Wednesday Weekly Roundup


Last week I wrote a little over 10K, so back on track. Going back and forth between two novels, since they’re set at the same time, so adjusting the already done while I write the current one. The good thing of writing them at the same time or at least long before publishing them is an excellent way of making those minor changes that make the story better. Also because I improvise a lot, and then I have to change stuff around, LOL!

I hope to be done with this project during the coming two weeks, and then we’ll see. I’m thinking of taking at least a month to write short stories for anthologies, while I try to figure out what I want to write next. It’s probably not yet the time to pull out of the drawer my shelved project, so we’ll see.

And another Future Earth Chronicles book is out! Asian Ways follows Arjun and Yuu’s journey through India and China, which is more or less what I’m dealing with in the current novel – 400 years earlier. So, being in an Asian mood, I ended up rewatching Jodhaa Akbar during the weekend! 😉

It came out last week, but too late to include it in last week’s post, so here it is.

Revenge, reckoning, and redemption: HELLCATS, THE ANTHOLOGY has it all.

Presenting sixty nine stories of feline adventure that will make you chortle, chuckle, gasp, and guffaw.

We have: Pirates, cowboys, and spacewalkers.

Soul suckers, seers, and swashbuckling heroes.

With guest appearances by Mr. Darcy, The Madwoman in the Attic, and Hunter S. Thompson as a cat.

In the far reaches of outer space, cats crawl and pounce, shift and slaughter.

While back on Earth, the wicked are punished, the weak avenged, and the good guy wins against all odds.

We have paranormal fantasy, sci-fi, swords and sorcerers, cozy mysteries, romance, literary fiction, and much, much more.

All proceeds from this anthology will go to support a 79 year-old grandmother Erada who has been hounded through the courts and is in danger of losing her home.

The HELLCATS are a group of writers who banded together to try to prevent that from happening.

Help the HELLCATS help Erada keep her home.

Buy HELLCATS, THE ANTHOLOGY, now.

More reading recommendations – if you like mystery: Mystery, Crime, and Mayhem is a new Quarterly Mystery Magazine. The first three issues are already out! 🙂

And if you prefer horror you can check this Kickstarter: Feed the Obsession. In both cases I know many of the awesome writers involved in the projects, so check them out! 🙂

Speaking of Kickstarters… a comic book that funded in 24hrs… couldn’t be just because it has a very famous name among the writing credits, right?! This campaign is under fire for industry professionals because

“How is using a platform meant for people to KICK START projects they can’t afford okay for a company who admits they don’t need the money?”

But the publisher

claimed that the point of the Kickstarter was not to raise funds, as the publisher has “got the money for it”, but rather to take advantage of the untapped audience it can reach.

I guess both sides are right, but then, what do I know? I’m not ready for a Kickstarter yet! 😀

What else? Not much. Busy week at DayJob so far, so not much time to write, but I’ll catch up. Hopefully this afternoon itself. It’s kind of hot again, but I won’t be deterred, LOL! Have a great week!

Wednesdey Weekly Roundup


Last week I wrote around 10K before taking my train. This week I’ll be mostly editing, so not much for wordcount, probably, but I knew about it.

A gentle reminder that one giveaway is almost up – and again, I won’t know you downloaded, since Smashwords won’t tell me unless you do. So feel free to grab Star Minds Sire Teens. The code is: TG65B and it expires on: 2020-8-31.

And of course a new Future Earth Chronicles book is out!

Yollanda is startled when her friend Carlos calls out of the blue to reveal the truth behind Rainbow Town. Soon she finds herself helping him and watches, aghast, as her hometown switches down.
Yollanda learns to live under the sun, in the ruins of Great Falls, with Carlos and Lucy, until she’s confident enough to climb ontp a horse-drawn closed wagon to explore more.
And when an airship reaches Roanoke, she jumps at the opportunity to cross the Atlantic, hoping to explore her African roots.
BONUS STORY: “Bran the Raven’s Last Night” – The Battle of Chittor seen in “Kristine the Youngest” from Bran’s point of view.

So there, go check it out! 🙂 Next one in a couple of weeks! 😀

Now, as soon as I’m done with the prequel, I’m going to write a few shorts to submit to markets in September and October. And no, I’m not keeping track of rejections time, although I do keep and Excel sheet with the submissions. And I like seeing those red marks that say “SOLD” next to some stories! 😉

Hopefully the stories I’ll write in September will be stories I can add to my existing series, if not, well… eventually I’ll publish all those random stories in a volume, LOL! I do have quite a few still… The Silvery Earth ones will be out probably at the beginning of next year, and I might write more in the Star Minds Universe even though theoretically I’m done with this section of history and should move on to the next galactic century.

