Thursday, 15 December 2011

Indie or Not Indie? That Is the Question—Kurt Chambers

This is the hottest discussion in the publishing industrytoday, that there is no doubt. Should I, or shouldn’t I? There are many, manyarguments for and against independent publishing. Is it a good thing, or is itan act of defeat? Today, my mission isn’t about discussing the pros & conson the subject, because at the end of the day, it’s a personal decision forevery author, and for some people it’s the ideal solution, and for others it isnot. What I want to talk about today is the reasons why I decided to go downthis route with my first novel, Truth Teller.

I’m not even sure if this is going to make any sense toanyone else but me, but I will try my best to explain my train of thoughts. Ispent many years writing a middle grade fantasy series, three books in totaland a fourth book in the pipeline. This series is my baby. I went down thetraditional route of trying to find an agent or publisher only to discoverafter many years and a lot of heartache that my novels just didn’t suit themarket. This was thrown in my face time and time again, market, market, MARKET!I started to really hate that word. Not to be put off, I continued to takeadvice onboard and wrote a whole new novel, Unknown Reality, that I consideredmarket friendly.

Now, this left me with a dilemma. I had a choice to make;what do I do with my baby? I love this series. I had put my heart and soul intothis story, literally. It meant more to me than any other book I had written,or would write in the future. It was my first novel, my acorn, and it hadbloomed into a beautiful tree. Everyone that read it also loved it. I had neverhad a single bad review. The choice I had was to shelve it and wait until Ibecame a successful author before I stood any chance of introducing it to theworld. That was a choice I really struggled with. It was good enough for themarket, it had gone through the whole process a published book goes through, butthe people controlling that market simple wouldn’t take the risk to give it achance.

I had tried plan A and Plan B and got nowhere, and I wasdesperately looking for a plan C. I was browsing the internet looking foranswers, randomly surfing and waiting for that spark of inspiration. I stumbledupon this article that explained in great detail how and why it is almostimpossible to break into the children’s book market. This wasn’t what I wantedto hear. This wasn’t the kind of inspiration I was looking for. My hopes for aplan C were fading fast. I continued looking, reading articles with a heavyheart. Then I found this article that explained the changing roles of agentsthroughout the years. I never realised that in years gone by, an agent wouldhave never considered telling and author how they should practice the art ofwriting, where these days it is common practice. That was my greatest fear. Ididn’t want an editor to destroy my novel by telling me how it should bewritten. Not this novel, it meant too much to me. I wouldn’t have a problemdoing it to any other novel I wrote as I wasn’t so attached to them.

Then, like a lightbulb switching on in my head, plan Cfinally began to emerge. I didn’t want to shelve my wonderful novel, I wantedthe world to read it! I didn’t want an editor or agent to destroy what I had createdjust so that I could become a published author. I wasn’t worried about beingthe next J.K Rowling, I just wanted to share my story and give children achance to read it for themselves. After all, that’s who I wrote it for, not theadults who were judging it to see how much profit it would make. Maybe I shouldconsider publishing this myself?

While these thoughts were running through my head, an advertcame on the telly. It was an advert I had seen many times before in the run upto Christmas. Amazon Kindle. These things are selling like hot cakes this year.It’s the start of a new revolution, the next big thing. How many thousands ofthese things were going to be sold this year? This band-wagon was comingscreaming towards me and I just wanted to jump on and cling to it witheverything I had. Okay, that might sound a little over dramatic, but that’s theway it felt. The answer seemed so clear to me now. I grabbed this opportunity withboth hands and I will hold on until I have no breath left in me.

My time is now!



Truth Teller is now available from here:


You can connect with the author at:

Author’s Web page http://kurtchambers.net/

Truth Teller Reviews:

Dawne Dominique - Multi-published author and professional cover artist.
The Truth Teller is one of the best children's fantasy book I've read in a long while. Charlotte is so easy to picture in my mind, and the fantasy aspects are brilliant! There are underlying currents of "real life lessons" that are subtly included...ideal for parents looking for that perfect bedtime story to read to their children. I loved the entire premise of the novel and will definitely be purchasing the next ones in this series.
Kurt Chambers has captured the genre with a wonderful story that will delight many a child's (and adult's) imagination.

Annie McMahon - Editor, published author and Novel Workshop moderator.
This book has everything a bestseller should have: compelling story, endearing characters, vivid descriptions, genuine emotions, and a lot of surprising twists and turns. This is a story about a friendship that transcends race, gender, age, and even realms, between Charlotte, a ten-year-old girl, and Elderfield, a teenage elf. Beautiful and heartwarming. I strongly recommend it and have reviewed Kurt’s story on my blog, Dutch Hill News.

