An internal dialog.

Some days I open my blog and get ready to post, and can’t think of a thing to say. It’s a dangerous time, when my mind is prone to wonder off along uncharted paths. Today was one of those days. I have no idea where the following came from. Maybe I just needed another cup of coffee.

Couple at Bar

A writer and an editor walk into a bar.

Writer: “It’s a dark and stormy night.”

Editor: “Never start with the weather.”

Writer: “I sold my first novel.”

Editor: “So you finally won one.”

Writer: “I’m going to write a second book.”

Editor: “I agree that you should move to two, too.”

Writer: “I’m just not sure what to write.”

Editor: “What do you really want to do?”

Writer: “I don’t want to do nothing?”

Editor: “Now you’re just being double negative.”

Writer: “Okay, how big of a book should I write?”

Editor: “You need to let your weight wait until you have your subject.”

Writer: “I’d like to write something historical.”

Editor: “Well, you’re going to want your yore correct.”

Writer: “What do you mean?”

Editor: “Historical readers are finicky. They’re going to want their there.”

Writer: “So I need to get my facts straight.”

Editor: “Yes, you need to write right.”

Writer: “But there are some things I don’t know. No?”

Editor: “That’s when you need to ask your grammar.”

Couple touching glasses of red red wine

 

With great apologies,

Steve

Publication date – Son of Thunder

Woot! I was just informed by my publisher, Soul Mate Publishing, that my novel, Son of Thunder will be released on February 20th as an eBook!

Son of Thunder MinicoverThe paperback version will be available 3 to 6 months later.

 

Also remember: The Redeem a Templar promotion is still on, through Sunday. Get your free copy of The Forsaken Templar here: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0081S8LPO

My next ‘Next Big Thing.’

I have been tapped by author Aria Bellamy for the Next Big Thing Blog Tour. She’s a new friend of mine and you might want to stop by her blog and check out her steamy upcoming release Alexa Stone Top Ten List.

Now, I’ve already done a hop on the Next Big Thing Blog Tour. You can find that post here: http://scmitchell.wordpress.com/2012/12/19/the-next-big-thing-blog-tour/

Looking back on that I realized that I have finished that ‘Big Thing’ but I could use this as a way to share my next ‘Next Big Thing’ with you. So, here goes:

What is the title of your next book?

The working title is Hearts in Orbit

Where did the idea come from for the book?

Probably from my love of Science Fiction/Space Opera

What genre does your book fall under?

Science Fiction Romance

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

I’m right at the beginning of the writing process and my characters haven’t solidified in my brain yet, so I don’t have a clear picture.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

A woman, doing what she knows is right, ends up on the wrong side of the law and is pursued and captured by a relentless bounty hunter.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

I am hoping Soul Mate Publishing will be interested in it, otherwise I plan to shop it around.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

It’s far from done. I’m only a few chapters in. It should occupy the next two to three months.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

I would say it’s similar to the books by Linnea Sinclair,  though she writes in 1st person and this is in 3rd.

Who or What inspired you to write this book?

The way things rumble around  in my brain, it’s sometimes hard to tell where an idea comes from, but I would say it’s a combination of Star Wars, Linnea Sinclair, and too little sleep.

What else about your book might pique the reader interest?

I’ve created a new race of aliens called the blarmings. In this universe all the cats and dogs were wiped out by a virus and people are looking for a new type of pet. The blarmlings are adorable furry creatures, highly intelligent and pacific. A ruthless galactic corporation has started trapping and caging the blarmlings and my heroin decides she has to take a stand. She needs to show the galaxy that the blarmlings are people, not animals.

So there you have it. My next Next Big Thing.

Steve

Redeem a Templar.

Templar minicover

From The Forsaken Templar:

With a crack of thunder the doorway to purgatory slid open, ripping the bonds of reality. Through the mist a gaunt, old man stepped between the world of the living and the world of the damned. Nathan Gray was seeking a soul.

     His crisp black suit and clean white shirt seemed an ordered contrast to the chaos around him. His stilted walk was slow but purposeful. It was not his age that he felt, but rather the weight of humanity resting on his shoulders.

     A thousand voices cried out in hope – so many souls, doomed to spend eternity in torment. Nathan hardened his heart against the assault on his senses.  He knew the one he sought. Geoffrey le Court had never once called out to him. Yet, of them all, Geoffrey was the most deserving of redemption.

Well, the souls are piling up in purgatory, and the place is in complete disarray,  but you can help. Yes, right now we are featuring our Redeem a Templar Promotion. Thousands of crusty old dead knights are lining up at the gates of purgatory, and ready to fly to your Kindle device or Kindle reader. Just like Nathan Gray, you can redeem your own Templar Knight, and the best part is, it’s FREE, FREE, FREE!!!