For other publications I might just make up stuff, using their calls as writing prompts. I still haven’t decided what I’m writing after I finish the Future Earth Chronicles, so some unrelated shorts might spark the next series! 😉

A couple of interesting bundles on StoryBundle (so limited time offer, check them today):

The Innovative Worlds Bundle ending really soon that includes Future Visions edited by my friend and fellow author Francesco Verso, and The Exclusive Dark Fantasy and SF Bundle curated by my friend and fellow author Douglas Smith a remarkable set of eleven titles by bestselling authors and rising stars. As always, at StoryBundle, you name your own price—whatever you feel the books are worth, and a portion of the proceeds goes to charity.

I ran into this wonderful post on how to buy a book, and who actually profits from it. I also heard of indie authors punished by vicious readers on Amazon (not to mention it’s impossible to be seen without ads on the various markets), so yeah, Amazon is definitely not the best place to sell our books, but it’s one venue (and eventually I’ll be able to sell from my own web page, but we’re not there yet), and as long as you don’t put all your eggs in one basket, you should be fine.

In the gap in my publishing that will happen in October (after FEC Book 10) there should be something coming out from another publisher, stay tuned for the official announcement. I got paid for that story, but I don’t see any official release date on the publisher’s page, so I’ll keep mum for a little longer. Wishing you all a wonderful week!

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


Last week I wrote almost 16k (with an extra day off day job) and since it was so busy in the mornings (sarcasm), I even got to start on the new strip. Now I have to color the waves before putting them on Instagram, but meanwhile here’s a “scoop” – the cover and credits! 🙂

I started the coloring and lettering of the panels I have already done, but there’s still quite a lot of work to do. This week I hope to tackle a couple of shorter works for upcoming anthologies or to add words to some books. Like, a couple of additions to FEC11, which I completed last week. Then next week I’ll have very little writing and lots of editing, LOL!

Many writers say they can actually hear the voices of our characters – including yours truly. Now you have the scientific explanation. I’m definitely more of a “internal dialog” person, definitely not a “monologue”, hence why I thought writing screenplays would be a piece of cake. Or radio plays. They’re all dialog, right? Wrong. Lesson learned, back to prose.

A Kickstarter I backed because there are plenty of writers I know (including the one Planet Bob guy, whom I met at the Anthology Workshop in 2017) and I was curious. I’ll get only the ebook, but if you’re in the US there’s plenty more rewards! 🙂 And don’t you like the title? SPACE:1975 – A Blast of 1970s Style Space Opera Fiction. I loved Space 1999 and could probably write something for them as well. Maybe. One day.

How should artists deal with the pandemic? Like Dolly Parton! 🙂 Check how she steers her empire through the pandemic!

She has always known what the pandemic has forced many in the industry to realize: that diversifying your income streams is one of the smartest things an artist can do.

And for us indies it means don’t put all your eggs in one basket – and then licensing, of course. I still have to get to that, possibly next year. Like I mentioned in other posts, now is not a good time to take risks. But if I manage an early retirement, I’ll definitely look into it!

I happen to be a Generation X person – although in Italy it’s slightly different. My peers are still steady-job oriented and wouldn’t consider entrepreneurship, unlike Millennials. So if I get rid of the steady job, I might start exploring entrepreneurship, although laws in Italy are the most complicated in the world – which is one more reason why I want to move to another country to start a business.

Whenever I get to start working on my writing business, I’ll definitely consider Kickstarters and licensing. Meanwhile I’m just writing, so I’ll have a decent catalog by the time I’m ready to relaunch. Although I don’t see myself stopping writing to do something else.

Some writers drop everything writing to make licensing deals work. They lose writing time to business time. I could actually spend the rest of my adult life writing nothing, and making a boatload of money from licensing what I’ve already written.

I like writing too much to do that.

Like Kris, I’ll probably never be one of those writers. But I do hope eventually I’ll find the energy to concentrate on the business part of my writing, even though, like I said, it’s not easy in this country, and it adds to the stress I already feel. Like the biological clock saying “it’s been ten years, and you’re still at this stage? Gee, get moving!” – except I can’t, not really. Because I am mentally and emotionally exhausted.

So, we now know why we’re feeling like this! 😉 I’m currently low on #3 (although it was a bigger problem in the past), but the rest is more or less spot on.

