Monday, August 04, 2014

Exclusive

I have decided to take my stories and go all in with Amazon.* I know many of you will tell me what an unwise decision that is, and you may be right. But the thing is, in three years I haven't earned squat on all of the other retailers combined.

It may be a failed experiment, then again, maybe not.

I'm working toward publishing book one in a new series. I'm just waiting on the cover art to come back. But then I went and did something stupid, like read this blog post by Hugh Howey, and now I'm wondering if I should wait until I have the others ready to go.

So many tough decisions. It is true that the easiest part of self publishing is writing the books.

What to do?

*If you wish to read any of my stories and you don't want to go through Amazon, please email me and I will do my best to get you the story.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

The Only Thing Constant Is Change

I can't believe that I haven't written a post since January.

Granted, my purpose for this blog has changed over the years. When I first started, it was understood that if you wanted to gain the attention of an agent then you needed a strong web presence with a ready-made following.

Now that that myth has been debunked, I use this blog just to drain some of my random thoughts.

What have I been up to since January?

Much and more.

I lost my job. Well, that's being a bit dramatic. The job I had, which I worked between the hours of 6am and 2:30pm, was switched against my will to one that was between 10pm and 6:30am.

I liked this job. It was easy, had very little stress and gave me ample downtime that I used to sneak in some writing. I was very blessed to land another job before the shift change. This new job is a very good job. A much higher rate of pay, still during daylight hours, good benefits. Downside is no idle time to write. Not complaining, just explaining.

I had to learn how to write at night again. You know, those hours when everyone else in the house is asleep and you wish you were too.

I've been working on a new series. I had planned to write one, publish it then move on to the next one.

That didn't happen.

Instead, once I finished book 1 I couldn't help but start writing book 2 immediately after. The job change came in the middle of all this and I found that I didn't have time to write the second while editing the first.

Just last night I finished the first draft of book number 2 and while I'm tempted to start on number 3, I am going to pull back and get some editing and publishing done first.

If any of you out there would like to know when book number 1 (I will reveal the title soon) comes out, I invite you to click on the link to the right and join my mailing list. I promise no spam, sharing of email addresses, or annoying updates every 15 minutes.


Sunday, January 05, 2014

Old Man Winter Can Stick It

Hello everyone. I hope you are all warm and dry as we endure this latest Snowpocalypse. If you happen to be somewhere tropical then I hate you. Just kidding. But I'm not. I really hate you.

Here in southern IN it keeps switching between rain and snow. My yard has turned into the most drab giant Slurpee you've ever seen. As I listen to the water dripping down my broken chimney and tap on top of my vent-less gas fireplace, soaking the army of towels I have piled beneath the leak, I truly wish I would have faced my acrophobia this past summer, climbed up on my roof and put a tarp over the dang thing.

They (whoever they are) are forecasting this rain/sleet junk will switch over to snow here in about an hour and that we will have -30 windchill factors to look forward to. Oh, rapture! School has already been canceled in this area which means I'm probably not going in to work tomorrow, which means they won't pay me (go figure) which means less money to put towards fixing that giant, gaping hole in my chimney.

Sorry. I didn't mean to wax all glass-half-empty on you. Winter sometimes does that to me. I wasn't built for the cold and if I didn't have such deep roots in this town me and Mrs. B would load up the kids and head south. Maybe hit up Georgia for some zombie hunting.

Anyway, as I mentioned last post I've been having some Day Job issues. Weather permitting, I have a pretty important job interview on Tuesday. Any well wishes, good thoughts, crossed fingers and prayers are appreciated.

I would that my book sales were enough to cancel out the necessity of a day job, but alas it has not yet come to that. I'm still pressing onward, though. I have 70,000 words down in book 2 (the continuance of the book 1 I will be putting out soon) and I hope to finish it within the month. I was hoping to just keep on typing, but with the way my schedule is changing I think I may have to postpone writing book number 3 until I get number 1 published and number 2 fixed up a bit.

Everyone confused? Good. That's the way I like it.

If you're somewhere being tormented by Old Man Winter, give him the finger, stay inside with a your robe and slippers on and curl up with a good story. If you're somewhere tropical . . . go inside for a bit. Too much
sun is bad for you.

