Wednesday Weekly Roundup


Since I’m well into that book 2 of the trilogy, last week I wrote 13.5K words, which brought my yearly total to almost 260K. Still behind since we’re past half the year, but I can still catch up. And if I don’t, I don’t care. The next project might be a novel, or it might be a series of short stories. I haven’t decided yet.

And I also want to write more stories to some themes so I can put out a few more short story collections before the end of the year. The publisher’s newsletter is coming soon, you can subscribe by entering your email on the home page.

This is also the last week of the Smashwords sale, everything 50% off (except titles at 99c and the two latest), so hurry. It ends on Saturday!

I have ordered the paperbacks of the latest two titles, but unless they deliver them a day early like they did for the previous ones, they won’t make it into this post. Very busy mornings at work with special thanks to this lovely pandemic, so I hope to have some energy to keep writing!

I won’t bore you on how Roman buses make it even worse by not showing up or having you wait for 35minutes. I can do that on foot in 20minutes, but at lunchtime it’s really tough. When they show up on time, it takes me thirty minutes (10 minutes first bus, get to the other bus stop in 10 minutes, 10 minutes second bus) to do those 5km, when they don’t, they don’t. One hour or more in total.

There, I said it, I bored you! ๐Ÿ˜‰ But you have one more reason why I want to move away from this town. A colleague suggested I get a two-wheels, but I used one for twelve years and that was almost twenty years ago and I’m not young enough anymore, especially on the Roman streets, famous for the “sanpietrini” and its holes (that can be deadly on a scooter). And my almost-26-year-old car is ready to retire, so… buses.

But then, without those buses, I wouldn’t have come up with the idea of the ghost bus, so… whatever! ๐Ÿ˜€ Have a great summer!

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


And here’s a new title, the last for the summer! I’m taking August off except for another collaboration anthology still in the works. Here’s my historical time travel stories, some very nice experiments to prepare myself to the next project – when the Urban Fantasy Trilogy is finished, that is!

Lost in History A collection of original stories with reenactors or tourists lost in time, through portals or timeslips, from the Middle Ages to the early 20th century, in Europe, India or the United States.

A Real Tournament (12th century France)

Living History (12th century England)

The Pink City (19th century India)

Stranger Than a Movie (19th century U.S.A.)

Jazz Times (20th century U.S.A.)

I have started on the third book of the Trilogy – actually the middle one. Again, I’m changing how I write, I never wrote so badly out of order before! But since I’m not publishing anything until I have written all the books, I should be fine. I’m only 10K in, but I’ll probably pick up speed next week.

I have a couple of friends who are on Kindle Vella. It’s available only to US authors and customers at this time, but eventually (and when I’m ready, which is definitely not now!) I might be able to get on it too. For those who don’t know, it’s to read serialized things.

So, if you’re in the US, first check out Debbie Mumford, who has quite a few things there! ๐Ÿ™‚

Wildfire: https://www.amazon.com/kindle-vella/product/B093DS7CCQ

Prentiss Twins: White Buffalo: https://www.amazon.com/kindle-vella/product/B097QFC3HL

Confessions of a Teenage Tree Sprite: https://www.amazon.com/kindle-vella/product/B093DSD4YP

Then don’t miss Circus Galaxus by Dirk Walvoord about a trickster hero in the deadly world of the ultimate gladiator game show.

Last week was cooler and with plenty of thunderstorms, but I doubt the heat wave is over. I’m still better off than people in Germany and Belgium with floods or in California with fires. We’re destroying the planet, no wonder it’s trying to shake us off!

I’m experimenting with TikTok, but I don’t like making videos with my phone, so I’ll probably stop soon. It doesn’t look like I’m going viral yet – not that I care. Like Instagram, when I’m fed up with it, I’ll just leave it out there. Or maybe close the account, since I don’t really follow anyone – except Khabi Lame.

Oh, well, we’ll see… Since it doesn’t look like we’ll be able to travel much this year either, the rest of my vacations I will use to for more online workshops. I might be able to finally set up a Kickstarter, if I finish watching the videos! ๐Ÿ™‚ If you’re interested, it’s free.

And I also have another online workshop to do whenever I get off DayJob again. So, plenty to keep myself busy even if I can’t get out of Italy – or move around it much.

A couple of interesting Kickstarters: Pulphouse Fiction Magazine subscription drive (hint: I might have a story in the coming issues as well) and Starbarian Saga, a fun project by my friend Robert Jeschonek! Check them out and have a wonderful week!