'9 Warning Signs You're Mentally Emotionally Exhausted 1. You're easily irritated. 2. You feel unmotivated- even to do things normally enjoy. 3. You'r experiencing anxiety or panic attacks. having trouble sleeping. Either takes you hours fall asleep or broken all through the night. 5. You almost no patience and you find yourself being short with colleagues family. 6. experiencing indigestion. You have stomach ache all the time or feel like there's butterflies in stomach. 7. You crying unexpectedly. 8. You feel from reality- go through days without really emotionally responding connecting to anything. feel TheMindsJournal THEMINDSJOURNAL'

I shall try not to take big decisions while in this state, just in case. This too shall pass. And when I’ll be Dolly’s age (approximately two decades from now), I hope to be able to be like her (extract from the article linked above again):

This is perhaps one secret to Parton’s widespread appeal: Just because she wants to be for everyone doesn’t mean she doesn’t stand for anything. Offending as few potential customers as possible is just good business. But when Parton explains the philosophies that drive her life and career, her answers are hardly corporate. “First of all, I’m not a judgmental person. I do believe we all have a right to be exactly who we are, and it is not my place to judge,” she says. “All these good Christian people that are supposed to be such good Christian people, the last thing we’re supposed to do is to judge one another. God is the judge, not us. I just try to be myself. I try to let everybody else be themselves.”

And here’s to hoping musicians can stop politicians from (ab)using their songs. Can Neil Young Block Trump From Using His Songs? It’s Complicated.

“Their best recourse is probably one that they have been using for many years,” he said, “which is to complain publicly and engage in shaming sessions, which very often have won.”

Wishing you all a wonderful week! 🙂

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


Last week I wrote 13K, finished a draft 0 (to be revised when I travel on the 23rd) and started a Part 2 to make a sequel longer, albeit still a short novel (can’t let go of that character, no!) Even though I’m quite in the future by now, I don’t seem to be able to let go of the Future Earth Chronicles, although I’ll have to write the prequel next!

And the new book is out! Follow Megan’s journey more or less parallel to the first five books and get ready for the continuation of the plot! Raj and Bel have gone home, but the younger members of their party are still out and about!

Megan is Rainbow Town’s ultimate punk-rock star, but an attention-grabbing newcomer is irking her to the point she decides to leave her golden prison.

Led by Richie, Megan, her best friend, Lucy, and Carlos dig their way out of Rainbow Town. After an unfortunate experience with a white settlement, Megan and Richie decide to try living with the First Nations who got their ancestral lands back.

Three years after leaving Rainbow Town Montana, Megan’s path crosses the Wanderers seeking the truth behind Rainbow Town. The post-apocalyptic warrior woman must learn to trust the newcomers and follow the adventure song.

An oldish article that still fits today – your entertainment choices are not your identity.

“Producing things for others is the difference between being a grown-up and being a child, and once making something rather than defending the purity of medium or the problematic aspects of a spending habit becomes routine, you find that you spend a lot less time unhappily screaming about raped childhoods and the SJW menace. There’s a reason that, whenever a criticism is raised against something like a game or a TV show, the first response is always someone shouting, “If you don’t like something, make your own.” It’s because that person feels like he can’t and he assumes you can’t either.

But you can, you know? You can make the thing. People do every day, and the more you do it openly, honestly and with the sincere attempt to do your best, the happier you will be.”

That’s why I write. I tell the stories I want to read. It might not be the latest fad, but it’s what speaks to me.

Which, of course, needs a tiny bit of courage.

“Writers who are worthy of the title “writer,” because they write and they have a career.

Oh-and a tiny bit of courage. Never forget that tiny bit of courage.

It makes all things possible…when viewed after the fact.”

Now, I just finished a book in a bundle I’m in. I won’t name it because I don’t recommend it – the premise was interesting, but it was poorly executed, and I might try to write something similar, eventually – but the most irritating thing was that it looked as if the writer had hit the publish button as soon as he wrote “The End”.

Indie authors, please, I beg you. Hire a proofreader before hitting that button! Not an editor and not necessarily a paid person (it can be a grammar nazi friend, a voracious reader friend or your significant other) and have them scour your manuscripts for homophones, wrong words in the wrong place or missing/extra words!

Word’s spellchecker won’t catch them (maybe if you turn on also the grammar checker?) and it makes for a painful read. Unless readers are by now used to a garbled mess, you better clean your manuscript.

