CategoryWriting and publishing

Typos are eternal but fixable


I’ve had a few questions recently about if I want to hear about typos or small formatting errors. Yes, I do! This post explains more about how to let me know about typos. I’m embarking on a larger project to do some tidying in 2024 that includes all the tiny errors that somehow creep in.

Short version: 

If you spot typos or other minor formatting issues in my text, I’d love to hear about it. 

You have your choice in how to let me know. I’ve set up a Google Form with all the information I need to track down the problem. (There’s an option to share your contact info in case I have a question, but only if you like.)

Otherwise, feel free to email me (reply to any newsletter!), use the contact form on this site, or DM me on Discord, and let me know the following:

  • Which book
  • Which chapter or what’s going on in the scene.
  • A short phrase (something identifiable I can search on or skim for) to help me find the right paragraph.
  • What the actual typo or problem is.

Useful to know

I do write in British English. I’ve also made some deliberate choices about spelling and language use when it comes to Albion as a magical community. But it’s my job to make all of that consistent.

If you’re not sure if something’s actually an error, please let me know. I’ll take it from there. 

Longer version: 

My books go through multiple sets of eyes. I do multiple editing passes on my own, including an automated grammar and spelling check. Kiya goes through it multiple times. And then there’s my early readers, who note things as they spot them. (And then me again once or twice.) 

Despite that, typos sneak in anyway. Rereading a few things recently, I swear some have generated in the file while I wasn’t looking.

What that means

First, please do let me know about them if you spot them and you’re willing (as above).

And then second, I’m planning on doing a review for typos (and other small formatting things, making some stylistic choices more consistent, etc.) However, this is a logistically complicated project.

Because of that, I’m putting out a call for typo spotting. However, I expect the fixes (and the uploads) to be a project that takes me a fair chunk of 2024 to complete. 

What does that project look like? 

Reviewing all the books

First, I’ve got to read all of the books again (and at 30 novels and novellas as of last week, that’s a lot by itself.) I also need to do that when I’m at my computer with the final files, not on any other device, so I can see how the file is theoretically displaying on different ereaders.

As part of that, I have to make the actual edits, though finding them is much more work than fixing them. 

Preparing the files

Second, I’ve got to regenerate the final files for upload. While I’m in the files, I’ll likely update backmatter, add later books to the author’s note as relevant, etc. This part is actually fairly easy in the software I use. However each of the major retailers has slightly different preferences so I end up with half a dozen separate files. 

Uploading the new copies

Third – and this is the challenging bit – I’ve got to reupload those books to the various sites I use for distribution. Right now, that’s seven different places. (Kindle, Apple, Barnes and Noble, Google Play, Kobo, Draft2Digital which handles a bunch of other places, Gumroad, and I’m about to add one more.) 

Each distributor has their own user interface quirks. Most of them involve at least a couple of places in the upload or revision sequence where you click something, wait (sometimes a minute or three) for it to process, and then go on with the next steps. These days, I usually work through two of the sites at a time. I swap tabs between the two while the other is processing. I put a movie on or something else I want to watch, but it’s a particular kind of tedious task I can’t do in vast amounts at one go. 

If all the websites are behaving properly, it’s about 15 minutes a book. That ‘behaving properly’ can be a big assumption though! And obviously, getting the time to upload 30 books (or 10ish hours) can also be a trick, so breaking this into smaller chunks is the way to go.

Because even small page count variations can make a difference for paperback books, I either need to correct just typos (nothing that affects page count) for the paperbacks or decide not to edit. (Revising paperbacks also has some other limits – the distributors I’m using right now allow limited revision uploads in several cases. So I need to figure out how to handle that.) 

Getting the revised copy

The other problem with this is that getting the revised copy to your device can be tricky. Most of the distribution sites won’t push a new version to you unless you go through some steps to request it. (That process varies a bit distributor to distributor or device to device). The changes I’m making don’t count as a new edition – they’re far too minor for that. So you won’t, as a reader, get the new copy unless and until you go through the necessary steps. 

(Usually that’s deleting the file on your ereader and downloading it again, but sometimes that doesn’t work. Mysterious are the ways of the ereader.)

I can’t help directly with that – there’s far too many devices and routes for getting ebooks for me to know all of them! What I can do is let you know (here and on my newsletter) when all those cleanup steps are done and the new files are available. 

If you’ve got questions, get in touch whichever of the ways above works for you, and I’m glad to explain more (or clarify here if it helps others).

Extras in 2024


Time for an update on extras – both how I think about them and where you can get them. 

