1. The Land of Miu, 2. The King's Riddle, Books & Movies, Hope Anthology, Speculative Realms

Free eBooks Available for Read an eBook Week

Just letting you know that Kayelle Press is happy to participate in Read an eBook Week. They feel it’s important to promote any kind of reading as it really can set the imagination free, if you let it.

Unshackle your mind by downloading their free ebooks during the promotion — 4 March 2012 (starts at one minute past midnight) to 10 March 2012 (ends at 11.59pm, USA Pacific time).

The Land of Miu — always free!
The King’s Riddle — free for one week only!
Hope Anthology — free for one week only!

Get them for FREE from Kayelle Press’ Smashwords page during the promotional period mentioned above only.

Also, I am offering the Speculative Realms Anthology for free as well. Head over to the Speculative Realms’ Smashwords Page to download the ebook for free.

Reminder: Don’t forget to use the coupon code, which will only appear on the individual pages for the books during the promotion period, when completing the checkout process.

1. The Land of Miu, Books & Movies

eBook Available for Free!

The Land of Miu is the first book in a series for younger readers. It can be purchased as a paperback (refer to my official The Land of Miu page). Or, it can be downloaded as a free ebook from the following places:

Smashwords (available in various digital formats including epub and kindle)
Kobo Books (download to your Kobo device or any other device with a Kobo app)
Nook Books (download to your Nook or any other device with a Nook app)
iTunes (download through iBookstore or onto your computer)
Goodreads (read online)
Wattpad (read online)
Feedbooks (download epub or Kindle versions from the website and add to your ereader or download through various ebook apps through your device)

1. The Land of Miu, Published!

Released: The Land of Miu

On Friday, 25 November 2011, The Land of Miu was published.

It is important to note that this is the second edition of the first book of the Land of Miu series. I know it’s getting tiresome reading that sentence everywhere, but I want to ensure existing readers totally understand that this is not the next instalment in the series. The next instalment, The King’s Riddle, will be released on 25 January 2012.

The paperback version of The Land of Miu is already available from Amazon for $9.99. Of course, it is also available from Kayelle Press for the same price.

The digital version is free! It is available from Smashwords. At present, it is also available from the Amazon Kindle Store for $0.99 but I’m hoping that will change to a free download in coming weeks.

If you do not have a Smashwords account and do not want to create one then use the contact form above to send me a request to email the ebook to you. Don’t forget to tell me which format you prefer. It’s available in PDF, mobi, epub, LRF and PDB.

And please rest easy knowing that to me ‘free’ means exactly that, ‘free’. There are no catches or small print, and you will not be emailed for any other purpose than to send you your free ebook. Promise.

1. The Land of Miu

Out With the Old and In With the New

Cat's Eyes (fantasy for younger readers)
1st Edition, published December 2010
2nd Edition, published November 2011

Important Note: “Cat’s Eyes” is being replaced with a second edition with a new title, “The Land of Miu”.

These are the same book, the first book in the series, but with different titles and different covers.

On 25 November 2011 “Cat’s Eyes” will officially become the first edition of Book 1 of the The Land of Miu series. The second edition will be released with the title “The Land of Miu” and it will be published with a new cover (see the cover to the right).

It is extremely important to me that readers know and understand these two titles are one and the same book (same story, same events, same characters — the second edition has just been tweaked a little bit for spelling/grammar inconsistencies). I have attempted to ensure everyone is fully aware of this fact well before the publication date and I have placed both covers on this page in an effort to get the word out there. I truly don’t want existing readers to purchase the second edition and feel duped. So please be patient with me if you feel I am going on about it too much.

1. The Land of Miu, 2. The King's Riddle, 3. The Lion Gods

The Mythology Behind the Land of Miu

Until now, the mythology behind the Land of Miu has not been shared with anyone. It wasn’t a secret, but I enjoyed writing the first two books without ever mentioning that the Land of Miu was built around Ancient Egyptian mythology.

Book 2, The King’s Riddle, does have a clear reference to the myth. Book 3, The Lion Gods, will be where all is revealed.

However, today, I am going to reveal the myth behind the Land of Miu.

For those of you who are familiar with the original publication of the first book (soon to be released with the title The Land of Miu, but originally published as “Cat’s Eyes”) you will recognise the image above as a similar version to what was used on the front cover.

This was not something I made up. It is a real Ancient Egyptian myth called Aker, also referred to as Akeru and Akerui. Aker was an ancient earth-god in Egypt. It is said that the two lions are guarding the entrance to the underworld to ensure evil spirits cannot escape when the sun entered the tunnels at dusk, travelled through the underworld during the night and exited the tunnels at dawn.