And if you ask someone who does it for a living, don’t forget to pay them. I might offer proofreading in the future, but I won’t do it for free. Like you shell the money for your cover artist, shell some for a proofreader – and pay them! Below a handy guide of the different editors.

Image may contain: text that says 'Understanding BOOK EDITORS: Who you need & when you need them A DEVELOPMENTAL EDITOR on character development, theme, When: finished draft and wantt your story, when ifit "works' Focuses writing pointing awkward telling vs. showing, passive dialogue, flagging any inconsistencies. When: You know your draft sound "works.' COPY grammar, address commonly confused with works, and your ensure numerals. polished. has the possible. They well copy' typographical number problems. When: The book formatted for for you plan ACQUISITION EDITOR Works They acquire manuscripts evaluate the book's gets published. developmental edit, line edit copy editi traditionally publish. www.savannahgilbo.com'

Yes, I finished that book, but it didn’t make me want to read more from that author. And he wasn’t the first. Traditional books might have typos, but they’re less messy.

A few typos are okay (I keep updating my own documents – this weekend it was FEC Shorts (that you can still grab for free with the Smashwords coupon) because while re-reading one story I found 2 typos), but when the sentences become a garbled mess, it’s not.

My main publishing expenses are still paying Mighty Editor for proofreading (actually she does more copyediting, now that I see a clear guide of the different kinds – although I usually ignore her punctuation suggestions! 😉 ) – and I’m an ESL writer, in case you’re new to this blog.

Now I wish you a great week, and happy writing, reading or whatever keeps you entertained! 😀

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


Last week I wrote over 13K and reached the new events, since the start of the book is a recap of the previous ones. And again I got surprised by the turn of events, so I’m speedily going towards the completion of this series (at least for now. Next generations might show up eventually, like in the Star Minds Universe, LOL!).

David Gaughran is back with a few publications for writers – although I still have to go through the first editions of Let’s Get Digital and Amazon Decoded, you might want to check them out! Don’t be lazy like me! 😉

I guess each one of us reacted differently to lockdown – I hid into writing and can’t be bothered studying the marketing part yet. But I’m still publishing, so whenever I’m ready to study and give everything a marketing boost, I’ll have plenty to choose from! 🙂

Another Kickstarter worth checking: Funny and Stupid Stories (That No One Should Read) – ain’t that a great title? Go check it out, the ebook is for everybody, although the paperback is only for the UK… And yes, it’s a Kickstarter in GBP (although I see it in Euro and you probably see it in USD or whatever your currency is!)! 🙂

This is a collection/anthology of funny stories. I write in all genres, but mainly horror and supernatural crime. In between the “serious” stuff, I write a few funny stories to relax. This is a collection of those stories.

And if you prefer a trilogy of paranormal mysteries set in small town Kentucky featuring psychic Ash Jericho, To Die For is still going for a few more days.

The Ash Jericho series is a three book paranormal mystery series. It’s possible there will be more books and stories in the series at a later time, but my goal is to publish these three books quickly, back to back, so that readers can enjoy their visit to Ash’s small town.

Or if you’re fore epic fantasy, this is a first novel campaign to help get a decorative edition of the book.

Firefrost  is epic fantasy at its finest: danger, magic, swords, and crowns. It’s a standalone novel about overcoming the darkness inside each of us and the prejudices that keep us captive. The novel is set in a burning, war-torn world, and is full of a dark and powerful magic that consumes hearts and kingdoms.

One day I might do my own Kickstarter, but it’s not going to happen anytime soon – conflicts with my DayJob, don’t ask me why, but that’s one more reason to quit and move to a country where things are simpler! 🙂

I’m reading the books from a vampire bundle I got some time ago from StoryBundle, but I realized maybe it’s also time I read Homo Deus by Harari, since I’m dealing with our future… so as soon as I finish this 3 Musketeers retelling with vampires, I better go back to that before I finish that bundle! 😉

Last weekend ended up being Rock N Roll weekend. I realized Saturday was a former muse’s 60th birthday, so I watched Sugar Town (his only movie with a decent role – but he’s not an actor! He’s John Taylor of Duran Duran, there, I gave out my age again! *Waves at other Duranies still out there*) after lunch. After dinner Rock On.

Sunday I watched Rock Star after lunch (with world’s sexiest drummer, Blas Elias! 😉 ) and Rock On 2 after dinner. Techie Bro didn’t come over to sleep, so I felt free to watch whatever I wanted. He came on Monday, though, since he had no bed to sleep in either at the old house or the new one.