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


And the brand new collection of original stories is out! Check these Lands of Wonder part of a new series of original short stories!

Five original stories to visit Otherside, Elsewhere, Silvery Earth and alternate future timelines of Earth. Travel to these magical, weird or hyper-technological places with the characters.

Can they find their way back? Do they even want to? Do they have any choice in the matter?

Portals can be tricky like that.

Enjoy these travels through time and places, a batch of fantasy portals that even gives a preview to the coming Duology. It’s available also in paperback!

I went back to Book 2 on Thursday as I traveled to cooler places for a few days and ended up writing almost 7K by Sunday, which is more that I wrote in the previous three weeks put together, LOL!

Writing the epilogue this week and a couple more things in this world. Editing is still scheduled for September, so you won’t see any of it before then.

You know I don’t like to give writerly advice because I grew up in the age of the typewriter and changed my ways and what I want to write many times in 40+ years. But if you want a 10-year summary, head off to Chuck Wendig’s who has one lesson for the ten years in the writing mines.

Also, if you’re still afraid to put yourself out there, check Kris Rusch’s latest post on fear and all writers. I still struggle in finding my bookshelves on the various retailers because I don’t follow trends, but I keep publishing because I enjoy the process of writing those stories, creating covers for them and putting them out there. Eventually my audience will find me.

If you write for younger audience, you might want to consider joining TikTok – it’s taking the book industry by storm. It seems to be working well for sci-fi romance too… I doubt my readers are on TikTok, so I shall pass for now. I have enough dealing with Facebook and its Page antics.

I mentioned last week that there were changes at BundleRabbit… a brand new name and a brand new site! Folks, welcome PubShare! I’m still studying the new dashboard, but it’s not as bad as WordPress! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Soon you’ll get the results with a brand new curated anthology. Stay tuned!

The heat is already frying my brain, so not much else to say. Back to writing and putting together that anthology. Have a great week! ๐Ÿ™‚

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


Last week I wrote almost 3K, starting a new story, but I was unable to finish it. Besides the Duology, I’m planning on publishing a few 5-stories themed collections, so I’m writing to complete the ones I already have. Yes, I have still unpublished stories that need to come out, so I’m adding to those themes before I go back to the Duology next month.

Unlike the previous week story, this one I’m going to finish – and maybe even reprise the other one, we’ll see. I’m still quite slow, but DayJob is getting in the way and the weather isn’t helping. I had a headache for the whole weekend because of the low clouds and the heat, not easy to create when your head feels like it’s splitting or has nails in it! ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

But I’m taking it easy this year. I’m switching gears in all possible ways, writing in new genres and experimenting! ๐Ÿ™‚ I must say I’m fully into JOMO (Joy Of Missing Out), unlike many other indie writers. Check this post by Kris Rusch about fear-based decision-making or FOMO and the Indie Writer.

I feel a lot like Kris… blogging is so ten years ago, but I keep getting new followers, so welcome and don’t worry, I’ll be rambling once a week for a little longer! Considering that I started with daily posts… I can do weekly! I guess my blog is my newsletter, since the actual newsletter has so few subscribers.

Now I shall go back to writing… it’s definitely summer, so I might be slower than usual, but I’m planning a couple of collaboration anthologies, and putting those together takes less of my energies than the actual writing – although when I’m in the writing zone I don’t really feel the heat or whatever else is going on in the real world, LOL!

Wishing you all a wonderful summer, full of interesting readings, inspired writing and whatever else you might wish for. Have a great week!

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


As expected, I didn’t write much last week. I started a story on Thursday, but never finished, so the wordcount is under 2K. I’ll do better this week – maybe. I haven’t started writing yet, haven’t decided what. So it might be another low-count writing week.

I don’t really care. I am making plans for future publications, but it’s a little early to talk about it. When I finish this workshop, I might be able to do another quick one and finally make a dream come true in this new world of publishing. Maybe. We’ll see.

Meanwhile, the summer heat as arrived, the first jab of the vaccine is done, and I’m getting ready for my summer hibernation! ๐Ÿ˜€ I read a book in Italian because I needed to remind myself how to format novels in Italian. I’m helping someone to publish his first novel at 95, glad he gave up the thought of going with a vanity publisher. I don’t know about your country, but here they’re still doing strong.

It will be a paperback only, since the author doesn’t care about ebooks, but if it sells, I might do the ebook version as well. I had to reformat all his dialogues, but at least I’m practising for whenever I need to add another form of income, LOL! His son told me that thanks to me, the old man has started his second novel.

