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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi from the UK,

I'm a writer from Sheffield. For those of my American cousins who don't know, Sheffield's a city in Yorkshire, England known for its steel industry (now sadly in deep decline) and, let's face it, for being bloody cold and bloody rainy most of the time. When I'm not chasing around after my two-year old son, I spend much of my time holed up in my study wracking my brain for the next word, the next sentence, the next paragraph - a process which I'm sure is painfully familiar to many of you.

I started writing seriously about five or six years ago. Since then my short stories have been widely published in the UK, US and Australia. My first publication was in The London Magazine, England's oldest literary periodical, with a history stretching back to 1732. As you can imagine, I was incredibly proud to see my work in the pages of a magazine that's played host to writers from Wordsworth and Keats to T.S. Eliot. Other UK magazines that've featured my work include: Staple, Dream Catcher, The Willisden Herald New Short Stories 3, Various Authors A Fiction Desk Anthology, The Grist Anthology of New Writing, and The Momaya Annual Review. In the US my literary fiction has appeared in publications such as The Chaffey Review, Fast Forward: A Collection of Flash Fiction, Audience, Cause & Effect, Hoi Polloi and Voice From the Planet. I've had crime and sci-fi stories published in magazines such as Swill, and Escape Velocity, and I have a horror novella out with Comet Press.

Short stories are a wonderful learning ground. I once read that all aspiring authors should write fifty short stories before tackling a novel - a principle I followed for three years. For the last three years I've been writing crime novels. Unfortunately, I haven't yet been able to translate my success with publishing short stories to novels - lots of positive comments from editors but no takers (another scenario I'm sure many of you are painfully familiar with). So I decided to take a chance and self-publish to kindle. My debut novel 'The Society of Dirty Hearts' has been available for a couple of weeks now, and I'm thrilled at the prospect of being able to get my work in front of readers.

Here's my novel's blurb:

'In a small town where nothing much happens, teenage girls are going missing with alarming regularity. Some turn up dead. Others don't turn up at all. The police attribute the deaths to suicide and drug use. Julian Harris, a university student haunted by nightmares about the girls, believes there's something more sinister at work.

When Julian stumbles across the body of one of the girls, he determines to find out the truth - a decision that leads him into a murky world of drugs, prostitution, blackmail and murder.

The Society of Dirty Hearts is a mystery novel that explores twisted psychological depths full of dark secrets and darker desires. '

It's available for just $1.35.

Being new to this, I don't have a clue what to expect. Maybe my novel will only sell a handful of copies. I'm pretty sure I can write and tell a decent story, but that's no gaurantee I'll avoid obscurity. Whatever happens, I'm incredibly excited to be able to connect with readers and writers here.

Thanks for taking the time to read this. And for anyone who wants to connect with me elsewhere, here's a link to my twitter page: http://twitter.com/#!/ben_cheethamUK

Cheers,

Ben
 

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Welcome to KindleBoards, Ben, and congratulations on your book! :)

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Just uploaded new cover for my book. More colourful and grungy. Hopefully, more eye-catching too. Designing a cover's been a real headache. So hard to know what makes for good cover art. I've been sorely tempted to employ a professional to produce something more polished - I may well do in future - but for now I'm sticking with my own creation. I hope you like it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hi all,

Just wanted to let you know that 'The Society of Dirty Hearts' has joined the 99cent club.

All the best,

Ben
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hi,

The Society of Dirty Hearts (A crime thriller novel) has eventually had a couple of reviews over at Amazon. Both are four star and really capture the essence of the novel. Here's a flavour of them:

'...Cheetham's David Lynchian descent into small-town secrets was satisfying. Definitely recommended for fans of psychological horror and throwbacks to the salad days of `80s paperbacks.'

'I read this in one session last night and have to say this would make a great "Twin Peaksesque" modern series a la What happened to Mia Bradshaw?'

As of yet, no one's had anything truly negative to say. And sales are slowly starting to pick up. I've heard a slow build is pretty standard with indie ebooks, so I'm pleased with how things are going. Just wanted to say a big thanks to everyone who's taken a chance on my novel so far.

All the best,

Ben
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
The Society of Dirty Hearts has recieved a great review over on the book blog I Meant To Read That. Here's a taste of the review 'Julian has very bad nightmares, well he calls them nightmares but they seem more real than that; more like premonitions. He sees himself rape then murder a teenage girl and can feel the sexual pleasure he gets from this. Julian, a college student, is pretty much screwed up and can't sleep for fear of the dreams returning and terrified that he may actually be the person he becomes in his dreams. Doctor Jekyll and Mr. Hide, eat your heart out...Great story from Mr. Cheetham, well told, fast paced and engaging.'

You can read the review in full at: http://imeanttoreadthat.blogspot.com/2011/10/society-of-dirty-hearts-by-ben-cheetham.html

I hope the review tempts you to take a chance on my novel. If it does, you can download it for 86p/99c from

https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B005E9EBQQ

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B005E9EBQQ

Thanks for taking the time to read this. And an especially big thanks to everyone who's purchased my novel so far. I really hope you enjoy it.

All the best,

Ben
 
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