Friday, 30 October 2015

The Rainbow Awards strike again!

Still boggling from yesterday's astonishing twofer in the Rainbow Awards, we went online this morning and found out that lightning had struck once more! This time, we can congratulate Jay Lewis Taylor on impressing the judges with THE PEACOCK'S EYE:

"One of the best historical novels I've read in a while. The author captured late Elizabethan London perfectly. I could almost smell the ambience. Research has been flawless as far as I could tell."

So, once more, we have the opportunity of proclaiming that another of our books has received the coveted:


We'd tell you how proud we are of everybody, but we have an idea you can probably guess!

Thursday, 29 October 2015

More good news from the Rainbow Awards!

Once more, Manifold Press seems to have made quite an impression on the judges at the Rainbow Awards; we're thrilled to have received two more Honourable Mentions in the latest batch to be released!

To take the books in both alphabetical order and chronological order of release, ESCAPING FROM HIM by Liam Livings drew the following response from the judges:

This is my first book by this author. From the beginning I was pulled into the world he created. I could not put this story down needing to see what would happen next and how the story would end. I will be looking for more from this author in the future.


And secondly - but by no means secondary - here's the judges' verdict on SMOOTHIE by Jane Elliot, which was this Press's first full-length female/female offering:

Must read page turner that will leave you laughing, gripping the arm of your chair, and cheering for the underdog right to the end. A fascinating read. True writer’s craft.

And there's plenty more in similar vein, so once again ...


For a Press producing only eight books a year to have such a high proportion of successes in a very tough awards season is almost overwhelming; all of us here at Manifold Press would like to thank the judges and congratulate the authors. We hope we may be forgiven for being ... just a little over-excited this morning!

Sunday, 25 October 2015

New review of UNDERCOVER BLUES...

... but not merely that! This is the time of year when details of the Rainbow Awards start to become available, and we're delighted to say that Chris Quinton's UNDERCOVER BLUES has attracted not only an Honourable Mention in this year's list but also a lovely review from Elisa herself.

A simple plot that was very well executed, never lost itself in trying-too-hard originality or fell into any cliché traps, and for that it deserves full points.

Having been involved with the evolution of this book since its very earliest beginnings (and you really don't want to know how long ago that was!) we can only say that we're absolutely thrilles to know that it has been so well received. Congratulations to Chris, and thank you Elisa!


Saturday, 17 October 2015


Eagle-eyed readers may have noticed that the regular Author Guest Blog Post is a little late this time, for which we would like to apologise - both to you and even more importantly to our author, Jane Elliot. It was simply a question of losing track of time, resulting in a panicked conversation late last night: 'Hang on, what's the date? Oh, bugger!' We'll try not to do this again.

It's particularly embarrassing as this is such an important post from Jane, as you'll see. Having said which, I'll leave her to tell it in her own words.

- - - - -

It’s the End of the Trail for Me

For as long as I can remember, I wanted to be a writer. While other kids wanted to be astronauts or ballerinas, I wanted to be a bestseller. To me, the ideal future was one in which I wrote a seductively engaging book, passed it off to a dashingly clever agent and watched as the entire world was entertained by my words.

That dream carried me for nearly thirty years, as I learned how to write and found ways to share my stories. I spent a good decade of my post-college years working meaningless jobs to pay the bills while I wrote like a madwoman in the evenings and went through endless rounds of rejections from agents. I was so sure that all I had to do was get one book out there and my career as a writer would be made.

I still remember writing END OF THE TRAIL. It was a bit of a lark – I’d been writing m/m fanfiction for years, but all of my family and friends told me it was waste of time to write original gay fiction, as no one would publish it. Still, I was having fun with the characters and I’d been more than a little worn down by years of constant rejections as I’d tried to get my more mainstream books into an overcrowded market. Just like fanfiction, END OF THE TRAIL was practice for the Real Thing (i.e., the book that would eventually make me famous.)

It was pretty amazing when END OF THE TRAIL was published – for the first time I could tell all of my family and friends that those years upon years of work was worth it – I was an author! Supremely confident in my writing dream, I sat back and waited for the money to roll in, counting down the days when I could quit the drudgery of my job and start my career as a professional author.

(I can be very naïve at times.)

After a couple of years and a couple more books, I finally understood that most authors do not, in fact, make a living on their writing. Now that I was looking at spending the rest of my life working for a living, with writing as a low-paying side job, I realized that I didn’t want to spend the next thirty-five years doing something I hated, just so that I could afford to spend an hour or two in the evenings doing something I enjoyed. It was time to find a career that spoke to me just as much as writing.

I’ve spent the last three years in an employment program that allowed me to try out several different jobs. It was a tough three years, with very little income and a move every year to a new place and a new job, but in the end it paid off – I finally found something that I enjoyed as much as the written word. And, unlike the written word, it pays enough for me to live on.

With a new career in hand, it was time to take stock of writing and I finally came to the realization that my idealized dream of being a reclusive writer who did nothing more than put words to paper was never going to happen. These days it’s at least as important for published authors to be salespeople as it is for them to be writers, and I’m terrible at retail.

Fortunately, there are now myriad ways for a writer to connect to readers without going the publication route. Of course, they don’t pay anything. On the other hand, I now make enough money doing something I enjoy that I can afford for writing to be a hobby again, and it’s important to me to put as much passion into my new career as I put into all of those years of writing.

To that end, I’m announcing the retirement of Jane Elliot from published fiction. The novels I have written for Manifold Press will stay available, but going forward I’m going to focus on writing strictly for fun. For the next little while, at least, that’s going to mean fanfiction. If you’re open to pairings of all genders, I hope you’ll give my new works a try.

I want to end with some thanks. A huge, huge thanks to Manifold Press, which has been amazingly supportive to me over the years. Special kudos to Fiona and Julie, who have been the best friends a writer could ask for. And, most of all, I want to give my deeply felt gratitude to my readers – without you I’d never have made it so far. From the bottom of my heart, thank you!

- - - - -

What can we say in response to that, except that it's been a joy to work with Jane - always professional, responsive and fully in command of her subject matter? Any editor or publisher with an ounce of intelligence would be thrilled to work with an author of Jane's calibre, and we've had that privilege for almost six years now. While we totally respect and support her decision to move on to other projects, we can't help being sorry that from now on life will be taking us on diverging trails. However we haven't quite given up hope of maybe running across one another again in the future!

All the best, Jane, with whatever you choose to do, from everyone at Manifold Press!

Thursday, 1 October 2015

Two new titles announced!

We’re delighted to announce two intriguing new books, to be published on 1 November 2015, and to welcome back two stalwart authors who have been missing from our list for far too long:

R.A. Padmos returns with a new tale about life in Kinbridge – the setting for her highly successful novel RAVAGES.  This time she delves into the city’s past – and into a society only just beginning to tolerate homosexual relationships between consenting couples in private – with the tale of Dylan and Max who, meeting by chance, must make adjustments before they can contemplate a life together; IN THE PRIVACY OF THEIR HOME is a fascinating study of a world which has long since – thank goodness! – ceased to be.

Another long-time absentee is Adam Fitzroy, returning with the tale of retired police officer Ted – determined to clear up the mystery surrounding an unexpected death on an isolated Scottish island – who meets and becomes attracted to the enigmatic Athol, thought by some to have guilty knowledge of the tragedy. Disentangling fact from rumour brings them closer together, and they find themselves sharing both perils and pleasures as the mystery unravels in IN DEEP.

We're really glad to see these two popular authors returning after a long break, and looking forward immensely to their compelling new titles!