Ralene Burke – Writer, Editor for Wives in Bloom:
Honestly, I can’t wait until my kids are old enough to read these books. Kurt has written an amazing series that emphasizes such wonderful themes as friendship, family, hope, and faith. I’ve read Truth Teller and Wrath of Siren and, even though they are MG, enjoyed them immensely. If you’re looking for wholesome reads for your children, check out the next big thing for MG.

Sunday, 11 December 2011

Debut Novel Release – Truth Teller by Kurt Chambers


I am delighted to announce the release of my first novel, Truth Teller. Wow! Did I just really say that? I never thought I would hear myself say those words, but it’s true. Truth Teller is due for release on Amazon, Smashwords and Barnes & Noble on 25th January 2012 in e-book format. I’m planning to bring it out in paperback a little later in the year if all goes well. I will be announcing more information about this release as soon as I have any news. I will no doubt be planning to do a blog tour and such things.

Let me tell you a little bit about my story. Truth Teller is the first book in a series, and the beginning of Charlotte’s adventure. There are currently three books in the series: Truth Teller, The Wrath of Siren and Favian’s Law. A fourth book in the series, Lost magic, is currently under development.

Truth Teller Reviews:

Editor, Illustrator, and Published Author, Dawné Dominique

Take a delightful, mesmerizing journey into Charlotte’s world, where life is routine until she discovers a hidden curio shop and an even stranger shopkeeper who gives her a magical snow dome. But this is not an ordinary globe…it’s a magical gateway into another realm. The world Charlotte has always known disappears as she’s spirited away into a mystical land on the brink of war between elves, dwarves, and an evil that has lain dormant for far too long.

Terrified by what’s happened to her, Charlotte is befriended by Elderfield an elf, and his parents, Middleton and Swallow. In order to find a way back home for Charlotte, they must embark on a journey to find a man named Goffer, a powerful elf who may be able to help her return to her own world. Not everything is at it seems, however, for there’s a reason why this special globe was given to this unassuming little girl.

As Charlotte, Elderfield and Middleton travel through dangerous lands, encountering heart-stopping dangers along the way, they are unaware of the dark stranger that follows them. Finally arriving at the Stronghold, a safe haven for the people of lands trying to seek safety from an impending war, Charlotte meets Goffer, and is shocked to discover that he’s the same shop keeper who’d given her the magic dome in the first place.

Will Charlotte find her way back home, or is her presence in Elderfield’s world the final unbalancing that will plunge the lands into war?

Truth Teller is an absolutely delightful, exciting read from start to finish. Mr. Chambers has created a fantastical world where magic is very much alive. His characters are vivid and so real that you can’t help but fall in love with them. Immerse yourself in a read that will guarantee not to disappoint.

~~Dawné Dominique

Assistant Editor, Allicia C. Rose

There is a lot of good humor in the Truth Teller, things that actually made me laugh out loud. I especially enjoyed watching the bond of friendship between Elder and Charlotte continually strengthen until they had become like family – that’s one of my favorite concepts in fantasy, and the author did a wonderful job of bringing it to life. He has got the skill to make the reader care about his characters, the most important and most difficult task an author must undertake. I really enjoyed the story, and look forward to working on the next book in the series.

~~Allicia. C. Rose

I have so many people to thank for this release. I have received so much help and support from my friends in the writing community. I couldn’t have done it without them. I will never be able to return the kindness they have shown me, but I want you all to know how eternally grateful I am to all of you.

I am especially grateful to published author, Anastasia V. Pergakis, who took me under her wing and made my book release possible. Please show this wonderfully supportive lady some of your support by visiting her website, and better still, by buying her wonderful book, Cleanse Fire.


Sunday, 4 December 2011

Best Social Networking Sites For Writers--Kurt Chambers


This post was inspired by a writer friend of mine who asked for my advice on networking, so I decided to write a blog post that would hopefully answer all your networking questions and provide the best recourses to all the top writers networking sites.
Networking is important to any person who is looking to promote themselves to the general public. But networking is so much more than just self promotion. It is especially important to us writers because it is somewhere to get the support we need to take us along this perilous journey. Becoming a successful writer is no easy task. In order for us writers to grow and learn to become the best we can be, and to be a success in the publishing business, we need to be around like-minded people. Fortunately, the writing community is a thriving place where there is plenty of help for any budding authors who wish to try their hand at being the next J.K Rowling.
So, what is networking? The idea is to make yourself as visible as possible. You want to get your name out there in the world and tell them all about your wonderful, shiny new novel and how awesome it is. You don’t need to be a published author to network. You may not have even finished writing your story, but that doesn’t stop you from telling the world about it and what progress you are making. Eventually, you are going to need a fan base, so it’s best to get started straight away.
Your aim is to show up on the world's number one search engine, Google, to give you maximum exposure. The quickest and easiest way to do this is to use the most popular network sites. Below is a list of the top five that will make you score well on Google.
Main Network Sites

