-bending style. Weird Westerns, nihilistic Norse-style fantasies, YA espionage stories, and hardboiled Noir tales with shades of fantasy or science fiction are just a few examples of the twisting and warped hallways of his imagination.

Guest Post: Natasha Whearity – Why Do I Write? (Pt. 2)

Author Natasha Whearity
My latest project is a book called Idiot. The title is not supposed to be offensive to its readers or anything, if that’s what you first thought when you saw it. I did have a slight dilemma when I came up with the title, because I was thinking about walking into a bookshop and seeing my book on the shelves with the word “IDIOT” scrawled across it, and I realised it may put people off buying it. But, I called it Idiot nonetheless because the word is very significant in the book.

Idiot started as something for my eyes only. But, as the narration progressed, I realised that I was really enjoying writing the story. Then, when I sat back to read what I had written, I found myself enjoying reading it, too. Even having read the book about seven times, I still enjoy it. It’s the kind of story that never grows old. It doesn’t have an expiration date.

As a writer, I often find potential scenarios interesting. Say a fight broke out, or a guy didn’t return my affections, I would sit and write the alternative “what-if” scenario. What if that fight hadn’t happened? What if that boy had felt the same way? This was the same for Idiot. I’ve always wanted a friendship like the main two characters have in the book, and so I wrote about a friendship I wish I could have had.

Idiot follows the lives of Dennis Wellington and Susannah Watson who meet at a train station when they are thirteen-years-old. Their lives become inextricably ensnared as the book follows their lives at random points in time.

Idiot is not a love story. It is about friendship. Whenever I give anyone the synopsis, they always laugh at me.

“It’s about a boy and a girl, and they’re best friends,” I’ll say.

“And let me guess,” they’ll say in response, “they spend the entire novel hating one another until they realize they’re supposed to be together and live happily ever after.”

Well, no. My story is about a boy and a girl who are best friends, but showcases the more realistic side to friendship. I’m not saying that films like When Harry Met Sally, or books like One Day are not very good because they’re not realistic. Not at all. What I am saying is that sometimes things don’t turn out the way you planned. Sometimes you think you know someone, but they’re not who you thought they would be. Sometimes you spend your whole life thinking something will happen, but it doesn’t. That’s life. My book isn’t based on a true story, but I wanted it to seem like it could be.

Dennis is from a poor background. His parents don’t earn very much. He lives in an ex-council house on the dodgy side of town. He can’t afford to buy new trainers, even though his have huge holes in the toes. He’s small, but good-looking for his age.

Susannah is from a rich background. Her parents are divorced, but they both still earn a lot. She buys new clothes every week, and can afford to go on holidays to exotic places. Her boots cost her a hundred pounds. She’s tall and slim and has tacky blonde hair.

They are from two different worlds, but have many things in common. They both like reading, writing, Star Wars, and arguing. They both hate Chinese food and books with disappointing endings. They think of each other as best friends, though they would never admit it.

As in real life, there are sad parts, and moments that will make your heart crack. I found myself screaming at my computer screen when reading through the first draft, wanting something so badly not to happen, but then there were the good parts to balance it all out. The happy moments. The amusing conversations that anyone can relate to.

It may seem ironic to call a book about the importance and closeness of friendship Idiot, but sometimes the people we love the most can be the biggest idiots. I think the sign of a true friendship is being able to call someone an idiot and having them say it back. We’re all idiots sometimes, and this is the story of two of them.

Unfortunately though, I am now facing a challenge that stands in the way of my book being completed: I do not have an editor. I do not have someone to tear the stories I have created to pieces. I have many proof readers. I have teachers who are willing to sit and read my manuscripts for hours, picking out the occasionally sloppy punctuation. I have many brilliant author friends, such as David, who are willing to give me the advice and support I need, but I don’t have an editor.

You’re probably thinking it’s not that important, and I was the same. “I don’t need an editor,” I told myself. “I’ll edit my own work.” I wish it was that simple.

Editors are very awesome people. They help you tidy up that masterpiece. They tell you the bits you should cut, and the bits you should keep. They’re not afraid to tell you when your writing has lapsed, or where you need to improve.

Editors are important, and it’s only now when I’m a bit stuck in a rut that I’ve realised how much I really need one. However, as I am a student just managing to afford to go to university, paying an editor is out of the question right now. However, without an editor I’m going to have all of those weeds of text that I don’t need, or I might miss that vital splash of water that will allow my apple tree to soar. It’s a bit of a catch-22 situation, really.

I don’t mean to bum you out. I’m just trying to explain where I’m coming from. Editing is essential for my writing, and writing is essential for my happiness.

