That Scoundrel Émile Dubois’ is a Winner of the B.R.A.G Medallion for Outstanding Fiction


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‘That Scoundrel Émile Dubois’ is a Winner of the B.R.A.G Medallion for Outstanding Fiction.

Winning this award really made my day. I had entered my first book, the paranormal –historical- romance satire of Gothic, ‘That Scoundrel
Émile Dubois’ just hoping that I might be one of those whose books are considered to be of a high enough literary standard to be awarded that medallion. Still, I wasn’t unduly optimistic  – for who doesn’t consider their own work to be good?  We wouldn’t carry on writing in the face of all discouragement if we didn’t . There are far easier ways to make money. – So, when I opened the email, informing me that I had won the award, I did a dance!

I would like to publicize this opportunity for the benefit of other Indie writers.

For those followers of my blog who are self-published authors, and interested in entering, the B.R.A.G website was set up by a group of experts connected with writing who saw the main problem for Indie authors: – that because there is no quality control, all self-published works are often dismissed wholesale as being by definition poorly written and badly edited.

To quote from the website:

According to publishing industry surveys, 8 out of 10 adults feel they have a book in them. But traditional or mainstream publishers reject all but a tiny percentage of manuscripts. Historically, this has presented a classic catch-22, in that you had to be a published author in order to get a publisher.
The advent of self-publishing companies and print-on-demand technology has changed this. Now anyone can publish a book and the number of books being self-published is exploding, reaching into the hundreds of thousands annually. However, there is virtually no control over what is published or by whom, and industry experts believe that up to 95% of indie books are poorly written and edited.
Compounding this problem, these books are rarely reviewed in The New York Times Book Review or by other leading sources. Additionally, the reviews and ratings at online booksellers are often provided by the author’s friends and family, and are therefore unreliable.
There are professional book review services and writing competitions within the self-publishing industry that help address this problem. However, none provide an independent, broad-based and reader-centric source to advise the public which indie books merit the investment of their time and money.
This is precisely the reason that indieBRAG and the B.R.A.G. Medallion exist. We have brought together a global group of readers who are passionate about reading, and who love to help us discover talented self-published authors.

brag-medallion-stickerThere is a fairly long wait – four months or so. I gather that the B.R.A.G website is always on the look out for readers, too.

Here’s the link.Here’s the link

I was particularly pleased that ‘Émile won this award, because he and Sophie have always been my favourites out of all my characters and are the lovers whom I love best to write about.

I am very fond of the romantic Reynaud Ravensdale and his amazonian lady love Isabella in ‘Ravensdale’, and I have become equally fond of that pugilistic, caddish musical virtuoso Harley Venn and the down-to-earth Clarinda in ‘The Villainous Viscount Or the Curse of the Venns’. In ‘Alex Sager’s Demon’ I was also particularly fond of the haughty Ivan Ostrowski, and I had a lot of sympathy for Natalie Nicholson, who wanted to be a successful modern model, not the love object of a man from Tsarist Russia.

Still, writing of those absurdly over-the-top goings on in the North Wales of the time of the French Revolutionary Wars was the greatest fun of all, maybe because then I was a novice author, and those characters were so vivid to me, they at times almost took over the writing.

There was the pure incongruity of those two eighteenth century scoundrels caught up in occult happenings. Then there was their larger than life aspect: many historical romances feature a hero who is a highwayman, or a smuggler. I decided to go for the full hit and put both on Émile and Georges’s CV. That was besides their experience as the eighteenth-century equivalent of protection racketeers in Paris: and it  is when he is in this guise that Sophie meets ‘Monsieur Gilles’.

I loved writing about the redoubtable, Tarot reading Agnes, and the heartless, sadistic siren Ceridwen Kenrick. I had a great deal of fun from depicting Sophie’s benefactor, the elderly Countess, and the ‘sad tangles’ in which she got her embroidery, work for the poor box, or her tapestry work, which poor Sophie always had to right.

And then, I loved writing about the creepy (in all senses of the word) dirty minded, gossiping, giggling Goronwy Kenrick, who somehow manages to be self-righteous about ‘that French ruffian’s’ criminal history.

Yet, the unlovable Kenrick has his tragic element; just as Émile longs for reunion with his dead siblings, so does Kenrick yearn for reunion with the one human being he has ever loved – his late wife. That is why it was finally written as dark comedy.

The original winning this award inspires me to return to writing the sequel with renewed vigour.

‘That Scoundrel Emile Dubois’ is available on

here

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