You can now read 80% of The Broken Kingdom, my new King Arthur novel

It’s an experiment. I don’t know if it has worked yet*. I probably won’t know until the end of the year. But the idea, which is pretty simple, is this: I write a novel in the gaps between writing/editing other novels. I write chunks of this experimental novel whenever I get a few days free of my other commitments, and instead of hanging on to the chunks till the whole thing is done, I release them in 99p eBook “episodes” every so often. So far I have written and published four episodes out of five, which is 80%

The novel is about King Arthur, and is set in a strife-torn post-Roman Britain in which a handful of petty kingdoms are almost constantly at war with each other. Arthur is a young cavalryman who, with a small group of comrades, is tasked with delivering his half-sister Morgan to the north of Britain to marry the brutal King of Rheged. Everything goes horribly wrong, and that is pretty much the story of Episode One: Arthur’s Bane (first 20,000 word, or 70 pages chunk of The Broken Kingdom). Oh, and a dragon is awakened from an icy sleep by an evil sorcerer. There is a bloody coup in Dumnonia, and so on. There are lots of strands to the story. But, trust me, they all interlink and come together by the end of the novel

In Episode Two: Arthur’s Escape, and Episode Three: Arthur’s Revenge we see our hero recovering from the disaster in the north and forming a unit of elite cavalry called the Warriors of the Round Table, to take the fight to their many enemies. Merlin is helping him, although the sorcerer is mostly concerned with the greater menace of the rapacious dragon and the Soothsayer, the evil woman who controls this hideous Worm. (NB, there will probably* be three novels in the series, which is called the Wormkind Chronicles.)

Anyway, I have just published Episode Four: Arthur’s Folly (below) and I am starting work this week on Episode Five: Arthur’s Battle, which should be out in the early summer. Eventually, I will publish all of the five episodes of The Broken Kingdom as one novel (but I’m not sure exactly when), and it will be a paperback book as well as an eBook, and if I can get my audio publisher interested, an audio book, too.

So that is the experiment. Some people have bought the episodes as they have come out. But I haven’t had very much feedback so I’m not really sure how well it is going. If you think this is an interesting idea, do buy the eBook copy of Episode One: Arthur’s Bane – it’s just 99p – and let me know what you think.

*Authors really need feedback in the form of reviews on Amazon (or elsewhere). Not only does it trigger algorithms that encourage Amazon (and others) to suggest the book to more people, it also tells the author what he is doing right or wrong. As I say, this is an experiment. Should I keep doing this? Should I abandon the series? I need people to let me know. And if you’ve already left a review, thanks very much!

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