Guest author: Geoff Le Pard – Buster and Moo

The perils of a novel in weekly instalments

Maybe it was my Charles Dickens moment; maybe hubris; or just maybe I wanted to find a way to generate posts as a relative newcomer to blogging. Whatever the motivation I found myself, as I churned out the required 50,000 words for Nano 2014, pondering an alternative which was to write a book spread over 52 weeks. I had an idea for the novel, borne out of the family acquiring a rescue dog the year before, which I thought had legs – the story not the.. anyway. But as with all of my novels to date, I had little beyond the basic idea, maybe enough to generate ten chapters; I’m an organised pantser: I start writing and see where I get to.

I moved from the nascent idea, to a fixed determination to give this a go in a short space of time. As December petered out, I began writing a few of the chapters and became confident that I could extend the story at least until Easter; after that, well time would decide.

I probably should have consulted people but I’m a great believer in having a go and not over-thinking my writing; early on I was told I needed to plot my novels and for a while ground to a halt as I struggled with this approach. The advice, while no doubt well-intentioned, merely served to prove, as I should well know already, that there are an infinite number of ways to skin a cat.

I went into my weekly work with a will (sorry, cheesy alliteration that) and, for a while, developed an encouraging readership. But by the time I reached week 15 the number of views had dropped significantly. I suppose, if I thought about it, that shouldn’t have been surprising. I was asking my readership to agree to quite a commitment. If for any reason they missed a week or two they needed to catch up and we all know the pressure on us of reading blog posts anyway. For people to go back and catch up, well that’s quite an ask.

I was also hopeful of generating some helpful criticism but that too was naïve. Nearly all my comments come from people who are supportive; they really don’t want to criticise me.  A few do and mostly they are most welcome but no one had a bad word to say about my chapters. Any novelist knows the worth of well thought out criticism but the blog post is not the right vehicle.

Still, I kept at it. I reached November and Nano 2015. This was a huge undertaking for me – 30 short stories in November, each written on the day, each 1667 words long, give or take 10 either side; each a different genre, tense, pov; each based on a prompt from my readers. The novel had to stop. Anyway, by then I’d say only three or four people were still committed readers. And, in truth, I’d reached a dilemma how I was going to end it. I thought I had an ending but sometime in about September the book took an unexpected turn and that ending became otiose.

In truth, I was pleased to stop. I needed time out to think about where I wanted it to go. So, I never made it to 52 weeks. But I got pretty close and I learnt a lot in the process. Lesson one; don’t write a novel in weekly instalments on my blog!


Buster & Moo  – a new book from Geoff Le Pard

Available to pre-order now – Publication date July 15th


With their relationship under pressure, is adopting a dog the best decision for Mervin and Landen? As they adapt to fit the animal into their busy lives a chance encounter with Dave and Sheri, the dog’s previous owners, develops into something more and the newfound friendship is tested to the limits.

Life is complicated when Landen loses her job following the discovery of her affair with a colleague and then she becomes involved in a police investigation into alleged money laundering and drug dealing at her old firm. She tries desperately to keep the sordid truth from Mervin as events begin to spiral out of control.

As the four lives overlap and criss-cross the one constant is their shared love of the dog named Moo. But the problems mount up. While Sheri and Mervin grow close as they struggle to help each other, it is the unlikely alliance between Sheri and Landen that leads to the dramatic climax. However, there is only room for one hero in this story – who will it be?

Geoff Le Pard

About the author

Geoff Le Pard started writing to entertain in 2006. He hasn’t left his keyboard since. When he’s not churning out novels he writes some maudlin self-indulgent poetry, short fiction and blogs at He walks the dog for mutual inspiration and most of his best ideas come out of these strolls. He also cooks with passion if not precision.

Find and follow Geoff

Blog   Amazon author page

 Twitter     Google+   LinkedIn     Facebook

My Father and Other Liars by [Le Pard, Geoff]My Father and Other Liars is a thriller set in the near future and takes its heroes, Maurice and Lori-Ann on a helter-skelter chase across continents.



Dead Flies and Sherry TrifleDead Flies and Sherry Trifle is a coming of age story. Set in 1976 the hero Harry Spittle is home from university for the holidays. He has three goals: to keep away from his family, earn money and hopefully have sex. Inevitably his summer turns out to be very different to that anticipated.


Life, in a Grain of SandLife in a Grain of Sand is a 30 story anthology that covers many genres: fantasy, romance, humour, thriller, espionage, conspiracy theories, MG and indeed something for everyone. All the stories were written during Nano 2015


Salisbury SquareSalisbury Square is a dark thriller set in present day London where a homeless woman and a Polish man, escaping the police at home, form an unlikely alliance to save themselves.



Buster & MooBuster & Moo is about about two couples and the dog whose ownership passes from one to the other. When the couples meet, via the dog, the previously hidden cracks in their relationships surface and events begin to spiral out of control. If the relationships are to survive there is room for only one hero but who will that be?

This will be available here from 15th July



If you would like to be my guest, please read the guidelines and get in touch!


