New interest!

Wow, where has June gone? Between the WisRWA convention, some fix-up work around the house, and getting a really good start on Knight of the Night I’ve completely ignored my blog. Okay, there was also a fabulous wine tasting trip in there somewhere as well. Still not a good excuse. (Bad author…no cookie!!!)

So here’s an update on my writing. I have a bit of new interest in my novel, Son of Thunder. In May I did a complete rewrite of the first chapter, and another edit run on it, and I feel it’s much better book now. In the past few weeks I have received full read requests from an agent and a publisher. Fingers are crossed (even a few toes). I think it’s time for another round of query emails, then it’s right back to the grindstone on the next Demons Rising novella.

I am pretty sure that Knight of the Night will be the last book in the demons rising saga, making it a trilogy. Not that the story will be completed, in fact it will just be begun. I plan that the three books will be an introduction to a very dark future world and set the stage for a series of full novels set here. The demons will have risen to power and the Templars and Arcanists will be fighting an uphill battle that will span two worlds (possibly three). My mind is bursting with possibilities that I can’t wait to get down on paper (well in the computer anyway).

And just for the heck of it, (and because it’s slipping down the page) here’s a link to the promo video for There’s no such thing as Werwolves.

Click here to view video!

Note: If you LIKE/SHARE/SUBSCRIBE the author will get his cookie!

Until next time,

Steve


 

 

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The hazy days of summer.

It’s been a busy couple of weeks and I realized this morning just how long it has been since i updated this blog. Sorry about that. It was nice to keep the Book Trailer front and center for the past few weeks. I have received some nice comments on it and am very happy with how it came out.

June 1st – 3rd I attended the WisRWA Write Touch Conference. It was an excellent experience. Over 90 romance writers getting together to talk writing, publishing and the romance genre. I met two other male romance writers, and felt complete acceptance from the entire group. I did my first author signing, in a room filled with other published romance authors. It was quite exciting, and I think it went well. I was also able to pitch two agents that attended the conference, and received a request for a full read of Son of Thunder. It’s a very reputable agency. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that my search for a new agent is coming to a close.

Overall I came out charged up and ready to dive into the next Demons Rising novella: Knight of the night. This is the story of Salina Frye (from Werewolves) and Ryan Chamberlain (from Templar) and deals with the events following the closing of the demon gate. As the ravaged Arcanist and Templar forces seek to deal with the rising demon domination of their world, the rival groups need to put aside three thousand years of animosity and learn to work together. Expect some real fireworks.

Oh, and there’s one last thing:

FREE, FREE, FREE, FREE, FREE…

I have decided to put the Kindle version of Swiftly Beats the Heart for free starting Wednesday (6/13) and running through Sunday (6/17), so if you are new to my blog, or just missed it in February, here’s a chance to add it to your Kindle collection.

Until next time,

Steve

Love from across the pond.

Okay, maybe love is too strong a word, but one thing I forgot to check during my promotion was my foreign sales. I did surprisingly well in England and Germany, where I not only gave away free copies but also had some sales as well. I also had people pick up free copies of Werewolves in Spain, Italy, and France. The topper, though, is that I got two reviews on the British Amazon site: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B007KAE45A

It’s interesting when I think about people in other countries reading my stuff. Some day I may have to dabble in translations, just to see if it would be worth it. I do have a connection with someone who can translate English into Spanish and French, but she’s pretty busy right now. Maybe in the future…

On another note, I have a writers conference coming up this coming weekend, and interviews lined up with two agents.  I’m working hard on a final edit and polish of Son of Thunder, which I am planning to pitch to them.I’m keeping my fingers crossed that I can find a new agent soon.

Such Fun,

Steve

The hardest part of writing is…

When I started writing, over thirty years ago, I remember thinking that if I could just finish the rough draft…I would be almost there. After all, lots of people start writing a book, but most never finish. This has got to be the hardest part of writing.

Fast forward to about twenty years ago: It’s finished. (It’s also wretched. Believe me, you will never see this first novel, at least not in its current form.) I pick the publisher I want to publish it, and send it off. It will sell, right? Most people don’t finish their novels. This one is done. Any problems they will have a professional editor fix, and I’ll be published and rich. But the waiting…this has got to be the hardest part of writing.

The rejection letter arrives. What? They couldn’t see my brilliance among all the typos, bad grammar, and poor description? Rejection sucks. I’m done with writing. Pack it away along with all my dreams. This is most definitely the hardest part of writing.

But I can’t stop writing. Over the next twenty years I make numerous starts on countless stories. Life keeps getting in the way and I keep packing it up/putting it off. Finding the time to write…that is the hardest part of writing.

Then, two years ago…RETIREMENT! Time to write. Stories get finished and polished. I finish Templars Gate (The Forsaken Templar). I even find an agent. This is it. The big time! I write There’s no such thing as Werewolves and Son of Thunder. But nothing sells. Communication breaks down. I feel like I’m beating my head against the wall. I have sequels in my brain, but it’s no use writing them unless I can sell the first. What can I write that will sell? Am I really an author? The questions…the self doubt…this has got to be the hardest part of writing.