There is an easy way to check your progress once you start networking. It's called 'ego surfing'. You simply go to Google and type in your name followed by your profession and see how much of your stuff is showing up. The more you network, the more chance you have of getting on the front page of Google. That's where you want to be, on the first page of results. As an example, here is my Google score when I ego surf with the key words, Kurt Chambers Author. When you just type in your name and fill the first page, you know you've made it. lol

So you want to be a writer? The best advice I can give you, and this is sound advice, is to join a writing community and go and mingle with other writers. Any publisher or agent will suggest this to you, and I recommend it through personal experience. It’s the ideal place to present your work to other writers and get good critique advice. I now run the Young Adult Novel Workshop on writing.com that I joined about seven years ago. They taught me everything I know today. And more importantly, I met some of the best friends I’ve ever had. These communities are where you will learn your trade and make contacts. Here is a list of the most popular places.
Most Popular Network Communities For Writers
Writing. com: http://writing.com
The Writing Room: http://www.writingroom.com/
My Creative Content: http://www.mycreativeintent.com/
Another good recourse to seek advice and to talk to other writers is a message board. These cover about every subject related to writing that you can think of. I use message boards all the time as they contain so much useful information.
Message Boards for Writers
Freelance Writing Message Boards: http://www.freelancewriting.com/forums/index.php
National Novel Writing Month Forum: http://www.nanowrimo.org/forum
Message Boards for Writers: http://www.mywriterscircle.com/
Writers.net Message Boards: http://www.writers.net/forum/
Writers Weekly Message Boards: http://forums.writersweekly.com/
If you consider yourself to be a more seasoned writer and ready to take on the world with your new novel, you may want to make more connections with professional bodies. You can do this by joining an organisation that deals in these circles. Here are two examples of reputable organisations and a list of others.
Organisations
For Children's Writers: http://www.scbwi.org/
American Christian Fiction Writers: http://www.acfw.com/

And last but not least, here are a few more links where writers gather. I think that about covers all the major network sites.

Other Book Related Sites For Writers
WriteOnCon Annual Conference: http://writeoncon.com/
So, what are you waiting for? Go out there and network to your heart’s desire. Meet cool writer people and see if you can knock J.K Rowling from the top spot. Hehe!! Good luck with that!
If you’ve read my blog and found it useful, please return the favour by leaving a comment. I love to hear from my readers. Thank you.


Shameless plug

Truth Teller by Kurt Chambers is free to all readers


How can ten-year-old Charlotte ever envisage that magic really exists? The place for other realms belongs in a child’s fairy tale. Or so she thinks, until she discovers the strange shopkeeper and begins an adventure that changes her life forever.
Discovered alone in a far away forest, Charlotte embarks on a journey encountering heart-stopping dangers and real life monsters, but a far greater threat shadows her every move. Even the strength and skill of her new companions cannot protect her against a ruthless druid assassin.
But in this realm, Charlotte is not the vulnerable little girl she thought she was.

Download a free copy in any format for any device:


Smashwords:

Amazon:

Barnes & Noble:

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Writer’s Ramble—Kurt Chambers


Man! I’m in limbo! Well, that’s the way it seems sometimes. Right now, I’m in the middle of a submission campaign. Waiting, waiting, waiting!!! That’s all my life seems to consist of right now. It’s just dangling at the mercy of others. Will they? Won’t they? Will I even hear from them again? It’s the most frustrating thing in the world when you consider the percentage of how many of them will be a yes. The statistics stand at a staggering 100% no at the moment. haha!! That’s not the most encouraging set of statistics in the world, and is enough to make even the most hardened optimist steer towards the cynical side of life.

But all is not lost! There is always hope. That 0.00001% still lurks in the background, waiting to jump out on you when you least expect it! So, what will I do? Well, keep waiting will be first on my list. In the meantime, I have tons of editing to do. And reviews. Being the moderator of the Young Adult Novel Workshop helps keep me busy. Did I mention real life? *Grin* I have several other novels that need to be written. I’ve just decided to scrap the novel I’m working on at the moment for personal reasons. I wanted to write a book four to my Truth Teller series, my baby, but as I stand little chance of getting the first three books published any time in the near future, I will put this aside for now. This story was such a big part of my life for so many years, but I think it's finally come to an end. It's time to move on to something new.

