Wednesday Weekly Roundup


And we got a new title! As announced, here go the two covers. This week you can check Edwyn Blackmore, a m/m romance set at the beginning of the Varian Empire. You can check the chronology of all the stories here. And here’s the blurb of the latest.

Edwyn’s father demands he finds a bride, so he sets out for Xendaria, where the family originated, to look for a suitable maiden. He stops in a rundown castle belonging to his former sword teacher, Curzio, a Varian nobleman who never married and is the last of his line. Love and drama ensue. A Silvery Earth sweet m/m romance

Like I said, both covers have the same m/m couple by Ravven, but the newest one has a background with a picture of yours truly. It’s the interior of the castle Fortezza Verrucole Archeopark in Garfagnana, a wonderful place to visit if you ever get to Tuscany. Reenactors in medieval costumes show you the life inside the castle when it was still used.

Reading recommendations: check out the Cave Creek Series. I read the novel, Card Sharp Silver, and it’s a very enjoyable read! And I know most of the writers who contributed to the three anthologies. I know a lot about this shared world and I can only recommend you check it out!

Moving on to non-fiction for writers, two neat things came out last week, too late for me to include them in the post. One is the Write Stuff Bundle 2021 – I’ve met all those author (except Joanna Penn, and she’s British!) and they’re all terrific writers. I was even a beta-reader on Michael W. Lucas book. So, highly recommended.

The other spawned from The Covid Year (in their own world) – The Indie Author Magazine. I used to buy all the writers magazines when I traveled abroad, but I stopped because they focused on traditional publishing and finding an agent and all that 20th century publishing stuff. Welcome to the 21st century and the new world of publishing!

Eventually I might write something for them, but probably not this year, since I’m feeling sort of in transition, so until I settle in the new normal, I don’t have much to say!

Last week I wrote under 8K, on three different short stories. This week I’m probably writing for the workshop, but I also have other ideas fluttering around. Again, I don’t know if and when I’ll publish these latest stories, but then, they’re not the only ones still in a drawer (or computer file).

Maybe at some point I’ll do a collection of Rejected Stories in various genres, LOL! But I’m currently still writing and submitting them, and like Breathe found a home in the namesake anthology years after it was written, it could happen again.

Gente reminder that if you want free books in different genres, you should subscribe here. Currently LitRPG/Steampunk books are free! I guess that’s all for today and I wish you a wonderful week! 🙂

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


Last week I forgot to post the cover of the new title… so next week you’ll get two, LOL! Yes, another story is coming, that might end up in Male Lovers of Silvery Earth Volume 4 if I ever write more in that area. Both covers have the M/M couple designed by Ravven, although in completely different contexts! 😉

I’m starting the Portals Collection Workshop, so I don’t know how much writing I’ll be doing in the coming nine weeks. There is still a story I hope to write this week, but then I don’t know. Meanwhile, last week I wrote 8600 words, which might be less than usual, again, but it’s short stories. I write more when I plunge into longer works! 😀

I might have slowed down and become unhappy with what I write because the critical voice has awakened. I didn’t have it before, but now that I followed a few workshops on craft, sometimes I stop and I hear the teacher’s voice “Some setting would be nice!” or “You need more depth!” which kicks me out of creative voice, LOL!

But then, I always wrote the bones first and then added the meat. So in the end my process hasn’t changed much in the first draft, it’s the one revision that brings out those voices. I’m still having fun writing and exploring new genres, though, so I’m not going to stop. Like I said many times, I might give up publishing, not writing! 😀

I definitely need more income streams, so I’ll be studying that too this year. Comics and strips don’t seem to sell, so I’ve given up the third strip even on Instagram. Translations – I need to do a search of what sells in the Italian market before starting them, but I hear much resistance for e-books from my Italian friends.

They still want to go to the bookshop and buy paperbooks (when there’s no lockdown, of course), and going to the bookshops in my area is still on my mind, but then Covid happened, and this was put on a shelf for better times. When? Dunno. Hopefully some time in the next couple of years.

I still have at least until 2023 with the day job, so plenty of time to organize whatever will come next. Possibly more anthologies in collaboration with other authors, possibly more bundles, we’ll see. And speaking of bundles, don’t forget to check the twenty fantasy books for a single low price. It doesn’t get any better than that. https://20bookpacks.com/IASFA-Fantasy-Bundle

Last week I rewatched all the series of Robin of Sherwood for inspiration for my stories – although that’s historical fantasy, so I also checked my historical novel, The Fern and The Cross, to make sure the history and details were correct! 🙂

Which meant I skipped my Saturday Night Fever with some Bollywood movie, but whatever! Next weekend I’ll watch two, LOL! I will also try to get back to reading, I’m falling behind again – and I even received two paperbacks I had ordered some time ago.

