“Out of Time” recently crossed the 2,000-sales mark! I’m pleased with our number of sales, but even more pleased to be working on a new collection with the same talented authors. Besides getting some new short stories underway, I’ve been getting some new novel work done, and am looking forward (yes, already) to this year’s Nanowrimo. (Anyone looking for a friend there, look me up, I’m “ruined keep scribe” and always happy to have new writing pals.)
A quick thanks to all those who’ve bought “Out of Time.” Sales have gone beyond all the authors’ expectations and we are all looking forward to releasing another collection sometime next year. In the meantime, do please check out Russell James’ and Teresa Robeson’s blogs (links are on the right). I’ve had a couple of inquiries about whether there’s more to the story of “The Widow in the Woods.” The characters are tinkering about in the back of my mind, so they will make another appearance, but I can’t say more than that right now. Continue reading
I’ve been an unapologetic Luddite for most of my life. But my reluctance to embrace technology is overpowered by my love of reading. To that end, I’m the delighted owner of a Kindle Fire. A book with its own light source? Immediate downloads? What a time to be alive!
Now, I realize not everyone else is hip to this brave new world. Continue reading
Years ago I took a long bus trip. It was everything a 36-hour bus ride could be, with the usual suspects (ordinary people, crazy people, young people, old people, little children, crackheads, perverts, college kids, etc.). With a delegate present from every walk of life, that bus presented me with sights, smells, and propositions I hope never to encounter again. Some time after that, I happened upon Weird Al’s performance of “Another One Rides the Bus.” I had to watch it a second time because I was laughing so hard the first time through I missed half the lyrics – all of which rang true enough to keep me in hysterics.
Weird Al’s whimsical ditty came back to me this morning and I started thinking about all the story ideas that could come out of that bus trip. What if humans and aliens had to share a daily commute? If goblins ran bus companies, what sort of rules would they impose on passengers? Or, I could take the most inappropriate thing I heard on that trip and write it into a setting that was the opposite of the bus environment. Or, I could pick the creepiest weirdo on the bus and write the story of how he got that way. (Um…maybe not that last one, upon second thought.)
I’m a big fan of the holiday season, not so much for the traditions of any particular idealogy, but because I really like cookies and colored lights. I usually listen to music when I write, and throughout December I have a couple of favorite holiday albums that I mix into the rotation. Annie Lennox’s A Christmas Cornucopia is a decent mix of tunes (and the video for God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen is a real hoot). My other favorite to have in the background while I write is a collection of holiday music from the Middle Ages: A Feast of Songs, by Beth and Barry Hall. I can write to either of these albums throughout the entire month. When it comes to hosting holiday parties (hey, writers do social things like that!), my favorite is James Taylor’s Christmas Album. Continue reading
The other day I saw a post on Facebook by someone who has self-published a novel. In a very high-handed way he said that he was a “real author” and wouldn’t lower himself to do anything as silly as Nanowrimo. I respect people who don’t want to do it, and I know that there’s a level of kitch to the whole thing. But I was really embarrassed on this fellow’s behalf. Yes, he has really authored a novel. After self-publishing it, he did a promotional give-away of the darned thing. I downloaded the free copy and tried to read it. I couldn’t get past the second chapter. It was pretty bad. I don’t know him personally, but I actually considered contacting him and offering to help proof-edit-improve his future works. I chickened out because it seemed like a weird thing to do, contacting a total stranger to say “let me help before you do something like that again.” Continue reading
As most of the writing world knows, November’s been declared “National Novel Writing Month” – shortened to NaNoWriMo. I heard at a local convention that so many would-be writers take part in this exercise and then (horrors!) ship the slapdash product off to publishers, that many publishing houses just shut down through the entire month of December. I have no idea if that’s true (what good would it do, wouldn’t the dreadful manuscripts just be waiting in January anyway?). But, never mind. Continue reading