Graham Downs

Monthly Newsletter :: July 2018

Hi there,

It's been hectic at my day-job this month. I've been dying to dive into the writing on my new book, which I can't share with you yet, but I just haven't found the time.

On the plus side, I've gotten quite a bit of reading done in July, after my marathon read of Stephen King's 11.22.63 in June. Right now, I'm reading The Strain by Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan. I watched the TV series last year and really enjoyed it, so I'm hoping the book will turn out to be just as good.

What have you been getting up to this month? Read any good books lately?

Financial Report: June 2018

I had a bumper month in June. Seriously, massive. Check it out:

  • Total Income: R1 071.39
  • Total Expenses: R770.01
  • Total Profit: R300.48

As always, those amounts are converted to South African Rands, using the exchange rate at the time of this writing.

I think last month was in my top five (maybe even top three) best months ever. And surprisingly, the bulk of those earnings came from print book sales. I got a bunch of new stock of my books in the post, which I'd ordered way back in February already--yep, the South African Post Office is that slow--and sold it all to people around the office.

The reason why the expenses are so high is that I splurged and used some of those profits on a Bargain Booksy feature, promoting Memoirs of a Guardian Angel. You can read more about how that went in the "Blog Posts" section below.

Do You Read Flat White Magazine?

Flat White Magazine is an online lifestyle magazine with a focus on South Africa, published by my good author friend, Christine Bernard. It's really good, and if you haven't read it yet, you really should.

The July/August 2018 issue is chock-full of recipes, travel, things to do, and author interviews. Including a wonderful interview with yours truly!

I'm so grateful to Christine for interviewing me for this issue (see pages 31-32 for my feature), and was really happy for how it all turned out.

Flat White magazine is completely free to read online. Click the cover image above.

Featured Author: Joanne Macgregor

This month's featured author is a personal friend of mine. She's also super-prolific.

Hailing from Johannesburg, South Africa, please welcome Joanne Macgregor!

When not writing books, Joanne Macgregor is a Counselling Psychologist in private practice and deals mainly with victims of crime and trauma. She consults and writes on alternate days, and in completely different head-spaces and physical environments.

She started her professional life as a high school English Teacher, but has also worked as an IT trainer, a theatre dogsbody, and management consultant. Also as a waitress, an in-store frozen vegetable demonstrator and make-up artist.

Although she lives in the frenetic adrenaline-rush that is the city of Joburg, Joanne has always been in love with nature, and escapes into the mountains and the bush whenever she can. She’s a pretty good cook, grows vegetables, and is addicted to chilies and bulletproof coffee.

Joanne is a bird of many feathers and enjoys writing for different ages.

She is the author of several books for young adults:

The ecowarrior series of books for Young Adults:

And has written a psychological thriller for adults:

As well as two books for younger readers:

Joanne was first published in 19mumble when she was seven years old. The Star newspaper, a Johannesburg daily, printed her poem, which went something like this:

Oh when the sun is shining bright and gay, it makes you want to sing today,

Sing, sing, sing!

Oh when the sun is shining bright and gay, it makes you want to swim today,

Splash, splash, splash!

(Editor: It went on a bit more, but you get the idea. These days, she writes better. Promise.)

To find out more about Joanne, visit her website,

Smashwords Summer/Winter Sale

If you missed my announcement earlier this month about the Smashwords Summer/Winter sale, you don't have much time left!


Every year, from 1--31 July, the e-book retailer runs a massive sale, with books discounted anywhere from 25% to 100% off!

This year, I have three books in the sale. Click on the covers below to view them on the site:

A Petition to Magic

Price $1.04 (25% off)


Price $0.99 (50% off)

Memoirs of a Guardian Angel

Price $0.99 (50% off)

Even if none of those books strikes your fancy (or even if they do, but you're just looking for more), click here to see the rest of the catalogue. There are literally thousands on sale!

Blog Posts

Here are all the blog posts I wrote since my last newsletter. To read one in your browser, click its link:

Featured Book Transient by Zachry Wheeler

This book was awesome! It reminded me so much of True Blood that it made me half want to watch that series all over again.

It concerns vampires in the distant future, except that term has fallen out of favour of late, and most people use "eternals" instead. But these are real vampires, not the sparkly, hunky, romantic vampires we've been so exposed to since the release of Twilight.

The story takes a while to get into. It opens pretty much in the middle of the action, and backstory is given in bits and pieces throughout, so it keeps you interested and curious; I only figured out what was really going on about 25% in.

Editing-wise, it's near-perfect. There are a few WTF moments which disrupted my immersion, but those are few and far between, and shouldn't be nearly bad enough to detract from your enjoyment.

There really isn't much more to say about it without regurgitating the plot, so I'll just reiterate what a fantastic story it is. If you like real, blood-sucking vampires, you should love this book.

My Rating: 4 / 5 Stars

About the Book

The year is 2578 and immortals control the world. Brutal wars and endless genocide have reduced mankind to a handful of mountain tribes. In order to survive, humans infiltrate the eternal society as transient spies, hoping to uncover a means to regain control of the planet.

Jonas is a young transient deep undercover in downtown Seattle. He lives underground, works at night, and drinks his daily blood rations, just like any normal eternal. He is a model spy, but also an apostate among extremists, torn between ideologies (as well as lovers) from either side.

Allegiances are strained to the breaking point when Jonas bears witness to a violent death that rocks the eternal civilization to its core.

Click here to find out where you can buy the e-book.

Thanks for reading this edition of my newsletter. I'll see you next month. And, if you're in South Africa, enjoy Women's Day on the 9th.

Yours in Reading,

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Graham Downs

South Africa