Spring 2020 – Princelings update

princleings and the pirates audio

Is it really three months since my last bit of news? Apparently so.

It’s been a very busy period, and information has sometimes been hard to find, mainly from ACX/Audible about ‘live’ dates and locations.

So, this is what’s happened, in book order. It seems to make more sense than chronological.

The Princelings of the East (#1)

Princelings of the East audiobook

Princelings 1 is now available as an audiobook. It went on sale on Feb 19th, but that only became apparent in March! There is also an updated Kindle file available if you like to read along, or use Whispersynch. A file for iPad, Kobo & Nook will follow.

You can buy the audiobook at the following online retailers: Audible, Amazon, Apple (iTunes)

Princelings and the Pirates (#2)

Pirates is currently being developed as an audiobook. Chris Preece has narrated a dozen or more chapters, and I’ve reviewed the first ten in sequence. He’s doing a great job of it.

He’s had a bit of trouble settling on a pronunciation for the name Nerys, Kira’s sister. I wonder how important it is? I always pronounce it the same way as Nerys in Deep Space 9. I suppose it isn’t as common a name as it might have been when I was small.

As with the first book, I’ll be uploading a revised Kindle edition before the audiobook comes out.

Princelings and the Lost City (#3)

Dani has drafted a revised cover to fit the audiobook format, but I’ve yet to edit it for Chris to narrate. I hope we get started on this before the summer, though.

Princelings Revolution (#10)

Book 10 pre-draft

This is only a draft cover, but the good news is, I’m sending Dani the detailed brief this week.

I’ve now completed the beta version of the final book in the series, and it’s out for reading with several people.

I’ve already had feedback from Tori, who has not only made several useful comments, but she’s a whizz at finding typos, especially when I’ve typed the wrong word. Actually, it’s to do with accessibility software. I think my iPad, if not my Mac, has the capacity to read something to me. Maybe I should add that to the editing process.

Princelings Revolution is currently targeted for October 1st on Smashwords, but that’s a reference to a date in book 4. I expect it will be later, although I don’t want it to disappear in the Christmas rush.

It seems that many traditional publishers are postponing book launches till after the pandemic passes. That means there’ll be a huge rush of new books later in the year (hopefully this year). So I’ll keep my options open, as I have no wish to get caught in the Christmas market. Late January will be just as good.

Although the tenth anniversary of the publishing of the first book will be at the end of November next year. I must put a special celebration together for that.

eBooks on Sale

Smashwords has been running a sale since March, and I’ve had most of the Princelings books at special prices, including the Box Sets.

I think I’ll change them up a little for May. Check my Smashwords page here.

These offers are only available on Smashwords, but you can get them in mostly any format.

Keep safe, and keep reading!

The Princelings of the East – 3rd ebook edition plus Audiobook

Princelings of the East audiobook

All the work for the audiobook of Princelings book 1 is complete and loaded onto ACX. I’m just waiting for technical approval, after which I’ll be able to give you some links and also some FREE COPY CODES.

Princelings of the East audiobook

Free Audiobook Codes

Obviously there are reasons for giving free codes: to get reviews! So please watch this space to get a code and be able to review in three parts: the story, the narration and the technical bit.

Third Edition

The third edition has had some minor tidying up and smoothing of some of the wording. This makes it in synch with the audiobook, which means that if you like to listen and read at the same time, you will be able to do so using Amazon’s Whispersynch technology.

The third edition will also be going to Apple Books (and Kobo, Nook and Smashwords), so if you prefer to read on your iPad, you can also get the audiobook to listen along.

The ebook remains free on Apple iTunes, Kobo, Nook and of course Smashwords.

You may be charged 99 c/p if it’s the first time you’ve bought it from Amazon, but if you already own it, you can get the upgrade via your kindle account.

Princelings as Audiobooks

Princelings of the East audiobook

Audiobooks – the coming thing. With the growing popularity of smart speakers, it seemed the time to get the Princelings books onto audio. I mean, if someone is going to ask the admittedly unlikely question “Alexa, find me a fantasy book where guinea pigs are kings” I want them to find mine!

The procedure for indie publishing audiobooks is well documented elsewhere. The two main sources I’ve found for uploading audio files for publication are ACX (Amazon’s connection with Audible), and Findaway Voices, which recently made arrangements with Smashwords. Both have very good and helpful instructions for asking for auditions, and choosing your narrator. There are also the business things like payment and contracts, and technical aspect of quality, length and uploads.

Naturally I started from a different position.

Princelings audiobook cover

I was lazing on the sofa one Saturday, watching the auditions for The Voice UK. The next one up was a guy from Norfolk (where I live) who did audiobooks as one of his activities. When I heard him reading, I sat up and said “that’s Fred!” I had found my Fred and George, as far as I was concerned.

Scroll forward to this year, and I decided I’d better get these audiobooks started, with the Princelings of the East as priority. I tracked down my Voice, first through the tv show website, then to his Facebook page. He did some audition tapes – a five minutes extract and a fifteen minute one, and after some more discussions, he got going on them.

Christopher Preece is delightful to work with, comes up with just want I want (sometimes without guidance) for the voices, and surprises me with some of the side characters sometimes. Who knew that Baden has a Sheffield accent? Fred, George, Hugo, Victor, Lupin and Nimrod are just as I hoped. I’ll hear his Lord Smallweed for the first time later today, as that chapter just went up on our working site. The brief: a nasty piece of work, who will become more evil as the series progresses.

The words need to match the kindle ebook exactly, in order to comply with Amazon’s specifications for Whispersynch. So, having given Chris a slightly updated version of book 1, I’m now tweaking bits where word flow is better in the audio version than the reading one.

There’ll be a new edition of Book 1 published before the audio is released. You can update your Kindle, iPad, Nook or Kobo from your purchase site, or get it free from Smashwords as usual, if Amazon isn’t pricematching.

I expect to get the audiobook online in January or February. You’ll probably be the first to know.

And after we finish The Princelings of the East, Chris will be starting on Princelings and the Pirates, followed by Princelings and the Lost City. It’ll depend on sales of those whether we do any more. Chris is excellent value for money, but it gets pricey when you have a ten book series!

And a quick ‘thank you’ to Dani English, who rustled up a revised Princelings cover even though she was packed with pre-Christmas commissions.

Note: I’ve set up a page for the audiobooks, but be warned – there’s a link to Chris’s stupendous rendition of Prince Ali on it!

Our first Box Set

Princelings Box Set 1

I’m bringing out the ebooks of the Princelings series in three box sets over a period of time, starting at the beginning with Books 1-3.  This will be released on 25th November 2016, and is available to pre-order at Apple iTunes, B&N for Nook, and Kobo now.  You will be able to get it for Kindle (and other formats) at Smashwords from the publication date.


Apple iTunes ** B&N for Nook ** Kobo


I know you’ve probably already got these books, but do tell your friends, and if you’d like to promote it in a post or tweet at anytime, just ask me for any other details (or an interview, or excerpt).

In case you’re wondering about the other two sets, one will be Books 4-6, available next year, and the third one Books 7-10, available some time after book 10 comes out, so maybe around 2021!