Monday, December 30, 2013

My Year In Review Post

I've been a bit absent on the ol' blog . . . again. Big shocker, I know. My apologies. It's not you. It's me. I live what you could say is an anticlimactic life. Anyway, I've been a bit busy these past couple of months, but I thought I better get one last post in 2013.

As I wander through my self-publishing adventure like a blind man in a smoke-filled rave party, I've inevitably stumbled along the way. One of my major mistakes was wasting a bunch of time trying to promote old works instead of welding my rump to the chair and super-gluing my fingers to the keyboard. I've heard it said many times the best way for an indie writer to succeed (or at least increase sales) is to have multiple works out. Despite knowing that, I still had trouble pulling away from the promotion side of the business.

Mid way through the year though I turned over a new leaf. I started writing feverishly on a new project. I had in my mind that I would write a series. Around mid-September I completed book one and now I'm three quarters of the way through book two. In the traditional realm I know that it's not advisable to write book two until you're sure book one will sell, but indies play by different rules. Besides, it's turning out to be more of a continuing story--like Lord of the Rings or The Dark Tower Series--that I'm breaking up into separate books.

I haven't yet churned out the second draft of book one mostly due to the day job and writing book two. I'm hoping to put in some writerly overtime and get book one out soon. I haven't released the name of the series because . . . well, I'm a bit paranoid that the name will be taken before I can get the book published. Stupid, I know, but it's my own little piece of neuroses.

I received some bad news a few weeks ago that my job will be going away. I'm searching for a new job, but as any of you in the same situation know, the pickin' sure are slim. So, I'm rushing to finish book two because I just don't know where I might end up in the next month or so. There's a good chance I may get stuck on 3rd shift and if I do I'm sure my writing time will suffer.

If things go well, I'm hoping in 2014 to publish the two books I've written and write another three. Wish me luck.

I would like to thank all of you that bought, read and reviewed my stories this past year. I hope you had a great 2013 and may 2014 be ten times better.

Happy New Year!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Almost Half of My Life

Let me tell you a little story.

There once was a troll that happened across a beautiful maiden. The maiden was kind to the troll, treating him as she would any friend. The troll feared that the maiden would soon see him for what he truly was, so in his desperation he acquired a magic ring that would forever bind the maiden to him.

Years passed and the troll felt bad for deceiving the maiden. He confessed that he had tricked her into staying with him. To his surprise the maiden had a confession of her own. The ring he had given her held no magic at all. She had stayed with him all those years because she wanted to.

In all seriousness, today is my 15th wedding anniversary. It's sometimes hard for me to grasp that a decade and a half have passed since I tricked that beautiful maiden into marrying me. Though at the time we thought we were so grown up, I look back and realize we were only kids. I mean, just look at those two baby-faces. I was 21 and she was only 18. And before you ask, no we didn't have to get married. No little buns were in the oven (that didn't come for another nine years). Not knocking that, but when we announced that we were getting married, that was the first question on almost everyone's lips. We got married because we couldn't imagine it any other way.

I realize now the reservations our families had. Marriage is a full time job, and many people just aren't up to the task. If either of my children come to me at the age of 18 and say they are tying the knot, I'm sure I'll get the same look on my face that my father-in-law had.

But thus far we've made it work, and I hope we continue to be blessed in that fashion.

Brandy is the best women I've ever known. She's gentle and strong. Smart and kind. She has never once told me to shelf this writing thing and has total faith that I will one day make it big. And any writer worth their ink knows how much support like that really means. She makes this old troll a better person.

If you take into account the two years that we dated before we were married then I've been with this wonderful woman almost half of my life. Time really does fly when you're having a good time.

Anyway, I'm not much for sap (I'm a sappy person deep down, but the troll in me hides that fact like a bar of gold) but she deserves a bit of sap from time to time. I know when we first started out we had "our song". To my shame I can no longer remember what "our song" was.

Don't judge me! I'm sure she doesn't remember, either (he says with a pensive wince).

Anyway, back in the late 90s I listened to a little more country music than I do now. Kind of burnt myself out on it. But there was one song that always brought that lump up in my throat and it rings more true today than it ever did back then. I wish I had the talent, or at least the courage, to sing it to her myself, but the troll won't let that happen. So I'm afraid this will have to do.

Thank you Brandy Michelle for sticking with this grumpy old troll and filling half of my life with such joy.

Happy Anniversary. I love you.