Last April, I got accepted by Booktrope Publishing. As one could imagine, I was relieved. Self-publishing had become an extra weight on my that I could no longer bear. At 17, I made a very quick and irrational decision, signing on, having no idea what to expect.
On April 29,2016, every author and team member for Booktrope received and email, letting them know that Booktrope is closing its doors.
We are deeply saddened to share the news that Booktrope will be ceasing business effective May 31, 2016. This decision was not reached lightly and we will share as much as we can with the community over the next few weeks.
When I read the email, I was shocked, but not really. Devastated. Hurt. Angry. But most of all, I was left with a heavy uncertainly hanging on my shoulders, as are so many who are being hurt by the loss of the company. As of May 31st, 2016, all four of my books will be removed from Amazon, no longer accessible to readers.
Due to this, May 3-7, I believe, I am offering all of my books for free. I wish I had an answer as to what’s coming next. I wish I could say that the books will go right back up because I’ll self-publish them, but it’s not that simple.
Booktrope offered me a way. A way to be a student, to meet some amazing people, and to live my dream that I’ve had since elementary school. I’ve grown so much because of them and everyone I’ve met. My teams put so much time and effort into my books that I can never repay them fully enough for.
After graduation from high school in June, I will be starting college in the fall. I’m starting to see that maybe this is a sign that it’s not my time. I wish I had better news, but at the moment, I do not.
I’m not giving up on my dream forever. I could never do that. But right now I’m at a loss for words and ideas, and it’ll take some time and thought to fully come up with a game plan.
I just want all of my friends, family, and most of all, my fans, to know that this is not the end of the line for me. A hiatus, maybe, but certainly not the end. While I do not know about everything else, that is the one thing I am certain of.
I hope to see you guys again soon.
Alec John Belle
A few days ago on my Facebook page I announced that I would be writing a new book for Spring 2016. This new book is my next contemporary young adult novel, The Long Road Home. While there is no official synopsis yet, this is the one I have.
Brooke never meant to survive. She hoped that the suicide attempt would end all of her suffering. After years of rejection, pain, and heartbreak, she feels as though she’s not good enough for anyone. Now she’s stuck in a hospital, being forced to take antidepressants and is getting therapy for her issues.
And she hated it until she met him.
Now Brooke must remember the past in order to better her future, while trying to keep her feelings for the new patient in check. In this heartbreaking novel, a young girl will laugh, cry, and fight to find her way home to the one place she’s never really let anyone in–her own heart.
This book is going to be something different for me, but I am all about taking risks. My hope is that it reaches to many people who struggle with the same issues Brooke has and that it can shed some light for those who haven’t dealt with these issues before.
The Long Road Home is scheduled to release in February/March 2016. The book can now be marked as “to-read” on Goodreads as well!
Today I am very happy to share with you the official cover for my re-release, Forbidden Darkness!
I’m very excited to say that this book will be released to the world on June 5th, 2015. This book is very important to me, as well as the series as a whole.
One thing I know I’m going to get asked is this: Why did you choose to incorporate things like suicide, self-harm, and depression in a world that’s supposed to for entertainment? The answer to that question is actually pretty simple.
I do not believe in censorship. When I wrote my first novel, Before I Break and it made its debut in September of 2014 (which is also re-releasing this July), I was very concerned about the type of response it would get. Many authors including my very favorite, Ellen Hopkins, get banned from schools and certain places because of the type of things their books cover.
Forbidden Darkness focuses on Heather Hawkins, who just recently almost lost her best friend Kristen to suicide. The affect effect that it leaves on Heather is sad, because throughout the novel she worries that it’s going to happen again. Heather’s mom worries that Heather will turn out like Kristen. Philip, who is now Heather’s love interest, plays a role in the things that happened to Kristen. While Heather is the main protagonist of the book, what happened with Kristen was pretty damaging to everyone around her.
When Heather realizes she’s a Monster Hunter and is being stalked by a guy named Kadin in her dreams, she notices he can wield Darkness. The idea of the Darkness came to me when I originally named the first book Negative Energy. I won’t go too much into the story because I still want people to read it, but the Darkness is basically a physical form of all those negative emotions you feel. And it’s entirely, 100% evil.
