"A bit bloody dusty in here, innit?"
Shit. I just checked the date of my last blog entry. The first of June. So let me begin, even though I already have, by apologising for not motivating my lazy arse and letting my thousands of fans know what's going on in the f+cked up world of the ML Stewart monster.
As I mentioned on Twitter, I have been asked by HarperCollins UK to submit the full manuscript for my current book project "Hunter". This is on a strictly 'no promises' basis. In other words don't sue us for wasting your time if we think the book is shit.
One of HC's editors first contacted me earlier this year after reading The Facebook Killer (which she absolutely loved) and asked if I would consider writing a book for them. And so, after several emails, phone calls and storyline changes, I am now approaching 70,000 words of my latest novel, Hunter.
Set in London, it's the story of a serial killer whose horrific crimes were never rationalised, even though he was captured and is now imprisoned in the high security unit of Belmarsh Prison. When, twenty years later, another victim is found, mutilated in the exact same fashion, DS Liz Porteous is assigned the task of solving the riddle surrounding the original murders in a effort to stop the modern day body count rising.
If that sounded like a sales pitch, I'm sorry, it wasn't supposed to. I am writing Hunter in the same style as FBK. There are manic moments, dark (almost sadistic humour) and I defy anyone who eventually reads the book (whether it is published by HC or self-published) to work out the plot before I allow it.
One or two people have pointed out that FBK was a little two-dimensional, and my reply has always been - yes, it's supposed to be. You have one man and a laptop computer. That man's psyche becomes three, but they always belong to Dermott, and his apples, his victims, are just that. Victims. The reader doesn't need to know any more about them than what they give away on their Facebook page.
Hunter on the other hand delves much deeper. We learn a lot more about Liz Porteous, the serial killer's mind is opened up to us and, Edward King, a freelance journalist, makes a clumsy entrance to add to the storyline. But be warned, I do still indulge in moments of literary insanity.
As for book sales? Well [gets out the calculator] In a nutshell, I have sold (and given a few away) 81,384 books. Across the board I am currently selling a little over 1,000 books a month through Amazon, and around 1,700 per month via Smashwords, 99% of which go to Apple readers.
FBK 1 & 2 have been numbers 1 and 2 in the UK Apple Horror charts for over a year now, and are still fighting off the likes of Stephen King. FBK3 managed #17 in the Overall Apple Top 100, but that lesser known Fifty Ways To Beat Your Bitch opened the floodgates for an Erotifest and Apple buyers lost their minds, their principles and quite a lot of skin from their arse cheeks, too.
To be honest I rarely check my book sales nowadays, let alone the reviews. I just hammer away, day in day out on my next piece of work. I have a strict regime. Get up, read the paper online, drink horrendous amounts of tea until my kidneys scream, begin writing, smoke cigarettes until my lungs scream, move on to red wine until my liver screams, and keep writing until my characters scream.
I would just like to add that I have done no self-promotion whatsoever for almost five months now, and book sales have remained constant. It may be snobbery, but I now tend to look at the self-promo-prostitutes with an air of disdain...which, reminds me, I have a date with DS Porteous. It would be rude to keep her waiting.
Twitter Rubbish - @AuthorMLStewart
E-Hate Mail - firstname.lastname@example.org