Wednesday Weekly Roundup


And the last Ghost Bus Riders book is out! Again sending to the publisher’s page for the blurb and everything. I also uploaded the paperbacks for all three, although you might want to wait for me to tell you they’re fine! 😉

I noticed I had to put a higher cover price on Amazon.AU and I’m using this to warn my Australian readers that some of my books are on sale on eBay Australia at a much higher price. Even if you hate Amazon and don’t want to buy from them, I don’t see why you should pay 50AUD for a paperback on eBay… just saying!

Last week I had written 6k+ when I realized this story and another I already wrote needed to become a novel. So I’m happily back to a longer work, which means my wordcount should increas in the coming week(s) as I try to fill in the blanks and make it a nice, gripping story (hopefully).

It will be published next year, but it’s a good start! I will probably write another novel for that mini-series as well, exploring that world, so it’s another long title to write next (along with a couple more that I have in mind, one spawned by a short story, the other a serial novel or something).

So even if this year is less productive than the last, I’m not being too hard on myself. If you feel you’ve hit a writing wall, check Kris Rusch‘s take on it.

Be kind to yourself. If you would tell a writer friend to take a day off in your situation, then take that day. Figure out how to treat yourself fairly and well.

Because that’s the thing that will get you writing again. Not pressure, not mentally cracking a whip.

Kindness.

Just a friendly reminder, in these tough times.

And that’s why I’m not berating myself if I won’t reach my 500K. I know I can do it again, when I’m not grieving for my life in shambles (and I’m lucky, I shouldn’t complain, but the sudden changes were really a trauma for me) and my health improves.

Just keep writing and reading and take care of yourself. I have plenty of books with all the Kickstarters I backed in the past months, but I’d like to suggest you one more, in case you don’t have enough. Thunderpaws & The Tower of London is about a cat and some British humor. Have a great week! 🙂

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


That sale I had last year at the anthology workshop? It’s one of them! I have no idea of when it will actually land in your inbox, so you better go grab your Halloween Spectacular Calendar! It makes a great gift too!

Here’s how it works:

Every day, starting on October 25, 2021, and running through November 2, 2021, you will get an original short story sent to you (or the recipient of your choice) via email.

Each seasonally themed tale is accompanied by an introduction by the editor of the Halloween Calendar of Stories, Mark Leslie.

You will get each story in ebook format (epub and mobi), so you can read them daily on your own device, anywhere, anytime you choose. Or you can store them up and binge on a weekend.

Your choice.

As an added bonus, all subscribers will receive the Halloween Harvest anthology, which includes all nine stories, plus two bonus stories! Halloween Harvest will be released just two days after the calendar ends, on November 4.

Stay tuned for more – and the announcement of my story in the calendar! 🙂

click on image to go to site

I think I realized what changed in my writing and why I’m no longer having fun. I used to write stories based on “movies” streaming in my head. I started losing that “sight” some time ago, in theory to learn my craft, add setting and so one.

Result: now I write prose in my head and it’s not as much fun. I should try to get back to writing movies but with the depth and setting and all the other stuff. Except currently I can’t even see those stories that I used to tell myself (not for public consumption because, hey, not everything we do creatively is for public consumption! 😉 ), so I’m probably burned out somehow.

That’s why I’m taking it easy this year. I want to get back my inspiration – I don’t even see Da Muses anymore! So, I want them back in my mind to create more awesome stories. Although I’m also changing topics and veering into historical time travel, there’s still room for them.

Clearly taking inspiration from still pictures is not the same thing as having a real person in mind! About the Ghost Bus Riders, I still have a virtual cast, although I couldn’t put them on the cover, but for other stories/series it was no longer the case. So, back to my roots!

This week I wrote only a short story for an anthology and the weekend was busy. I’m mostly done with physiotherapy (feeling better, thank you), so hopefully next week I’ll have more writing time and will start the next project.