Yes, through Sunday, January 27, you can get The Forsaken Templar (Kindle edition) Free.

There’s a tortured soul just waiting for you right here: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0081S8LPO

Show them you care.

Steve

When the voices stop.

My characters speak to me constantly, and sometimes at the most inconvenient times. It’s nothing that I’m worried about. In fact, it’s something that I count on to draw me through the story I’m writing. When I’m writing, I’m living in the world of my characters, and communicating with them.

There are times when my characters drive me from a comfortable bed, interrupt a meal, or keep me from the next chapter in that wonderful Soul Mate romance I’ve been reading. They can be quite irritating, but they are completely essential to my storytelling, so I let them get away with it, because the only thing worse than my characters jabbering at me…is my characters NOT jabbering at me.

It happened last week. I’ve been working on my sequel to Son of Thunder. Nott, the Norse Goddess of the Night, and Tyr the God of Courage (minor characters from SoT) had been dragging me along through their story ever since Christmas. Suddenly, their voices just went silent. Nott has wondered off to take a nap, and Tyr just looks at me and shrugs. I seriously didn’t know what to do with them.

The silence in my head was deafening.

I took a few days off, played around with some ideas, but they never started talking to me. In the silence, though, I heard a cry. A cry from another galaxy…another time.

A novel I’d started last year, set in the far flung future, suddenly hyper-jumped front and center in my mind. Rigel, the galactic bounty hunter, and the beautiful Phoebe, his bounty in more ways than one, are suddenly filling my ears with their story.

“You promised you’d get back to us.” And I had. Things can only remain on the back burner so long before the pot melts. So I’m leaving the Norse gods behind, and rocketing off to another galaxy, at least for the next few weeks.

Wish me luck.

Steve

Is doing everything right, doing everything wrong?

Well, the Adopt a werewolf campaign is over, and we found homes for over 500 new copies of There’s no such thing as Werewolves. Hopefully some new readers will discover my writing which, of course, is the reason behind the give away.

This time of year is a time of looking back, and looking ahead. I looked back on my giveaways last year, and at one point I gave away over 5,000 copies in a 5 day promotion. So this promotion hit only about 1/10 of what the same promotion did less than a year ago, and it made me wonder: Is doing everything right, doing everything wrong?

Let me explain. There’s a kind of “Here’s how you do it”  list of things you ‘need’ to do if you’re a new author. Have a blog and a presence on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and as many other social networking sites as possible. You have to have a PLATFORM. Then, if your query letters to agents and publishers fall on deaf ears, you self-publish, and use free promotions to get your work out there to build a reader base. It worked. It worked for me last year. The 5,000 free books generated sales of my other books. sure, it seems to have worked much better for some of the authors before me, but I got my foot in the door.

On the other side of things, I’ve done my share of picking up and reading promotional (free) books. Some were good, some just okay and many were really bad. The gatekeepers are gone. It’s easy to see that the bar for entry has been lowered to the ground, and the field is overflowing. I hit the point where I just stopped picking up free books, and trying out new authors. I’ve gone back to reading trusted authors, taking suggestions from friends, and buying books from publishers. In short, I’ve gone back to the gatekeepers. My reading time is precious, so I want something good. I think a lot of people are doing the same thing. Thus we see the rise of the boutique publishers, the new gatekeepers.

Having just gone through the editing process on Son of Thunder, I realize that there is a good chance my self-published books are not all that good, they may even be crap, I’m certainly no fair judge of my own work. I like them, and I’m proud of my books, but I avoided the gatekeepers, and jumped into the muddy pool, just to get something ‘out there.’ They’re certainly not as good as they could have been with an professional editor and publisher behind them.

It seems to have worked for me, though. I have an editor and a publisher now. I’ve made it past the gatekeepers. I still have a long way to go. But I wonder about new authors, jumping into that muddy pool. The industry is changing so fast, what worked last year, doesn’t work as well as it used to, and maybe it doesn’t work at all. I think I got in at a good time, maybe hitting the tail end of the big self-publishing boom.

I don’t have much advice for new authors. I wish I did. I wish I could say, just do what I did (not that I’m all that successful). But what worked last year, doesn’t work as well right now, and may be completely worthless in the future. The list of things you need to do as an author grew out of the success stories of such authors as Amanda Hocking and E. L. James, but they broke new ground. Those that followed them, doing all the “right” things, had less success. So doing everything right, may just be doing everything wrong. Then again, who knows. Maybe with luck, skill, persistence, and a bit of crazy, you might find the new right way to do things. I know I’m going to keep my eyes open.

Until next time,

Steve