About Sue Vincent

Sue Vincent is a Yorkshire-born writer and one of the Directors of The Silent Eye, a modern Mystery School. She writes alone and with Stuart France, exploring ancient myths, the mysterious landscape of Albion and the inner journey of the soul. Find out more at France and Vincent. She is owned by a small dog who also blogs. Follow her at and on Twitter @SCVincent. Find her books on Goodreads and follow her on Amazon worldwide to find out about new releases and offers. Email:
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53 Responses to Guest author: Geoff Le Pard – Buster and Moo

  1. trentpmcd says:

    That was quite an undertaking. I never planned on doing a serialized novel, but I just finished my second one. A few things I did – I always posted something else that day so my readers who didn’t want to make a time commitment still had posts to read. I also put an easy to use navigation system on each installment and made a table of contents, which I added to as I posted each chapter. With both books, I gave up at one point and sat and wrote the rest of it out over a long weekend, though i still posted.them on the schedule.

    Anyway, good luck with the book when it is released!

    Liked by 2 people

    • TanGental says:

      Thanks Trent. Yes, I see that a more organised reader centric approach could succeed which I didn’t have the whit or patience to undertake. I think for me and my ways of writing I need to splurge, sit back and splurge some more and that probably confounds what I hoped to achieve. Glad you made yours and thank you for the good wishes

      Liked by 2 people

  2. That it amazing Geoff. To commit to writing a book on your blog is a huge commitment. I try to keep up to a posting schedule but I sometimes fall off the bus. Your blog is great and I am looking forward to reading your books in the near future.

    Liked by 2 people

    • TanGental says:

      Thanks Robbie. Yes I’m bonkers about writing challenges and I did learn a lot, beyond the flippant ‘not again’ esp about my prefer writing structure. I don’t necessarily recommend it though I’ve seen others do it successfully.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Ritu says:

    Looking forward to reading!!!!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. TanGental says:

    Thanks so much Sue for being the host with the most…


  5. Pingback: Guest author: Geoff Le Pard – Buster and Moo | TanGental

  6. Reblogged this on Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life and commented:
    Geoff Le Pard is never short of words as I discovered at the Blogger’s Bash.. and every one of them worth listening too.. A dedicated follower of fashion (of writing too) Geoff decided in 2015 to write a chapter of a novel every week for 52 weeks.. head over and read his conclusions about this worthy (wordy) ambition..Guest post on Sue Vincent’s blog #recommended

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Charli Mills says:

    When Geoff churned out this serial, I didn’t miss one — he had me hooked! Now I have the book to find out how he wraps it all up. I think Geoff brings back the art of serial. Many authors wrote that way and it makes me wonder if they had more freedom to explore their characters and play with plot twists. Given today’s blogging platform, it’s a viable way to develop future books or get readers who truly like one’s style of writing.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I was so amazed at how you managed to write a short story every day for one of the NANOWRIMO challenges, Each one of them was of your usual high standard Geoff, you are a writing machine!!! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Mary Smith says:

    Writing a short story a day is a huge undertaking. I feel so pathetic at how little I manage to write – maybe a short story every few years! Interesting about the serial. In Dickens’ day his readers wouldn’t have so many other blog posts to read.

    Liked by 2 people

    • TanGental says:

      I try to convince myself that the lack of a significant readership wasn’t the reason I stopped but in truth, had I managed to engage a wide range of people then the pressure to continue might have made the difference. And, of course, there is a question of quality over quantity!!

      Liked by 2 people

  10. willowdot21 says:

    Whoo hop his Geoffleship!

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Chuck says:

    Wow Geoff, you have impressed me with your determination. Perhaps as my skill level rises, I can take on more writing. For now, I’m reading, practicing, and learning to enhance my level of writing. Thanks for the inspiration.

    Liked by 2 people

    • TanGental says:

      I’m so glad this may inspire you. That would be brilliant. There’s a sense of letting go that is so revealing in many ways. Good luck with the writing and I look forward to hearing about it

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Goeff, I can definitely empathize. I have a week or two to go on a serialized story that is up to well over 70,000 words and will become a novel. I’ve done it as a stream of consciousness exercise and have tried not to look back on previous weeks as I write the new installments. As I now look back on the early chapters, I’m going to have a great deal of continuity issues to fix. Since it’s a story centered on time travel, this is an especially prevalent problem as I’ve created a writing ‘butterfly effect’ that is going to take a while to unravel.

    Liked by 2 people

  13. Reblogged this on Author Don Massenzio and commented:
    Here’s a great guest post by Geoff Le Pard on the task of undertaking a serialized novel. I can relate to this.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. dgkaye says:

    Love the honesty in Geoff’s blogging venture to write a book chapter weekly and trying to keep an audience tuned faithfully when we have limited time to read so many blogs. That’s why books are better, we can sell them and we can read them at our leisure. Wishing Geoff much success with what sounds a good read with Buster and Moo 🙂 xx

    Liked by 2 people

  15. You’re on quite a roll there Geoff, lots of books under your writerly belt. Well done, good luck with Buster & Moo, sounds like a cute read. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I learned the same lesson with The Truth App. That’s why I now stick to Flash Fiction on the blog. Any longer stories can go into a book where they can be read in one go (unless somebody knocks the door or Alan Titchmarsh comes on the TV).
    I’m always amazed by how you manage to publish at least one post a day on your blog and still have time for writing new books, as well as reading, walking Mylo, baking, bloggers bash duties, and all the other things I know you do.
    Congratulations on the new book, Geoff. I look forward to hosting it over on my blog.

    Liked by 1 person

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