So you see, it’s never too late to start. This Italian teacher had published only two books of poetry so far (with vanity publishers), and now he’s writing novels in his twilight years, based on his youth’s memories! I have in mind to go to the Frankfurt Book Fair and check the rights center, I might ask him if he wants me to shop his book as well for a translation! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Not sure yet, but I do hope to get to travel Europe in the second half of the year. For now, I’ll stick to Italy, LOL! Not happy to start a new Day Job Routine in the summer, but well… it will be quickly out of the way, I guess! And when the weather cools down, I’ll be off, probably to London, to use their libraries for my research. Trying not to plan too much ahead, just in case! ๐Ÿ˜‰

I might be a little late in sharing this, but you’re probably aware that I’m a Discovery Writer/Pantser most of the time. A very interesting podcast (I read the transcript) on discovery writing and sustaining a long-term writing career. Lots of good advice on both craft and business! ๐Ÿ™‚

May be an image of 2 people and text that says 'SPACE ADVENTURE BOOK BUNDLE'

And if you like sci-fi, there’s another bundle of great books out there! I’m not in it, but I’ve read some of those novels, so go check them out! Limited time, like for StoryBundle, so don’t miss it! Wishing you all a wonderful week!

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


Last week was hard on me on the Day Job’s side, so I struggled to finish the weekly story. But I did manage 8K+ and this brings the yearly total to 200K, yay! I might still not make it to 500K this year, but it doesn’t matter. I like keeping track of how much I write, but if I don’t reach the goal, I’m not going to beat myself! ๐Ÿ˜‰

This week is probably as harder as the last one, in spite of today being national holiday in Italy, and next week marks a new routine with the Day Job… and of course summer is here. For newcomers, I hate the summer heat. I say I hibernate when it’s hot and start living again when it cools down. I want to move to a northern country to avoid the summer heat.

But that won’t happen in the near future, unfortunately. So I’m going to brace myself for another long hot summer, hoping I’ll be able to finish those stories. I’m considering writing two this week, since I have an extra day off, but we’ll see. I also want to send a 500words sample to an anthology, so I might do that instead.

A little bit of depression was also caused by a toxic group – toxic for me, at least. Then I read Dean’s post on Deadly Problems for Writers and felt a little better! ๐Ÿ™‚ I think my problem is in the metadata, but at this time I have no energy to look into them. So I’ll just keep writing for now, then we’ll see.

Like I said many years ago at the start of this ten-year-old blog, I’m married to Mr. Writing. I’ve been flirting with Mr. Publishing since, but I’m not very happy with that relationship! ๐Ÿ˜€ So maybe I’ll put him aside for a while, and just write what entertains me – like I always did.

The bimonthly newsletter should have gone out by now, but I’m waiting for a buy link… so you still have time to subscribe, get a free story now and a free book with the newsletter – hopefully within the week. I’m not the publisher of this one, so I’m not sure. He said June 1st, but then, shit happens even to others! ๐Ÿ˜€

So, if you want news about this new title, subscribe to the newsletter, or wait for next week’s post, whatever you prefer. I wish you a wonderful week! ๐Ÿ™‚

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! ๐Ÿ™‚

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! ๐Ÿ˜‰

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! ๐Ÿ˜€

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! ๐Ÿ˜€

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 doesnโ€™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! ๐Ÿ™‚

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! ๐Ÿ™‚

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 thereโ€™s bad karma between them that needs to be cleansed.

So go check Lessons From Past Lives, at 99c on your favorite retailer! ๐Ÿ˜€ 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! ๐Ÿ™‚

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! ๐Ÿ™‚ Next week I start the Portals Collections workshop, so I’m already set for the next two months…

โ€œThe writer who thinks the whole purpose of writing is suffering isnโ€™t one Iโ€™m much interested in. The one that tells a story for the joy of telling it is the one Iโ€™m interested in. Writing can be hard, but it shouldnโ€™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, Iโ€™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.โ€ (Joe Landsale)

And with these words of wisdom, I wish you a wonderful week! ๐Ÿ™‚

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


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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.

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Unbreakable FuryBy Kevin McLaughlin
Reecahโ€™s FlightBy Richard H. Stephens
Book of the Immortals – AirBy Barbara G.Tarn
Fenzigโ€™s Fortune: A Gnomeโ€™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
Dragonโ€™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

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***

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! ๐Ÿ™‚

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! ๐Ÿ˜‰ 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! ๐Ÿ˜€ We’ll see…

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

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