Hellcorp sparkles like a blood-black diamond. Satan’s got his work cut out in this darkly comic crime tale. A cracking read! – Mark Leggatt
Life is hard for The Devil and he desperately wants to take a holiday. Growing weary from playing the cosmic bad guy, he resolves to set up a company that will do his job for him so the sins of the world will tick over while he takes a vacation. God tells him he can have his vacation just as soon as he solves an ancient crime.

But nothing is ever easy and before long he is up to his pitchfork in solving murders, desperate to crack the case so he can finally take the holiday he so badly needs…

This is a perfectly-pitched darkly comic crime novel that is ideal for fans of Christopher Fowler and Ben Aaranovitch.

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Jonathan Whitelaw

About the Author

Jonathan Whitelaw is an author, journalist and broadcaster. After working on the frontline of Scottish politics, he moved into journalism. Subjects he has covered have varied from breaking news, the arts, culture and sport to fashion, music and even radioactive waste – with everything in between. He’s also a regular reviewer and talking head on shows for the BBC and STV. ‘HellCorp’ is his second novel following his debut, ‘Morbid Relations’.

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HellCorp – Jonathan Whitelaw Guest Post 4
Indie publishing, writing and the great network of internet friends

I’ve always looked at the publishing industry in the 21st century as pretty much what the music industry used to be like. I know it might sound like the stuff of ancient history but there was a time not that long ago when musicians and bands could mail in their work to studios in the hopes of landing a deal. And while I’m not quite old enough or good enough to be in said band, it’s not THAT long ago that the practise was still very much thriving.

Fast forward to 2018 and the idea is absurd. In fact, the mere concept that music would exist as a physical copy in any way for an unsigned artist is almost preposterous. The wonders and accessibility of the internet have long done away with any such tradition. For musicians, bands and artists, it’s as easy as uploading your work onto the web and shamelessly and relentlessly promoting it on social media and beyond.

It’s a business model that’s prized the power back into the musician’s hands. No longer constrained by time and money, if you want to make music you can do it from your bedroom and add any and every effect you want in a matter of seconds. No more tape recorders held up to the amp.

In the publishing world it’s very similar. The advent of self publishing on platforms like Kindle Direct Publishing have opened the door for so many aspiring scribes to get their work out there, read and reviewed. The success of E.L. James as one of the century’s biggest and boldest rags to riches story is testament that it can work. Not every time but there’s always a chance.

When I first started writing the only way I could get people to read my work was either through hard copy or e-mail. Now, if I want to publish something, it’s a matter of a few clicks and away we go. The world is getting smaller all the time and it’s helping writers find their voices and audiences.

Now I learned a long time ago, thanks to writing HellCorp’s The Devil, that if something is too good to be true then it usually is. While the most sincere writer in the world who wants to have their novel read and picked up by agents, publishers or even just writers can do so, there is an awful lot of noise out there. As a music journalist in uni, I once wrote of a self-published artist that “just because you can do something, doesn’t mean you should.” Harsh, I know, but the point still stands. It’s easier to find an audience now, but it’s also harder to get noticed.

I love that whole communities have sprung up on the web for novels, writing and indie publishing. Reviewing, sharing each other’s links, web pages and messages is as heartwarming as it is a lifeblood of independent publishers and writers. Without blog networks and the tireless efforts of those who run them, we wouldn’t have such a thriving, diverse, inspiring and talented industry.

During the lead up to publication of HellCorp I’ve been blown away by the support and excitement from my fellow Urbane writers, bloggers and beyond. In most cases it is complete strangers who are busy burrowing away and helping to get the book out there, noticed and above all read. I can’t thank them and you enough for that. And it really does mean a lot to writers to have that support network.

So, while the internet can get a bad time of it, it’s dramatically changed the publishing world forever. And you know what, I don’t think that’s such a bad thing. Not a bad thing at all.

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