So, after a very musical weekend… summer came. So I’ll probably sort of kind of vanish now. Oh, wait, I have plenty of titles for Sci-Fi July… I’ll try to postpone my summer letargy, LOL! Stay tuned for the coming publications, announcement on the publisher’s page in a few days! Have a great weekend! 🙂

 

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


Last week I wrote 12K on book 8 and spent Sunday afternoon drawing for a change. Well, the portrait took only 2 hours, but I also had a new Italian title out and covers to tinker with. Now I’m back to writing and hope to wrap up Book 8 by the end of the week, so I can move on to Book 9.

Some publishing news: Cash Flow for Creators is now live. I beta-read it and can vouch for it. It’s clear, fun, and if you’re not sure how to start your writing business, you should give it a try. If you’re not American (like yours tryly) some things might not apply, but at least you’ll learn how to add a business mind to your writer mind and publisher mind. I know, us indie must wear many hats.

Apple Books for Author launches with PC access, so if you ever wanted to go direct to Apple but don’t own a Mac, now you can do it! 🙂 Personally, I’ll stick with D2D for now, I’ll wait to see how this goes. I already have to open another account, probably with Book Funnel, to put out some reader’s magnets, I don’t want to bother learning another retailer interface.

This year I’ll just keep going like I always did, maybe next year I’ll have the energy to do a complete relaunch – more paperbacks, more audiobooks, whatever. At this time I have barely the energy to resume publishing regularly (and yes, next weekend you’ll get another Lone Wolves Team eBook) to the usual suspects.

A good projection on Schrödinger’s Future by the always awesome Kris Rusch, which is another reason why I don’t want to do much yet. Besides, my 10-year-anniversary is next year, so it makes sense that I keep the good stuff for next year. Of course I’ll have to start working on it at the end of the year, but hopefully by then we’ll be less stressed out.

On a happier note, we are now in Phase 2, and some businesses are open again, albeit as takeaway. I was able to have breakfast at a coffee shop and this week I know that if I catch that bus, I’ll find my pizza place open (it used to have tables so you could eat in there, but now, of course, it’s all takeaway), so I won’t have to cook 2 meals per day, yay! 🙂

Monday I was off day job again because there can’t be more than six of us at the office, so I stayed at home doing those online courses (officially) and finishing the cover rebranding of Future Earth Chronicles, even though the launch is still a couple of months away or more.

And for your reading pleasure, my friend Tameri Etherton has a free book out on Amazon – well, free until the 14th, so go get it now! Link is not geotagged, but I’m sure you’ll find your own Amazon store if you’re not in the US (just change the .com with whatever your Amazon store end with, that’s what I did to see it on Amazon IT)! 🙂

She’s just a girl standing in front of dragon asking him to love her. Or, something like that!
Fall in love for free! Snag your copy today! Free until May 14th!

Or, if you prefer epic fantasy, now’s your chance to get all four books in the Song of the Swords epic fantasy series for FREE!
Epic fantasy at its best! Free until May 14th. Snag your copies today! Love fae? Love assassins? Love fae assassins for FREE? Sweet! FREE for a limited time! Get your faerie assassins here free until May 14th! Yes, my good friend Tameri is giving away a lot of books until tomorrow! 🙂 Go get them now! 😀

If you’d like to try Latinx Dark Fiction there’s a new bundle out at StoryBundle, as well as the WriteBundle2020 if you want to work on your craft/business of writing. I know all the authors of the Write Bundle and I can only highly recommend them – they know their stuff! 🙂

Now I’ll be waiting for a couple paperbacks I’ve been wanting to read and hopefully order the new Kindle. Although I still have quite a lot of stuff to read on KK, but well… it’s getting bothersome not being able to check files and having to use Kindle4PC! 😉 Have a great week!

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


Last week I added another 2K to Books 6 and 7 (mostly Book 7, since it was and still is shorter) and then started on Book 8, that reached 10K by Sunday night. I also worked on the cover rebranding, but I’ll do a “new covers reveal” event closer to the publication of the next books.

It will probably be a Facebook event, either in my group or on my page, we’ll see. Let me know your preference – and if you’re not on Facebook, just say so, and I’ll do the event on this very blog! 🙂 By June the Happiness Is vignettes will end, therefore I’ll reinstate the Sunday Surprise posts, so you’ll have two posts a week still.

And here’s the year ahead… again for indies like me. You may have noticed I resumed my publishing every other week of books I wrote between the end of last year and the beginning of this one… So, another batch of Lone Wolves Team missions is out! Check it out at the usual places! 🙂 Two more coming this month, then in June the final books of the Star Minds Universe.

