Language Problems

active voice tenses

Dear #writing community, I am updating my blog to include some the basic information that people have difficulties with. I usually make use of this information when teaching people whose second language is English. On the first page I have included two illustrations of tense formation for both active and passive voice.

The first two sections can be found via the menu: Language Problems, Then ‘Tense Formation and Use’ and ‘Narrative Tenses’.

** CAVEAT ** I teach British English so for those of you whose preference is American English, expect differences. I hope to make this suitable for as many English speakers as possible, so please feel free to offer suggestions for the inclusion of American, Australian, Indian alternatives so I can let everyone know these differences exist and what they are.

Look forward to hearing from you.




Proofreading? Hah!

Howdy #writingcommunity.

If you think proofreading a novel is tedious all I can say is HAH!

You should try proofreading technical documents where even the individual words / sentences / paragraphs have to be formatted in a very specific way. Non-breaking spaces, non-breaking hyphens, keep-with-next markers, etc…

However, there is an upside – my ‘third’ employment will serve me well with my other two.

3. Technical Proof-reader : 2. Writer : 1 Teacher

But damn the income! It only comes from #1 and #3…

Juggling is no longer a skill, it is an essential tool!




Remember my goals?

My objective of changing this conceptual bookcase into reality…?


Well, it has begun. Today I received the first two proof copies in 8″ x 5″ format.

republished spines


So I can now declare this project to be well and truly underway.

Next up? “Resurrection” after my Beta readers have had a shot at it. Mid-February seems an achievable publish target.

After that? “Exodus” or “Playground”, whilst at the same time writing and preparing “Renegades” to follow on behind “Resurrection”.





Dear #writingcommunity…

This may be of interest to anyone interested in using Amazon to self-publish their works.

I have developed an excel spreadsheet that takes all the effort out of calculating the margins, borders, spine sizes etc. and it uses the same standard formats as Amazon. It was produced from their documentation after all.

It’s FREE and available through this link.

Book Template Details – Full Version – Design

No macros have been used to produce this easy-to-use tool.

I will be open to comments, queries, suggestions and fixing any unanticipated problems for a limited period. Any other feedback will also be welcomed.

As you might imagine, it comes without warranty and a caveat – please ensure you enter the correct values. I have tried to make it as safe as possible, but nothing is “foolproof” to a sufficiently talented fool!



With the re-publication of “Neither Here, Nor There” and “A Fool’s Errand” I have collated the reviews from previous editions and added them to the individual pages for my published novels.

The comments may be small in number but they still provide motivation and incentive to this weary author.

Anyone who reads a book and derives pleasure from the efforts of the author PLEASE  DO LEAVE A REVIEW to let them know that they have reached you, whether they tickled your funny-bone, or they made you cry.

It makes up for the very low income generated by the publication of a story.

Thank you.



Amazon Formats

Hi Everyone,

I’ve been using a spreadsheet to expedite my production of book interiors and covers for use when publishing to Amazon. I have created a more flexible version which I am making available to anyone who wants to give it a try.

For a limited period I will endeavour to correct any problems that any user reports to me with thirty days of this post.

Any issues can be addressed via Twitter – @OwenGRichardsId – let’s see if we can’t make this into something useful to any indie publisher.

Book Template Details – Full Version – Design

This is an excel file with two sheets and NO macros. It is formula driven. Input is restricted to the key fields necessary to perform the appropriate calculations.

Have fun with it!