I guess that’s all for today! Have a nice week! 🙂

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


And we have another title out, a short story this time. I experimented with a different way of telling on this one, and threw in some of my historical research I did for other stories. The piece in Uruk, 2600BCE is short and brand new, but for the Spartan at the Thermopilae I referenced the two books I read for Helios of Sparta (although he’s born about a century later). And the two 12th century knights appear briefly in The Fern and The Cross as adults.

Rohan is married to Charlie, but the lockdown is hard on their relationship. Rohan tries to relieve past lives to see if there’s bad karma between them that needs to be cleansed.

So go check Lessons From Past Lives, at 99c on your favorite retailer! 😀 And don’t forget the epic fantasy bundle… Do you love big books and epic adventures? Longing for elves and wizards and dragons? Then look no further. https://20bookpacks.com/IASFA-Fantasy-Bundle

Last week I wrote about 6800 words and gave up the idea of writing more Star Minds short stories. The three that I have already written will come out at some point, but I don’t feel like writing more at this time. I want to keep experimenting and trying new genres.

Like I said, I did the Writing Time Travel workshop, and it gave me a few ideas. It also reminded me of some time travel movies I hadn’t watched in years, so I used the weekend to rewatch Freejack only to discover the jump into the future was from 1991 to… a dystopian 2009! So it wasn’t only Back to the Future Part 2 that promised flying cars when we still have none!

The 2009 New York of Freejack is less dark than the 1997 one of Escape from New York, but it still is badly outdated. So yeah, I guess writing time travel into the future is hard, so I’ll probably stick to the past for the time being. Historical time travel appeals to me more than jumping into the future at this time! 🙂

Or I might try time loops, if I rewatch Groundhog Day… We’ll see. I’ve taken Earth out of a century-long time loop in Star Minds, I should play with shorter time loops, LOL!

And by the way, if you want to do that time travel workshop, WMG is again doing a sale on all their workshops. Stay in and learn, so when we get back to some kind of normal, we’ll have the tools to conquer the world… er… the readers! 🙂 Next week I start the Portals Collections workshop, so I’m already set for the next two months…

“The writer who thinks the whole purpose of writing is suffering isn’t one I’m much interested in. The one that tells a story for the joy of telling it is the one I’m interested in. Writing can be hard, but it shouldn’t be miserable. Some days it might be, but on the whole it should be an exciting, if occasionally, frustrated adventure. A story is made better by style, character, dialogue. All the tools that make it work, but the most important component is joyful passion and a willingness to improve on your passion to make it yours and to have it read well. I like to go to work with a certain excitement that gives me pleasure, and hopefully will give the same to the reader. We are not all pleased by the same thing, but if I can write for myself with joy and enthusiasm, I’m confident readers will feel that in the work and some of them will share that enthusiasm and be swept along by the story. I enjoy writing as well as having written. I enjoy finding my story as I go, figuring it out, and putting it down for myself, and no one else, with the confidence I will find some similar souls out there that enjoy the sort of tale I have told.” (Joe Landsale)

And with these words of wisdom, I wish you a wonderful week! 🙂

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


A bundle so packed full of fantasy,
you’ll need a bag of holding.

Over twenty authors have joined the International Association of Science Fiction and Fantasy Authors (IASFA) in a massive book bundle to enchant readers everywhere.

IASFA Book Bundles are a way for people to discover quality books written by popular authors. You know how it’s always hard to find something good to read? IASFA can help solve that with monthly free book promotions as well as through a massive Book Bundle like this.

https://20bookpacks.com/IASFA-Fantasy-Bundle

The Fantasy Book Bundle! Discover fantastic worlds where princesses are assassins, elves cavort with dragons, and orphans aren’t always what they seem. From enchanted forests to perilous seas, there’s an adventure for everyone in these stories. Find your next favorite fantasy author in this fantastic bundle. We’ve compiled over twenty exciting titles and can offer them in a bundle for much less than a dollar each. Begin your epic fantasy adventure today.

Books included:

Truth and Other LiesBy Lyra Wolf
The Blood Stone: Curse of the Drakku Book OneBy Jason Nugent
MercenaryBy Catherine Banks
The Glass GargoyleBy Marie Andreas
Unbreakable FuryBy Kevin McLaughlin
Reecah’s FlightBy Richard H. Stephens
Book of the Immortals – AirBy Barbara G.Tarn
Fenzig’s Fortune: A Gnome’s TaleBy Jean Rabe
FairmistBy Todd Fahnestock
Creature Feature: A Horrid comedyBy Steven Paul Leiva
Sanctum: Sands of SeteshBy C.S. Kading
The Stones of ResurrectionBy Tameri Etherton
Bone TradersBy Rachel Ford
The Shape of DarknessBy D. Fischer
Dragon’s ChoiceBy Debbie Mumford
The Crimson ClaymoreBy Craig A. Price Jr.
Half-Bloods RisingBy J.T. Williams
By the PactBy Joanna Maciejewska
The Shadow and the SunBy Monica Enderle Pierce
Black Heart of the Dragon GodBy Craig Martelle
Sharp SteelBy William Alan Webb
The Watchers of Moniah Blade of DissensionBy Barbara V. Evers By M. Telsch-Williams