The image itself depicts two lions seated back to back with the symbol for the horizon on their shoulders with the rising sun. The lions themselves represent the sun setting in the west and the sun rising in the east. They were named Sef (Yesterday) and Duau (Today). The strip at the top is the sky, which is held up by the two peaks of Djew.

Now we get to the bit that involves the Land of Miu. The Egyptians believed there was a cosmic mountain range that held up the heavens. The western peak was called Manu while the eastern peak was called Bakhu. It was on these two peaks that the heavens rested and these are the two cities found in Miu.

We have the lions protecting the entrances to the underworld and we have the two peaks of the mountain supporting heaven. I found this to be a fascinating combination and the Land of Miu was built entirely around the image and the mythology associated with it.

1. The Land of Miu, 2. The King's Riddle, 3. The Lion Gods

How the Land of Miu Began

On 29 July 2005 I wrote in a post, “Cat’s Eyes. What mysterious land is hidden within their depths?”

I was talking about the eyes of my female cat, Sophie (on the right in the photo above). She would (and still does) sit and stare at me with a knowledgeable look. I often wondered what she was thinking. And she always came across as a being that is older and wiser than her years. She is an aloof cat and she expects obedience from her human slaves … for that is how she makes us feel. For instance, she’s too good to use a cat flap; a cat of her status has door men or women to do her bidding. She acts like royalty.

On the other hand, there is also her brother, Jasper (on the left). He’s always been a loving cat and it’s not unusual for him to walk into the room, straight up to where you are sitting, jump onto your lap and pat your face with his paw. He wants totals focus from us. He wants lots of patting and loving. He’s bigger than his sister and he portrays a fearless leader. However, he’s not as courageous as he would like us to believe. On numerous occasions his sister was the one that killed a rat, but he would snatch it from her and pretend he was victorious in the hunt. And in a scuffle, we’ve seen Jasper hiding in the bushes while his sister exerts her authority in the cat kingdom.

Somewhere around this time in 2005 I had a dream. The exact date is not noted anywhere, but I still remember the dream clearly … mainly because it was referred to in the book.

I dreamt that a little girl went butterfly hunting in her large, secluded back yard. At the very back of the yard (and this really doesn’t make sense, but remember, it was a dream) there was a large rock that overhung a secluded spot below. There was a bit of a drop involved. Anyway, the girl rested on the rock and presently heard voices. When she gazed over the edge of this large rock she discovered two cats sitting together, talking about a mysterious underground world. The girl listened as the cats spoke of the trouble they were in, about another cat who was trying to kill them and what they intended to do to outsmart their pursuer.

I believe I woke up around this time. If not, I remember no more than this.

The dream and my two cats gave me the first glimpse of the Land of Miu. I wondered how I could make a story from these scant ideas and very soon had the basics of a world and at least two of the characters. Of course, I didn’t want the story to be about cats so I decided that the Miuan people could shape shift. Sophie and Jasper made a cameo appearance in the beginning of the first book (which at that time was titled “Cat’s Eyes”) as did a reference to the dream itself.

When the cats changed back to their Miuan form, they insisted they be called by their Miuan names which are Alara and Siptah. These two characters are joined by Kate and Emma, two human girls.

On 13 September 2005 I began writing the first chapter of the first book. It would be five years before the first book was published with the original name “Cat’s Eyes”. That was in December 2010. This month the second edition will be published with a new name, The Land of Miu.

Together, the four characters go on one adventure after the other. So you can expect to see more of them in the future. Apart from that no one can say what the future holds for the series, but where it came from is now quite clear.

1. The Land of Miu, 2. The King's Riddle, 3. The Lion Gods, My Writing:

The Land of Miu Series – New Titles

The Land of Miu series is changing, as announced in my post “Cat’s Eyes” to be Renamed. Yet it’s more than just the first book to be renamed and republished … and it’s all very exciting.

Regardless of my statement, “The cover for this book will remain the same…”, I have once again changed my mind and there will be a new cover too. It is in the process of being designed by a third party and I simply cannot wait to receive it and start promoting it to the world! That will happen by the end of next week, I think.

Besides the above, books two and three will also undergo a radical change. Both books have received new titles and I will commission new covers for them as well, once the first cover has been finalised.

The series name is unchanged. It has been and will remain The Land of Miu series. The three planned books are as follows:

The Land of Miu (Book 1), previously published with the name “Cat’s Eyes”, the second edition will be released on 25 November 2011.

