Hey — just a quick note from me to say Cullen 7, COWBOYS & INDIANS is out now! Sincerest thanks to everyone who has preordered it — it should be on your Kindle now, waiting for your eyes to read it. Feels good to have it out my computer and into the wide, wide world.
Some early review quotes from Goodreads —
“I have read all the books in the Scott Cullen series and I honestly think this is the best one so far.” — Adele Mitchell
“Overall, a fantastic book by one of my favorite authors … easily the best book I’ve read so far this year.” — Tam McGregor
Buy it from Amazon now.
Oh, and if you haven’t bought it, SNARED is £1.99 today only.
Just a quick note to let you guys know I’m actively WRITING this book, the seventh in the Cullen series. Taken a bit longer to plan and outline, which is definitely paying off (though still not perfect, ha). Got to 25% midway through my fourth day of writing, so it’s going pretty well so far.
Needless to say, it’s not about the genocide of the American indigenous population over the last 500 years. The cowboys relate to certain police officers, but also colleagues of the murder victim. The Indians are, of course, natives of the Indian subcontinent, home of much of the outsourced IT development in UK/US since the late 90s.
Very interesting writing given what happened at the end of the last book, too. There’s a lot less moaning about promotions in this one.
I’ve kind of neglected my self-published works over the last six months since WINDCHILL, so it’ll be good to get some instant karma with this book. There’s something else in the pipes, which some of you have been after for a year or so…
It’s a pretty good project to get myself stuck in while I await the impending release of SNARED. I hate waiting for anything and I really am Mr Impatient (should just get it over with and change my name to Ed Impatient).
SNARED out 28-Apr-15! Pre-order now!
“A great story, regardless and one guaranteed to spark debate” — Goodreads review
Just noticed this morning that I’m up to 999 reviews for GHOST IN THE MACHINE on Amazon.co.uk, averaging 4.2 which is pretty high for a perma-free book.
This is completely insane to me – when I published it almost three years ago, I didn’t think that I’d get nine reviews, let alone this number (and being into my second year as a full-time author, either). Crazy craziness.
Serious thanks to everyone who’s read the book and posted a review, even the one-stars. Being able to do this for a living is the best thing that’s ever happened to me.
Current project – Draft 2 of CRASH INTO MY ARMS (DI Fenchurch 1)
Next project – Final outline of COWBOYS & INDIANS (Cullen 7)
Morning all – here’s the cover to WINDCHILL, book SIX in the ongoing idiotic adventures of Scott Cullen:
Suitably wintry, right?
Just going through final edits for it just now – I’ve been a bit of an idiot and ended up with two books to edit at the same time; more on SNARED later. Needless to say, what started as a pair of short stories has grown to a monstrous novel, second-longest in the Cullen pantheon. Why do I do this to myself?
WINDCHILL is out on 13-Oct-14 and is currently on pre-release at Amazon. Note the price of £2.99, $4.99 (US) [and some odd fraction in EUR/AUD/CAD/JPY/INR/etc] will be maintained for at least 90 days after release, so it’s not like I’ll suddenly dump the price to 99p. [Oh, and COWBOYS & INDIANS will be book seven, out sometime early next year]
Book blurb –
WINDCHILL covers two cases over the festive period, two stories joined at the hip.
Still reeling from the events of the previous Spring, Detective Constable Scott Cullen’s ambition has almost burnt him out. With his drinking out of control, Cullen’s hopes of promotion are dashed by the shrinking police force and managerial game playing – his only pleasure is the prospect of Christmas spent in front of the TV.
In CHRISTMAS STEPS, when a corpse is found in a burnt down house, Cullen’s Christmas plans are pulled apart as he unpicks the victim’s life just as his own private life is picked apart by his boss, DI Colin Methven.
In WINDCHILL, the murder of a young barman in his Edinburgh flat leads Cullen into the murky world of pubs and bookmakers, while the most likely suspect has a cast-iron alibi.
WINDCHILL is a claustrophobic police procedural novel about dashed friendship, alcohol abuse and trust.
