Monday, 24 December 2012

Merry Christmas!

It's been a very exciting year for me.

First, I released The Wing Warrior, on Amazon Kindle and in paperback; and now it is available on all e-readers thanks to the good people at

Then I released The Unicorn Rider on Amazon Kindle, and a paperback edition is on the way.

With all that done, there is now only one thing left to do, and that is to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. And what better way to say that than with a doodle by the super-talented Mr James Lloyd:

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

The Legend Riders Merchandise

Now that The Unicorn Rider, Book Two of The Legend Riders is available to buy, I have had a little bit of time to sort out a few other things I wanted to do. One of those things was putting out some special The Legend Riders branded merchandise. So, with great pleasure, I announce the launch of our new merchandise,

We have tee-shirts, mugs, key rings and bumper stickers, all in various designs by the one and only Mr James Lloyd (who has provided the cover art and promo art for all of my work on this series of books).

The Wing Warrior T-Shirt

Merchandise is available to buy now at

Thursday, 22 November 2012

The Unicorn Rider Cover Design Process

It's been a while since I posted anything here, and the main reason for that is because I have been hard at work prepping The Unicorn Rider, Book Two of The Legend Riders, for publication later this month. The Unicorn Rider continues the story of Nimbus, his sister Glass, and his best friends as they learn to live in a world that has recently been inhabited by mythological creatures. You can get yourself a copy of the first book, The Wing Warrior, in Kindle or paperback format from Amazon.

As well as spending long nights hunched over my keyboard, agonising over every sentence during the editing process, I have also been working on a front cover which has just been finalised. I thought people might be interested to see some of the iterations the cover went through.

The cover of The Wing Warrior was done by James Lloyd, based on an illustration by my wife. For The Unicorn Rider, I employed James's services again; but this time I provided the artwork myself. (I know, right? Double threat.)

I had an old art book that focused on learning to draw horses, and I found a picture in there that formed the basis of my original illustration, which was then passed to James. Our first idea was to produce something that was stylistically very different to the cover of The Wing warrior:

The Unicorn Rider

Although I was really pleased with this, I ultimately decided that it was too different from the cover of The Wing Warrior and that the unicorn should have the same chrome finish as my dragon. Unfortunately, the artwork I had done was a bit too intricate, and the chrome finish looked awful.

Back to the drawing board I went, and produced something that kept the same shape as my original drawing, but in a chunkier style:

The Unicorn Rider

I was much happier with this cover, but something still wasn't quite right... "The style's wrong," my wife said, leaning over my shoulder to look at the computer. "It doesn't look like an emblem. It looks too much like a unicorn."

I understood what she meant. The dragon on the cover of The Wing Warrior is quite clearly a badge, and not an attempt to accurately render the shape of a dragon. It has no arms or legs, and a triangle for a head. My unicorn needed to be the same.

So I had a third go, and this time I got it just about right. A few tweaks later, and James was able to provide me with the finished cover, which looks like this:

The Unicorn Rider

If you would like to know more about The Legend Riders, please visit where you will be kept up to date on all the latest news and reviews.

Monday, 29 October 2012

Doodles by Lloyd

When I first decided to bring The Wing Warrior to the market, I had a very specific idea of what I wanted on the front cover. I wanted a classic emblem - an insignia - that I could also put on badges, headed paper, and anything else. I wanted an icon that people would instantly recognise.

I asked my wife to draw the rough design, and she did a great job of visualising what I wanted; but the bulk of the work was undertaken by a good friend of mine called James Lloyd. He did fine work.

The Wing Warrior front cover
The front cover of The Wing Warrior.

As well as doing the work for the front cover, James has also provided some fun photographs for my facebook page, and now he has come up with this little beauty. Enjoy...

The Wing Warrior advert by James Lloyd
The fine work of James Lloyd.

Thursday, 18 October 2012

The Wing Warrior - FREE!

THE WING WARRIOR, Book One of THE LEGEND RIDERS is available for free download on Saturday 20 and Sunday 21 October.
That's right, for the whole weekend you will be able to download a Kindle edition of The Wing Warrior from Amazon absolutely FREE!

While you are there, why not buy a swanky paperback copy as well?
FUN FACT: The first 25 people to read the book and post a review on Amazon (either on the UK or US site) will get a free limited edition badge set (you can use the contact form on this site to let me know where you would like the badges sent).
At the time of writing, I have 17 sets of badges left to dish out, and they're pretty awesome.
The Wing Warrior badges

Saturday, 13 October 2012

The Wing Warrior in Paperback

The Wing Warrior is book one of The Legend Riders series. It was launched on Kindle in September and has been picking up some great reviews.

Now, I am very pleased to be able to say that the book is also available in a paperback edition with a MRSP of £6.99. For more information, and to order a copy, visit

The Wing Warrior
The Wing Warrior - paperback available now.

I do apologise that this blog entry is just a shameless plug for the new edition of The Wing Warrior, but I've been working really hard prepping and promoting the book and I just haven't had the energy to add much meaningful content to either of my blogs lately. I'll see if I can add something more interesting soon.

You know, if you bought a copy of The Wing Warrior, I wouldn't have to spend as much time promoting it, and then I would have more time to maintain my blogs. Just saying...

Monday, 1 October 2012

The Legend Riders - Why a Trilogy?

The Wing Warrior, Book One of The Legend Riders trilogy, recently received a very good review on (you can see it here). The book was given four out of five stars, and was generally received positively. However, the reviewer did quite strongly criticise the fact the book is the first part in a series, claiming that there is an overabundance of such series in the Kindle marketplace. It's a fair point, and I actually tend to agree: Quite often I will look at the books available on Amazon and I will grow increasingly frustrated when I keep seeing "book one of..." in the descriptions.