It’s nearly the end of the year. My goal this year was to finish my newest novel, Unknown Reality, and bring it to a publishable standard. My aim was to get it submitted before the end of the year, and I have achieved that. Go me! Hehe!! I wonder what next year will have in store for me J

Did you do set yourself any writing goals for this year? I would love to hear them.


Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Good Days & Bad Days—Kurt Chambers


I’ve had a bad week this week. Only today, someone did a 'hit and run' on my car and smashed the back door in while it was parked on the street. I have a long list of horrible things that have happened this week, but I won’t bore you with the grisly details. lol This week, I’m going to post something that I wrote a while ago and has been sitting in my port on WDC gathering dust. It started out as a blog post one day when I was having a really bad week, but it sounded too depressing when I read it. So what I did was write something more positive and use it to compare my train of thoughts on a good day and a bad day.

Bad Days
My alarm goes off at 5:55. I peel my eyes open and curse quietly to myself. Another day. I hit the snooze alarm at least twice. I seriously don’t feel like I can handle another day.

When I finally bring myself to crawl out of bed, I’m cold. Like a robot, I go through the same routine; wash and dress, make my flask and rush out the door after drinking half a cup of tea. Got to get my skates on, I’m late again.

I peer through my car windscreen at all the red break lights as I sit on the motorway in yet another traffic jam, and my mind starts to wander. What crap will I be up against today? A thousand thoughts drift through my mind about the people I care about. A tear rolls down my cheek, but it’s okay, I’m alone. No one there to see me without my mask. I don’t really care about myself, I don’t matter too much so long as I keep on top of things, but I do care about them. I will try not to lose it today, I really will.

I reach work, it’s grim, dark, cold and still raining. The people I work with are nice. They say good morning and ask how I am. I smile politely and lie to them.

“Yeah, I’m okay, thanks.”

They’re not really interested in my welfare, it’s just what you say. No one is really interested, even the people you consider close to you. They all have their own crap to deal with. I sometimes wonder what it would be like if people were really honest with each other. What would their reaction be if I told them how it really was?

“Well, I’m not doing so good, to be honest. My wife is suffering from ill health. It makes things so hard. My daughter is struggling to cope with raising two kids on her own. I do what I can to help, but I’m not in the best financial position myself. My other kids don’t make things any easier. Some of my closest friends are having a really hard time. It’s so hard to watch. It’s all taking its toll on me, I think I need help. Is it normal to sit on your own and cry, because I find I’m doing that quite a lot just lately?”

I’m fairly certain they wouldn’t ask me if I was okay again, and would probably avoid me. So I do what I always do and slip into my mask, smile, joke around and quote my morning script.

“Yeah, I’m okay, thanks.”

I set to work and check the clock every ten minutes. Is it tea break yet? I try my best to get through the day. Working hard helps to take your mind off what’s really going on in your head. Best not to think too much about it. I hide behind my wall.

I get a text message telling me about the latest crap going down in real life. I give a deep sigh. Is it tea break yet? When is this day going to end? I make a few jokes with my friends and slip deeper behind my wall. I mustn’t let my shield slip.

Finally my working day comes to an end. I’m cold, dirty and extremely tired. I pack my stuff in the car and drive through the rain towards the motorway. I’m greeted by a string of bright red break lights as I merge into an endless line of crawling traffic. My mission to reach home has begun. I just want to get home.

My euphoria at arriving is short lived when I step through the door and my wife tells me about everything that has gone wrong during the day. It’s never good news. I try to look concerned, but all I really want to do is eat my dinner and go to bed.

“Don’t worry, I will see what I can sort out.”

I absorb myself that night in my computer, just like every night. I don’t have any friends in real life, but that doesn’t really bother me. Who needs friends? It’s not like I would have the time for a social life anyway. The day reaches its end. I’m relieved. Like a robot, I run through my chores before I finally climb into bed.

Before I know it, my alarm goes off at 5:55. I peel my eyes open and curse quietly to myself. Another day. I hit the snooze alarm at least twice. I seriously don’t feel like I can handle another day.

But I always do. I have no choice.

Good Days
My alarm goes off at 5:55. I peel open my eyes and curse quietly to myself. Here we go again. I’ve never been a morning person. I hit the snooze alarm at least twice. This morning it was actually three times, I fancied an extra ten minutes in bed.

When I finally get out of bed, it’s not too bad. It’s warmer than it has been for days. Like a robot, I go through the same routine; wash and dress, and make my flask. I gaze out of the window to find my car isn’t frozen. What a result, I’ve got time to finish my cup of tea this morning.

