Here we meet someone we follow on Twitter and who has a blog … to answer our quick-fire questions about what their blog is about and why it’s special…
Name: Ben Galley
Blog: Ben Galley dot com
Notable for: At just 24 I have published two novels and wrote one on my iPhone.
When did you start writing? Did you go to Uni/Study English/Do A-Levels? How long did it take to write?
I started writing when I was about 11 years old, and finished my first book by the time I was about 13. Having been reared (I say reared, had books stuffed down my throat) on a diet of Tolkien, Doyle, Wells, Verne, and mythology, I always knew I’d end up writing, I just didn’t think I would be an author at 24! I studied English up to GCSE only. I went to Uni to study music, but after finishing I began to devote myself to writing. My first book The Written took about 18 months to write, and the sequel Pale Kings took under 4 months.
I decided to self-publish in the very first chapters of The Written. For me the decision was an easy one to make.
Why did you decide to self publish? When were your books published?
The pros simply outweighed the cons. The more I researched the more I realised I could publish on a budget and gain the same results, all it needed was a little technical know-how and a lot of hard work! It meant that I could achieve my dreams at 22, rather than wait and face probable rejection because of my age and experience by traditional publishers. I saw that I could become one of the youngest authors in the country and I pounced on that opportunity.
I published The Written for under £400 in January of 2011, from nothing more than a laptop, in paperback, hardback, ebook, and kindle formats. Pale Kings was released on the 29th of February this year in exactly the same way.
What are your books about?
My books The Written and Pale Kings are books 1 and 2 of the Emaneska Series. Described as “Lord of The Rings meets Sin City” the Series is a fast-paced, dark, and epic series aimed at adults and lovers of fantasy. The Emaneska Series is full of twists and turns and blistering action, and yet is written poetically, with beautiful, vast descriptions and hauntingly cold and emotional scenes. It is a very character-driven series, rich in its lore and mythology, and determined to be different. The blurbs for each book can be found on the Books page of my site.
Where is your book advertised? Does it have an ISDN number?
My books are available from almost every retailer across the world. Waterstones, Tesco, Asda, WHSmiths, Amazon, Booktopia, Smashwords, iBooks, Kobo, Barnes and Noble… the list goes on!
The Written Paperback: 978-0-9567700-0-4
Pale Kings Paperback: 978-0-9567700-3-5
Which company did you use? How much did it cost? How does it work – ie: are the books made to order?
I work with a Print On Demand company called Lightning Source to produce my paperbacks and hardbacks. For eBooks I use Smashwords and Kindle Direct Publish. Both the eBook avenues are free, and LSI are very reasonable. The cost per book allows for a competitive margin and a royalty better than some traditional authors, and they distribute to all major retailers.
How have you gained publicity or made people aware of your books?
A lot of it depends on hard work and social media. I am slowly climbing up from local press/radio to bigger publications. I am due to feature on a few fantasy review sites and forums, as well as a few Self-Publishing magazines and blogs. I also tour regularly doing signings and lectures.
How many have you sold? Any reviews or awards?
Roughly 15,000 all told. Most of my reviews come from Amazon and B&N, while others from dedicated magazines and online publications are due soon. My only award so far is possibly being one of the the youngest published authors in the UK.
What else do you do for a living as well as writing?
I am 24, and at the moment, I am managing to scrape by on my books. I previously worked in IT sales and at a range of bars and pubs. I actually wrote The Written on my iPhone while I was working full-time throughout 2009 and 2010.
What next? Another book? What does the future hold?
The future holds a number of things. A new standalone fantasy book that will provide a break from the Emaneska Series, code-named ‘CF’ at the moment. I will also be moving into apps and trying to turn the Emaneska Series into a graphic novel via Kickstarter.
Would you like to put your blog on Blog Spot? Contact us with your blog, name and email and we will send you some questions…