The International Association of Science Fiction and Fantasy Authors (IASFA) is a professional organization focused on aligning readers with authors. We are building the organization that currently numbers over 600 authors published within the SFF genres and growing. Stay tuned as each month we’ll offer full book samplers for free along with less frequent paid book bundle promotions. Help yourself to find your next favorite author by joining the IASFA newsletter. https://iasfa.org/book-promotion-calendar/

The Fantasy Book Bundle will be available from April 19th thru May 9th.

***

And we’re back to your scheduled program! That was the big announcement, you can get Books of the Immortals – Air very cheaply and along with all those wonderful authors if you still haven’t read it! Go check out that awesome bundle! 🙂

Last week I wrote less than 5K, again, but life is really getting in the way. I don’t want to talk about it, but whenever I’ll be able to quite that part-time day job, I might finally reach the pulp speed I’m trying to aim for. If you have no idea of what I’m babbling about, here’s some history for you, part one and part two. There’s even a meme on Facebook about the maths of doing it.

As you might be aware, I reached half-pulp speed in 2018 and have been keeping it since, but I still hope to increase the output. Reading those two posts was helpful to remind me I don’t need a beta-reader or three because I’m experimenting with a new genre. My trusted Mighty Editor and Proofreader already provides any feedback I might need.

So I might be writing less than usual this month, but I know I will catch up eventually. I can write 3K-5K a day if I set my mind to it. Doing it every day with everything going on in the world is clearly not possible right now, but eventually I’ll be able to train myself to do it.

Still, 145K words in almost four months are down. The Duology is helping me to deal with the pandemic, adding some magic to a dreadful world. I’m having trouble with older protagonists to put on the covers, though – I can’t find them anywhere on Depositphoto, so I’ll have to improvise.

I know that “a work is Urban Fantasy if it has a half-naked woman on the cover, and Paranormal Romance if it has a half-naked man on the cover.” (from TV Tropes) I know that mid-rifs for women or abs for men are a must, but if you have older protagonists (Generation X in one case, Millennials in the other), I don’t think they’d want to be represented as half-naked heroes or heroines in their twenties. Because none of us is in their twenties anymore (okay, some millennials are still in their late twenties, but the rest of us is not).

Since designing covers is the only thing I like about publishing, I’ll keep tinkering with them, since there’s no hurry to publish them. And I hope there are readers out there for fully adult protagonists dealing with magic in our cities. I still aim for an October publication, but I’m still world-building and I need to take another break from these characters.

The Portals Collection workshop starts soon, and I need to write a couple more Star Minds stories to close an era. Probably, LOL! I thought I was done last year when I published the box sets! 😉 But then I’ll get back to the Duology and then a new series that popped into mind and for which I already have the perfect covers.

Did I mention I like tinkering with covers and making mock-ups? Maybe I should start making premades instead of trying to get into translations! 😀 We’ll see…

Now go grab that awesome fantasy bundle and have a great week!

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


And we have a new ebook out – a vampire called Sun! 🙂 If you’ve read The Phantom Games or are familiar with Vampires Through the Centuries, Helios of Sparta is not new to you. And now you can finally read his story! 🙂 For those who don’t know him at all, here’s the blurb:

A vampire called Sun in Ancient Sparta and beyond.
After meeting a mysterious barbarian who can turn into a wolf, Helios marches on Megalopolis with the rest of the Spartan army, only to be part of the defeat of 331BC at the hand of the Macedonians.
Worse than the defeat is the death of Helios’ beloved, Kyros, and when the blond barbarian shows up while he’s mourning, he lets Bran mesmerize him into accepting his gift.
Thus starts the life under the moon of Helios of Sparta, no longer a Hoplite and former Olympic champion, but a vampire through the centuries and around the Mediterranean to meet his destiny in Bran’s home island of Britannia.

And after spending about half an hour on BookBrush Friday night, I went back to the Covervault templates. For someone like me who has some Photoshop skills, BookBrush is clunky and useless. But if you have no experience, it can be a nice way of preparing your marketing cards.

I joined because I hoped to get some 3D box sets covers, but they’re behind a paywall, so I might as well grab the Covervault templates for box sets, which is a single expense and not a monthly or yearly fee for never using the site. I might eventually use the 15 free downloads on BookBrush, but not yet.