I peer through my car windscreen at all the break lights as I sit on the motorway in a traffic jam. Not that I’m bothered, at least it’s not raining today and I’m in no rush to get to work to be honest. I stick on one of my CDs and play air guitar to one of my favourite tunes on the steering wheel. I sing really badly as I gaze out of the window at all the miserable-looking commuters around me.

A thousand thoughts drift through my mind about the people I care about. My grandchildren will be coming over on Saturday. They bring so much joy to my life. The thought of their beautiful smiling faces as they rush into my house and cry, “Granddad!” makes me smile a lot. How funny they are.

I reach work on time for a change, so I have time for another quick cuppa before I get out of the car. The people who I work with are nice. They say good morning and ask how I am.

I smile politely and say, “Yeah, I’m okay, thanks.” I mean it this time.

I set to work with my wind-up radio blasting, and the morning flies by really quickly. I stop for a tea break and get a short text message from my wife. It tells me how much she loves me and how much she is missing me today. It makes me smile, and I realise how lucky I am.

Finally, my working day comes to an end. I pack my stuff away in the car and drive to the motorway. My mission to reach home has begun. I just want to get home.

I pull up outside my house, go inside and dump my bags beside the back door. I’m greeted by my beautiful wife who gives me a hug then hands me my dinner. It’s my favourite.

I settle down for the evening and switch on my computer. I have an e-mail from one of my dear friends. It is massively encouraging. It makes me smile. You now, I really do believe I have a chance to make something of myself one day. My friends are so nice to me. They are amazing.

The day draws to an end and I climb the stairs to my bed. I love my bed, seriously, it’s the best place in the world. I think happy thoughts and drift off into a comfortable sleep.

My alarm doesn’t go off at 5:55. I peel open my eyes and stare at the clock in the darkness. I don’t relish the thought of getting up in the cold knowing I will be rushing around like a madman. Then I realise. It’s Saturday. I snuggle back down into the warm duvet with a contented smile.



Truth Teller is now available from here:



You can connect with the author at:

Author’s Web page http://kurtchambers.net/

Truth Teller Reviews:

Dawne Dominique - Multi-published author and professional cover artist.
The Truth Teller is one of the best children's fantasy book I've read in a long while. Charlotte is so easy to picture in my mind, and the fantasy aspects are brilliant! There are underlying currents of "real life lessons" that are subtly included...ideal for parents looking for that perfect bedtime story to read to their children. I loved the entire premise of the novel and will definitely be purchasing the next ones in this series.
Kurt Chambers has captured the genre with a wonderful story that will delight many a child's (and adult's) imagination.

Annie McMahon - Editor, published author and Novel Workshop moderator.
This book has everything a bestseller should have: compelling story, endearing characters, vivid descriptions, genuine emotions, and a lot of surprising twists and turns. This is a story about a friendship that transcends race, gender, age, and even realms, between Charlotte, a ten-year-old girl, and Elderfield, a teenage elf. Beautiful and heartwarming. I strongly recommend it and have reviewed Kurt’s story on my blog, Dutch Hill News.

Ralene Burke – Writer, Editor for Wives in Bloom:
Honestly, I can’t wait until my kids are old enough to read these books. Kurt has written an amazing series that emphasizes such wonderful themes as friendship, family, hope, and faith. I’ve read Truth Teller and Wrath of Siren and, even though they are MG, enjoyed them immensely. If you’re looking for wholesome reads for your children, check out the next big thing for MG.

Friday, 18 November 2011

Life Beyond Our Planet—Kurt Chambers


Do you believe there is life out there beyond our own planet? To me, this is a silly question. Yes, of course there is. Tons of it! Life is a naturally occurring phenomenon in nature. Given the right conditions, life will form on its own accord; this has been proven in scientific experiments by creating a primeval soup from which life emerged.

I’m a keen amateur astronomer, and spent two years of my life building a rather large reflector telescope. During the time I spend building this, I studied astronomy to learn as much as I could about the universe that surrounds us. It’s amazingly fascinating, and very beautiful. One of the things that really stood out to me was the sheer size of our universe. Trust me, it’s very big indeed. And in this vast universe, there is a lot of stuff. So much so, you couldn’t come up with a number that would even mean anything to you. Common sense alone tells me that there is a lot of life among all this. Our humble planet alone contains approximately four billion different life forms that we know of, and we live on such a tiny little planet.

The question that we should be asking ourselves is, I wonder what all these life forms beyond our planet, solar system, galaxy, and even universe, are like? That’s a much better question. One that many a good book have been written about. They call it science fiction, but chances are, some of it may actually be science fact. We stereotype aliens as being little green men that like probing things that would possibly make your eyes water, thanks to the media and the film industry. I’m not saying that there is a civilisation out there that has the technology and the resources to visit our planet. We live a very, very long way from even the nearest star. But one thing is for sure, we are surrounded by billions and billions of living things in every direction. We may not ever see them, but they are there.