It’s still short works for now, but I want to complete another Themed Collection before I move on. You will get one at the end of the month and one in December, but I need one for the new year as well! 🙂 Then we’ll see.

Next weekend I’ll upload the last Ghost Bus Riders book and publish also the three paperbacks. Meanwhile, you can check out Crunchy With Chocolate – dragon stories that include one of mine… how cool is that? 🙂

Readers can receive a 15% discount off the ebook by using code JS72Q at Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1106225

Readers can receive a 15% discount off the physical book by using code Dragons2 at the WolfSinger Publications website: https://www.wolfsingerpubs.com/shop?Collection=2021+Releases

These codes expire on Oct 22nd

And WMG is doing a Fall Special Workshop Sale – their workshops are half price only until Sunday. Check them out! 🙂

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

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


First big announcement: new title, yay! Book 2 of the Ghost Bus Riders is now out on all retailers! Stay tuned for Book 3… (and again, since the new WP dashboard doesn’t collaborate, head for the publisher’s page to read the blurb, thank you).

Kickstarter chapter is closed, with a hundred more thanks to those awesome backers. I sent out the rewards on Saturday, and being such a small thing, it took me about one hour. I can’t imagine how long it would take if I had hundreds of backers!

I’m getting better at dealing with Kicksarter’s dashboard too – I found unread messages and other stuff I had ignored so far while working on my campaign. I learned to go there and check at least once a week to see if there are other annoucements that don’t reach my inbox.

And they have a neat button to “report spam” which I used gleefully on the first day (someone offering exposure and a backing pledge that would probably never materialize anyway) and even more gleefully when the Kickstarter was done and funded (these people clearly can’t read if the campaign is still going or not, how can they help me with visibility? 😉 )

Anyhow, moving on, maybe I’ll do another next year. This week I have to finish a few shorts to send Mighty Editor next week, but I’m still quite busy. I feel like I’m working full-time again, but it’s actually medical stuff (and renewing my ID) that keep me busy on afternoons. Hopefully I’ll manage to finish whatever I need to finish.

Production-wise, last week was low again, for the same reason as this week. I wrote 4600words and managed to wrap the October project (hints in the newsletter coming out tomorrow, you still have time to subscribe to it) so I can send it to Mighty Editor next week along with the story I hope to write this week.

Then I’ll probably go back to Otherside and write a few more stories for that one… or maybe I’ll start the new project. We’ll see! 🙂 Have a great week!

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


And the Kickstarter stress is over, yay! And it funded at the last minute, thanks to a very special person! Now I’ll be busy preparing the rewards, so even less time for writing this week, but I’ll catch up – I’m between projects anway, LOL!

Maybe next year I’ll do another, for a different series. I certainly learned a lot with my first attempt, and I thank again all backers for believing in me! 🙂 And if you’re a backer, your reward is on the way as soon as I figure out how to do it! 😀 (and if you didn’t select a reward, I have already thanked you)

Last week I wrote a little over 9K and this week I probably won’t write much, since most afternoons are busy with the above, physio and going through the next Ghost Bus Riders book that just came back from Mighty Editor. Gotta hit that “publish” button in the weekend, it will have to be ready, LOL!

The rest of the month I will write more short stories to submit to various anthologies – actually, for the rest of the year I’m probably writing short stories, and will start on the next long-form project in January. Maybe. We’ll see.

I hope to announce an anthology I’m part of soon, the editor sent us the proof and the cover and both look great, so stay tuned! 🙂

This is quite short, but not much else is happening, so I’ll go back to my editing and wish you a wonderful week! 🙂

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


And for my brag shelves, I give you the anthologies I was in lately! Check out both the Blaze Ward Presents series and the Curated Anthologies series for more titles! 🙂 Both are available in ebook and paperback! 🙂

Write-wise I wrote less than 8K last week, but seemingly wrapped the trilogy. I’m going through it this week, so I probably won’t be writing much until today, although I might catch up with wordcount between tomorrow and the weekend.