Can you sell more books when you’re terrified of selling? Kristen Lamb gives some very good advice here. I’m trying to make both this blog and the Newsletter (redux) more interactive, but besides my dear friend Tori, it doesn’t look like I’m achieving much! 😉

Hey, I’m only human and cannot produce billions of words a day like OpenAI’s GPT-3 algorithm! That’s why you have only a weekly post here and the occasional post on the publisher’s site and bi-monthly newsletter. And I’m a prolific writer… although last week I wrote less than 6k.

Life rolls, that’s what some people call them. Day Job is getting crazier and I started phisiotherapy for a shoulder that hurts, so less time to write. Also, sort of inbetween projects, so again, not writing as much as when I’m in the middle of a short novel! 😉

If you dream of selling your book to Hollywood, read this cautionary tale. For the new people who joined, I started writing in English by writing screenplays, because the prose is easier – present tense, no need for descriptions or thoughts – and my writing style back then was pretty much a movie.

After my attempts at breaking into Hollywood, I decided to go back to prose because I’m a control freak. Movies and TV series are team works (and especially in movies, the writer is cut out of the equation pretty early), books are all their author’s creation. And I like to be the creative goddess of my stories, LOL!

Coming up – some heroic fantasy news! First of all, next week the International Association of Science Fiction and Fantasy Authors (IASFA) will announce a fantasy book bundle that will delight even the most discerning dragons. And yours truly is among them, so stay tuned.

Sword of Cho Nisi Trilogy by Dianne Gardner is a very complex campaign that has lots of moving parts and a lot of different levels for supporters to jump in at. Check it out.

Ending on a positive note – I tested negative for Covid. Now waiting for a vaccine, so I can travel again. Have a great week! 😀

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


I hope you had a fabulous Easter or Passover or Just Another Weekend! 🙂 I used the time to change all my publishing plans again, LOL! So from next weekend new stories. The box sets have been postponed to the summer. And there might be a break in publishing during June, unless I manage to put together a few collections and book Mighty Editor on time.

I was hoping to be able to put up three paperbacks and order them, but one was stuck “in review” for 3 days, so my order for the first two was deleted after the first 24 hours. I had to wait until the third went live to order them all. Hopefully I’ll get them some time in the next couple of weeks.

Last week I wrote a little over 10K on the Duology and a related story before moving on. Like I said, I need to wait for the months to fly by and I still have to figure out a few kinks and rules necessary to worldbuilding, lest my readers get mad at me for contraddicting myself. It’s a different way of creating a parallel world from what I used to do, which might be why it’s taking me so long.

Remember the Infinite Bard? It still has my short story, The Raven, at the bottom… that list of free reads has grown to some 50 free stories to read online. Go check it out! 🙂 New stories go live on Thursdays, I think.

Spring is here, and next weekend EUR is all closed up for the E-prix. And since last year they couldn’t run, they’re running on both days – with no public whatsoever. They also do a slightly different circuit because this year Fuksas “Nuvola” is a vaccination center. So hopefully it will take them less time to take down everything and allow us to get on with our lives.

I’ve taken the Writing Time Travel workshop, so I might write a few more time travel stories (I already wrote a couple for the Shared Worlds workshop). If you follow me on Bookbub (reviews tab), you can see I just finished a time travel novel and I’m starting on another one (although you won’t know which until I’m done and if I like it enough to recommend it, LOL).

I did write some time travel, precisely in Books of the Immortals – Fire that came out 10 years ago. If you haven’t read it yet, you can get it for free with Newsletter #2 coming out in June. Subscribe at the publisher’s page, as I already said quite a few times.

Soon I’ll be announcing another group effort. Thank you for those who purchased the IASFA sci-fi bundle and stay tuned for more offers, both free and paid. Easing off into the routine after a week off Day Job, I wish you a wonderful week! 🙂

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


The classic editor comes and goes from this dashboard, so some learning curve will be involved in the coming days. Now I might need a couple of weeks to get used to the new thingy, but hopefully it won’t be too messy. Slowly getting the hang of it, so to speak.

Anyhow, Newsletter #1 is ready to roll with a full novel as free download. It goes out tomorrow and you still have time to subscribe, get the free story immediately and wait for the novel tomorrow. Still can’t figure out how to put sign up forms elsewhere, so please hop off to the publisher’s site and dump your email in the newsletter sign-up, thank you! 🙂

Also, last days for the sci-fi bundle… grab it now if you haven’t already! Do you like space opera? How about military science fiction? Do you love the old masters and especially the book club, where you bought one book and received ten more? This is way better. https://20bookpacks.com/IASFA-Sci-Fi-Book-Bundle

The International Association of Science Fiction and Fantasy Authors (IASFA) is a professional organization focused on aligning readers with authors. We are building the organization that currently numbers over 600 authors published within the SFF genres and growing. Stay tuned as each month we’ll offer full book samplers for free along with less frequent paid book bundle promotions. Help yourself to find your next favorite author by joining the IASFA newsletter. https://iasfa.org/book-promotion-calendar/