I start entering contests, submitting for anthologies, and I get my first big break. September 29, 2011. My short story, A Requiem for Poseidon sells! It’s to a small online publisher. The book will probably only be available digitally. But it’s a sale. Twenty-five whole dollars! I have made money with my writing. I am a professional. “So, when is the book coming out?” I am asked continually. “Soon…” is all I can answer. (It’s been seven months and I still do not have a release date.) Once again, waiting is the hardest part of writing.

I part ways with my agent, and start the search for another. I have stuff now, a body of work. Two completed novels, three completed novellas, and more starts than you can shake a stick at. Though why people would want to shake a stick at anything is beyond me. I go to work every day. I don’t consider myself retired anymore. I’m a writer…an author. It’s what I do…what I am. I have two books published (and a short story in an anthology ‘coming soon’). There’s a ton of stuff I need to do, a mountain of stories I need to write, and it’s all hard work.

This isn’t the blog I started out to write. It evolved as I wrote it, as my writing tends to do. What I realized this morning, sitting here at my computer, is that the hardest part of writing…is believing in yourself.

Believe!

Steve

Good things happen in threes

In writing there is the Rule of Three. It’s not so much a rule as a guideline, but it works. Sometimes the rule of three carries over to the real world and today I’ve got three pieces of good news to pass along:

First: The print version of Swiftly Beats the Heart is now available to purchase on CreateSpace by clicking here. It will also be available soon from Amazon.com (but I make a little more if you buy it direct from CreateSpace). I know there are some of you that are unable to read the Kindle Version. I hope you will pick this up and let me know what you think.

 

Second: Yesterday I received a request for a partial of Amulet of the Fallen God from one of the literary agents I queried. Of course it’s not a sure thing, but it is the first step in getting a new agent for my writing. Also, this was a well respected agency, who represent some awesome authors, with many books on the best sellers lists. I sure hope they like what they see.

 

Third: I am moving ahead on a deal that will possibly make Spanish & French translations and Audio books available for Swiftly Beats the Heart and any future self-published books.

 

There is so much happening right now, and it’s all very exciting. For the first time in my life, I think, I’m really looking forward to going to work each day.

 

Until next time,

Steve

Query time

Amulet of the Fallen God is complete and extensively edited, which means it query time. I have been planning on using this novel to search for a new agent, so it is once again time to cast a wide net and see if I can get any nibbles. I’m really happy with the way the novel came out. It’s 99,040 words and has a lot of action and romance. It’s a fantasy with romance elements. It’s not a romance because I just couldn’t get Allsa and Dravious together at the end for a ‘happy ever after’ ending. It will probably happen in a sequel, but there was a a small roadblock at the end of the book that needed to be there for the right ending of this part of their story.

I’m very happy with the initial results for Swiftly beats the Heart. Lots of copies were downloaded during the FREE promotion, and I’ve also had a few sales for real money. I just received the proof for the print edition today, and I am hoping to have that available soon for those of you without the ability to read the kindle ebook version.I’m also hoping to get some reviews on Amazon and GoodReads to help create new interest. It’s still amazing to me that so many people are reading my story.

There is so much to do. I am now planning on my next release. I’m going to try and release my Demon Gate series. First will come There’s no such thing as Werewolves and I hope to have it ready to upload by the middle of next month sometime. That will be followed by Templars Gate and after that Demons of Dusk. I still need to finish writing the last book, and give the first two a really good edit run. Then there’s covers and formatting.

It’s a lot of work, but I have to admit…I’ve never been happier.

Until next time,

Steve

 

 

Testing the waters by jumping in on the deep end.

I’m a member of two awesome writing groups – Writers Voice, associated with the Wisconsin Writers Association, and the Wisconsin Romance Writers of America (Wausau Chapter). I can’t express enough how much these two groups have helped me and my writing.

Recently we’ve had a lot of discussion in both groups about self-publishing. Now, I’ve always planned to try and go the traditional route with my writing – get an agent and let them handle sales and whatnot so I can just ‘write.’ But I have been wondering lately if maybe I’m not missing the boat on this new dynamic in publishing. So, after an interesting discussion at my Wednesday evening Writers Voice meeting (Thanks Sherrill) I decided to look into Kindle Direct Publishing.

After playing around with it for less than a day I was suddenly at the point of…Wow, I could do this!! So I did it.

I am happy to announce that Swiftly Beats the Heart (formerly titled Cheetah and Zoom) will soon be available for purchase on Amazon.com. It’s still ‘under review’ and though they say this should only take 12 hours it has taken much longer than that. I will post a link here as soon as it goes up. I plan on doing the kdp select thing and put it up for free for 5 days, just as soon as I figure out how to do that.

Yeah, the cover is not the greatest, I made it in MS Draw, but I think it works well enough for a first attempt. I feel the story is solid and a lot of fun, so I hope you’ll pick it up and let me know what you think.

I still do plan on looking for a new agent, and pursuing the traditional route to publishing, but even us old guys need to keep our eyes on the future and for me, yesterday was a step in that direction.

Until next time,

Steve