So, where do I go from here? I guess I’ll have to wait and see. I’m trying to contact as many agents as I can to try and get myself out there. Usually the things we want most are often the hardest to get. However, I’m not the sort to give up easily. I’m going to fight for my place on those bookshelves, or those spaces on the Amazon website. I’m going to fight like there’s no tomorrow. So, watch this space. You haven’t heard the last from me!

Over and out,

Natasha Whearity

Follow Natasha on Twitter: @NatashaWhearity

About the Author

Natasha Whearity is a published independent author and teenage phenomenon living in the United Kingdom where she attends college. Her debut short story, The Endgame, is featured in the anthology, Kindle All-Stars: Resistance Front. When not indulging her love of Harry Potter, or reruns of the television show Friends, Natasha can be found out on the Go-Kart race track, or spending time with her close friends and family.

Part two of Natasha’s guest post will be featured later this week, in which she discusses her latest project, a novel entitled
Idiot, which explores the complicated lives of two best friends, and the trials and tribulations they must face.

Guest Post: Natasha Whearity – Why Do I Write? (Pt. 1)

Author Natasha Whearity
I don’t know why I write. I know that sounds really daft being that writing is one of my favourite hobbies, but the truth is that I really don’t.

Think about something you love more than anything: A person, a hobby, or just a general feeling. Now try and explain how you feel about it. It’s hard, isn’t it?

Until the Kindle All-Stars: Resistance Front project, I’d never had anything published. Sure, I wrote almost every day, but everything was always for my eyes only… or my unfortunate friends who asked how my writing was going only to receive a manuscript of my latest ‘masterpiece.’

Before Resistance Front I’d written a play called Suns and Stars about a world in which people are judged entirely on the way they look. I performed the play at my school and had such positive feedback that I decided to adapt the play as a novel. Unfortunately, as with a lot of “would-be” authors, I was rejected by seven agents. It didn’t shake my confidence thankfully, although I decided to put Suns and Stars off to the side. I guess when you love something that much, you won’t stop at anything.

When I found out about the Resistance Front project, I sat in my room for hours trying to come up with an idea for it. I remember telling my mum that I couldn’t do it because I’d never written a short story before. And then the idea literally just popped into my head. The next thing I knew, I was writing a story that was better than any story I had ever written.

I still think of The Endgame as one of my best pieces of writing. I’m so proud of that bad boy. I’m also proud to be featured within a collection amongst so many talented writers, one of whom is David himself. Sometimes I wake up in the morning and just smile because not only have I had something published (which was one of my dreams anyway), but it was published alongside other phenomenal writers, making it even more special. The whole KAS team are all so lovely. They have helped me, guided me, and looked after me in the big, scary, writing world. They have all been supportive, and they are all awesome.

After The Endgame and becoming engrossed in the world of short story writing, I gradually became more and more fond of them. I discovered that a good way to write a short story is for it to have a twist at the end, and so I laid in my bed one night thinking of all the possibilities for twists. That’s when the idea for another project hit me (not literally though).

I wanted to write a trilogy of short stories based upon World War One. They would each be from different viewpoints of the war, and at least one of them would have a twist. I wrote all three, one after the other, and sent them to my top proof-reader: Sandie Slavin. Soon I had come up with the title for the trilogy: Those We Would Never Know. The title was dramatic. It told the truth. I liked it, and Sandie did too.

Writing gets on my nerves more often than not. Whenever I want something to happen with it, or for something to come to me, it never does. I will sit there trying to reason and bargain for an idea to spring to mind, but nothing ever appears. Still, if my house was on fire and my writing was still inside, I would run in to get it. Not because I’m stupid, but because that’s how much it means to me.

Writing can be infuriating. I’ve found that my most inspirational time slot is when I’m just about to nod off. Not very convenient, I must admit, but it has its redeeming moments that make it all worthwhile. Like that split second when an idea literally pops into your head and explodes like a cheap bag of popcorn from Tesco. Like those moments when you come to the end of your half-plan of a story and want to know what happens next. Then you realise that what happens next is up to you.

Writing, for me, is like a best friend.

Over and out,

Natasha Whearity

Follow Natasha on Twitter: @NatashaWhearity

About the Author

Natasha Whearity is a published independent author and teenage phenomenon living in the United Kingdom where she attends college. Her debut short story, The Endgame, is featured in the Kindle All-Stars compilation, Resistance Front. When not indulging her love of Harry Potter, or reruns of the television show Friends, Natasha can be found out on the Go-Kart race track, or spending time with her close friends and family.

Part two of Natasha’s guest post will be featured later this week, in which she discusses her latest project, a novel entitled
Idiot, a story that explores the complicated lives of two best friends, and the trials and tribulations they must face.