My friend Francesco Verso published his first collection of short stories in English. If you’d like to try some Italian sci-fi, here’s what he has to say:

Writing short stories – contrary to popular belief – is very hard. You can’t procrastinate, you can’t hide behind turns of phrase, you have to know where you are going and which buttons to press to reach the point in as few words as possible. Paradoxically the short story is the narrative form most suitable for the accelerated times in which we all find ourselves: brief, dense, and compact, the short story is a precious and agile interface for understanding the future we will be living in for the rest of our days. These are my first eleven short stories written between 2008 and 2020, inside you will find a kaleidoscope of visions of the future, ranging from augmented reality to artificial intelligence, from gamification to #solarpunk, all the way to biotechnology and post-humanism.

You can find his book on Amazon.IT (and probably the other marketplaces as well, but this is the link he gives).

And for a different kind of sci-fi, Cygnus Rising by Craig Martelle, the first book in the Cygnus Space Opera series, is on sale for 99 cents from tomorrow. “From the ashes of their past, Cygnus was rising. From space they came, to space they returned, humanity searching for a way home.” Grab it from your favorite retaile fromr April 1. Limited time and no, not an April Fools’! 😉

Now back to regular programming! Last week I wrote 13K (more or less like the previous week) on my urban/contemporary fantasy Duology, hoping to finish a fist draft by Easter. There’s still some way to go in world-building and other stuff, so I don’t think this will come out anytime soon, but well… I’m on it! 😉

Now that Holi came and went, I had to rewrite a couple of scenes in the Duology… but I’m keeping everything in the “deleted scenes” file, just in case. The Duology ends in October, hence I won’t be able to publish before then. It will soon be dated, even if I don’t mention it’s 2020-2021, but I thought the now would be a good time to mix some magic into the hell we’re going through all over the world.

Last weekend I did most of the fun publishing stuff, i.e. covers! I like choosing the stock images and possibly get the background from my own pictures to save credits, but some places I’ve never been to, so I must use stock images. You can already see some results in the Books of the Immortals cover variants that will be available to Newsletter subscribers throughout the year: Books of the Immortals – Fire has a stock image of Timbuktu, Books of the Immortals – Ether has Junagarh Fort of Bikaner in the background, taken by yours truly back in 2016 during my tour of Rajasthan.

So I prepared all the covers for the books coming out in the next few months, and now I’m left with the boring part – editing and formatting. This morning I’ll be busy helping my friend and cover artist Cristina (who did the original Books of the Immortals covers) with her own stuff as well and no new titles will come out this weekend because it’s Easter. Most people will celebrate it – or Passover – so I won’t bother publishing anything.

Then it will be box sets and collections, and the new titles should arrive in June. It’s novellas and short stories. I have a bunch of short story collections to publish as well, and possibly another curated anthology or two. We’ll see.

paperbacks of Books of the Immortals - Air

And let’s not forget tomorrow it’s the Bookversary of Books of the Immortals – Air! Here you can read that first announcement… ten years already… where did time go? Anyhow, get the ebook for free by subscribing to the newsletter above! 🙂 With a variant cover, but it’s still the same book… or wait a couple of weeks for an even better deal… stay tuned!

A last suggested article/book in case you’re a buddying writer – For Independent Authors: The Ultimate Guide to Publishing Wide. I’m notoriously wide, although I don’t go direct to Nook and Apple, but I use both Smashwords and Draft2Digital as distributors. I have only one short story in KU, Lisa’s Odyssey, at least in English. Now I shall go back to my writing and editing and formatting paperbacks… have a great week! 🙂

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


And the prequels to Future Earth Chronicles are now out in a single 90K book! The cover has the alien symbol with a stylized human brain at the center because… brainwaves! Gotta love those alien psy-vamps! 🙂

Last week I wrote 13K+ on two entwined books. I’m working mostly on the second book of the Duology and I had to do some research about Holi in Delhi. Besides someone saying that last year there were no celebrations because of the pandemic (my friend told me lockdown hadn’t started in India for Holi, since it was in early March…), I found this other article that even time-travels to the upcoming festival!

Yes, Holi is next week this year, but according to them:

“Holiyappa, 2021!

The event took place on the 29th of March, 2021. It was organised in The Junction, Green Park Delhi. The event promoted to offer lovely music to the audience so that they could dance and enjoy. It presented some famous DJs like Dj Dheer and DjTanuj.Its theme was ‘Music, colours and good vibes’.”

Note that it’s the only event that is set in the future in the article, so it’s probably an uncorrected (except for the date) excerpt from last year.