The sixth book in a series of Edinburgh-based police procedurals starring DC Scott Cullen, the first of which which has been compared favourably with Ian Rankin, Mark Billingham, Christopher Brookmyre, Ed McBain, Elmore Leonard and Stuart MacBride.
Not long now.
GHOST IN THE MACHINE (Cullen 1) is now a bargain 79p/99c – myBook.to/edjamesghost
Just a quick note to let you know I’ll be appearing at this year’s Bloody Scotland as a presenter as well as a punter –
I’ll be appearing with Allan Guthrie, who’s one of my biggest influences as a writer, and we’ll talking a lot about digital publishing, as well as Cullen and the other mad stuff I’ve got in the pipeline.
I went to the first event two years ago and it was excellent (I couldn’t make it last year what with being a WILLIE and a heavy cold) – there are a lot of things I aim to attend this year.
Also, closer to my home, I’ll be appearing at the Write:On festival in Haddington tomorrow night.
The Cullen books, GHOST IN THE MACHINE free – http://www.amazon.co.uk/Ed-James/e/B007UEQTQI/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1
Kind of spooky in the week GHOST hit 666 reviews in the UK, but a few things on CULLEN book two – DEVIL IN THE DETAIL.
If you’ve bought it, you should have received an email from Amazon yesterday saying a revised version was uploaded. This is fact. There’s also a revised version of GHOST IN THE MACHINE uploaded as well.
What sort of revisions? Well, one of the big things I’ve done this year is edit the first two novels so the writing is consistent with the later novels – my style has moved on a lot. With GHOST and DEVIL, I went through them several times and tidied the text up significantly. The changes were read by Rhona, who edited DYED IN THE WOOL and BOTTLENECK, and those two books are now as good as I can make them without starting again from scratch (seriously, don’t tempt me).
The bulk of the changes are stylistic – removing info dumps (bad), heavily-reducing the Scottish patois (no kens, didnaes and all that), cutting Bain’s swearing a bit (he’s still a profane idiot), heavily-reducing the dialogue attribution (I was a bit worried about people getting lost in dialogue, so every line had a said) and tidying up a few bits and pieces. There was a lot of descriptions of roads which really added nothing to the books – I should really write THE ED JAMES GUIDE TO THE SCOTTISH MOTORWAY SYSTEM (INCLUDING DUAL CARRIAGEWAYS AND SIGNIFICANT A-ROADS).
The significant changes to GHOST were the complete rewrite of the first scene and addition of a cold open scene in Pilrig Park, foreshadowing a bit of the ending. Nothing major, really. The word count went from 96,000 to just under 87k.
DEVIL was squashed into two calendar days and I’ve thinned the action on day two out into a third one, adding a nice scene with Sharon McNeill. There’s also a bit of a ticking clock that was in there which I’ve picked out of the mix and made more explicit. At least two of the scenes got really major rewrites. The word count was sliced from 103k to just over 86k and it is a lot slicker for it.
I don’t know if any of your ever have any plans to re-read the books (I think TRAINSPOTTING and THE CROW ROAD are the only novels I’ve read more than once…), then do me a favour and read these ones. Spending that amount of time putting sheen on a free book was a labour of love, really.
In other news, DEVIL is now out on Kobo and Nook. I’m experimenting with non-Amazon channels for the Cullens just now (I’ve had >30,000 GHOST downloads on these two) but I’ve been a bit underwhelmed by sales so far, shall we say. Say what you want about Amazon, their KDP offering for indies like me is second-to-none.
Keep an eye on the mailing list – http://bit.ly/EJMail – to keep up with my release schedule.
Just noticed it’s two years to the day since I first published GHOST IN THE MACHINE. Wow. Hard to believe how much has changed in that time. Serious thanks to everyone who has downloaded it and bought the subsequent escapades in Cullen’s life.