And the UK has decided to scrap VAT on e-publications! So you’ll pay the price I set up on the retailer, with no VAT added. My titles are usually between 1.99£ and 3.99£ (with a few 99p exceptions). For everybody else, sorry, I’m not the one who decieds on VAT percentages…

This week marks Phase 2 in Italy, so more people are allowed out and more places are opening, still with social distancing andf masks and gloves and all that jazz. I go to work by bus, and from this week it’s every day again, not just Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays like it was since March 12.

Monday morning I took the bus with new labels forbidding to sit too close to each other, so if a bus has 20 seats, you can use only 4 or 5. Which is fine at 7-30am, but definitely more “crowded” at 1pm. There were also more people around and waiting for the bus. And besides surgical masks, we got facial shields for work – which is much better, because you breathe better.

Still, only six people can be present at one time, so some of us will have to either work from home or take other forms of permits. I already used 15 vacation days this year, so thankfully my manager didn’t ask me to miss a day in May! 🙂 It’s sort of going back to normal, except there will still be long lines at supermarkets and now I have only Saturday mornings to go and buy food. Sigh.

I guess that’s all from this side of the world… stay home if you can, stay safe and don’t panic. We shall overcome! Have a great week! 🙂

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


By Wednesday last week I had finished Draft Zero of Book 7, so I had to stop, re-read, adjust, and so on. So only 8400 new words. Having found some mistakes on the first five books while writing 6 and 7, I decided to go through the paperbacks (something I used to do immediately, but since I moved to KDPprint and had to send the books live to order copies, I had shamelessly skipped the process) and catch typo faeries and adjust mistakes to what I’ve been writing.

It’s really minor changes for my one and only reader so far, and you can download the updated version from Smashwords for whenever you want to read them again. Whoever gets the series now (and on Smashwords it’s still 9$ for 5 books…) will get the corrected version. I hadn’t sold any paperbacks, so I’m not worried about those, LOL!

I won’t blame you if you don’t want to read the Future Earth Chronicles now, though. A side effect of the Covid-19 pandemic? Reading got a lot harder. Especially reading sci-fi:

Lisa Yaszek is also trying to be kind to herself. These days, the last thing the professor of science-fiction studies wants to do is read more science fiction. She already feels as if she’s living through a disaster, Yaszek said. She doesn’t need the excitement of somebody else’s.

Of course, she said, some might find comfort in dystopian stories, like E.M. Forster’s “The Machine Stops,” about a world where society lives underground, reliant on a giant machine to provide its needs, and the machine breaks down. The parallels are obvious.

Lots of science fiction is inherently optimistic, said Yaszek, who teaches at the Georgia Institute of Technology. It’s about the possibility that people might put down their differences and work together. Reading those narratives can feel discomforting right now, she said, because when you’re done, you return to this imperfect world, where people are making imperfect choices.

So don’t worry, the series will still be out there, possibly with five or six more books, when this is over! 🙂 We’re living through history, and it’s obviously keeping our minds busy with all the bombardment of contrasting news about the pandemic. Be kind to yourself and carry on! 🙂

What are your best practices? I can’t “write by committee” because I started on my own. In this time of upset, I moved brainstorming from drawing to playing Bubble Witch Saga 3 (sue me! 😉 ) and by now I’m well adjusted at doing my first draft on my writing laptop instead of longhand. The writing is not suffering, it’s everything else that went on the backburner! 🙂

Althoug I updated both the Future Earth Chronicles and the Star Minds Universe series pages. I’m still pondering if I should change the covers of Future Earth Chronicles – at least the ebooks. I’m working on new ones, experimenting before I buy the images for the next five or six books! 🙂

And our mighty curator A.L. Butcher put out another bundle! Here Be Aliens is now live on BundleRabbit and the usual suspects. In this bundle you can find Adventurer, the first of the Star Minds Lone Wolves books, along with a few more. Or you can check the series discounted on Smashwords (the first 7 books are 30%off as mentioned on this list of discounted titles).

This is science fantasy/space opera, so it should take you away from this planet for a while (although Adventurer starts on a different future Earth, where we have joined the Star Nations and are traveling to space, yay!). It’s also alternate future because the shift happened back in 2012! 🙂

Also, for your reading (dis?)pleasure, the trainwreck… of traditional publishing. I shall stay tuned for the indie version. The IASFA has also a Facebook group. And they’re NOT like the Author Guild mentioned by Kris Rusch in her post, that’s for sure.

