It’s crazy how quickly the weeks (and months) can rack up with no updates on this site. My apologies. I’ve been dedicated to producing my author newsletter on a regular basis, so all the news and recommendations you can ever dream of are waiting for you here.

As ever, things have been busy. Since Territory came out in June, I’ve been hammering away at various other projects. I finished my novel Last Night of Freedom. The book taught me a lot about the editing process.

As I’ve probably bored you about over a beer at a convention or reader event in the past, I’ve come fairly close to getting an agent with previous novels. But I’ve never managed to get over that hurdle and earn myself that line into major publishers. I’m hoping Last Night changes that for me.

I think one of the things that held me back in the past was my lack of a clear editing process. I always thought I’d edited the books well, but perhaps not to a professional level. With Last Night I was not only brutal with the book, but rigorous. I made copious notes – very useful for writing the synopsis – and ensured I kept track of not only the characters’ actions but also their emotions throughout each chapter.

The final stage (and this takes longer than you think) was to read the book aloud. Thanks to Will Dean for this tip, but it was really helpful in spotting cadence and tone inconsistencies.

I produced this writing prompt to keep me going throughout the writing process. Something I’ll definitely be doing for future novels.

I’m also halfway through a screenwriting course at a local university. The course has been great. Not only has been brilliant to be back in a classroom (in the flesh!) but to just be learning a new skill and meeting new people. The tutor, Adam, has been great and his notes have been so helpful in trying to batter some of the novelist tendencies out of my screenplay.

I’ve managed to turn my previously half-completed, abandoned novel Static into a TV pilot and I’m currently working on the pitch document. Hopefully they will both be edited and honed by the end of the year.

This follows on from writing the screenplay for Territory (badly) earlier in the year. Hopefully, with all the lessons learned from the course, I can redraft Territory leaving me with two decent spec scripts in my back pocket. I’ve also written four short films in the last few months. Two are originals, two are adaptations of stories from Dark Missives.

The key thing I’ve taken away from my course is – you’ve guessed it – to edit and to hone the writing to within an inch of its life. Every note I’ve had back has encouraged care, craft and brevity. All of these lessons are sinking in and week by week, the words are getting better. Who knows, some of them might even be good one day!

As I said, just because I haven’t been writing here, doesn’t mean I haven’t been busy!

I guess with that all said, I’ll leave you with one final image. I’ve also been working hard on my photography of late. Here’s a snap I took at New Brighton a few weeks back. Perhaps it’s a story prompt… Who knows?


Copyright (c) Dan Howarth - 2022
New Brighton – Oct ’22

Territory – Out Today!

It’s that time again! One year on from the release of my debut collection Dark Missives, I’m back with a novella – Territory. It’s out now!

Set in an icy, remote hunting community in Finland, Territory takes the reader far beyond the boundaries previously set in my fiction and down the path of Man Vs Nature.

Territory with its keen eyes and sharpened fangs is released into the world. This cold, insidious story is now available for readers everywhere.

What’s it all about?

In a remote Finnish hunting community, darkness and the cold hold the villagers close. As a pack of wolves threaten the village’s future, grief-stricken hunter Jari must unite the population to reclaim their territory.

Haunted by the loss of his wife and his best hunting dog, hunter Jari tries to stem the flow of alcohol and grief that threatens to destroy his life. As the darkness and isolation of winter settles around his small hunting community in remote Finland, it brings with it another threat. The encroachment and growing boldness of a pack of wolves endangers the villagers’ way of life. The presence of the wolves opens old feuds and cracks within the community’s makeup. As Jari tries to lead the villagers through their toughest season, it soon becomes clear that not everyone will survive the winter.

Awesome Reviews

Territory has already had some fantastic reviews from early readers on review sites and on GoodReads.

Ginger Nuts of Horror called it “an absolute doozy”.

Steve Stred said that the book “pushed forward with the suspense and thrills”.

Where Can You Get It?

You can buy Territory in ebook and paperback from the Jeff Bezos Space Travel Fund Emporium by clicking HERE.

Or you can buy a signed copy from the Northern Republic Store.