Upon A Summer's Day displayed on a tablet in a sunset scene looking out across water to fields beyond, all of it glowing golden and sparkling with magic. The cover of Upon A Summer's Day shows a man in a suit silhouetted over a map of northern Wales in a muted green. He is gesturing, holding his cane in one hand, a cap on his head. Behind him is an astrological chart, with Jupiter and Saturn highlighted in the sign of Taurus.


Extras are one of the terms for, well, extra bits of writing. Different authors approach them in different ways. It can be bits cut out of the final work, or it can be a treat for readers. It can be things the author had to write to figure out how something in the main novel/novella/whatever went. Often it’s more than one of these at once. 

Some authors never share these. Some of us (hi, that’s me), share more. 


Fanfic and me


I’ve had a couple of questions recently about how I feel about fanfic – so time for a post where I can lay it all out.

Short version: I love and approve of fanfic, but please don’t send me any fanfic (or related text, like ideas you’ve had for it) or otherwise directly wave it in front of my eyes. Sharing fan art, craft projects, and other forms of fannish goodness are all wonderful.

Read on for more of an explanation (and why I’m putting it this way.) 

Copy of Eclipse on a white cloth, with various small ritual items - sprig of rosemary, talisman, cards - beside it.

Writing and the question of AI


If you’ve been anywhere on the Internet recently, you’ve probably seen a lot of comments about the use of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning when it comes to creative applications like art and writing. (Among other reasons, it’s a big part of the current Writer’s Guild of America strike.) It’s about time for a post from me about what that means for my writing, and then some general thoughts about the larger implications of these new and ever-improving technologies. 

One thing that’s making some of these conversations complicated is that people are using the terms “artificial intelligence” and “machine learning”  in a variety of ways. Here we’re mostly talking about situations where computers use information they’ve been trained on to give output (basically, making predictions of what makes sense based on what they’ve already seen.) 

A copy of Bound for Perdition lying on a piece of aged paper with elegant handwriting. The cover of Bound for Perdition has a man and woman silhouetted in dark brown on a green and brown background, with the woman holding a book while the man gestures. An open blank book and pen are inset in the top right corner.

Reviews and how they help


Reviews are a fantastic way for readers to help out authors they want to support. But a lot of readers are nervous about what to write, where to share them, and what they ought to know about the process.

Here’s a little demystification to help. I’m focusing here obviously on books, but the same basic process can help with music, podcasts, and all sorts of other content out there. 

The short version: Leaving a brief (2-3 sentence) review of books you love wherever you get or talk about your books is a fabulous way to both help other readers and the author. They don’t need to be long or complicated to help.

The cover of Old As The Hills displayed on a tablet in front of a pine forest, dotted with firefly light. The cover of Old As The Hills has a man with a can and a woman silhouetted on a green ground with a map. She holds out her hand, he is putting something into it, forming a doorway between them. An astrological chart behind them shows the symbols for Venus, the Sun, Jupiter, and Saturn highlighted behind a splash of glowing stars.

What kind of review are we talking about? 

When authors talk about reviews helping, what we mean is usually something simple.

We’re talking about a review of one to four sentences from a real human who read the book and wanted to share a couple of thoughts. You don’t need to be elaborate and you don’t need to include tons of details. Reviews like this help provide what gets called “social proof”, that real humans read the book and had a range of feelings about it. 

Detailed reviews and literary criticism are fantastic too – but they’re a completely different thing. Many people aren’t up for writing that (and certainly not about all the books or music or whatever else it was they enjoy).


My plans for 2023


Now that I’ve talked about what I got up to in 2022, it’s time to look forward into 2023. I’m incredibly excited about my plans for 2023. There’s quite a lot to come! Publication dates may shift a little, but I expect them to be fairly close to the following.

Copy of Best Foot Forward lying on a desk with a dip pen, bottle of ink, and paper. The cover has a deep red background with map markings in a dull purple. Two men in silhouette stand, looking up at a point in the top left. An astrology chart with different symbols picked out takes up the left side of the image, with glowing stars curving up to the title.

Coming out in 2023

This year, I’m alternating between a series of 1920s books (Mysterious Arts) and books dealing with the Second World War (the Land Mysteries series).


The naming of characters is a difficult matter


(Look, I couldn’t resist the T.S. Eliot reference, I’m only human.)

To be more serious, the names of characters are something I spend a lot of time thinking about. I got a great reader question about it this week, and that makes it a wonderful time to share some of how I do this.

To be honest, there’s a lot of staring at my list of names and sighing a lot. But I also have established patterns that help me sort out what I’m doing with the names.

(As a note, links to character names in this post will go to their WorldAnvil pages so you can see where they appear most easily.)

Cover of Eclipse displayed on a tablet, resting on a pine bough, surrounded by wood five-pointed stars.
Eclipse is a great example of several different naming patterns in my books.

New and exciting!

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