Two posts in one week! Editing, and Publishing

I completely forgot to share the link to my post on editing last Sunday, so this week you get two posts!

First: Editing: Enrich your story by showing, not telling

And Second: Publishing in South Africa and Abroad: Do I need an ISBN and where do I get it?

Have fun!

Published: “Beneath the Wax” by Nthato Morakabi


In October, I was thrilled to publish Beneath the Wax, the first novella in Nthato Morakabi’s sci-fi horror series! With the latter half of 2018 proving to be a very busy year, the publication of this book ranks as one of my highlights!

Beneath the Wax 03 Kindle Cover 01

With a gorgeous cover design by Nico Venter (who is currently working on the artwork for Jozi Flash 2018 – YAY!), and exceptional story-telling by Nthato, Beneath the Wax is a perfect Christmas gift for fans of horror and sci-fi.


1723: Constantine Bourgeois is a man of many secrets. Artisan by day, killer by night, he turns his victims into wax figures for his shop.
2045: Richard Baines works for the renowned Anthony Garfield Historical Museum. His mundane existence is a stark counterpoint to his fascination with serial killers and science fiction.
Constantine’s nightmares drive him to undertake a journey to uncover a long-forgotten secret. Richard’s research uncovers a company secret and the mystery of Madame Bourgeois.
Two men, two timelines, and truths that will only be revealed when they look Beneath the Wax

Purchase the novel on Amazon* today, or if you’re a book blogger and would like to review the novella, please leave a comment below and I’ll get in touch with you ASAP.

*I would like to state that Chasing Dreams Publishing operates as an independent publisher, and 100% of royalties earned from the sale of Beneath the Wax go to the author. If you would like to make his Christmas that much more festive, please consider supporting him by purchasing a copy. If you’d like to make it doubly festive, an honest review on Amazon would be even more appreciated!



Ablaze in Mirth – Matthew Thompson

I was recently given the opportunity to beta read Ablaze in Mirth by Matthew Thompson. A short story, Ablaze in Mirth is a gripping action tale of a vampire enslaved to humans, determined to save himself and his family by any means necessary.

I loved the return to “traditional” vampires, vulnerable to sunlight – a vulnerability which leads to an age-old struggle of life and death in a battlefield created for human entertainment.

The author weaves a tight-paced tale of action balanced by softer emotions that serve no purpose in the struggle to survive.

Ablaze in Mirth is available as a free download on Smashwords.

Ablaze In Mirth

“The humans cheered and booed and bet on us blood suckers. And they enjoyed it too, watching us burn every year in the Nile Valley during the summer solstice, the sun beating down on us, incinerating us like bugs beneath a magnifying glass.”

Once a year, the Ablaze Games attracts thousands of spectators from around the world for a two-week tournament, wherein the winner attains his or her freedom.

Matias Carlos Bassi is one of this year’s contenders, risking his life to gain a better one. And it’s not only in the arenas he must strive to survive; the underground Ablaze Complex leaves its competitors to circulate amongst themselves, including assassins. All of which is televised for the human populace, the current rulers of the world.

Seven arenas separate Matias from becoming the 189th victor. It will mean keeping out of the deathlight, and to kill his fellow kind. But he’s hungrier than ever, and willing to do whatever it takes to remove the shackles from himself and his loved ones.

About the Author

Bio Pic

Matthew Thompson was born in England in 1983, and is the creator of Domino Galaxy, a book series set in an afterworld. He has previously worked in the video games industry as a game and level designer.

You can view his website here:

Kristian’s War – Peter Wisan

I was recently given the opportunity to beta read Kristian’s War, a novel by Peter Wisan. He has now published the story, and it is available for purchase on Amazon and Barnes and Noble. 

A modern take on an age-old spiritual journey, what I truly enjoyed about this story is the universal message that salvation is found within, not without. Congratulations on publishing Peter, and I look forward to seeing more in the Searcher Series.

KDP Cover (2)

Kristian Anders, a dirt-poor farmer, lives in a dark land where evil forces take the form of men. The sins of his past weigh heavily on his mind. When a stranger directs him to take a new path, Kris begins the journey of a lifetime towards a distant King who is rumored to solve all problems. But then a ruthless soldier is dispatched by the ruler of the dark land to capture or kill Kris. Everything leads to one final fight, where Kristian must defeat the demons of his past or die.

Marine Corps veteran Peter Wisan delivers a gripping, tactical take on the spiritual journey in a blend of heart-stopping action and heart-rending loss.



To a year of chasing dreams!

Welcome to 2017 everyone! I truly hope that this year will mark a new beginning of wonder, a middle of everything that’s beautiful, and an ending of circumstances that no longer serve a purpose in your life.