So, if I actually find the increasing number of series on the market to be frustrating, why did I decide to make The Wing Warrior the first part of a trilogy?

Most people would assume series are written for financial reasons: Quite simply, if people read your first book and like it, they will want to read the rest in the series. If they read the book and don't like it, they may still buy the rest in the series out of some kind of obligation to know how everything turns out in the end. In my mind, this is something of a double-edged sword: Yes, you may be able to hook people in with your first book and encourage them to buy more; but what you are more likely to do is turn them off buying your first book because they are not sure they will like it, and they do not want to feel like they are only getting a "taster" rather than the main event. There is absolutely nothing worse than reading a book you didn't enjoy all that much, only to find out that it ends on a cliffhanger.

Besides, the argument that you can hook in a reader with the first book and guarantee sales of subsequent titles can be used just the same when talking about books that are not part of a series. If your first book is good enough, people will look for you in the future, and they will buy your books because they like your style, even if your stories are unrelated.

And yet, considering all that, I still wrote a trilogy. The reason was, I never really thought of The Legend Riders as three books; it is a single story that happens to be broken up into three parts. By that I mean, when I sat down to write The Wing Warrior, I already knew exactly what was going to happen throughout the course of The Legend Riders; but there was so much content I knew it was never going to fit in a single book. The book simply has too many characters and plot strands to have a satisfactory resolution in a single volume.

Take, for example, the characters of Sky and Glass. They are the main female characters. Glass is the younger sister of the main hero, and Sky is a girl who is stuck looking after her drunk father after her mother walked out on them. Both girls are living in the shadow of the men in their lives. But over the course of the story, these two girls will become far more powerful than any of the male characters. I can't really say much more without giving the game away, but their transition from put-upon underdogs to powerful heroines would have seem rushed and unrealistic without having the room to develop their characters over the course of the trilogy.

Of course, once I had decided to write a trilogy, I was able to use that construct to my advantage, allowing each story to focus on one of the main characters. In book one, we follow the adventures of Nimbus and his dragon; in book two, we learn how Nimbus must travel into the realms of the dead to find a unicorn for his sister, Glass; and in book three... well, I'll say no more for now.

The trilogy structure also allowed me to introduce a running gang about Nimbus, but I can't really tell you about that either!

So, there it is; I wrote a trilogy. I wrote it all in one go, flowing straight from one book to the next, and in my head it will always be a single work. I appreciate some people may look at The Legend Riders sub-heading and pass the book by, but I hope that enough people will be prepared to give it a shot. And there is a bit of good news for people who are worried they are going to be hooked into reading all three books: As already stated, I hate getting to the end of a book and finding a cliffhanger, so The Legend Riders adopts what I refer to as the Star Wars arc. Simply put, book one, The Wing Warrior, is a complete book in its own right. It has a definite ending, and most (not all) of the plot lines are tied up neatly enough so that you can happily avoid reading the rest of the series should you so choose. That way, if you give the book a try and hate it, you won't feel cheated, and you won't feel the need to buy the rest of the series.

Of course, you're going to want to buy the rest of the series anyway. Trust me.

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Free Badges for The Legend Riders Readers

So, you've bought a copy of The Wing Warrior, Book One of The Legend Riders (if you haven't, you might want to consider getting one here), you've read and enjoyed it, but now you are thinking, "what else can I do to support Kevin and this new series of fantasy books?"

The answer is simple: You need to let as many people as possible know. The more people you tell, the more people will buy it. Get involved now, when your input matters most. I really cannot stress enough the importance of contributions from you - the reader - during the early stages of bringing this series of books to the market.

Here are just a few things you can do to help (and yes, I'll get to the free badges in a minute):

This one's easy. Just go to the Amazon page for The Wing Warrior and click on the little "like" button next to the name of the book. Job done.

This one's also dead easy. Once again, head over to the Amazon page for The Wing Warrior, then scroll down until you see the section regarding tags. All you do then, is select all the tags that you think accurately relate to the book. You can even add your own tags by double-tapping the letter "t" on your computer keyboard.

My handle on Twitter is @KevinWOutlaw because, you know... that's my name. Follow me now, and you can be kept up to date on stuff like what I had for breakfast, what I'm watching on television, and what fascinating new word my little daughter has just started using.

This is the big one. Head on over to and click on the "like" button. This is the main hub from which I send out information, and by liking the page you will be kept totally up-to-date. For example, if you already liked my page, then you would know about the free Legend Riders badges that are available to my Facebook friends (see, I told you I'd get to the badges eventually).

That's right - I'm giving away free stuff! Limited edition sets of Legend Riders pin badges, to be exact.

Each badge is limited to a production run of 50, and I am making 25 sets available at this time (two badges in each set). As an extra bonus, each set will also be accompanied by a "thank you" letter from Cumulo (if you've read the book that will make sense) which will be signed by me. Of course, nothing is truly free, and there is a catch, which leads me to my final point:

If you would like a set of free badges, all you have to do is pick up a copy of the book, read it, and then let everyone know what you thought by writing a review on Amazon (just giving a star rating out of 5 isn't enough to qualify, I'm afraid). Before you post your review, send me a Facebook message with your name, address, and the user name under which you will be posting your review. Once your review has gone live, your badges will be despatched to the address you provided (assuming we haven't run out of stock).

This is strictly a first-come first-served deal. I cannot guarantee that we will never be making these badges available again, but for now this is the only way to get hold of them. I would also like to add that there will be no priority system based on how positive your reviews are - so be as honest as possible.