East of Constantinople, West of Shanghai


New covers for Aculeo & Amunet

One of the best features offered by ebooks is the option of updating the files.

In the last few days we’ve been hard at work on some new covers for my Aculeo & Amunet ebooks.
Reader feedback has been pretty consistent in the past months – the readers love the stories, but they don’t like the covers.

And we know it’s the covers that sell the stories.

So, in a few hours the ebooks will be up with new artwork1 – the work of Italian graphic master, Luca Morandi.
And the readers of Karavansara can take a glimpse at the first of the three new covers, right here and now.

Continue reading


A book is a book (sometimes)

With 2015, a new European Community regulation come into being, stating that VAT on digital contents will be calculated based on the country of purchase.
This is extremely stupid – as it hits small businesses, cottage companies and small publishers, forcing them to keep a separate accounting for VAT based on the countries in which their products are sold.
This, because European Community countries do have each a different VAT regime for digital contents – ranging fro 4% to 23%.

The new rule was apparently introduced to solve the problem of Amazon’s tax dodge (Amazon being VAT-registered in Luxembourg) but the effects are horrid – and do not hit Amazon, but readers and publishers.
In Italy – where I live – VAT for ebooks used to be a staggering 22%.
No matter where I purchased my ebooks, that would be the extra for me to pay. Continue reading


The gamification of piracy

Last week, Bride of the Swamp God, the first in the Aculeo & Amunet ebook series, was pirated on a forum.
A link, two servers, my ebook available for free.

It happened on one of those websites where the pirate – but they call them sharers – gets points for uploading items, points that can be spent for a number of services… including requesting a specific title, a book, a movie.

It was a first, for me, and while I did all that was in my power to have the links canceled, I had the opportunity of discussing the situation with a friend, and this led to a number of consideration that I’m trying to summarize in this post.
Mind you, I haven’t discovered nothing new, and I’m not offering any momentous solutions.
But let’s try and see where this gets us… Continue reading


Planning for 2015

sextantI was reading this interesting post on Percival Constantine’s blog, the other day.

Now, I’m always thinking in serials, when I write.
Granted, I wrote a few one shots, but – probably due to my preferences in reading – I tend to prefer short fiction that goes in series.

Right now I’m working on my first English-language novel (I know, I know, I told you so already, ad nauseam), and I’m thinking of it in terms of the first episode in a serial.
I’ve two other stories featuring the same character – both currently in the form of a logline, but promising.
Then, of course, we’ll see what the publisher and the readers have to say about that.

As soon as I deliver the finished novel, I’ll start on my next project – once again, a serial. Continue reading


OK, sorry but I have to share this.
I just got the best review ever on Amazon…

I can’t understand the enthusiasm of the previous reviews, the text is too short for an evaluation. Yeah, sure, it seems to be well written, but what evaluation can I make??

And so he went and gave it a One-star rating.