A new year is normally a time for resolutions, but I’ve never been fond of making those, so I’ll just tell you what I have planned for Chasing Dreams in the next few months:

Dream in Words Competition


I’m so excited about this competition. Even though Chasing Dreams is still a small one-person startup, I’m collaborating with an amazing artist and people who are passionate about writing to hold this event. The deadline is really close, so if you’ve got a story that you would love to bring to life, make sure to send your synopsis and first three chapters through to before the 31st January.

Jozi Flash 2017

At the end of 2015, the Jozi Wrino’s organised a Flash Fiction Anthology challenge. The resulting stories were published by Chasing Dreams in 2016 in a free to download e-book. The stories are a crazy, topsy-turvy mix of genres, with the only common theme being the prompts and the fact that the authors are all South African.

This year we’re doing it again, with amazing artwork from Nico Venter providing prompts across 8 different genres. The anthology will again be available, free to download from the end of March 2017.

You can download the original Jozi Flash Anthology here.

After the End


Due to the holidays and the general chaos with which 2016 ended (for both myself and Sharon), the release of After the End has been extended to 20 March 2017.

For those who don’t know, Sharon is currently living on a farm in a small town in South Africa, and building her own house out of recycled materials. After the End features ten short stories from her which explore life in post-apocalyptic worlds. While Sharon’s own circumstances are far from post-apocalyptic, she certainly has some experience with surviving disastrous circumstances and starting life afresh, with new adventures every day.

The extra time taken to polish and refine After the End, will make it a collection well-worth owning.

If you would like to be involved in the blog tour which has been moved to 13th to 19th March 2017, please signup here.

I’m looking forward to sharing a year full of dreams with you. Here’s to 2017!








Dream in Words Competition


Chasing Dreams Publishing is thrilled to be able to present Dream in Words, a competition hosted in conjunction with Nico Venter Art. See the details below:

How to Enter

  • Entries should be made via e-mail to in a Word or PDF document which should contain a one page synopsis and the first three chapters or 5 000 words of your novel.
  • Corrections may not be made once a submission has been received. Proofread your entry before submitting.
  • Entries must be received before midnight South African time at the end of the closing date 31 January 2017.
  • There is a no limit to the number of novels you may submit, but each entry should be submitted separately.
  • Entry fees are per individual submission. Multiple submissions with one entry fee will be rejected.
  • Your e-mail should include the following information:
    • Your real name and surname.
    • Age.
    • Parental consent if under 18.
    • Title of the novel.
    • Genre of the novel.
    • Nom de Plume if you choose to use one.
    • Approximate length of the novel.
    • Contact details via e-mail.
    • Proof of payment of the entry fee
  • Entry fees should be submitted via PayPal at this link:

N.B. Please choose the ZAR currency or alternatively use the currency converter to find the latest exchange rate to the currency of your choice.

  • Entry fees are non-refundable. Please ensure that you pay the correct amount in the currency of your choice.
  • Entries will be acknowledged by email within 48 hours of receiving them.
  • Please check your email address carefully before submitting your entry.
  • If you do not receive a confirmation email (don’t forget to check your spam) please contact us by sending an e-mail to
  • Entrants are responsible for completing the submission process correctly and alerting us to any problems they encounter. Chasing Dreams Publishing accepts no liability for entries not received due to a failure on the part of the entrant to follow the submission process correctly.


  • Entrants must be 18 years or over on the closing date, or have written consent from their parents or guardians to enter.
  • Entries must be in English.
  • Entries must consist of a synopsis and the first three chapters or 5 000 words of a completed novel. If the novel is incomplete, the first draft needs to have been completed by the 28th February 2017.
  • Entrants must be willing and able to participate in edits, cover design discussions and online marketing such as blog tours during the course of 2017.
  • Publication of the winning entry is scheduled for December 2017. This date may be subject to change at the discretion of Chasing Dreams Publishing and in discussion with the winning entrant.
  • Entries must be the work of the entrant and must not have been published or accepted for publication elsewhere in print or online including blogs or personal websites.
  • Entries must be fiction but can be on any subject, excluding erotica and poetry, and may be written in any style or form.
  • The competition is international and welcomes entrants from all countries.
  • Simultaneous submissions are accepted but please let us know if your entry wins a prize or is published elsewhere so we can withdraw your entry.


