We Have Liftoff

Launch of Atlas V Juno from Cape Canaveral AFS

After sending you a false signal two weeks ago, The Maidstone Conspiracy is now actually launched as of today on Amazon. Really! Honest! And Hallelujah!

Here’s the link: : http://amzn.com/B016OUM81S.  The ebook version is online now. The paperback edition will be up and available for order in a day or two.

Cover Design-Maidstone Conspiracy

This novel is very different from my first two books — it sits somewhere in the middle between the lighthearted stories about those happy experiences life can bring us, shared in Encounters With Life, and the violence and gore characteristic of a thriller like The Ultimate Threat.

When asked early on by my publisher, Solstice Publishing Inc. to describe The Maidstone Conspiracy my response was something like this:

It’s a different kind of murder mystery in which a couple swept up in an idyllic storybook romance is attacked separately by unknown assassins, and find themselves also confronted with a plot to steal their life’s work. Woven into the twists and turns of the story are betrayal and intrigue, with the perpetrators of both plots playing central roles in a surprise ending. 

Hope you share the same enthusiasm while reading it as I felt while writing The Maidstone Conspiracy.  Sure, it was lots of work but it was also lots of fun. I expect that that will come through, along with a few bits of my (shall we say) unusual sense of humor. Got your attention yet?

Some History

Here’s a little history of this unplanned and unpredictable writing journey of mine thus far.

Each of the three books posed different kinds of writing opportunities and challenges, as you can imagine. But above all, I was surprised and intrigued to discover that I’m neither a formula writer nor one to follow a strict (okay, ‘disciplined’) routine. Hey, inspiration can come in the shower or while planting radishes — not just while staring at a blank screen. It’s all good! I also learned that writing novels is hard work! Conversely, writing short stores is recreation… lots of fun… sort of like munching on a favorite dessert.

It all started while trying to document stories for our grandchildren. But those pesky gaps in memory caused most of those ventures to morph into things looking more like creative non-fiction or fiction stories, with a few exceptions, one being the story, Dragonflies and The Great Blue Heron. Yeah, that’s my favourite.

As for this latest novel, what started out as a short story — and a true story — about an English nobleman who became a rancher in North America turned into the inspiration for The Maidstone Conspiracy. It was the first of the books started, and ironically, the last of the three to be published.

The first was The Ultimate Threat and I’ll credit my good friend Keith Critchley for that. Six or seven years ago we were discussing the scourge focused then mostly on al Qaeda. Keith encouraged me to consider writing something about that and thus to somehow raise alarms. Of course, the really bad guys today are those pathological savages called ISIS. As said earlier, that encouragement turned into a mission. And then my wonderful wife Sharolie talked me into packaging up some short stories, and the fabulous CEO Melissa Miller at Solstice Publishing accepted them for Encounters.

There are lots more stories to be told and, sequels perhaps to both novels. But for now, my focus must turn to sharing these three books with the world. Okay… okay… marketing them!

I am absolutely delighted that following it’s release in June, The Ultimate Threat was rated as the #1 best seller in its category on Amazon for a few weeks. A rare privilege. Of course, the challenge now is to see if The Maidstone Conspiracy can equal or better that achievement. Personally, if I had to pick favourites, I’d go for The Maidstone Conspiracy. (Having said that, don’t tell the bad guys in The Ultimate Threat, okay? They might come after me for picking a favorite over them!)

My thanks to everyone for your forbearance over my misreading of the Amazon.com site. blogs.mcgill.caThat launch was a bit like the photo at right.

Turns out that posting two weeks ago was about preordering, but gave me yet another much needed lesson in paying attention. (I’ll never know how many times my dear mother directed those words my way when I was a boy! Chuckle!)

Thanks for visiting. Hope you will enjoy The Maidstone Conspiracy!

I would love to hear from you.


Photo Credits: Rocket liftoff by Paul Crockery, United Launch Alliance, courtesy of NASA.gov.; Airplane dog courtesy of blogs.mcgill.ca. 

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