I’ve spent some of this year revising the first two books to make them more consistent stylistically with the rest (and to reduce Bain’s swearing…) and new versions of GHOST and DEVIL are available now. I’m such a dabbler. They may email you telling about it, but if you want to receive the revised version on your Kindle, send them a mail and they’ll give you the new file (looks like they’re going to automate this).
Anyway, thought I’d give an update on where things are – the Mailing List is going to be my primary announcement thing and I’ll start using this place more regularly for more flippant stuff.
Cullen Year One
About a month ago, I released a collected edition of the first four books called CULLEN YEAR ONE. This puts GHOST, DEVIL, FIRE and DYED in one edition for the bargain price of £5.99 or $9.99, saving 25% off the price of buying them individually. It’s a bit of a steal, especially as GHOST is free already. Universal Amazon link – [ http://mybook.to/CYear1 ] It’s on Kobo and Nook too if that’s your thing.
CULLEN 6 – COWBOYS & INDIANS
Had a few searches for the next Cullen book, clearly people who’ve devoured BOTTLENECK already. At the moment, there’s no release date for it. I’ll start doing some work in the next month or so, just to get the plot nailed down along with the novella I’ll do later this year. As per the BOTTLENECK afterword, still no idea when I’ll release it. Things are a bit in flux just now – keep an eye on the Mailing List for further news.
DS DODDS 1 – SNARED
I’m currently going hammer and tongs at the first draft of SNARED and am roughly a third of the way through, having bashed out 33,000 words. Not bad for three days’ work so far… Again, for release information, keep an eye on the Mailing List for news of when this one is going to get released. For those of you who don’t know, this is a new series set in Dundee with a new copper, DS Vicky Dodds. It’s hardcore police procedural all the way, similar in some ways but pretty different to Cullen. I’m enjoying writing it like you wouldn’t believe.
Yeah, not sure what I’m doing with this. CRASH INTO MY ARMS, the intended sequel to SHOT THROUGH THE HEART, is getting de-vampired and will be the next project after SNARED. I’ve got a solid idea for a sequel but the sales on this one have been really quite bad. I learnt a lesson with this one, that’s for sure. I’m going to make it free again to see if that gives it a market sufficient to warrant a book two.
I’ll be sending a new newsletter in the next couple of days – sign up at http://bit.ly/EJMail
Hope you’re all enjoying BOTTLENECK.
I’m not all about Amazon. Mostly, but not all. I’ve put BOTTLENECK on Nook and Kobo right from the off –
Getting some very positive feedback on BOTTLENECK, which is a blessed relief more than anything. Oh, I was on the cover of Monday’s Herald.
To find out about my upcoming releases – sign up to the mailing list. I usually pre-release the book by this means, so it’s the best way of keeping on top of my books.
In other news, I’m just about ready to start the first draft of SNARED, the first DS DODDS mystery.
Released on Monday 17th March, here is the book blurb for BOTTLENECK, CULLEN 5 –
Acting Detective Sergeant Scott Cullen almost has the stable relationship and promotion he’s long coveted. The uncertainty surrounding the imminent Police Scotland restructure and his crippling caseload both take their toll on him. Now living with his girlfriend, her own burning ambition puts a strain on their relationship and her health, traits they both share.
But when a body is discovered in the abandoned streets underneath Edinburgh’s Old Town, Cullen struggles to identify the victim before trawling the depths of the Scottish music scene, digging up old scores in Edinburgh and Glasgow.
Now, as he returns to the Angus home town he’s long since left, Cullen finds himself spread thin, hunting across Scotland for a killer who leaves no trace. As Scotland’s police forces are centralised into Police Scotland, Cullen is dragged into the murky world of internal politics, blocking progress in the case and jeopardising his own career.
BOTTLENECK is a tense police procedural novel about greed and ambition that will suck you in from the start.
Intended as a series jumping-on point, BOTTLENECK is Book 5 in the Edinburgh-based police procedurals starring DC Scott Cullen which have been compared favourably with Ian Rankin, Mark Billingham, Christopher Brookmyre, Ed McBain, Elmore Leonard and Stuart MacBride.