Now off to working on the next book of Future Earth Chronicles... Have a great week! 🙂

 

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


Stories from the Twilight Zone. Foreword by Anne Serling. In my father's final interview he said that he felt his writing was "momentarily adequate." And, when asked what he wanted people to say about him, as a writer, a hundred years from then, he responded, "I don't care that they're not able to quote any single line that I've written. But just that they can say, 'Oh, he was a writer. Thatìs sufficiently an honored position for me.'"

and that’s enough for me as well!

So I wrote. Slowly but steadily working on the current WIP and planning the next book with Google maps and Wikipedia and all that stuff needed when writing in the real world, in places I’ve never been to (and never will, at least in the current case – Africa is too hot for my tastes). 12K last week, and I’m almost done with Book 7 too. Onward to book 8 this week, I guess.

I was thinking I wouldn’t extend the Smashwords sale, but after reading Kris Rusch’s post, I decided to do it at least for Future Earth Chronicles – with 9$ you get 5 ebooks and a complete arc about life after the apocalypse! And since it was either all or nothing, here’s the list of the discounted books again… only on Smashwords, extended to May 31!

And I also have a new title out – the last of the Lone Wolves, Fabio, who almost speaks like his great uncle Daniele, since even though Earth is now part of the Star Nations in this alternate future, he still grew up in Rome and sometimes uses the same words that probably drove text-to-speech and other software crazy in the Trilogy or wherever Daniele was present! 😉

And of course it was already live when I realized I used the wrong background image (the watermarked version, not the actual JPG) on the cover… so one hour on Sunday late afternoon, just before dinner, was spent changing the cover everywhere, including Facebook. You can tell I’m not really myself from the rookie mistakes on the latest two titles! 😉

Next month more Team’s missions… meanwhile, happy reading! I’m currently on those Stories from the Twilight Zone that I mention above, having finished at least one of the bundles I still have on KK.

Another Kickstarter worth backing if you’re a writer – Writing Bundles (and workshops)! I am not ready to launch anything, maybe next year or later, but I’m keeping an eye on projects and will post the links here if I think they might interest you.

A friend of mine has a new ebook out, And Then…: An Assortment of 12 Delectable Tea-time Cookies (link to Amazon.com), a collection of 12 quick-to-read and delightful-to-savor stories in various genres. Also, there’s this new anthology out – no, I’m not in it, but I thought you might enjoy it:

It’s time to turn the “man and his dog wandering through a dystopian world” trope on its head, and tell the stories about cats and their women – their badass women!

CAT LADIES OF THE APOCALYPSE
Available in print and ebook from your favorite online retailers

RE: Covid-19, if you have enough of all this misinformation gone viral, here you have a few fact-checking by an expert trying to stop this. The guys knows his stuff. Feel free to follow all the links he gives. Also, if you wonder why some people are still not staying at home, here’s a research explaining our psychological response to Covid-19.

And here’s some words of wisdom about it all from The Chuck Wendig himself. I guess we’re all broken right now, and even if I’m still writing, it doesn’t mean that I feel good. I’m seeing a lot of things going in the backburner and my expectations are null – I have lost them and don’t see them anywhere around me. I will need some searching to get back on track.

Ending on a ligher mode, if you want to chuckle, check the 13 wildest conspiracy theories of all times, starting from Covid-19 is caused by 5G (debunked above)… But onward we go! Have a great week! 🙂

 

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


Last week I ended up writing 17K+, which brought the yearly total to 150K, which means that on week 15 I caught up with the wordcount. To reach my goal of 500K/year I need to write 10K/week with two weeks off… so at the moment, I’m back on track and can still take two weeks off to go somewhere in the second half of the year, if things have settled down. Yay! 🙂

And like I announced on the publisher’s page, the new title is now complete, so I’m posting the cover. Still a short novel, but at least it has flashbacks! 🙂 You can now know a little more about Alex’s past! 🙂

If you write SFF, you know have two options of professional organizations looking out for you. The SFWA that is more traditionally oriented and has the Writer Beware blog, and the IASFA, that is indie-oriented… set up by Craig Martelle of 20BooksTo50K, it’s starting to build up… and it’s free to join! 🙂 I can say I was among the first 15 members, LOL!

A nice post on how to cope right now. Be kind, to yourself and others. Yes, I miss the coffee shop coffee and having lunch with a colleague or three, but we’ll get over it. Yes, it was a lonely Easter time, but I’m sending out tonz of virtual hugs for whoever needs them right now. And yes, I sometimes hold my hand, especially when I go to sleep, just to remind myself I’m still alive and still human.