Anyhow, my characters already enjoyed the Rang Leela, even though it hasn’t happened yet, LOL! Actually this whole Duology is written in the near future, so I plan to go back to each chapter/month when we get there (like, I dumped a few paragraphs in March of Book 1 last week, and will do the same when April comes along). So this might see publication at the end of the year.

I might start writing some real time-travel stories later this year, but I still have to take the online workshop about writing time travel, as well as read a few time travel stories. I’m almost done with the bundles on KK, so soon I’d have to switch on the new Kindle again, and upload all the books I have gathered so far. Sigh.

I got an email from KDP saying they will no longer accept mobi files for reflowable ebooks. So I’m just going to upload word.doc from now on – I used to put up the Smashwords mobi files when there was a big ToC, but whatever. I can always upload the Smashwords epub files instead! 😉

Should writers write every day? It depends. If you need to get into the writing groove, you probably should. If you have already found what work best for you, ignore all advice. Also, remember you might change even a true and tested way of writing through your life. I agree with Chuck Wendig’s advice:

The greatest advice I think I offer to writers these days is to Know Thyself. Which is to say, figure out who you are as a writer. Your processes are your own to discover. Your voice is your own to seek and to find. Who you are and what you write and further, how you write, is something literally nobody else can tell you. So, should you write every day? Some will tell you YES YES YES, some will tell you NO NO NO, but the answer is, well, shit, I dunno. It’s both. It’s neither. All/none of the above. Maybe it’ll help you. Maybe it’ll hurt you. Maybe it’ll do the one until it does the other, because things work… until they don’t. You only learn this by trying.

Writing advice, and the conversation around is, is always to help you crystalize and contextualize your own way of doing things. And sometimes, it’s there to challenge them. I was a pantser at the start of my career until I realized I had to — had to! — be a plotter to get a book done. But Wanderers was a book I wrote without an outline. So was Dust & Grim, Book of Accidents, and Wayward. I was a pantser, then a plotter, then a pantser. None of this is permanent. I’m not permanent. My works will change and how I approach them will change, too.

I was a total pantser, now I’m a half-plotter, especially if I need to stick to a calendar of events (be them real history or fake history on a secondary world, or even alternate history on our world). And even if my voice is more or less the same, I changed and so will the stories I tell and the way I tell them.

Now, for reading and writing pleasure, check out this Kickstarter. As Kris Rusch says, it includes a book on writing as well as a full collection of fantasy books:

If you want to read the Fey, the best way to do so is to back the Kickstarter at the $30 level. You’ll get all seven existing books of the Fey, the new novella, the only Fey short story (at the moment), four other fantasy novels, and $600 in online writing workshops (at the time of this writing), all for your $30.

If you’re a writer, here are the rewards – lots of goodies and lots of learning for you. Also, re: Kickstarter for fiction writers (from Kris’s blog post above again),

Many of you are daunted by the idea of doing a Kickstarter. Dean and Loren L. Coleman are running a free class on Teachable called Kickstarter Best Practices For Fiction Writers. Investigate it. If you don’t feel ready, you have the knowledge in your back pocket for when you are ready. If you are ready, make sure you’re doing the Kickstarter the best way possible.

Know that Loren L. Coleman also has a Kickstarter on how to do a Kickstarter for your fiction. Crowdfunding Your Fiction: Best Practices can be yours for 2$! A few more days to go and it already reached the 2000$ stretch goal, so more goodies for your two bucks! 🙂

And that’s all for today… have a great week! 😀

***

Do you like space opera? How about military science fiction? Do you love the old masters and especially the book club, where you bought one book and received ten more? This is way better. https://20bookpacks.com/IASFA-Sci-Fi-Book-Bundle

The International Association of Science Fiction and Fantasy Authors (IASFA) is a professional organization focused on aligning readers with authors. We are building the organization that currently numbers over 600 authors published within the SFF genres and growing. Stay tuned as each month we’ll offer full book samplers for free along with less frequent paid book bundle promotions. Help yourself to find your next favorite author by joining the IASFA newsletter. https://iasfa.org/book-promotion-calendar/

The Science Fiction Book Bundle will be available from May 15th thru April 4th.

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


A bundle so packed full of science fiction,
we had to assemble it in orbit.

Over twenty authors have joined the International Association of Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers (IASFA) in a massive book bundle to warp the space-time of readers everywhere.

IASFA Book Bundles are a way for people to discover quality books written by popular authors. You know how it’s always hard to find something good to read? IASFA can help solve that with monthly free book promotions as well as through a massive Book Bundle like this.

https://20bookpacks.com/IASFA-Sci-Fi-Book-Bundle

The Science Fiction Book Bundle! From fantastic worlds to scowling spaceship commanders, from exploration to colonization to alien contact. There is something for everyone and probably your next favorite Science Fiction author can be found right here. We’ve compiled a bunch of hot titles and can offer them in a bundle for much less than a dollar each. Take a look and see what there is to see.

