From my Padded Cell…

I built it with my own hands, and now I’m gonna sweat inside it – standing room only – for hours and hours at a time.

Was this really a good idea?

No swinging of cats or swinging of any kind.

Last autumn I decided to look into turning my novels and stories into audiobooks. I began the process of requesting auditions and received a couple of great audio samples for Seven Graves, One Winter. Three things made me rethink the whole project.

The first thing was Greenlandic, more specifically the Greenlandic words I have used in the book(s). While my own grasp of Greenlandic is limited, I do have some experience, and at least know how I want to try and say the words I have used. My concern, is, was and will be, whether a non-native speaker is going to get their tongues around Greenlandic words and place names like Ittoqqortoormiit.

This got me thinking.

The second factor was cost, closely followed by the third factor (below). I simply don’t have the funds available to invest in audiobook production. Without a publisher footing the bill, I need to find ways of getting my books out there in as many formats as possible within a tight budget. The projected budget for Seven Graves, One Winter was prohibitive – not impossible, but it left no wiggle room.

Added to concerns about wiggling… yes, I know… there is the simple fact that I have been quite productive. Meaning I have a lot of novels, novellas and short stories under the name of Christoffer Petersen, many of them in series. If the cost of one audiobook production was prohibitive… well, have a quick look at the photo below, and you’ll see what I mean.

Twenty works, and counting (not including omnibus editions).

These things got me thinking a little more.

What if?

What if I recorded the books? What would that take and what would I need? And, more importantly, how much would it cost?

Without giving anything away, and not thinking of my “time” used now or during recording and editing, I can say that buying the equipment to record, and the materials needed to build my padded cell, ahem… “sound booth”, I spent about a quarter of what I would have spent to have someone else record Seven Graves, One Winter.

This gets better when I consider the twenty written “works” I want to turn into audiobooks.

So, today I got as far as installing the USB audio interface, the mic, the shock mount for the mic, the arm for the shock mount… yeah, a few new things. Then there’s software, and, well, it’s a good thing the cell is padded.

The result is a quick test for audio clarity, and you can hear that here. (About a year ago I made this recording with no booth and a crappy mic. So, yes, I am pleased with the investment… that acting though!)

Now I just need to learn how to act inside my sound booth. Considering that it’s not possible to swing an ant let alone a cat, the acting is going to be interesting.

There’s still a few holes to block, and a learning curve like no other to master, but, until then, stay tuned, this might just become something…

Research is Murder!

A murder… right here, in the middle of it all!

In April last year I spent a few bizarre hours discussing how to get rid of bodies in the local concert hall. The local concert hall is nothing less than Sønderborg’s Alsion, a very modern Danish building that shares facilities with the University of Southern Denmark. There’s a lot of glass, wood, and really long drops from the very top of the building, straight down to the actual concert hall.

Partners and co-conspirators!

Søren the Stage Manager and Stine from the Press and Communication office generously gave me time to explore all of Alsion’s darkest and deepest corners. Several times during the tour, I made them both show me that their mobiles were switched off… I mean, the things we were discussing… criminal, I tell you!

Lots of strange places to hide bodies – right at your feet!

The purpose of the tour was to give me an idea of just how one could get away with murder in one of Sønderborg’s most famous attractions. I say get away with it, but I’m not so sure about that. You see, I’ve put Detective Freja Hansen on the case.

I needed to get to know Freja before I could write the Sønderborg book, so I sent her on a run through the Highlands of Scotland – she was born in Scotland. Of course, fell running is tough at the best of times, but with a killer hidden among the runners, well… it got out of hand quite quickly.

The novella: Fell Runner, allowed me to get to know Freja, which is good, because she’s needed now, as there has been a murder in the concert hall.

I won’t give you all the details, but I will share a teaser of the cover. The building on the front is Alsion.

Blackout Ingénue – book 2 in the Detective Freja Hansen series.

Blackout Ingénue is scheduled for release on June 9th, and you can pre-order it for not a lot of money from Amazon US, UK, Canada and Australia. It will go up in price once the pre-order period is over.

That’s it for now.

Overhaulin’

Website needed a fix, and I am currently fixin’.

Talisman -coming soon

Not entirely sure how long this is going to take, but until then, here’s a “cover reveal” for the free Maratse “origins” short story: Talisman. It will be available free via sign up for the newsletter – all part of the overhaul, and available on paperback.

Talisman is set on Greenland’s east coast, and tells the story of how, when and perhaps even why Maratse joined the Greenland Police. Oh, and a talisman is involved.

Interested readers might like to know that I discovered the “talisman” on the cover in a hunter’s cabin I visited during a month-long solo kayak expedition in Greenland.

I won’t forget that cabin in a hurry.

There’s a bigger version of the cover on the page for Maratse’s stories.

Lost in the Woods

I left wildlife biologist Jon Østergård and his daughter, Emma, in an ambulance close to Thyrup Church in Denmark, last summer, but the story is not finished.

The real Danish wolves might have disappeared over the Danish-German border, but there are plenty more in Alaska, which is where the majority of Lost in the Woods is set.

Where Paint the Devil explored the political and social fallout surrounding the return of the wolf to Denmark, Lost in the Woods ramps up the drama and action in the backwoods of Alaska’s interior, with much of the story taking place in the Yukon-Charley Rivers National Preserve.

There is even more at stake this time around, when wolves are not the only predators.

Lost in the Woods is available for a limited pre-order price of 0.99, from Amazon US, UK, Canada and Australia.