The smell of coffee and the sound of inspiration

As mentioned in my previous post, I decided to close down my Patreon page as I was struggling to maintain a steady presence on the site. I think the platform is a fantastic way for creatives who are very much immersed in their art to nurture a positive two-way dialogue with their followers. Personally, I was finding it increasingly difficult to offer a steady flow of rewards for those kind enough to offer support through a lack of quality time and a number of personal factors that have been demanding my attention.

I’m now quite literally in the process of redressing some of the Patreon imbalance and certain individuals should be receiving something unique in the post very soon!

However, I’ve recently found myself utterly addicted to a fantastic writing podcast called The Bestseller Experiment. It’s a particularly good audio companion for not only the drive to and from my day job, but also to focus the mind away from aching limbs while I run. Not only is it giving me regular doses of inspiration and positivity as I work my way through my very first book, but it has some incredible nuggets of advice for not only budding writers, but creatives of all persuasions. One particular interviewee on the ‘cast offered up the option of a Ko-Fi page…

This works differently from Patreon in as much as the option is there for fans/followers to donate a one-off payment as and when they feel like being generous, without having to make a regular donation. Much like Patreon, there is the option of upgrading to a monthly arrangement. This, of course, relies on the account holder making material available to their followers on a regular basis … so in my case, I think we’ll stick with the first option, just for now!

Despite technically being a freelance artist, I, like many others, still rely on a steady day job to keep the wolf from the door. I’ll always remember interviewing one incredibly prolific science fiction writer on a radio show, when out of nowhere he stated that he had only recently given up a salaried position in order to concentrate on full-time writing.

This, unfortunately, is the state of play for many a creative, whether they be writers, musicians or artists. Only the very lucky few have a consistent stream of paid work with which to refine their LinkedIn profile to the thing that truly makes them happy. I’m sure that other creatives would agree with me how frustrating it is to be in the middle of a meaty piece of work only to look at the clock at gone midnight and realise that at 6 o’clock the following morning you need to be awake for your ‘proper job’. Nothing quite focusses the mind on time management than a deadline that can only be batted away by relentless use of whatever time (and energy) is left after your day job has finished with you.

Still, I find myself moaning. It is a gift to have the ability to do anything creative and in this day and age it is a gift to simply have a steady job – particularly with a family to feed. And actually, as jobs go, it’s quite a nice one. To have the support of family, friends and followers on top of that is another thing altogether.

As a footnote, if you’d like to check out someone who runs a Patreon page and runs it well (She is fantastic at updating and offering great rewards to her followers) why not check out Raine Szramski’s page. Her work is incredible. >>>



A New Chapter…

It really IS a new chapter in more ways than one.

I came to a decision to close down my Patreon page. I’d suspended it a couple of times  over the last year while I became too busy with work and life in general to really be able to concentrate on providing the appropriate relationship between myself and my supporters. I’m not just talking rewards, but something that I think supporters deserve, which is a two-way street of information and communication. While my schedule (And focus) isn’t allowing this to happen, I thought it only right to close it down, at least until I’m in a position to establish something more substantial in less “dense” times!

I would like to take this opportunity to thank those who came along with me for my short Patreon journey. I know who you are and certain individuals will be receiving something a little special in the near future. I won’t forget the difference you made to me.

As far as my continuing work goes, firstly, I am up to my neck in my biggest writing project to date. I can’t give any more details at this point in time, but needless to say, there *will* be a “product” at the end of all the work that I hope to be proud of.

Secondly, there is something in the pipeline on the audio side of things. Again, there will be an end product that I can shout to the rooftops about when the time comes. Famous authors have been mentioned. Actors known to the fans of a certain scifi show have been mentioned. JOB TITLES have been mentioned. Music is most definitely involved.

As and when I can talk a bit more, this will be the place I’ll be doing it…


Peter Farrie’s Skeptileptic launch Wednesday 25 April

Way, way back when I first moved to Exeter, I got chatting with a certain Mr Peter Farrie on either Twitter or Facebook (I can’t quite remember) about songwriting. He was in the midst of a project entitled My Song Life in which he posted a song a month (With accompanying video I might add) for a year.

That year came to an end, but far from resting on his laurels, Peter continued to write and even found the time to play piano at my wedding. Since then I have held firm that I would like to return the favour by creating the artwork for his first album. That time has come.

On Wednesday 25 April, Peter is playing a special gig to launch the album, Skeptileptic, along with support and the opportunity to purchase said compact disc.

The album will shortly be available to pre-order.

You can find more details via Peter’s Facebook page or via his Twitter thread. Tickets for the launch night are available via WeGotTickets

Time Shadows E-Books Available For A Limited Time

The e-books of Time Shadows: Anniversary Edition and Time Shadows: Second Nature are now available for ordering for a limited time.

The Time Shadows Facebook page and website have all the details, including order links.

All sales proceeds benefit CODE NGO, Canada’s leading international development agency uniquely focused on advancing literacy and education.

I contributed a brand new fourth Doctor illustration for the anniversary edition of Time Shadows 1 and a short story called The Spinning Dancer for Time Shadows 2.

After The Ball by Simon Brett
After The Ball by Simon Brett

Whoblique Strategies

1977: Brian Eno and David Bowie apply random oblique strategy cards to the recording of Bowie’s Low and “Heroes” LPs. From rock ‘n’ roll comes a new kind of art.

2017: playwright Elton Townend Jones and his Vortex of Wholigans apply the same strategy cards to every Doctor Who TV story. From time ‘n’ space comes a new kind of magic.

Over 275 stories, over 275 bursts of fast fiction, 70 writers, 16 Doctors, and a whole new adventure across the history of everyone’s favourite Time Lord.

Whoblique Strategies from Chinbeard Books by A Vortex of Wholigans.
Edited, conceived and commissioned by Elton Townend-Jones.
Sleeve, internal illustrations (And various written contributions) by Simon A Brett.

Available direct from Amazon

The Unofficial Doctor Who Limerick Book

The Unofficial Doctor Who Limerick Book

Shirt once had an idea
To make a book with limericks appear.
To get the thing made
We asked people for aid
And now the charity book is here.

People sent in lots of poems
Even folks, though we hardly know ’em
We had pictures galore
And oh so much more
Now we are ready to show ’em

Available to order up until the end of April via featuring 3 illustrations by yours truly, with all profits going to MIND…