  • Prizes are sponsored by Chasing Dreams Publishing and Nico Venter Art.
  • 1st Place – A full assisted self-publishing contract, including beta-reading, editing, book layout and design, promotional marketing, and final publication on online platforms and print-on-demand from Chasing Dreams Publishing. Full cover design and promotional artwork from Nico Venter Art.
  • 2nd Place – Full Manuscript Evaluation from Chasing Dreams Publishing and Preliminary Cover Design from Nico Venter Art.
  • 3rd Place – Full Manuscript Evaluation from Chasing Dreams Publishing.
  • Winners will be announced on the 28th February 2017 and given two working weeks to respond to an e-mail notification in acceptance of their prize.
  • Should the winners should not respond, the judges reserve the right to award the unclaimed prize to the next runner up.

For a full list of Terms and Conditions, please see this PDF file. By entering the competition, you agree to be bound by the Terms and Conditions therein.

The Invisible Crown – Cover Reveal

Chasing Dreams Publishing is once more showcasing a cover design for Royal James Publishing. The Hazzard Series looks like it’s going to be worth keeping an eye on, so diarise those release dates, folks!



Pre-sale: November 21, 2016

Blog Tour: December 11-18, 2016

Release date: December 19, 2016


About The Invisible Crown:

The city of Arcadia is a craphole, but it’s my craphole. I’ve walked its streets my entire life, always searching for something: a purpose, a suspect, or a stiff drink. My name’s Eddie Hazzard, and I’m a hard-boiled detective. Yeah, laugh it up. It’s a ridiculous job description, but this is a ridiculous town. It’s full of every cliché you can imagine: corrupt city officials, police officers on the take, greedy businessmen, and crime so organized it has an accounting department, a health plan, and retirement benefits. Which is more than I can say for myself.”

Meet Eddie Hazzard: he’s tenacious, a certain kind of clever, and usually drunk. When a beautiful woman comes into his office and asks him to find her husband, Eddie takes the case because the alternative is having his creditors show up at his door and do terrible things to his limbs. But the case takes a series of bizarre turns, getting Eddie caught up in a tangled web of reluctant cops, sketchy businessmen, and shadowy crime bosses. The deeper he gets, the worse things look. Will Eddie solve the case? Will he save the day? Most importantly, will he get paid?

The Invisible Crown is the first full-length novel of a series featuring Detective Hazzard and the bizarre, bewildering array of tough mobsters, genetically-modified creeps, and ruthless scumbags who inhabit the city of Arcadia.


About Charlie Cottrell:

2016-04-20 11.57.41


Charlie Cottrell is a history and special education teacher in Northern Virginia by day and a writer of “speculative noir” (near-future, science-fictiony, hard-boiled detective stories) by night. He likes to blend action, mystery, and a healthy dose of humor and sarcasm in his work.  He also writes music and draws comics and thinks he vaguely remembers what free time was, but he’s not one hundred percent sure on that.  Charlie hates tucking in his shirt, because he is a rebel. To read more about Charlie, you can visit him on his website.



If you would like to review The Invisible Crown by Charlie Cottrell or join the blog tour, click here or send an email to

After the End – Cover Reveal

I am so thrilled to present the exquisite cover of After the End! Designed by Nico Venter the cover embodies many of the elements within the collection of short stories written by Sharon Ruth Parkinson.


About After the End

There are few things that are considered in science-fiction as much as events which lead to the end of the world. After the End features ten short stories from author Sharon Ruth Parkinson which explore life in post-apocalyptic worlds.

In Mutation, mutated slaves are willing to do anything to save their race. As technology replaces humanity, the Technophobes are born.  When the universe gets Sucked In, a young couple discover the meaning of love.

From Earth, through space, time and even reality, humanity and the loss of it will answer the question, “What happens after the end?”

About Sharon Ruth Parkinson


I once read a book… It was called “Triplanetary” by EE “Doc” Smith and from that day on I was completely hooked on Sci-Fi. I was about ten, and my imagination had been fired and I began putting those imaginings into words. My grandparents fostered my love of words by collecting all their envelopes (way before e-mail was a reality), and giving them to me to open up and use as scrap paper when I stayed with them during summer holidays. A passion was born.

It wasn’t until I was in my forties and self-publishing became a reality that I decided to publish, starting with my anthology Possibilities on in 2006, and then my NaNoWriMo entrant, CODDS  was later published (I have since pulled CODDS since it needs some serious editing).

My main love is still Sci-Fi Fantasy, but I have discovered a delicious addiction to flash fiction, thanks to the Jozi writers and our WhatsApp group. My other passion is NaNoWriMo, which I attempt every year, not always succeeding, but enjoying the challenge it offers. And I have done all this while raising four children! I am busy with several novels, short stories and series at the moment, so like my Facebook page for updates

The Artist


Huge thanks go to Nico Venter for his gorgeous cover art. For more info visit his website or find him on Instagram.

After the End releases 31 January 2017