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Normandy, 1035 A.D. - Young William must take up his father's sword to defy the odds, defend his dukedom, and become the Conqueror.
32 backers pledged £810 to help bring this project to life.

About

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Writing & History – these are my two great passions in life. What better way to combine the two than by writing historical fiction? 

After years of research, writing, and re-writing, I finally completed my novel about William The Conqueror's coming of age and early struggles; Becoming The Conqueror was born.

But writers are nothing without you: the Reader.  

Why I Need You 

Setting off on my creative journey, from research trips across Normandy and England, discoveries in old manuscripts of the British Library, first drafts – countless drafts – cover artwork design and alpha reading, I involve my readers every step of the way. 

Follow my journey on Instagram
Follow my journey on Instagram

 

Now, after a promising trial on Kindle, it’s time to achieve that Holy Grail paperback publication. Achieving my life’s ambition of becoming a published historical fiction author will only be possible if you, dear Reader, choose to support me. 

Kindle trial cover
Kindle trial cover

Already, many of you have followed young William of Normandy’s story as an eBook and given the greatest compliment any author can receive: a request for a sequel. That sequel is well on the way, but, while you patiently wait, you can get your hands on a limited edition, numbered and signed copy of Becoming The Conqueror as a paperback novel. Just as William needed friends he could count on, so do I. So join us on this adventure. 

As William defies the odds to secure his dukedom, help me to secure this publication. 

As a bonus, if the funding target is secured, I will strive to have the finished product with you by Christmas!

William's birthplace: Falaise Castle
William's birthplace: Falaise Castle

What Is Becoming The Conqueror About? 

Normandy, 1035 A.D. - Duke Robert has died on pilgrimage, leaving his seven-year-old son William as his heir. This unprepared boy finds himself thrown into the power games of the great men of Normandy, who do not hesitate to use the most deadly means to gain power. Who can he trust, when every courtly smile could hide a wolf's fangs? 

With Normandy's very existence threatened by the ambitions of his bitter rival, the Duke of Anjou, and his cunning overlord, the King of France, William must stand up to rebellions by his own querulous barons and unite Normandy against its enemies.   

Only then can he forge his destiny and become the Conqueror.

Norman cavalry charges against the enemy!
Norman cavalry charges against the enemy!

Who Would Enjoy This?  

Of course, anyone who reads historical fiction should enjoy Becoming The Conqueror. If you read Bernard Cornwell, Simon Scarrow, Elizabeth Chadwick, and similar authors, then this will be right down your street.  

It isn’t just about history, though. It’s also a very personal tale about a boy who has to grow up fast to step into his father’s shoes. 

I’ve also made a conscious effort – while respecting historical facts – to keep the story flowing and not get too bogged down. This is a novel, not a history lecture. For those wanting to learn more, there is an extensive historical note at the end of the book.

Domesday: William's great survey. My novel isn't quite as heavy going.
Domesday: William's great survey. My novel isn't quite as heavy going.

Praise for Becoming The Conqueror 

(eBook: 4.8/5 on Amazon Kindle & 5/5 on Goodreads)

"This novel has everything from witty dialogue, brilliant characterisation, fast-paced action, the list can go forever. Becoming the Conqueror is an absolute page-turner that you will most definitely love getting lost in." Amazon review

"For a debut author, Joseph writes with such authority that makes you want to read more from him. He gives us an insight into a complicated and often misunderstood historical figure, and shows us the personality behind the sword and the shield." Goodreads review

"A real page turner; each character is written so well you feel you know them, the dialogue is witty and the vivid historical accounts are accessibly written, even to amateurs!" Amazon review

What's Next?

1. Make your pledge.
2. Spread the word.
3. Get the book.
It's as simple as that.

If all goes to plan, the sequel, Poisoning The Blood, will also be released in paperback format at a later date, so that you can follow William on his journey.
I told King William I was writing the story of his youth; I hope that's his pleased face.
I told King William I was writing the story of his youth; I hope that's his pleased face.

 

Countless evenings & weekends spent doing research here; help me turn it into a book!
Countless evenings & weekends spent doing research here; help me turn it into a book!

Risks and challenges

Delivering ON TIME and WITHIN THE BUDGET: the book is already 100% written and was proof-read by several linguists for the Kindle edition. A few remaining typos were spotted since Kindle publication and have been corrected. Once the book is set up for printing with the publisher's help, a final proof-read will take place. When this is completed, the estimated lead time for the print itself is 2 to 4 weeks - plenty of time before Christmas.

QUALITY: several publishers have been contacted for quotes and those shortlisted have supplied samples to ensure that the quality of print, paper, and binding are of a high standard. The paper used will be off-white, as brilliant white can be straining for the eyes. The font size has been determined by consulting several people with different strengths of vision to ensure easy reading for all.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge £5 or more About US$ 7

    Squire/Maid (eBook)

    Get an eBook copy of 'Becoming The Conqueror' and grateful thanks.

    Includes:
    • eBook 'Becoming The Conqueror' (ePub with DRM for single user)
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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge £10 or more About US$ 13

    Knight/Lady (book)

    Get a paperback copy of 'Becoming The Conqueror' from a limited edition print run (signed & numbered), & humble thanks.

    Includes:
    • Paper 'Becoming The Conqueror' - signed & numbered
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    Pledge £29 or more About US$ 36

    Baron/Baroness (bundle)

    Get a paperback copy of 'Becoming The Conqueror' from a limited edition print run (signed with personal message & numbered), eBook (ePub format, DRM activated), 6 original photos from my research trips with anecdotes on the reverse side, ‘Becoming The Conqueror’ bookmark, name on website roll of honour, & dutiful thanks.

    Includes:
    • Paperback 'Becoming The Conqueror' - signed & personal message
    • 6 photos - originals with anecdotes on reverse
    • 'Becoming The Conqueror' Bookmark
    • Name on web roll of honour
    • eBook 'Becoming The Conqueror' (ePub with DRM for single user)
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    Pledge £40 or more About US$ 50

    Duke/Duchess (bundle)

    Everything from Abbot/Abbess pack AND, eBook (ePub format, DRM deactivated, so that you can share the book with your friends & allies), your name included in print in the book’s patronage roll of honour & on website roll of honour, access to exclusive unseen videos in which I unveil some of the hidden gems from the book and develop on ideas which didn’t make the final editorial cut, & reverential thanks.

    Includes:
    • Paperback 'Becoming The Conqueror' - signed & personal message
    • 6 photos - originals with anecdotes on reverse
    • 'Becoming The Conqueror' Bookmark
    • Name printed on roll of honour in book
    • eBook (ePub, DRM deactivated to allow sharing)
    • Exclusive insight videos
    • Name on web roll of honour
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    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 9 backers
    £

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Funding period

- (30 days)