Books included:

Battlenaut Crucible By Robert Jeschonek
Cartwright’s Cavaliers By Mark Wandrey
Cygnus Rising By Craig Martelle
Day 115 on an Alien World By Jeannette Bedard
Emergence By Jacki Rawlinson
Forced Conversion By Donald J. Bingle
Forced Vengeance By Scot C. Morgan
Freedom By Fire By C.P. MacDonald
Ghost Probe By Craig A. Price
Hurt U Back By Tim Taylor
Janissaries By Chris Kennedy
Kaine’s Sanction By D.M. Pruden
On Station By J. Clifton Slater
Quinn of Cygnus: Lift Off By AM Scott
Salvage Title By Kevin Steverson
Standing the Final Watch By William Alan Webb
Star Compass By Anthea Sharp
Super-Sync By Kevin Ikenberry
The Chemical Mage By Felix Savage
The Chronicles of Jegra: Gladiatrix of the Galaxy By Tristan Vick
The Earth Concurrence By Julia Huni
Thief (Star Minds Lone Wolves) By Barbara G. Tarn
Tribari Freedom Chronicles By Rachel Ford
Uprising By Jerry Shepard
Warrior Wench By Marie Andreas

The International Association of Science Fiction and Fantasy Authors (IASFA) is a professional organization focused on aligning readers with authors. We are building the organization that currently numbers over 600 authors published within the SFF genres and growing. Stay tuned as each month we’ll offer full book samplers for free along with less frequent paid book bundle promotions. Help yourself to find your next favorite author by joining the IASFA newsletter. https://iasfa.org/book-promotion-calendar/

The Science Fiction Book Bundle will be available from March 15th thru April 4th.

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And now we’re back to your scheduled programming… I can’t tell you how excited and humbled I am of being in such company! 😀 I personally met two of those awesome authors (Robert Jeschoneck and Craig Martelle) and I know they’re all (the 19 of them) excellent storytellers! 🙂

Go check that bundle if you love sci-fi space opera! And if you’re not familiar with my Star Minds Universe, this is a very good way of grabbing a discounted book along with many more! 😉

Now, in my enthusiasm of having more or less tamed the WordPress Newsletter plug-in and wanting to inform my newly found subscribers of the above, I sent the welcome email with the free story and the IASFA bundle link two days in advance to the first eight awesome people who accepted the subscription (including Joleene Naylor)… sorry if that link wasn’t live yet on Friday night!

And then I realized (thanks to Tori) that the welcome emails were sent automatically – again with the link to the bundle before it went live. Apologies about that.

There are still glitches, apparently, so if you couldn’t download the PDF (again, thanks, Tori, for pointing it out), reply to the welcome email and I’ll send it over. Hopefully the problem is fixed and the new subscribers won’t have problems with the download.

If you haven’t subscribed yet, and want a free story that won’t be available for sale while you wait for the official newsletter #1 coming out for the 10th anniversary of Books of the Immortals – Air (April 1), you can still do it at the publisher’s page (couldn’t copy-paste the sign-up thingy anywhere else, sorry).

Last week I wrote almost 13K, finished book 1 and started on book 2 when I got the news that Rome and Latium will be in lockdown until Easter again. Sigh. One year later and we’re still at this point. What bothered me the most last year was the long lines at the supermarkets. Hopefully it won’t be so this year – and I’ll still go to work every day.

Anyhow, since I can’t move in the real world, I’m going to travel with my characters until Easter. They’re lucky to be able to move in the pandemic-ridden world, LOL! I planned my vacation time for the whole year, but I’m afraid I won’t be able to move around much anyway.

The Easter week I’ll have to work from home anyway, prepping that newsletter, some paperbacks and other publishing stuff, but I would have loved to be able to meet with my cover artist. We used to do creative weekends, then weekends became off-limit, so I hoped I could have lunch with her during the week, since I’m off DayJob, but no siree, we’re in lockdown, no moving around in Rome! 😦

Vaccines (not enough of them) are for the over-80, medical staff, teachers and immunosuppressed people like my colleague Marco who’s been working from home for a year, and despite the vaccine doesn’t know when he’ll be able to come back to the office. My father had his shot yesterday, my mother postponed to the end of April just in case he reacts badly.

Hope things are going better on your side of the world and we’ll soon be able to travel again. I mean, I don’t mind traveling through Google Maps and Wikipedia, but sometimes just going somewhere and actually meet people instead of reading Quora answers on places is better. And I’m an introvert! 🙂

That’s all for today… have a great week!