I look forward to being able to dig into other issues as this series goes along, and for you to see the true potential of Darkness. Just like life, we all have a little Darkness inside us, and when everything is going on around us, we need to learn not to give in. Never give into the Darkness, because it will take over your life in ways that you may never have imagined.
The hidden messages are thrown throughout the novel, and I hope now this will make it easier for people to catch them. Writing this series was a way of controlling my Darkness. What will you do to control yours?
Many of you know that Before I Break was originally self published. During the time after the book’s first release, I started focusing on other characters that had important roles in the plot. I then came up with two short stories.
When my book got picked up by Booktrope, I asked my book manager about these short stories I’d written. Originally the plan was to publish them through Booktrope to build the excitement for the book, but then we decided to do something a little more appreciative to the fans.
We decided to make BOTH short stories free! And to make it even better, I decided to write a THIRD short story as well!
For those of you who do not know what Before I Break is, all I can say right now is that it’s an LGBT Contemporary YA novel that focuses on other social issues. Some topics covered in the book and short stories are suicide, discrimination, mental illness, self harm, coming of age, discovering your sexuality, and more.
The three short stories descriptions are as follows.
1. CAPRICIOUS (Before I Break, #0.5): In this haunting prequel short story to Alec John Belle’s novel, Before I Break, Jake struggles with the idea of religion, discrimination, homosexuality, and life as he deals with an obvious mental illness.
2. THE WINTER OF HARMS (Before I Break, #0.6): In this prequel short story to the upcoming novel,Before I Break, read Avery’s journal and see what pushed him to his breaking point, and the mistake he made that could have taken his own life.
3. TURMOIL (Before I Break, #0.7): Following the events of CAPRICIOUS, Melissa is happy in her relationship with Cyril, until she finds herself looking at other girls. But she loves Cyril…right?
All of these short stories focus of the three supporting characters of Before I Break, which will focus on Cyril’s story. In the novel, you’ll see all of the stories come together and how each of these characters lead to Cyril’s breaking point.
The release dates for these short stories are as follows:
CAPRICIOUS: May 15th, 2015.
THE WINTER OF HARMS: June 12th, 2015.
TURMOIL: June 26th, 2015.
All leading up the the re-release of Before I Break! These short stories will also be available for free as e-books for iTunes, Nook, Page Foundry, and quite a few other places, but those links are now live as of right now.
This book, along with these short stories, are very important to me. This world I’ve created with these characters has grown on me, which is why I have some more announcements coming your way after the book re-releases. I hope you all stick around to see how everything turns out. 🙂
I know I haven’t been posting a lot lately. Mostly that has to do with there not really being many things to talk about.
Fortunately, I did a recent author interview, along with that interview, she’s giving away and ARC of both BEFORE I BREAK and FORBIDDEN DARKNESS. In case you aren’t aware, these are two books that I self-published and are now being re-published through Booktrope. I’m really excited about this ARC copy.
If you want to check it out, be sure to click the link below!
Also, be sure to sign up for my newsletter here!
Okay, so obviously BEFORE I BREAK (my contemporary YA) and FORBIDDEN DARKNESS (the first in an 8 book paranormal YA series) are my top priority right now. Let’s be real.
Unfortunately, because of the fact that both of the books are being republished and will be in editing for TWO MONTHS, it’s kinda hard to write sequels when I don’t even know entirely how much will be changed in the edits. This means that I’ll have a couple months where I won’t be writing anything. And, well, I’m a writer.
You see the dilemma?
So today I am beginning a new project, and no, this is not an April Fool’s joke. Because I have no idea whether I’ll go through with publishing this or not, I’m keeping it to myself for now. Who knows, maybe it’ll suck.
What I can say is that it’s another contemporary YA novel, similar to BEFORE I BREAK, but darker. I’m really excited to get into it.
It’s also a standalone, so if I do decide to do something with this, it’ll be one simple little book.
Time to get plotting.