If anyone out there is interested in helping with the search for real intelligent life, then you may want to check this out. I’ve been a member of SETI@home for over ten years and run their free program on my computer all the time.

http://setiathome.berkeley.edu/

Sunday, 6 November 2011

NaNoWriMo —Kurt Chambers


This month is a busy month for lots of writers with NaNoWriMo which, for those of you non-writer people, stands for National Novel Writing Month. The idea behind it is a writer spends every spare second of their time writing their novel, trying to hit a daily word count each day, or an overall target for the month. As writers, we don’t always spend our time just writing. If only we could! We spend a lot of our time reviewing other people’s work in critique forums or with beta readers. A large majority of writers learn their craft this way like myself. We also have to revise and edit our own stuff after getting reviews. This can be very time consuming. Networking is also a big part of a writer’s life. There is such a supportive network of writers out there in cyberspace, we all support each other and help with such a challenging quest of becoming published authors.

NaNoWriMo isn’t for everyone. I’ve never done it myself as I’ve always found it a bit too intense. We are all different, and I can’t write that way, personally. But I do wish all those other writers out there all the luck in the world! I take my hat off to anyone who is participating this year. And if that’s you, I just have one thing to say…What are you doing here reading my blog? You should be writing! :D


Sunday, 30 October 2011

English vs American—Kurt Chambers


Over the last few weeks I received a couple of rejection letters. One of them, though giving me reasons for the rejection, which is a rarity, was in all sense and purposes a standard rejection letter. This rejection came from an agent in America. So far all my rejections from the other side of the pond have been form rejections. For those of you who are not familiar with form rejections, here is the letter in question.


Dear Kurt Chambers,
Thank you for letting me review your query. I’m sorry it took me a while to respond, but unfortunately, I don't believe that we are the appropriate agents to represent this material. In this very competitive market, we are simply not enthusiastic enough about our ability to sell this work to offer you representation.
We wish you the best of luck placing this successfully. Thank you, once again, for letting us consider it.
Best regards,


During my submission campaign, I submitted to one English agent. I also received a rejection, but this time, although rejecting me for the same reasons, it was much more encouraging.


Dear Kurt,
Thank you so much for letting me consider this. I’m sorry it has taken me so long to get back to you about it. There is an awful lot I like about it. However I am afraid the market is so tough currently that I do have to be completely bowled over by something to take it on and I’m afraid I just didn’t fall in love with this to the extent that I would need to in order to go in to bat for it in this climate.
I know you will continue to approach agents and publishers and I’m sorry that it’s been a near miss for me. Good luck with your further submissions.
With all best wishes,


It seems that my biggest obstacle at the moment is the market. Not the news I really wanted to hear as I wrote this particular novel, Unknown Reality, with the market in mind, unlike my other novels. But I was quite happy with a near miss. That’s very encouraging from a top children’s publishing agent, and I will take it as an achievement to be able to impress a reputable agent to this degree with my story. There’s hope for me yet!

Now I think I should concentrate of submitting to UK agents after only getting form rejections from our American friends. Maybe I’m just too English for them and they just don’t get it. Only time will tell.




Truth Teller is now available from here:


You can connect with the author at:

Author’s Web page http://kurtchambers.net/

Truth Teller Reviews:

Dawne Dominique - Multi-published author and professional cover artist.
The Truth Teller is one of the best children's fantasy book I've read in a long while. Charlotte is so easy to picture in my mind, and the fantasy aspects are brilliant! There are underlying currents of "real life lessons" that are subtly included...ideal for parents looking for that perfect bedtime story to read to their children. I loved the entire premise of the novel and will definitely be purchasing the next ones in this series.
Kurt Chambers has captured the genre with a wonderful story that will delight many a child's (and adult's) imagination.

Annie McMahon - Editor, published author and Novel Workshop moderator.
This book has everything a bestseller should have: compelling story, endearing characters, vivid descriptions, genuine emotions, and a lot of surprising twists and turns. This is a story about a friendship that transcends race, gender, age, and even realms, between Charlotte, a ten-year-old girl, and Elderfield, a teenage elf. Beautiful and heartwarming. I strongly recommend it and have reviewed Kurt’s story on my blog, Dutch Hill News.

Ralene Burke – Writer, Editor for Wives in Bloom:
Honestly, I can’t wait until my kids are old enough to read these books. Kurt has written an amazing series that emphasizes such wonderful themes as friendship, family, hope, and faith. I’ve read Truth Teller and Wrath of Siren and, even though they are MG, enjoyed them immensely. If you’re looking for wholesome reads for your children, check out the next big thing for MG.