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


And here’s the last book of Before Future Earth Chronicles! 🙂 On the cover Ram and Zarina, which makes my friend Shafali cringe because I put a Hindu boy with a Muslim girl, but that’s the point of the story! Romeo and Juliet with religion instead of feuding families! 😉

This is a revision of Mumbai Dreams with a slightly different ending and pushed in the future. Here’s the full blurb of yhe ebook:

Two novellas at the time of the apocalypse and beyond.

“Mumbai, 2060CE” tells the love story between Ram and Zarina – a completely revised edition of Mumbai Dreams.

“Inheritor” tells the story of David, son of Daniel the vampire and Donna the alien human, kicked out of the alien facility where his parents live and exiled in the Himalayan Rainbow Town.

BONUS:

Excerpts from Rainbow Towns Journals

1. Claude Mancini, Rainbow Town Mont Blanc

2. Nour Shah, Rainbow Town Sahand

3. Jacob Davies, Rainbow Town Mount Mitchell

These three things will probably mixed with the other two books in the Omnibus that will come out in a couple of weeks. I realized I haven’t formatted that one yet because I probably haven’t decided the order in which to put the stories, since they sometimes overlap, LOL!

I mean, “Mumbai, 2060CE” is at the same time of part three of “Lockdown Begins” – same story from another point of view, should they be next to each other? Maybe I’ll put the journals first, since all three are mentioned in part one? I’ll think about it next weekend…

Last week I wrote my 10K although I spent most of the weekend cleaning up publishing stuff. I tried to change a few things on the publisher’s page and somehow screwed up, so I had to ask for help to Mighty Webmaster Admin who solved everything remotely. But I had to re-add the newsletter sign-up and when I tried to change the header picture, I couldn’t.

I did follow his instructions, but things changed in the WordPress dashboard and despite my attempts I couldn’t change the image. I won’t bother Mighty Webmaster Admin again – until the next problem. Already last week I had an email alert that something was wrong with the site, then I made a mess myself… Asking help 3 times in one week is way too much, I shall leave him alone for now! 😀

A business musing by Kris Rusch that reminded me why I’m in this still, ten years later. Yes, the world is changing, every norm has been shattered, it’s hard to predict where we’re going – and I didn’t see a rise in sales, but what she says about old traditional system and new indie publishing is still true.

And it breaks my heart that there are still young writers looking for agents. I guess I was lucky to be alive in the age of the typewriter. And in a country that didn’t have creative writing courses at the time (they started in the new millennium in case you’re wondering). And that Mom helped me understand that vanity publishers weren’t publishers and money flows to the writer and all that stuff.

I dreamed of being a writer in my teens too. But it was the 20th century, and already back then what felt awesome as soon as I wrote it became stale when I read it again two or five years later.

We change throughout our lives – I think I mentioned the various “stages” of my writing – and I’m still at a point where I hate everything I write, but I keep writing anyway because that’s what I do.

I’m a writer, I write. I’m the worst judge of my work, so I shall let readers and editors decide with their wallets. It’s a long term thing, a career, not an overnight, unsustainable success, and I will get there.

I discovered this article on Aphantasia, which actually matches my lack of setting, although probably for different reasons from the author of the article.

When I was younger I didn’t put a setting because I was too lazy, but I did see a movie in my head. Talking heads in white rooms mostly. Now I have trouble visualizing scenes, and sometimes I start thinking how I’d write it, instead of trying to visualize it.

What I mean is we change also in the way we express ourselves. I used to write down the movies in my head, dialog-heavy with a camera always on extreme close-up.

Now I’m more wordy and less visual, but the transition isn’t smooth. I still have trouble every now and then, and I try to visualize the scene, and then think how I could write it down – with the setting and everything.

Another thing that changed through the decades is going from real people in my stories (during my teens) to virtual casts of celebrities (from movies and music videos) to finding inspiration from stock images or DazStudio 3D rendering characters (although I still thow in Da Muses and other celebrities every now and then)

That’s probably why sometimes I cringe when I read older titles, but I’m not going to rewrite them They are the best stories I could write at the time, and I moved on since.

I don’t think I’m completely changing my voice now, at 50+ and after 15 years of switching to writing primarily in English! 🙂

If I ever write something that doesn’t sound like me, I have another super sikrit pen name ready! 😀

Oh, and remember that contest for Cupid flash fiction/poems? I posted a flash fiction, but Tori, who posted after me, won the contest! So glad I sent her their way! Congrats, Tori! And you guys can go check that page and enjoy those valentine stories! 🙂

Last but not least: more free books at IASFA! Go check the Alien SciFi free books page! The promotion runs from March 9-13!

Next week, the International Association of Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers (IASFA) will announce a science fiction book bonanza that is out of this world.

And if you’re anti-Zon (most IASFA autors are Kindle Unlimited), there’s also a BookFunnel giveaway with 150+ (!) SFF books! Ends at the end of the month…

And that’s all for today… have a great week!

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