The King’s Riddle (Book 2) will be released on 25 January 2012.

The Lion Gods (Book 3) will be released in late 2012 or early 2013.

1. The Land of Miu, 2. The King's Riddle, 3. The Lion Gods, My Writing:

“Cat’s Eyes” to be Renamed

A decision has been made to republish Cat’s Eyes as a second edition using a new title The Land of Miu. It has been a concern for some months that people will look at the former title and think the book is about cats, when in fact it isn’t. The book is about two young sisters who have an adventure in another world. It’s filled with magic, mythology, suspense and family. The only connection to cats is that the Miuan people are shapeshifters and often take the form of cats. They are also not human and have a resemblance to a cat with the top half of their face being very cat like, but don’t dare say that to a Miuan as they become highly offended by the comment. 😀

I feel “Cat’s Eyes” is a good name for the story, however, it does give the wrong impression and for that reason I know republishing with a new title is a good move.

Besides, it means the book will be updated in some ways. The cover for this book will remain the same as I think it’s highly important that the two versions resemble each other. It is also extremely important that the people who have already purchased the book KNOW this is the same story. I don’t want anyone feeling cheated and deceived.

Cat’s Eyes is the first edition. The Land of Miu is the second edition. They are one and the same book.

Books 2 and 3 will also be given a name change. The titles are yet to be confirmed.

Please refer to Kayelle Press for more details.

1. The Land of Miu, Books & Movies, Speculative Realms

Free eBooks for Summer/Winter

Cat's Eyes speculative-realms-coverI’ve heard that some people only read in the summer and others love to read in front of a warm fire during winter, so it seemed appropriate for me to add my ebooks to the Smashwords July Summer/Winter Sale July 1-31 because as Smashwords have so rightly acknowledged, “It’s summer in the Northern Hemiphere, and winter for our friends in the Southern Hemisphere.”

And if people really love to read then why not give the ebooks away for free!

So that is what I’ve done. You can get a copy of Cat’s Eyes and/or Speculative Realms: Where there’s a will, there’s a way right now for free. But this deal is only valid until 31 July 2011.

Click on the book covers above to be taken to the ebook of your choice. Or, grab a copy of them both. Membership to the Smashwords website is free, so it will cost you exactly nothing but a few minutes of your time.

If you enjoy the ebooks, please take a moment or two to write a quick review. It would be much appreciated.

And while you’re there, don’t forget to see what other free ebooks you can find.

1. The Land of Miu, 2. The King's Riddle, My Writing:

Publishing Update

When Cat’s Eyes was published in December 2010, there was an indication at the back of the book that Cat’s Paw would be published three months later – in March 2011. It’s obvious that hasn’t happened. Why, you may be asking.

The printer used for Cat’s Eyes used to be quite good. The first time I used them, for Speculative Realms, the service was great. My lack of experience meant I had to seek help several times and I always received it within 24 hours, and the instructions were clear and concise. Two years later, when I was ready to publish Cat’s Eyes, I returned to them and noticed a definite change straight away. All indications showed a plummet in service level, to almost non-existent. There were so many bad stories going around and ignored pleas for help, that it made me wonder if I were doing the right thing using the company again. However, for various reasons, I decided to forge ahead and, luckily, do not have to add my name to the list of people who needed help and didn’t get it.

Yet, my gut tells me not to take such a risk again. And I’ve decided to listen to my gut as it usually (but not always) serves me well.

At the beginning of this year, I started looking for another printer. I would have preferred one in Australia but every quote I received (and there were a lot) was VERY expensive. In truth, not even close in comparison to the printer I had already been using. This made me feel a little concerned, but I chose to continue looking.

Then I discovered Lightning Source. I researched the company, what people were saying about them, their prices and whatever else I could find out about them and discovered a possible replacement. Their offices were overseas, which wasn’t a problem, but the one recurring comment I kept seeing was their postal fees were high. I decided to start an account with them so that I could do some comparative research, but I kept getting this niggling feeling about the whole thing, which made me hesitant. That’s when I discovered they would be setting up shop in Australia. At that point, I made the decision to put everything on hold.

Today I found out the Australian office is open for business. At the news, I went straight to Lightning Source and asked some questions. It’s the weekend, so I don’t expect a response until Monday but my gut is telling me to follow this through to the end. When the account is set up and the comparative research done, I’ll decide what I’m going to do next.

At this stage, I believe I might have a new printer in Australia, but let’s not count our horses too soon.