Friday, 14 October 2011

Cleanse Fire (The First Chronicle) The Story Behind The Story


Me: It is my greatest pleasure to introduce you today to a great writer and a very good friend of mine, Anastasia V. Pergakis. I have invited her on my blog to tell you about her awesome new book, Cleanse Fire, and give you some background behind how this series came into being. Welcome to my humble blog, Anastasia.



Anastasia: Hi Kurt! :)

Before I tell you about the story itself, I want to share with you the original idea of where this story came from. My Dad served in the US Army for twenty years. As a writer, I had the urge to write a story about him, telling the world about his dedication to this country. Proud of my Dad as I am, I wanted the world to know of his service, and not have him fall between the cracks and be another 'nameless soldier' as it were. When I began writing the story however, I realized that I could never do justice to him, or any soldier for that matter. I couldn't capture the emotions involved with being a soldier and no amount of talking to my Dad was going to help.

So, I resorted to my passion – fantasy. I took the general idea of a soldier - the steadfast warrior protecting his country - and crafted my characters. The main character originally was to be "my Dad" in a sense, but over time, he grew into his own personality.

Now, while the story as it exists now is completely fictional, the characters and story line are all in dedication to my Dad and all soldiers who have served, are serving, and will serve in the military. It is my hope that, even though in fantasy form, the story of a soldier’s sacrifice and dedication to their country still shines through.

With all that in mind, protions of my royalties will be donated to the Wounded Warrior Project. This organization helps wounded soldiers and their families heal when they return home.

The Kinir Elite is made up of six elves. They are the Special Forces in their country - like Delta Force here in the States. or the S.A.S in the United Kingdom. They have unique and specialized training that allows them to handle missions of all kinds, ranging from hostage rescue to information gathering to “spy” work.

Now, that I've told you where the story came from, let me tell you what the book is about!

Complete the mission, no matter what…
Captain Derac Vidor has served Kinir for nearly twenty years. It’s his life, his blood, his soul. And then his Commander betrays everything Derac holds dear. Now he has to focus on his own life and his team instead of saving the citizens of Kinir.

Treason is only the beginning…
Fueled by rage, the team chases the source to their Commander’s betrayal – a powerful wizard bent on revenge. The wizard seeks to destroy the Kinir Elite, in both mind and body. No place is safe, even among their allies.

The past holds the key…
Derac’s tragic past may be the key to saving the team. But can he face the gruesome nightmare in time?

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Thank you Kurt, for having me here today! You've been a great support for me to get my book out into the world. Your friendship and encouragement mean the world to me!

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Write What You Know—Kurt Chambers


There is lots of advice for writers out there, and some of it is repeated over and over again by many writers, publishers and agents. This leads me to think that this advice is worth taking onboard. One quote that comes up very often is, write what you know. This might seem like an obvious statement, but very good advice nonetheless.

I spent seven years writing a series of Middle Grade Fantasy books, my Truth Teller series. There are three books in total; Truth Teller, The Wrath of Siren and Favian’s Law. I love these stories. They came straight from the heart and were always something I wanted to write. I worked for years to bring them to a publishable standard and entered the submission process. After many knock-backs, I came to the conclusion they weren’t the most marketable novels despite the amazing reactions I received from my target audience beta readers and the members of my critique group. So, I shelved them. I turned my attention to writing for the market. Luckily, the novel I wrote turned out to be a cracking story and very popular among my young readers. So, I tried to write another marketable novel. That’s when I hit a brick wall.

I had lost my way. I spent so much time trying to get published, I lost interest and almost gave up. It was a mistake. While I took a break from my writing, I realised where I had gone wrong. Write what you know! That’s what they say. So, that is exactly what I’m going to do. I went back to doing what I wanted to do and have just started writing a new novel. It’s book four to my Truth Teller series, Lost Magic. It’s so nice to be back with my old characters. I missed them so much. My series may never get published due to market forces, but I don’t care. I’m writing what I know, and I’m falling in love with writing all over again.

Sunday, 25 September 2011

Why Do You Write For Children? -- Kurt Chambers


As a children’s writer, I have been asked many times, why do you write for children? It’s a question that always pops up whenever my books are mentioned. I also had a discussion about this recently with a very dear friend of mine, children’s writer, Neha Garg. She asked me to answer the two age old questions…

1. Why do you write for children? (Is it just easier?)

2. If it isn't easy then how is it all that different from writing for adults? Aren't the skills transferable?

Here are my views on the subject.

