Thursday, 31 January 2013

OUT NOW! Love... From Both Sides & Love... Under Different Skies

Well, the day has finally come. My two new books are unleashed to the world today (in paperback and ebook respectively).

Love... From Both Sides is available to buy at all good book shops.

Love... Under Different Skies is available to buy as an ebook at all online retailers.

If you do decide to buy either one, both, or all three books in the trilogy, I very much hope you enjoy reading them.

Thanks to all the Coronet team at my publishers Hodder & Stoughton for getting the books to print, thanks to my friends and family for all their love and support, and (most importantly) thanks to each and every one of you for buying the books and liking my work. I wouldn't be here without you folks and your support is very, very much appreciated!

Best wishes and happy reading,


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Thursday, 24 January 2013

Only a week to go!

It's just seven days now until the paperback of Love... From Both Sides is released in all good bookshops (real and online) and Love... Under Different Skies is released as an ebook.

Thursday January 31st is Nick Spalding Day!

...well, in my household anyway.

If you happen to be in your local shopping precinct next Thursday and you keep seeing a shifty looking individual going into every book store and taking discreet photos of apparently random shelves, that'll probably be me. Please don't call the police.

Saturday, 12 January 2013

The final and official Love... trilogy book covers

All three covers for the Love... trilogy have now been completed and I think they look rather lovely when put together:

I now have something of a dilemma though...

I'm tempted to get prints done of the covers, frame them, and mount them on the living room wall, in a hideous display of egotism that will annoy everyone who comes round for a coffee. 'Have you seen my book covers?' I will say and casually flap my hand in the general direction of the prints. 'Yes Spalding, we have,' they will reply, 'and you're an utter tosser for slapping them up on the wall like that.'


But this presents a bit of a problem. If I decide to put the covers on the wall, then I'll have nowhere decent to put this:

So, would I rather people consider me an egotistical pillock? Or a sad fucking nerd who thinks a Batman bookshelf is actually a good thing to have pride of place on your wall?

Either way I'm likely to get insulted down the pub - it's just a matter of deciding in what manner...

Friday, 11 January 2013

A call from my mother that reminded me of Stephen King

Some might complain about the British postal service being not quite the efficient animal it was twenty years ago, thanks to successive governments trying their level best to destroy it through privatisation (as far as I can tell), but I have to say I am currently delighted with their service.

You see, I posted copies of the paperback of Love... From Both Sides to my mother yesterday, thinking the parcel would take at least three or four days to reach her. Colour me all shades of surprised then when I get a phone call from her today telling me the books had arrived less than twenty four hours after posting.

Kudos to you Royal Mail.

You may be wondering what the hell this has to do with Stephen King, but bear with me, I'm getting to the point, I assure you.

On the first page of a copy of the book I wrote my mum a little note. I won't go into the details, but it basically thanked her for bringing me up the way she did - and making me the type of man capable of writing a popular novel like Love... From Both Sides.

Needless to say, the phone call with her today was a little emotional.


And here's where Stephen King comes in...

He's always been my favourite author. Partly because I love scary stories, epic tales and novels featuring talking mutant raccoons (one for you Tower folk, there) - and partly because there are some parallels between his early life and mine.

...most notably that we were both brought up by single mothers after our useless 'fathers' did a runner when we were both two years old.

When I found this out about King, it only helped to strengthen my love of his work. In a weird way I also felt like to brought me closer to him as a person, given that we shared an unlovely aspect of our pasts.

When I read King's biography one thing that made me sad was that his mother Nellie died just as his writing career was taking off. She knew that Carrie had been accepted by a publisher, but she lost her battle with cancer before the book was actually published.

This unhappy fact always kinda stuck with me. Therefore, I always hoped that if I ever managed to get a book published I would be able to celebrate it properly with my mum - and write a note at the front of the paperback telling her how I couldn't have done it without her.

And now I have. Which gives me an extremely content feeling inside.

The icing on the cake?

I'm published in the UK by the same company that publishes Stephen King: Hodder & Stoughton. Funny how these things work out, isn't it?

I'm hoping that one day I might get to meet Mr King. If I ever do, I will relay this story to him just as I have to you in this blog post.

Because stories matter. My mum taught me that.

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Holding my paperback. Yeah... this is one of those moments.

I received author copies of the Love... From Both Sides paperback hot off the press from my publishers Hodder & Stoughton today.

...and while I've appreciated every second of the success I've had with the ebook version, there's nothing quite like holding a proper book in your hand to give you a real, tangible sense of what you've accomplished. as a writer.

It was quite emotional, I can tell you.

Those three hundred or so pages of pulped wooden loveliness are the culmination of a lot of hard work on the part of the team at Hodder, my agent and yours truly.

It hardly seems possible that it's only been eighteen months since I first sat down at my old laptop and wrote the words: Oh God, her breath smells like the gates of hell have opened... and here I am holding the book in my hand and awkwardly trying to take a picture of it with my iPhone.


Love... From Both Sides will be on sale in all good book shops from Thursday January 31st. 

Even if you've read the original ebook version that I self-published last year, I'd encourage you to go pick up the paperback as it contains extra and extended chapters.

Also, if there's a fly buzzing round your room, you can use it to squash the little bastard.

I'm all for the ebook revolution, but you try exterminating insectoid intruders with your Kindle like that and you're going to wind up with a really expensive grey plastic tea coaster - smeared with fly guts.

I now have the complicated and time consuming process of deciding who to hand some of the copies out to.

I've only just got over the trauma of deciding who to buy Christmas presents for, and now I have to go through the whole thing again with this sodding paperback.

In fact, it's even worse.

I only have a finite number of copies to give out, so I'm bound to end up mortally insulting someone when I don't give them one. I'm going to have to draw up a list and whittle it down to the people I can least afford to annoy.

...and then there's the copy I have to smear in excrement and post through the door of my secondary school English teacher. The one who said he didn't like my writing, the utter bastard.

...and then there's the signed copies I was going to slap up on Ebay to make a few extra quid on the side.

Maybe I should go back to Hodder and ask for another twenty copies.

...actually, there's a car boot on this Sunday, I'd better make it forty.

Tuesday, 8 January 2013

In memory of 'El Dente', Laura McIntyre's little red peril

'twas a sad day last Friday.

I had to get rid of the car that featured in Love... From Both Sides.

Yes, Laura McIntyre's little red peril was indeed based on a real car. A 1997 Nissan Micra that my other half had been nursing around since the summer of 2011. She's the one who nicknamed it 'El Dente', so you have her to thank for that particular gag in the book.

Unfortunately, the little bugger was on its last legs. The exhaust had more holes in it than the plot of The Dark Knight Rises, if the temperature dropped below ten degrees it point blank refused to start, there was a disconcerting smell coming from the air vents (like a combination of warm porridge and Swarfega as far as I could tell) and the steering was so heavy, it needed arms like Popeye to do a three point turn.

It was well and truly fuckered.

Thank goodness for Ebay. I flogged it to two enthusiastic teenagers for £350.

They promised to take good care of it, so I confidently expect to drive past it wrapped around a lamp post at some time in the very near future.

And there you have it.

El Dente is no more.

Commiserate with me for just the briefest of moments, won't you?