Category Archives: The write stuff

George Washington and the French and Indian War

Most people do not realize the importance of the French and Indian War on the life of George Washington and the impact on America’s history.

Imagine…No War of Independence, No First President or No United States of America.  It almost happened.

During the early years of the French and Indian War, George Washington was a young, ambitious officer in the Virginia Militia.  He lead bravely, fought hard and was a strong individual.  This was all noticed by the British officers who rarely held the American colonists in any regard.

Washington’s dream was to gain an officer’s commission in the British Army and if fate did not intercede history would have taken a different course.

The British knew of his ambitions and appointed him as an aide to Major-General Braddock.  Well liked and respected by Braddock, Washington did little to hide his dream.

In so many ways the disaster at the battle of Monongahela in 1755 and the death of Braddock, set the wheels in motion for Washington to agree to lead a raw, undisciplined band of men against the same British army nearly twenty years later.

It was well known that Washington was to gain a Major’s commission in the victorious British army.  It never happened and died with Braddock as the defeated army struggled back towards Fort Cumberland. Frustrated by the treatment he recieved from the several newly appointed officers, Washington eventually retired from the militia and returned home.  His dream was over and he had no other reason to fight.

The war had ended by 1763 and the French threat was over, along with an Indian uprising. The confident colonials had no use for the British and once it was decided to tax them, for the debt accumulated during the war, they decided to fight back.

The people needed a leader and once he agreed, Washington took control of the colonial army and eventually defeated the British and pushed them out of America.

It is fascinating to think what America would be like if Washington did indeed become an officer in the British army….maybe the headlines would have read: “Washington accepts the surrender of the defeated colonial  troops.  England’s King once more reigns over his America.”

Just imagine…

Interview and Book Signing!

Please check out my interview posted on AllBooks Review International.

See more reviews on and a NEW-short film on a few pieces in my F&I War collection…more to come.

Also,  please join me for a MEET THE AUTHOR/ BOOK SIGNING event on Saturday, March 31, 2012 at Red Bulb Expresso Bar, 6148 Main St., Stouffville between 2-4pm.  Thank you so much to Tammi and Cheeyuen for your support!  Tell your friends and please plan to attend…its a great place with an awesome menu!

Cheers, Steve

Building your brand: Remember to promote yourself along with your book

You spend all your time promoting, blogging, face-booking or tweeting our book but what about YOU.

Building your brand is just as important as building a marketing plan for your book.

What to consider when branding yourself?

First off, look at your expertise and educational experience.  What qualifies you to write on a particular topic?  In my case, my novel is a historical fiction that takes place during the French and Indian War. I started to do my research.  I read, I visited, I spoke to other experts on anything involving the war or that period.

It took me several years and countless hours to feel comfortable enough to write on the topic. The reality is you do not need to be an expert but you need to do your due diligence.  Link with others who have similar interests.  Read books in your chosen genre to see what is out in the market. Build a resource center, either on-line or a home-library, that you can easily access.

I collect artifacts, uniforms, weapons and anything from the F&I War period. I find holding a war club or musket gives me a ‘real’ feel and helps my writing.

How to build your brand?

You can further build your brand by working with your local bookseller, library or community center by starting a book club featuring the genre you write in.  Offer to teach a writing coarse, do a seminar and any other outlet that will promote you as a writer and expert.

How many times when someone asks you what you do for a living and you tell them you are a writer, the person finds it fascinating?

People love writers!  Write for your local paper. Start a blog to reach a bigger audience.  Have fun with it.

Promoting yourself is just as important as marketing your book but most of us tend to over look it. I will be blogging further about branding and promoting yourself, so please add to the blog and lets be proud of being writers.

Talk soon and keep writing.


THE WRITE STUFF: Your novel’s target market

Firstly I just joined a great site called Book Blogs. The members are awesome, I have already been contacted by a number of them and will be replying as soon as I figure all the nooks and crannies. Thanks to all for making me feel so welcome.

THE WRITE STUFF: Your target market

I think sometimes with all our enthusiasm after we have finished our novel and begin our marketing plan we tend to try to be everything to everybody.
DON”T bother. The best plan is to find who would be the best potential customers or groups you should focus your first marketing efforts on.
My own experience with my historical-fiction novel was to target, obviously, French and Indian War enthusiasts. I also sent complimentary copies of my novel to two artists whom specialize in that period and several gallery’s that carry their paintings. Copies were sent to editors of a number of magazines that cater to black powder users and reenactors. I also requested them to review the novel as a bonus.
I have done intervews and have booked a couple of speaking engagements to talk about the F&I War. I sent out Press Releases to National Parks in the US and ParksOntario in Canada.
I know you can’t ignore the general public but if you identify your market of customers who already love the period/topic/genre you wrote about, it makes for some strong results and positive reviews or comments.
The writing process was by far the most enjoyable but the reality is you are doing it to make some money or some notoriety…so marketing is critical to ensure you get your novel in the right readers hands.

Cheers, Steve