Tag Archives: iPhone

The Naked Writer #1

Inspired by Dean Wesley Smith’s posts Writing in Public, I thought it would be cool (and possibly motivating for me) to write regular updates on my own daily writing, and general publishing and reading experiences. Really what a blog was about back in the day – an actual diary of what I have done each day and collection of my thoughts.

So here goes on Day 1!

I’m currently finishing off a short story called Time’s Arrow. It’s an alternate history piece set in 1415 at the Battle of Agincourt. I’m planning to send it out to magazines when it’s finished to see if I can get it published in a pro market. If not I’ll self-publish it myself. I have been struggling with it a bit and had quite a long hiatus, but recently I have worked out a way to get back in the groove. One of my main writing problems is finding enough time. Usually the only realistic slot I get is first thing in the morning, but if I am too tired to get up at 6 am I have a problem. Writing in my lunch hour at work is problematic. I don’t feel comfortable sitting and writing fiction in an open plan office. There’s a park nearby, but sometimes difficult to get a bench to sit on and scribble.

The alternative that I came up with last Friday was to just use my iPhone. Specifically I’m using the Pages app and just adding to a Word document on that. Initially I thought this was madness, but it’s actually working quite well. I tend to go quite fast when I’m writing so can quite easily knock off 100 to 150 words or so in 5-10 minutes, which is about the time it takes for Outlook to load in the morning or while I’m waiting for a tea to brew. About 3-5 sessions of that a day and I’m easily at my daily goal of 500 words a day.

So that’s what I did today. 3 sessions and that took me to 562 words. I’m near the end of the story I think – just over 4,000 words so hopefully I will finish it this week – it’s been hanging around far too long!

Other things I have done today include:

Reviewing two submissions for Alt Hist – one got declined, the other went into the Maybe pile

Working out why Alt Hist 2 is listed at the price of $2.99 on Amazon and not $6.99. Turns out I mistakenly put it up on Google Play at $2.99 ages ago. I have now since rectified the mistake, but will probably take a few weeks for Amazon to change.

Followed a few people who followed me on Wattpad and sent them messages.

Posted in a Goodreads forum – Fantasy Fanatics


Started on Feast of Crows. Enjoyed the prologue and the first chapter – both with new characters which was a bit strange to start with. I haven’t read from this series for a while so I was looking forward to being reacquainted with old favourites. That will happen soon, I’m sure.

Aiming to finish reading Sweet Justice (a collection of Judge Dredd short stories) later this evening.

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I am Joining the Queue for the New iPhone 4S and Infinity Blade II

Despite the fact that many commentators have been quite negative about the new iPhone 4S announcement, I’m actually quite excited! I’ve had my old iPhone 3 for what seems like a century now, the case is battered and scarred, and the innards are as sluggish as my brain on a dark morning! I’m not usually one to get caught up in the hype of Apple’s new launches, but this time I am – but more out of necessity than anything else!

So I’m looking forward to it!

And that Infinity Blade II game looks pretty cool as well – might just be tempted.

Mr Jobs and co., looks like I’ll be first in line come October 14th (virtually on my PC that is I think – never did like Mac computers).

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Zombie Scanner: Are You an iPhone Zombie

Now there’s an App for that!

Publisher Three Rivers Press and author Max Brooks have just released “an iPhone app to survive the coming zombie apocalypse.

Here’s a video about the App:

And some blurb from the website:

As we all know, the world we live in has become a scary place, and the global increase in zombie attacks is of major cause for alarm. Developed by bestselling author and noted zombieologist, Max Brooks, the Zombie Survival Guide Scanner iPhone App is the ideal zombie detector tool. Use your camera-enabled iPhone to scan friends and neighbors and determine their level of infection. Use the app’s sharing functionality to spread the

Don’t be foolish with your most precious asset — life. Hordes of zombies may be stalking you right now without you even knowing it. The Zombie Survival Guide Scanner iPhone App is your first line of defense in an undead world.

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Latest and Greatest Hits: Top Grossing Posts from Praeter Naturam

How amazingly self-indulgent of me, but I thought Sunday would be a good day for reflecting on some of the blog posts created over the last month that have also drawn the most hits over the last month, so here they are the top five!

  1. Review of Iain Banks iPhone App – way out in front this one, I think it did particularly well on the search engines and also got picked up by some Iain Banks forums.
  2. New Info on Surface Detail by Iain Banks from his iPhone App – a post so heavily related to this month’s number 1 they could almost be twins!
  3. Feedbook distribution seems to be bringing in the readers – and this post certainly brought in a bit of traffic too!
  4. Blurred Lines Between Vanity Publishing and Self Publishing – self-publishing is always a popular topic I guess.
  5. Hard-Luck Diggings: The Early Jack Vance – I’m pleased that this book has got some publicity from my blog, it sounds like a great title.

Which post did you enjoy most?

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Iain Banks iPhone App Review – Correction!

For some crazy reason I seem to have not spotted some of the videos contained in the protected section of the Iain Banks iPhone App. I have now corrected the original review so please go there to see the whole listing.

It seems that these videos are unique to the app at the moment – can’t find them on YouTube for instance or on a Google search for Iain Banks videos.

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If e-books want to get serious

The logo of The Bookseller magazine
Image via Wikipedia

Then they will need to come down in price and also be available in more user-friendly readers, such as the Apple Tablet.

This is according to a survey of UK publishers and booksellers carried out by The Bookseller.

I think this has got to be a bare minimum before e-books can seriously gain any penetration in the general trade market.

a) Why would you buy a digital version if it costs more?

b) I am afraid the Kindle/Sony Reader are not really sexy/integrated enough with other media to encourage people to read books electronically for pleasure. I know there are advocates of these devices – but the iPhone phenomenon has neatly shown that specific portable electronic devices are a waste of time – devices need to be multi-functional.

Unfortunately the size of the iPhone counts against it as a serious reading device for more than a few minutes – I’ve tried it – the screen is just too small.

Also why would most sensible, i.e. non-geeks, non-tech industry or publishing people, really want to buy something just so they can read books on it? Duh – there’s books for that!?

I can see e-books happening in a big way at some point in the future, but not yet.

Physical books will always be my favourite I’m afraid – I’ve actually started getting snobbier about it recently – for instance I’m loving reading a special edition hardcover everyman which includes a ribbon bookmark – so much classier than your standard paperback.

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Quietly Researching

I feel a bit like a hermit at the moment! 

In fact very monk-like, which I suppose is appropriate. 
I have been working on my novel, although work has been busy with a trip to a conference recently, but not actually doing any writing. Instead I have had my head in a book, or ebook sometimes either on my iPhone or pdf on a laptop screen.
Not very interesting to hear about though, but these are the facts of the case me honour!