Matt Shaw started writing creatively at the age of 12 then experimented with the concept of writing screenplays before self-publishing his first book “The Autobiography of a Nobody” [n.b. subsequently re-titled “I’m fine”]. Delighted with the results of his first effort, Matt proceeded to develop his ideas for screenplays into novels and continued publishing them himself.
A few novels later, Matt realised that publishing in traditional paper format was not achieving what he had hoped. He told Eastleigh News;
My goal is to keep my prices low so people give me a chance, read my work and see what they think. Maybe come back and read more of my books.
In 2008 I wrote ‘Happy Ever After’, a horror story told through the eyes of the two people living the nightmare, a cat and mouse game which has gathered cracking reviews on Amazon, where I released it for Kindle, having turned my back on self-publishing to paper due to costs, lack of control and poor return.
People kept asking for more of the “Happy Ever After” story so I wrote ‘G.S.O.H Essential’ and ‘A Fresh Start’, finishing the trilogy. The other books in the series have also gone on to get excellent reviews on Amazon.
Still not mega sales though, until, that is, I gave ‘Happy Ever After’ away for free through Kindle’s promotion tool, again on Amazon. Thanks to that, and more positive feedback, within two weeks I had over 40,000 downloads.
Matt has recently quit his job with a stationery company and now spends his time writing, aiming to build on his success. He added;
“Now that I’ve quit the day job to continue writing, I plan to extend my catalogue to twenty books by the end of the year.
“I could lose everything taking this drastic step, but I’d sooner die knowing I tried everything than continue to live a life half-lived.
“I am now writing exclusively for the Kindle Platform. Thankfully there are enough programs (on Amazon) which enable people to download my books to read on tablets, computers & phones, so I’m not just limited to Kindle.
“The monies involved in publishing to paper just doesn’t make it economically viable any more.”
“I’ve also got some merchandise planned, with regards to my cartoons and photos, and I’m even releasing my own range of condoms…”
When asked about life in Hedge End Matt told Eastleigh News;
“I’ve lived here for about 5 years now and it’s great. It’s peaceful, no trouble (other than someone putting a stuffed tiger in a bush but that was just genius!) and I don’t plan to move away anytime soon. Even the staff in the local shops seem friendly.”
“Finally, if people do wish to join me on Facebook, if they say how they came across (where they read about me, i.e. on Eastleigh News) I’ll gladly email them a free book from my current catalogue. It will be nice to see some new faces on my page, which already has well over two hundred followers.”