Also, here’s the truth about introverts. Yes, it’s hard on us too. And yes, I’m lucky I still get to go to work three days a week to get my dose of people. I don’t look forward to when it will be all peopley out there, but I hear ya – introvert or extrovert, we’re all grieving these days.

And if you feel you need help to re-organize your life during lockdown, follow Kris Rusch’s advice. Also, prepare for the ultimate gaslighting – I think it’s going to be all over the world, not just in America. I had wished the world would stop, and now it has stopped, which is more or less fine with me, if the rest of the world wasn’t reacting so badly! 😉

I hope you might consider this: what happened is inexplicably incredible. It’s the greatest gift ever unwrapped. Not the deaths, not the virus, but the Great Pause. It is, in a word, profound. Please don’t recoil from the bright light beaming through the window. I know it hurts your eyes. It hurts mine, too. But the curtain is wide open. What the crisis has given us is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to see ourselves and our country in the plainest of views. At no other time, ever in our lives, have we gotten the opportunity to see what would happen if the world simply stopped. Here it is. We’re in it. Stores are closed. Restaurants are empty. Streets and six-lane highways are barren. Even the planet itself is rattling less (true story). And because it is rarer than rare, it has brought to light all of the beautiful and painful truths of how we live. And that feels weird. Really weird. Because it has…never…happened…before.

And, like he says,

From one citizen to another, I beg of you: take a deep breath, ignore the deafening noise, and think deeply about what you want to put back into your life. This is our chance to define a new version of normal, a rare and truly sacred (yes, sacred) opportunity to get rid of the bullshit and to only bring back what works for us, what makes our lives richer, what makes our kids happier, what makes us truly proud.

I finally started using those codes for RakutenTV and… I wasn’t impressed. I watched Sir – the only Indian movie I hadn’t seen that was available (there’s no Bollywood at all in their selection) – and the only options were Hindi (without subtitles) or Italian. So I had to watch the dubbed version (with the silly subtitle “Cinderella in Mumbai”), which wasn’t too bad since I didn’t know any of the actors and what they actually sound like.

Until we got to the part where the two sisters discuss Choti’s future husband. I have no idea why the people adapting this movie for dubbing put in Brad Pitt’s name, jerking me out of the movie in a heartbeat. 1) how can an Indian man look like Brad Pitt? Keanu Reeves is more likely, right? Oh, but nobody knows how to pronounce that, so forget it. 2) I’m watching an Indian movie about a maid who always wear a sari and they talk about a Hollywood celebrity? They might as well have used an Italian actor for Italian watchers… if they really didn’t want to use an Indian star’s name.

I tried to understand what they were saying in the original (probably Marathi, since it didn’t sound like Hindi – she’s from a small village near Mumbai), but the only name I could catch was Rajveer (I think). I mean, I understand trying to adapt (like the subtitles of ZNMD where they translated Manju into Romeo, but it was less jarring than this Brad Pitt thing and I was able to ask about the actual line to Hindi speakers), but this was really off-putting.

Come on, people, give us non-speakers some credit when we watch your movies. We want to watch and understand your culture, not see it whitewashed just in case we don’t get it. Sheesh. Besides that, I think it was a nice, realistic story that showed me something of India. I’m not surprised the movie received so many awards all over the world. I agree with this user’s review completely.

A beautifully thought provoking film!

12 November 2018 | by taherailseahmadSee all my reviews

It is really a film worth watching, the story and characters stay on with you in a fine, beautifully quiet manner even when the film is over! A wonderfully subtle but very definitely thought provoking film with a realistic story line!

Anyhow, I was reminded why I hate dubbed movies. The other three on my list should be English or Italian movies, so I can watch the original without subtitles. And I guess I’ll stick to DVDs whenever available for the time being. Watching on my laptop wasn’t the best experience, and I don’t have a smart TV – don’t want one, I don’t use it enough anyway.

On Sunday (Easter), I rewatched 12 Monkeys – remember when 5billions were supposed to die from an airborne virus back in 1996/1997? Well, we had another twenty years, and there aren’t that many deaths yet, probably will never be (that’s more what happened in my Future Earth Chronicles sometimes in the 21st century, but I will not tell the whole story of the apocalypse, ever – and by the way, last days to get the series half-price on Smashwords).

And that’s all for today… have a great week, stay safe and keep social distancing for a little longer. You can do it! Hugs! 🙂

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