I’ve been suffering from impostor syndrome lately, or maybe it’s Terminological Inexactitude Syndrome? I mean, writing is not a “real” job, is it? One cannot make a living with it? I don’t know, some things fit, some don’t, maybe the diagnostics are all wrong…

Which means that once again I don’t fit into any box! 🙂 Neither does my writing, apparently, or it wouldn’t be so hard to sell. Sigh. The link above is a fun read anyway! 🙂

Last day to back the Kickstarter for Pulphouse Fiction Magazine Subscription Drive! We have unlocked that sixth stretch goal, so we’ll get that “Pop-Up: Can I Sell Without Promotion?”! And lots of other goodies… 🙂

I’m getting a slight addiction to TikTok… the new phone had the app installed, so opening the account wasn’t hard. I even found a thingy to make videos from scrolling webpages, so some of my videos are just that. It hasn’t brought any sales yet, but then, I’m doing it for fun right now.

But mostly I spend a lot of time watching videos (with no sound) amd I found out that if I hit the ❤ A) I can find them again later and rewatch them and B) it refines the algorithm and it will show me more videos I might like – can’t tell how many crap videos I saw before I managed to refine the search! 😀

Anyhow, it’s been fun… until it lasts. That’s all for today from still too hot Rome, Italy… have a great week! 😀

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! 😉 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! 😀 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! 🙂

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! 🙂 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! 😉 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! 🙂

Wednesday Weekly Roundup


And welcome to post number… two. Five. Zero. Zero. Yes! TWO THOUSAND FIVE HUNDRED posts on this blog since 2009! 🙂 Gone from daily posts to weekly posts, and even though blogging is no longer a thing, I’ll keep going for a little longer.

The writing is still slow (less than 2K again) because I spent a lot of time editing and formatting and making covers last week, and this week I have guests and some traveling to do. Hopefully next week I’ll catch up, but for now I’m at 220K for the year, so I’m not complaining.

I saw the warning about changed on BundleRabbit and now I’m starting to see what it’s becoming. It’s not fully ready yet, so I’ll post about it next week, when I’ll head there to set up the next curated anthology for Sci-fi July. It has changed (moan) but has added some very interesting features I hope to use in the future (yay!).

For you KU authors, there’s a wake-up call. The ever-changing landscape of indie publishing is going through another shift, maybe not this year, but it’s coming. I have only certain Italian titles in KU (and Lisa’s Odyssey), so it won’t affect me much.

Although I haven’t really built an audience elsewhere, but you can find me on Amazon, Apple, Barnes&Noble, Kobo, Smashwords and DriveThru already. Probably more in the future, especially if some of the above features pan out. I hope eventually to be able to sell from my own website, but it won’t be in the next couple of years.

I enrolled all my books in the Smashwords July Summer/Winter sale – everything 50% off from tomorrow and until the end of July, except for 99c titles and the new one coming next week (or possibly earlier, since I’ll be traveling soon).

Now back to prepping those new titles! And since I skipped a month or three, I’ll add some Words of Wisdom/Writers on Writing/what-have-you below! Have a great week! 🙂

***

Kill your darlings.

It is, as with all pieces of writing advice, good advice.

Until it’s not.

Meaning, no one single piece of writing advice is a one-size-fits-all unitasker. Nearly all pieces of writing advice — with maybe the exception of FINISH YOUR SHIT — can easily be Judo-flipped onto its back. Nearly every piece of writing advice and its opposite is true, at some point, for many writers. And it’s vital we not be rigorous with what we feel are these chestnuts of writing advice. These chestnuts must, in fact, be roasted time and time again to bring out their nuttiest, most delectable flavor.

(…)

And as I said above, it’s good advice, until it’s not.

