Sunday, 25 September 2011


...I just went and did a Lucas all over my book.

Not as bad as a full-on stinking Lucas, where the original work is obscured to the point that characters are acting differently and scenes now mean opposite things. This is a rather more minor affair; a sweep through the text to make improvements, clarify points, and generally get rid of some shoddy sentences that had no right being there in the first place.

But even so, it places me in that devilish position of having altered the work after publishing it. Self-published authors are notorious for this, especially when they haven't done a particularly good job of proofreading and editing, and are then prodded into making improvements after they read the scathing reviews. This wasn't the case for me, though I did take into account some comments on matters other than editing. Anyway - I felt it needed to be done. So I'd best explain why, and what I'm doing to make the process a little easier for those who've already shelled out their cash...

1) This happened because I finally got round to doing the POD version via Createspace. I decided the beginning wasn't quite as good as it could be. Maybe the first few paragraphs needed toning down a bit. And then there were a few lines of dialogue that didn't ring true. And a couple of points that could have been clearer. And then... well, once you get started, it's impossible to stop. Most of the changes are in the very first chapter, but there's lots of little bits all over the place. None of which changes the story or the characters, and I doubt a new reader will even notice. You might not even spot the majority of changes on a re-read. It's largely a matter of polishing. While I was at it, I had another go at the cover, simply because my graphic design skills are limited and I'd grown sick of the old one.

2) If you bought the Smashwords version before all this - just download the latest revision. You can always get any revision later than the one you initially paid for. Kindle customers can re-download it, and they'll automatically get the latest version. If you want to keep the old one, you'll have to save it somewhere else before you get the new one.

However, people who bought it at Barnes & Noble and the other online retailers Smashwords distribute the book to won't be able to get a free update (I think - I'm not sure how they run things). Therefore, if you've paid hard cash for the book but would like the new version without paying even harder cash, please use the following Smashwords voucher to get a free copy: QH68Y. This will be up until the end of October, by which point the book should have filtered through to other retailers, and hopefully it won't be a problem any more.

And now I need to get back to that POD version, and some more work on the new novel. I'll try and write something interesting on here soon. Promise!


  1. Paul,

    I promise I'm not stalking you (although that might change when you're a bit more famous) but I haven't been able to find any other way of contacting you so I do hope you pick this up.

    Rather than make a long post here trying to explain myself would you be so kind as to drop an e-mail to Gillie at:

    And just tell her you're the guy Harold Lloyd told her about.


    PS... I really liked the "cover". Didn't realise you'd done it your self.

  2. I like the new cover! The change is subtle but it looks classier.

  3. Frida -

    Thanks! Also, I'm grateful for being listed in your recommended SF book page. Double thanks!

  4. You're welcome! I've been reviewing books weekly for more than six months now, and The Last Man on Earth Club is still one of the first books I'd recommend to anyone. It's a great book, and I hope it'll continue reach more readers.

    I really have selfish motivations; I want more people to read the book so I could talk about it with them!

  5. I suppose I'd better do some more marketing, then...

    I've been holding off until the POD version is done, which is taking forever - typesetting is a pain and Createspace take forever to get proof copies across the Atlantic :-(