1. There are lots of reasons why I write for children, I could talk about it all day. From a child's perspective, anything is possible. That is such a great resource for a writer to tap into. Anything! Imagine that. That alone is an inspiration for any author. When you sit down with young children and get into a conversation with them, it's the funniest thing in the world. Their perspective on life puts us adults to shame. You soon realise they have a craving for a world filled with magic and awe. As a writer, how could I not want to take advantage of that and create something that will be truly appreciated and believed?

Another aspect that really appeals to me is that my stories will hopefully stay with a child throughout their whole lifetime. All of us can remember our favourite childhood stories. We remember them with such fondness even through our adulthood. I can clearly remember being so excited and amazed as a youngster with some of my favourite stories with my imagination running wild. If my stories have the same effect on children as those stories had on me, I will be a very happy man.

Children are the most awesome creatures that ever walked this Earth. They are FUN! They laugh all the time. They see the world so differently from adults. Their innocence is their most endearing feature. That's what I love to write about. I try to capture this in my stories. When I'm writing, I laugh out loud. I gasp in wonder at the thought of things that would normally be impossible, become possible, just like I wanted them to be possible when I was a child. I even cry at the sad things that an adult would probably brush off as being silly, but a child would find distressing. Yes, I'm an emotional person and I'm proud of it. I want to be ten again! I want to live in a world of innocence again! When I write for children, I can.

I believe in Father Christmas and Tooth Fairies. Why, you may ask. Well, that is simple, because I was Father Christmas AND the Tooth Fairy for many years with my children. (See article, The Real Santa.) How dare any adult try and tell me I never existed! I will tell them they are insane. To be a children's writer, you have to believe anything is possible, because it is. I refuse to grow up and become a cynical, boring, judgemental adult. Writing for children to me means writing about all the best things in life that make life worth living. There is way too much horribleness in the world when you reach adulthood. Why would I want to write about that? I want to escape the real world in the same way as a reader does when they read a book. I want to escape to a world of innocence, fun, excitement and laughter.

Writing for children is simply awe inspiring. I could never see myself writing anything else.

2. This is quite a difficult question. Writing for children is actually harder than writing for an older audience. There are so many rules you have to apply to. For example, there are lots of words you can't use that you would normally use in every day life. Bear in mind you are writing a story from a child's perspective, so you effectively have to become that child in order for the story to sound realistic. You have to think and speak like that child. You have to see things as a child would, their humour, their emotions and every aspect of how they view whatever world they find themselves in. This isn't an easy task for lots of adults to do. Luckily for me, I have the mental age of a ten-year-old, so it's not that hard for me to get into that mindset.

When you write for kids, you also have to take into consideration morals. We raise our children with a strict set of morals in the hope they will become good people as they grow and develop. A children's author has a huge responsibility. We effectively engage on a close personal level with children throughout the world depending on how successful we are. It is our responsibility to promote the same set of morals that we would with our own children.

Another thing to bear in mind is, becoming a children's author is probably one of the hardest markets to break into. Believe me, I know, I have been trying for seven years. If anyone tells you writing for children is easy, they are wrong.

Please share with me the reasons why you write for children or young adult.

And please pay a visit to Neha’s awesome website, Scribble Desk, for some great articles, children’s stories, and may other things related to children’s writing. And don’t forget to leave a comment J


Truth Teller is now available from here:


You can connect with the author at:

Author’s Web page http://kurtchambers.net/

Truth Teller Reviews:

Dawne Dominique - Multi-published author and professional cover artist.
The Truth Teller is one of the best children's fantasy book I've read in a long while. Charlotte is so easy to picture in my mind, and the fantasy aspects are brilliant! There are underlying currents of "real life lessons" that are subtly included...ideal for parents looking for that perfect bedtime story to read to their children. I loved the entire premise of the novel and will definitely be purchasing the next ones in this series.
Kurt Chambers has captured the genre with a wonderful story that will delight many a child's (and adult's) imagination.

Annie McMahon - Editor, published author and Novel Workshop moderator.
This book has everything a bestseller should have: compelling story, endearing characters, vivid descriptions, genuine emotions, and a lot of surprising twists and turns. This is a story about a friendship that transcends race, gender, age, and even realms, between Charlotte, a ten-year-old girl, and Elderfield, a teenage elf. Beautiful and heartwarming. I strongly recommend it and have reviewed Kurt’s story on my blog, Dutch Hill News.

Ralene Burke – Writer, Editor for Wives in Bloom:
Honestly, I can’t wait until my kids are old enough to read these books. Kurt has written an amazing series that emphasizes such wonderful themes as friendship, family, hope, and faith. I’ve read Truth Teller and Wrath of Siren and, even though they are MG, enjoyed them immensely. If you’re looking for wholesome reads for your children, check out the next big thing for MG.