Monday, 3 September 2012

Best Seller!

Hello folks, long, long time -  most of the things I post these days are on facebook or twitter, and you're all more than welcome to join me there.    There's a new book, The Prisoner of Brenda, coming in October, but there's also this (below) to talk about:  I've set up a series of creative writing courses for first time novelists.   These are aimed at anyone who has ever dreamed about having a best selling novel -  have a wee read of the Press Release I sent out, and get in touch if you fancy a shot at it. 


From the controversial Fifty Shades of Grey to the magical world of Harry Potter, many of us have harboured dreams of writing a best selling novel.


Now acclaimed novelist Colin Bateman is launching a new series of courses aimed at aspiring writers – and he hopes they will help launch the UK’s next literary phenomenon.    


He is running his ‘Secrets of Writing a Best-Seller’ weekend courses in his home town of Bangor.  The first, in October, sold out in 48 hours.    


Secrets of Writing a Best Seller is an inspirational two-day course aimed at those who want to write commercial fiction that sells.   It is best suited to beginners who might have an idea for a novel but don’t know how to get started, or those who have a novel underway but aren’t sure how to progress with it.


The course will look at where ideas come from, genre, research, dialogue, character development, plotting, re-writing and editing, preparing synopsis and outlines and at how to get motivated and stay motivated. It will take a look at the business of publishing, and students will be guided in the best ways to approach agents and publishers.  It will also look at the option of self-publishing and chat with a leading agent.    


Colin says, ‘Many people dream about being a best selling writer…..but don’t think it’s possible because they have no idea how to start writing a novel.   I was exactly like that when I started out – lots of dreams but no idea about how to take the first step – or the second, or third.’  


Although reasonably intensive will also be conducted in a friendly and relaxed manner, with plenty of opportunity for participants not only to get advice from a best selling author, but also to ask whatever questions they have, as well as to participate in group discussions with other aspiring writers. 


‘People can be quite shy when it comes to their writing,’ says Colin, ‘I know I would never have shown anything I was writing to anyone before I was published, so I’m not expecting people to bare their souls in public.  But I hope it will not only be informative, but that it will be fun too and participants will go away inspired to write their first best-seller.’ 


If you are interested in attending the course please register as soon as possible, either via Colin Bateman’s Best Seller page on facebook or by emailing 




Monday, 29 August 2011

Dan Starkey is back....

Dan Starkey returns in my new novel, 'Nine Inches', which is published this October. After the tumultuous events of 'Belfast Confidential' Dan has left journalism and is now offering 'a bespoke service' for important people with difficult problems - and the first of these is radio shock jock Jack Caramac. Jack's son has been kidnapped - but only for one hour, and returned with a threatening note. Now Dan has to find the kidnappers, and soon finds himself thrust into Belfast's very dark underworld and facing two gangsters hell bent on taking over the entire city.

I've also ventured into the world of e-books recently. While my usual titles are now starting to appear on Kindle, I've also produced a couple of books which are exclusively available through that medium. The first is called 'Dublin Express', and it's a small collection of five short stories which have appeared previously in different publications over the past twelve years. The second is 'National Anthem', the stage play which premiered at the Belfast Festival in 2010 and was subsequently shortlisted for 'Best New Play' at the Irish Theatre Awards.

Friday, 27 May 2011

A lazy man am I.....

Oh Lordy, the time does pass and I haven't updated this blog in a long, long, long, long time. So, no excuses apart from being lazy and doing most of my rambling on facebook these days, where you're welcome to join me.
The new novel, 'Nine Inches' comes out in October - it features the return of Dan Starkey to the streets of Belfast nearly seven years after I last wrote about him.
The paperback of my last book, 'Dr.Yes', comes out in June - it's the third in the Mystery Man series.
Elsewhere, I'm currently writing a screenplay for the BBC based on Tim Brannigan's memoir of growing up in West Belfast, 'Where Are You Really From?', I'm writing an Irish language series set in a newspaper in Belfast, and also I've been busy on the road promoting my latest children's book. (See below)

I've been enjoying visiting schools in the last few months around Northern Ireland promoting my children's books - if you happen to be a teacher anywhere on this island and you'd like me to visit, do drop me a line via the website and I'll e-mail you an information sheet.

Friday, 27 August 2010

It's Chilli out there!

The new book, Dr. Yes, is being launched at an unusual venue - a marquee at Belfast's annual Chillifest. Chillifest is part of the Open House festival, and it features a No Alibis tent which will be hosting the book's release on Saturday, September 11 at 2 pm. The event itself is free, but it's a fiver to get in to the festival itself, which has lots of other attractions, including food, beer, wine and live music. Official release date is September 30, so this'll be your chance to pick one up early, or indeed, to get ridiculously drunk.

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Dr. Yes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The new Mystery Man novel, Dr. Yes, is being published on September 30th, which is a month earlier than previously announced. If you're on the island of Ireland there are four events lined up to support this - one being at the Big Oak Literary and Arts Festival in Derry on the weekend of September 19th, then there's a launch at Waterstones in Dublin in the first week of October, and also an event at a theatre in Blanchardstown in North Dublin (sorry I don't have the date to hand - on my hols in Florida!) . There will also be a launch event in Belfast. This will again be staged through No Alibis, but for a change this will most likely be taking place outside of the store - reason being that October also sees the debut of my first stage play, National Anthem, which is on at the Baby Grand Opera House for two weeks. We're hoping to hold the book launch in tandem with the play, so watch out for details of that. Once again I've been fairly remiss about updating this ol' blog, but if you are interested in keeping better informed, why not join me over on Facebook, where you'll be overwhelmed with detail......

Monday, 24 May 2010

And the winner is.....

Very happy to report that 'The Day of the Jack Russell' has just won The Last Laugh Award for the best comic crime novel published in the UK in 2009 at the international CrimeFest. Didn't even know I was in the running! I think an extra drink at the Dublin launch of the book on June 9th is in order. Everyone welcome! It's at The Gutter Bookshop.