More to the point, Kill Your Darlings (besides from being a great band name) is 101-class writing advice. It’s entry-level, as are most of the authorial platitudes. Show Don’t Tell? Sure, great, until the time comes when you need to tell the reader something. Write What You Know? Go for it, until you realize you don’t know a whole lotta shit, and if you take that advice too literally you’ll never write a goddamn thing that isn’t you sitting at the keyboard writing about writing about writing. Never Use Adverbs, For They Are Wizard Prisons! Great, great advice, perfectly golden always and forever, oh, except the words “always” and “forever” are motherfucking adverbsWriters Write Every Day — except until they don’t, and some write every week, or every month, some write 2000 words a day, some write 15000 words once a month, some write for a couple hours, or four, or eight, some write to music, some write to the screams of the people they have trapped under their floorboards. Open With An Action Sequence, except action sequences don’t always give the proper context, and also, what if you’re not writing action?

Chuck Wendig

The fact is, I don’t know where my ideas come from. Nor does any writer. The only real answer is to drink way too much coffee and buy yourself a desk that doesn’t collapse wen you beat your head against it.

– Douglas Adams

12 Strategies to Help You Deal With the Stressors Blocking You From Writing

Life is stressful. You can write anyway.

1. Focus on one thing at a time. Multitasking (usually) doesn’t work.

2. Break big scary tasks into small less scary pieces. Tackle one piece at a time.

3. Prioritize the things that need to get done today. Finish those first.

4. Don’t forget to breathe.

5. Write something that makes you feel good — no “strings” attached.

6. Treat writing as a reward, not an item to check off your list.

7. Speaking of lists … try making shorter ones. Just TRY.

8. Remember that it’s sometimes better not to write than to write poorly. Sometimes.

9. Take a few days off from writing if you have to — but only a few!

10. Or, alternate between writing days and writing “off” days.

11. Don’t beat yourself up when you don’t write. It’s OK to have a bad day.

12. Give yourself a pat on the back for every good writing day. Cherish those moments. Smile.

Meg Dowell

TAKE CHANCES, DON’T JUST PLAY THE MARKET

I need to write what I’m passionate about. If I don’t, the reader knows. Understanding the market is fine, and I’m not saying it’s entirely without influence, but writing is a labor of love. I need to be able to sustain that love over the course of the boring bits, right? Not every scene can be a character returning from the dead or a car chase or a shower scene.

KD Edward

What are the rules of Writer Club? Well, since you asked…

1. The First Rule of Writer Club is that long-term success is always about building readership.
2. The Second Rule of Writer Club is that any success you have in achieving the first rule does nothing to hurt the chances of mine.
3. The Third Rule of Writer Club is that it’s okay to talk about Writer Club.

Ron Collins

That blaming of the writer, and that emphasis on the words is reflexive. It’s what we were taught in school.

However, this craft we call “writing” isn’t about words. It’s about telling stories. And there is no secret scale that makes one story better than another.

It’s all about taste.

So it’s time, writers, to stop blaming your colleagues when one of their books doesn’t satisfy you. Maybe the book isn’t to your taste. Maybe you don’t like that sort of story. Maybe the writer didn’t tell the story the way you would have told the story.

All valuable ways of looking at fiction. But you as a writer have to stop using that invisible scale inculcated in us when we were children—in a different world, one run by a handful of people who had a stranglehold on publishing. That scale does not exist. It never existed. There is no perfect novel. Nor is there—from a writer of Nora’s caliber—“merely adequately readable prose.”

If you start admitting that a book isn’t to your taste, you free yourself up to read—and write—things that take risks. You can write books that don’t belong on that imaginary scale. You can drop the chains that force you to struggle with that scale, and start writing things that interest you.

You can find the freedom to write what you love. But only if you stop blaming other writers.

It’s all taste, folks. And your taste is as valid as mine. It’s just different. And that’s okay.

Kris Rusch

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! 😦

But I’m taking it easy this year. I’m switching gears in all possible ways, writing in new genres and experimenting! 🙂 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!

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